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By Robert L. O'Connell


William Tecumseh Sherman was once greater than only one of our best generals. Fierce Patriot is a daring, revisionist portrait of the way this iconic and enigmatic determine exerted an outsize effect at the American landscape—and the yank character.
America’s first “celebrity” common, William Tecumseh Sherman used to be a guy of many faces. a few have been exalted within the public eye, others recognized in basic terms to his intimates. during this daring, revisionist portrait, Robert L. O’Connell captures the fellow in complete for the 1st time. From his early exploits in Florida, via his exceptional yet tempestuous generalship throughout the Civil conflict, to his postwar profession as a key participant within the construction of the transcontinental railroad, Sherman was once, as O’Connell places it, the “human embodiment of happen Destiny.” this is Sherman the army strategist, a grasp of logistics with an uncanny take hold of of terrain and really good experience of timing. Then there's “Uncle Billy,” Sherman’s public personality, a charismatic hero to his troops and quotable catnip to the newspaper writers of his day. the following, too, is the personal Sherman, whose urge for food for girls, events, and the excessive lifetime of the hot York theater advanced his already turbulent marriage. Warrior, family members guy, American icon, William Tecumseh Sherman has ultimately came across a biographer useful of his protean presents. A masterful personality learn whose myriad insights are leavened with its author’s trademark wit, Fierce Patriot will stand because the crucial publication on Sherman for many years to come.

Praise for Fierce Patriot
“A really good exam of the various elements of the long-lasting Union general.”—General David Petraeus
“Sherman’s status in American background is bold. . . . it's difficult to visualize the other biography taking pictures all of it in one of these concise and enlightening fashion.”National Review
“A sharply drawn and propulsive march throughout the tortured psyche of the man.”The Wall highway Journal
“[O’Connell’s] narrative of the March to the ocean could be the easiest i've got ever read.”—Jonathan Yardley, The Washington Post
“A unbelievable, shrewdpermanent, clever, and robust book.”—Evan Thomas, writer of Ike’s Bluff

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He sought after not anything, or as low as attainable, to do with black freedmen as troops and despatched off a flow of blistering memos to that impact. all of it builds towards an hermetic, open-and-shut case—except for the testimony of the only real witness for the safety: the list of what Sherman really did. the actual fact is still that Sherman and his military catalyzed the liberation of numerous slaves—and did so within the so much remarkable model. The March throughout Georgia grew to become a highway convey for emancipation, placing to relaxation the inspiration that slaves have been by some means chuffed with their situation. you may say it broke the again of slavery and taken to fruition the Emancipation Proclamation. Granted, Sherman used to be now not precisely extremely joyful. As an army guy trying to movement as quick as attainable, he seen the freedmen who hooked up themselves to his military like such a lot of barnacles on a racing hull. yet he additionally knew from event that they have been his top resource of intelligence at the Confederates. it really is in those interrogations, a few of that have been preserved, that one other element of Sherman turns into obvious: He always taken care of those humans respectfully and with no condescension. Secretary of conflict Edwin M. Stanton came upon a similar factor whilst he raced to Savannah, anxious that Sherman may well jeopardize the confident racial surroundings the March had created. He quizzed a few black leaders approximately this, and to a guy, they maintained that Sherman had handled them easily as fellow humans. it's been argued that it used to be of their top curiosity to assert this, so it’s worthy stating an incident the place not anything used to be at stake. Years later, at a Yale college graduation, Sherman turned bored and, Sherman-like, walked out—only to be came across later on on a park bench, fortunately sharing cigars with a black guy with whom he had struck up a talk. Mere anecdotes, possibly, but additionally telling and constant ones contradicting the portrait of a virulent racist. Sherman craved crowds and ceremonies; either have been easy to his character and existence trend, starting with West aspect. Invite him and he’d be there—troop reunions, conventions, expositions, expert gatherings, testimonials, events, and weddings (especially weddings: he actually expired because the results of attending one too many), let alone as many theatrical performances as he may perhaps deal with. essentially, he loved being wherever he may well combine and mingle. after all, he used to be completely able to blowing a fuse should still the crowds press too shut or the handshakes turn into painful. “Out of my manner, rattling you! ” he may perhaps bellow. parents took little offense and stored exhibiting up—and so did Uncle Billy; he wanted them. surely, Sherman was once a manufactured from the higher crust; yet his sheer gregariousness turns out to have beaten classification attention. In individual, he seemed completely happy with the egalitarian enthusiasm that outlined mid-nineteenth-century the United States. but you'll by no means realize it from his correspondence: brimming with antidemocratic diatribes, darkish forebodings over social and exertions unrest, and an obvious willingness to take advantage of decisive strength to suppress them.

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