civil war union memoir

In one of the most pleasurable-to-read memoirs of the American Civil War by a private soldier, Ed Spangler’s 1904 book captures all of the horror, fear, humor, and thrill of the life of a real-life warrior.

“Young man, you are only five foot two—two inches too short.” I immediately stood on my toes and said, ‘“Try it again.” He did; and, winking, replied, “That’s all right.”

At Antietam, Marye’s Heights, Fredericksburg, and Chancellorsville, Spangler acknowledged that split-in-self between the horror of the sights and the thrill of battle, frequently relieved by black humor.

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