The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 79, July 1975 - April, 1976

Southwestern Historical Quarterly

them of blame for the conflict. He tells his story largely from the viewpoint
of fifteen participants, both Mexican and American, who left journals and
memoirs; and he does so in an engaging if occasionally excessively florid
style. One wishes that Weems had relied to a greater extent on available
monographic material, but one also suspects that he writes for an audience
less interested in diplomatic and political detail than in personal anecdotes
and gripping narrative accounts of stirring martial events. Factual errors
are few, and Weems's book is on the whole, both in tone and interest, the
more successful of the two works here under review. It is certainly not to
be sneered at by the "specialists." Bauer's scholarly treatment and Weem's
popular account are each in their own way very good if not excellent exam-
ples of their respective genres.
New Mexico State University GENE M. BRACK
The American Civil War. By Peter J. Parish. (New York: Holmes & Meier
Publishers, Inc., I975- Pp. 750. Table, maps, notes, index. $25.)
This large and extremely well written volume by Peter J. Parish of the
University of Glasgow describes the drama, the passions, and legacy of the
American Civil War. In a clear and moving narrative Professor Parish takes
his readers quickly through the events of the I850s that led to secession and
concentrates upon the events and men of the war itself. Although his
account adds little that is new, it represents a brilliant synthesis of recent
historical scholarship. Particularly impressive are the author's discussions
of organizational and logistical problems of the armies, the two societies at
war, and political factions within the Union and the Confederacy.
Any new, serious one-volume account of the Civil War era inevitably
must stand in comparison with the popular and durable standard, The Civil
War and Reconstruction by James G. Randall and David Donald. In this
respect, while The American Civil War will not replace Randall-Donald,
the Parish volume makes an impressive showing, especially for the reader
interested in the war years alone. Much less space is devoted to the pre-war
and Reconstruction years in Parish's work than in that by Randall and
Donald, but the military campaigns and political, social, and economic
developments of the war receive more attention in the Parish work than in
Randall-Donald. Both works have impressive bibliographies, but Parish
has the advantage of being more recent. There are no photographs in the
Parish volume (regrettable but not fatal if the publishers hope for college
text adoptions), but the maps of the military campaigns are numerous
(nineteen) and superbly drawn for clarity and understanding. Too, the final

242

Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 79, July 1975 - April, 1976. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101203/. Accessed September 21, 2014.