The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 85, July 1981 - April, 1982

Book Reviews

or the Orange and White or neither-these beautiful pictorial his-
tories belong on every Texan's bookshelf.
Southwest Texas State University WILLIAM C. POOL
One of Cleburne's Command: The Civil War Reminiscences and
Diary of Cap. Samuel T. Foster, Granbury's Texas Brigade, C.S.A.
Edited by Norman D. Brown. (Austin: University of Texas Press,
1980. Pp. xlvii+ 192. Introduction, biographical sketch, prologue,
maps, illustrations, index. $14.95.)
Although General Hiram B. Granbury's Texas Infantry Brigade
won high praise from its division commander, General Patrick H.
Cleburne, who is widely recognized as one of the very best Confederate
division leaders of the American Civil War, it has been generally over-
shadowed by John B. Hood's Texas Brigade, which served with dis-
tinction in the Army of Northern Virginia. The failure of Granbury's
Texans to receive the recognition they deserve is yet another example
of the long-time overemphasis on the eastern theater of the war. With
the publication of the reminiscences and diary of Captain Samuel T.
Foster, Twenty-fourth Texas Cavalry (dismounted), Granbury's Bri-
gade, editor Norman D. Brown has made a contribution toward giv-
ing Granbury's Texans more prominence in Civil War historiography.
Foster was a lawyer with an engaging, descriptive style of writing
(despite his grammatical errors). His reminiscences, not penned until
several years after the war, cover events from the battle at Arkansas
Post through April, 1864, at which point he began writing almost
daily diary entries during the Atlanta campaign from May to Septem-
ber, 1864. This is perhaps the most interesting part of the publication.
In more sketchy form Foster continues the diary to the end of the war.
Detailing everyday army life, recounting battles such as Chickamauga,
Chattanooga, Kennesaw Mountain, Franklin, and others, as well as
commenting on strategy, the merits of the western generals and of
President Jefferson Davis, Foster fashioned a vivid and interesting
narrative.
Speaking of Missionary Ridge, Foster says of the attacking federals,
"Still they advance, and still we shoot them down-and still they come.
Oh this is fun to lie here and shoot them down...." (p. 62) But on a
later occasion, after passing over a large number of dead Yankees, he
wrote that "it seems like they have nearly all been shot in the head,
and a great number of them have their skulls bursted open.... It don't

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 85, July 1981 - April, 1982. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101208/. Accessed August 21, 2014.