The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 59, July 1955 - April, 1956 Page: 238
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
ence yielded in the end to malignity and graft." Grant was de-
scribed by his friends as the greatest of his age, the savior of his
country. Taylor said that "it was inevitable that he should begin
by believing some of this, and end by believing it all." About
General Jackson's silence and other idiosyncrasies Taylor dashed
off these lines: "If silence is golden, he was a bonanza. He sucked
lemons, ate hard-tack, and drank water, and praying and fighting
appeared to be his idea of the 'whole duty of man.' "
General Taylor reserved one of his harshest appraisals for E.
Kirby Smith, commander of the Trans-Mississippi Department,
whom he described as "pig-headed," "obstinate," and "stupid." In
evaluating Smith's conduct of the affairs of his department he said
that "The Commander of the Trans-Mississippi Department had
the power to destroy the last hope of the Confederate cause, and
he exercised it with all the success of a Bazaine at Metz." In re-
flecting on what might have been the fate of the Confederacy had
Albert Sidney Johnston lived he wrote that "had it been possible
for one heart, one mind and one arm to save her cause, she lost
them when Albert Sidney Johnston fell on the field of Shiloh.
Other men, Lee, Davis, McClellan, Stanton, J. E. Johnston, Buell,
Buckner, and many others are thus masterfully analyzed and de-
The spritely style, literary allusions, scintillating humor, in-
cisive thinking, keen observations, and the perfect abandon with
which the General wrote of men in high places in the Confederacy
will delight and fascinate the reader. Furthermore, each page of
the narrative is laden with stark realism, charged with the feeling
that "you are there." One sees the charge of the cavalry, the flash
of the bayonet, and the onslaught of the infantry; hears the roar
of the cannon, the uneven cadence of marching men, the cries of
the dying; feels the sadness of defeat, the tragedy of death, and
the exultation of victory. One feels also the nauseating emptiness
even of victory, the devastating dread of defeat, and the utter
futility of it all.
Southwest Texas State Teachers College
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 59, July 1955 - April, 1956, periodical, 1956; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101162/m1/264/: accessed May 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.