The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 29, July 1925 - April, 1926 Page: 242
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242 Southwestern Historical Quarterly
so much opposition both among the people and from the Bureau
of Conscription at Richmond that he was relieved of his duties.
The Bureau itself came under fire, but held on until Congress
abolished it in March, 1865.
The confusion in the administration of the law is reflected in
the fragmentary and unreliable statistical records of what it ac-
complished. It is impossible to make even a satisfactory guess as
to the number of conscripts who were sent to the army in the
Trans-Mississippi area, and Professor Moore does not try. For
the states east of the river he merely follows the figures of Super-
intendent Preston, namely, that 177,121 men had been "disposed
of by the conscription service," of whom only 81,993 had actually
been put into the army. But he thinks that directly and indirectly
the law replenished the army to the number of some 300,000. He
concludes that the act on the whole was justified, for without com-
pulsory service the Confederacy must have collapsed in 1862. This
seems a sound conclusion.
Perhaps the most useful parts of the book are those depicting
the weakness and difficulties of Confederate administration, the
wholesale evasion of conscription, the break-down of popular
morale, the desertions from the army, the attitude of the courts
and of the enemies of the Davis administration. It is noticeable
that the sympathy of the author for Davis seems to grow with the
troubles which beset the Confederate president. The humor which
enlivens the first part of the narrative soon disappears as though
the sense of impending tragedy made it seem out of place.
The book is a valuable contribution to the history of the struggle
for southern independence and no serious student of the war can
afford to neglect it. But it is not without defects, some of which
are both needless and irritating. It lacks a bibliography. No
great publishing house should print a book of this kind-one de-
signed primarily for the special student-without a bibliography.
The need for it is made the greater by the careless way in which
some of the footnote citations are made. For instance, there is
nothing to indicate, beyond a vague statement in the preface, where
the newspapers referred to are to be found. Again, some of these
papers are sufficiently obscure to require the name of the place
where published, but usually the place is not given. There are a
number of errors which are due to carelessness of statement or to
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 29, July 1925 - April, 1926, periodical, 1926; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117141/m1/262/: accessed September 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.