The Colors of Courage by Margaret S. Creighton
Gettysburg's Forgotten History: Immigrants, Women, and African Americans in the Civil War's Defining Battle

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Gettysburg has been written about and studied in great detail over the last 140 years, but there are still many participants whose experiences have been overlooked. In augmenting this incomplete history, Margaret Creighton presents a new look at the decisive battle through the eyes of Gettysburg's women, immigrant soldiers, and African Americans.An academic with a superb flair for storytelling, Creighton draws on memoirs, letters, diaries, and newspapers to get to the hearts of her subjects. Mag Palm, a free black woman living with her family outside of town on Cemetery Ridge, was understandably threatened by the arrival of Lee's Confederate Army; slavers had tried to capture her three years before. Carl Schurz, a political exile who had fled Germany after the failed 1848 revolution, brought a deeply held fervor for abolitionism to the Union Army. Sadie Bushman, a nine-year-old cabinetmaker's daughter, was commandeered by a Union doctor to assist at a field hospital. In telling the stories of these and a dozen other participants, Margaret Creighton has written a stunningly fluid work of original history--a narrative that is sure to redefine the Civil War's most essential battle.

About Margaret S. Creighton

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Margaret S. Creighton is Professor of History at Bates College. The author of Rites and Passages: The Experience of American Whaling, and co-editor of Iron Men, Wooden Women: Gender and Seafaring in the Atlantic World, 1700-1920. She lives in Yarmouth, Maine.
Published July 31, 2008 by Basic Books. 360 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences, War. Non-fiction

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The Battle of Gettysburg, historian Edward Lilenthal once wrote, is “the symbolic center of American history.” If so, rejoins Creighton (History/Bates College), then the center needs to be expanded to embrace other actors apart from the warriors of July 1863.

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