Savas Beatie, 2017, 256 pp., $32.95
Image courtesy of amazon.com
There are certain volumes within Civil War scholarship that are well known to the masses, and some campaign specific studies tend to go along with that notion. The Generals of Gettysburg is one of those well known books specifying itself on intense campaign study. Now, Larry Tagg has offered a new study much in the same vein as The Generals of Gettysburg but with a different campaign. The Generals of Shiloh is a new work that gives the reader information regarding the commanders of the previous mentioned engagement and their actions while there. Once again, Mr. Tagg has given us a fine reference book that will be remembered and used for scholarship for the Shiloh Campaign.
Larry Tagg graduated from the University of Texas and is well known as a bass player and singer. He co-founded “Bourgeois Tagg” and enjoyed great success with the group in the mid 1980s. He also played bass for Tood Rundgren, Heart, Hall and Oates, and other musical groups. He has also taught High School English and drama while in Sacremento at the Humanities and International Studies Program. He is also the author of The Generals at Gettysburg and The Battles That Made Abraham Lincoln.
As stated in the introduction, The Generals of Shiloh is a fine reference book to the campaign that any student, or even master, of Shiloh should own. The format of the book is much like its predecessor and allows an ease of use to the researcher. As a book to read, some of the biographies of the commanders are quite interesting. Some of the commanders are well known while others have flown under the radar for years. That, in my opinion, is one of the nice things about this book. The war in the west has often been too ignored by many and therefore, many of the commanders who fought in this engagement are often too easily forgotten. Tagg, by using this format he used in his Gettysburg book, has brought to light some of the more interesting characters of this war I have only briefly read about. On top of the biographies about the generals, there are many sections in the book that give details on the army and brigade level of what occurred during battle. Right after the biography of the commander is a narration as to what their branch performed during the conflict. There is no doubt in my mind that this book gives me a larger appreciation for the Battle of Shiloh.
I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in the War in the West, in particular, the Battle of Shiloh. The format gives many researchers and ease of use and if one is going through the text to read it, they will find some fascinating, well written narrations of what occurred at this conflict. Overall, I hope to see more books like this in the future from Mr. Tagg and some of the other major battles throughout the Civil War. Highly recommended!