Shiloh: A Novel
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This fictional re-creation of the battle of Shiloh in April 1862 fulfills the standard set by his monumental history, conveying both the bloody choreography of two armies and the movements of the combatants' hearts and minds.
That was what roused me I believe, because for a minute I disremembered where I was. I thought I was back home, woke up early and laying in bed waiting for pa to come with the lantern to turn me out to milk (that was the best thing about the army: no cows) and ma was in the kitchen humming a hymn while she shook up the stove. But then I realized part of the sound was the breathing and snoring of the men all around me, with maybe a whimper or a moan every now and again when the bad dreams came,
been pleased to express toward me, it only remains to accord you the meeting proposed. I have designated 7 o’clock, a.m., tomorrow—and signed it: Your most obedient servant, A. S. Johnston. He had the choice of weapons, by the code, but as there were no dueling pistols available and as Huston had no experience with rapiers, with which Johnston himself was an expert, he agreed to use Huston’s horse pistols. They were hair-trigger weapons: Huston had a reputation for being able to light matches
I died. When a man gives his life for his country he wants to get the worth of it, if you see what I mean. Just before sundown they marched us away. Sherman’s men moved into their camps (without even a thank-you for us winning them back) and we went over to the far right and bivouacked near Owl Creek for the night. The mess crew came down from Stony Lonesome with our supper—beans again. Night closed in while we ate. We sat in a big huddle, dirty, dog tired. The moon, in its first quarter,
fight in. Forrest, however, had been watching for just such a position ever since we began the march. From time to time he would rein in his horse and look at the terrain, seeking a place to make a stand in case of attack. We couldnt believe that Grant, reinforced by fresh troops equal in numbers to his retiring enemy, would let us get away without some sort of pursuit, or at least the show of one, if for no other reason than to be able to report that he had chased us. The crest beyond the swale
and Polk. Beauregard was wagging his head, his big sad bloodhound eyes rimmed with angry red and his hands fluttering. He was obviously upset, which was understandable, for it was ten hours past the time when we should have been pressing them back against the river. When we rode up they turned and waited for General Johnston to speak, and when he had greeted them with that careful courtesy he always used, Beauregard began to repeat what he had been saying to the others. He favored canceling the