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Hardcover
 

 

 

SADDLE SOLDIERS, The Civil War Correspondence of General William Stokes of the 4th South Carolina Cavalry

by Lloyd Halliburton

285 pages.  6 x 9. 1993.

 ISBN 9780878441976  

Softcover $19.95

 

 

   

 

These letters, dating from 1861 to 1865, give us a personal account of Civil War activities in South Carolina, North Carolina, & Virginia. General Stokes' outfit saw some of the heaviest fighting of the war, including numerous battles that were connected with the defense of Petersburg & Richmond. In his letters, however, he underplays the danger of death, sparing the reader the gruesome details of combat & the morbidity of his surroundings, & focuses instead on the facts, providing an eloquent account of the operations of war. Although 2nd in command of his outfit, the frequent absence of his superior officer forced primary responsibility of command on Stokes. His cool, unselfish leadership is evident & his confidence in his men, the war's cause, & his own abilities is steadfast--right through to the final painful disbanding of the regiment in April 1865 & the inevitable surrender of the South. Although all Regiment records were burned at the end of the war, the letters & memorabilia of General William Stokes, made available by his great granddaughter, preserve the history of South Carolina's 4th Calvary.

 

From the jacket:

By the end of the Civil War the gallant 4th South Carolina Regiment had distinguished itself in some of the war's fiercest fighting.  Its commander William Stokes, then a lieutenant colonel, disbanded the regiment and sent his men home.  During the night, the teamsters and mules assigned to the headquarters wagon burned rather than have the regiment's records fall into enemy hands.  The fire destroyed its proud history.

Lloyd Halliburton has reconstructed the story of the 4th South Carolina Cavalry from General Stokes' personal correspondence and memorabilia, since little information exists in the National  Archives.  Thus, Saddle Soldiers fills a gap, not only in the account of cavalry action in the war, but in preservation of the experiences of a brave commander whose conduct in battle in garrison provided model leadership.

This four-year history exemplifies devotion to duty, sensitivity to others, and describes a chivalric era.  Saddle Soldiers tells not of a "lost cause"; rather speaks of a job well done.

 

Lloyd Halliburton was born in Shreveport, Louisiana.  He received an A.B. from Centenary College and, as a National Defense Graduate Fellow, the M.A. and Ph.D. in romance philology from Louisiana State University.  He was a Fullbright Fellow at the Universadad de Valladolid and later did research as a Post-Doctoral Fellow of the National Endowment for the Humanities in Madrid.

The author of two previous books, Columbia en la poesia and a novel Hendaye, he has also contributed literary criticism, poetry, and fiction to a number of journals in Spain, Colombia, and the United States.  Dr. Halliburton has taught at the University of Nortre Dame, Centenary College, University of Virginia, University of North Carolina, Georgia Military College, and the Virginia Military Institute, where he was Assistant Commander.  He  presently lives in Louisiana.

 

 

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