Gray Ghost : the life of Col. John Singleton Mosby James A. Ramage Soldiers Confederate States of America Biography, Mosby, John Singleton, 1833-1916 Lexington : University Press of Kentucky, c 1999 Hardcover. 1st ed., later printing. 428 p. : ill., map ; 24 cm. Map of Mosby’s Confederacy on end papers. Includes bibliographical references (p. -405) and index. Clean, tight and strong binding with clean dust jacket. No highlighting, underlining or marginalia in text. VG/VG
This is the first comprehensive biography of the renowned Confederate guerilla fighter from Viginia’s eastern slopes of the Blue Ridge [Gray Ghost] tells the fascinating story of the leader who not only revolutionized the art of the night raid during the Civil War, but who set the precedent for exploiting the psychology of fear to gain essential victories. The first half emphasizes Mosby’s psychological impact on Federal forces, particularly frustrated commanders such as Phil Sheridan, and stresses the guerrilla commander’s contributions to Southern pride.
Confederate John Singleton Mosby forged his reputation on the most exhilarating of military activities: the overnight raid. Mosby possessed a genius for guerrilla and psychological warfare, taking control of the dark to make himself the “Gray Ghost” of Union nightmares. Gray Ghost, the first full biography of Confederate raider John Mosby, reveals new information on every aspect of Mosby’s life, providing the first analysis of his impact on the Civil War from the Union viewpoint.
Mosby achieved far greater fame during the Civil War than the vast majority of the military officers who outranked him. Ramage disentangles Mosby from a mass of myth and misinformation, reaching judicious conclusions that never exaggerate the Virginian’s role in shaping the conflict.
He was, like Lee, a consumate gentleman and a dedicated Southerner who after the Civil War worked with and supported national leaders. Sadly in the second half, the South turns its back on Mosby after the War for supporting Grant for president and the State Department tries to suppress his exposing of corruption among appointed officers serving in foreign embassies. A readable, comprehensive portrait of the 80-year life of a gifted, thoroughly combative man who – like most who served with him – was more dedicated to the American ideal than 90% of northern officers and 99.995% of northern politicians.