A humane and balanced portrait of the much maligned man who played a crucial role in the Civil War


General John Pope : a life for the nation       Peter Cozzens United States History Civil War 1861-1865 Campaigns, Pope, John 1822-1892 Urbana : University of Illinois Press, c 2000 Book. xii, 412 p., [14] p. of plates : ill., maps ; 24 cm. Includes bibliographical references (p. 385-403) and index. Clean, tight and strong binding. No highlighting, underlining or marginalia in text.  VG

Ambitious and outspoken, John Pope was one of the most controversial figures to hold high command during the Civil War, Reconstruction, and in the American West. General John Pope: A Life for the Nation is the first full biography of this much maligned figure who played crucial roles in both the Eastern and the Western Theaters of the Civil War.

Renowned Civil War scholar Peter Cozzens has mined Pope’s own memoirs and a wealth of other primary sources to provide a complete picture of this gifted strategist. Uncovering new information about Pope’s pre- and postwar career and his path to power, Cozzens delineates the political environment that surrounded Pope and provided the context for his actions.

Cozzens examines Pope’s early career first as commander of the Army of the Mississippi and then as leader of a hastily formed Army of Virginia against Robert E. Lee. After his famous defeat at the Second Battle of Bull Run, Pope was sent to the frontier. There he held important commands on the western plains over the next twenty-four years, all the while struggling to clear his reputation of the events at Second Bull Run. A principal architect of the Red River War, which broke the resistance of the Southern Plains Indians, Pope espoused humanitarian treatment of subjugated tribes and was recognized as one of the army’s leading authorities on Indian affairs.

In place of the simplistic caricature that has satisfied most historians, Cozzens has crafted an accurate, humane, balanced portrait of a complex man involved with the most complex issues of his day. A monumental work on a long-neglected figure, General John Pope offers a fresh look at a key nineteenth-century military leader as well as the most detailed analysis available of Federal leadership during the Second Bull Run campaign.

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