Catalogue


An uncommon soldier : the Civil War letters of Sarah Rosetta Wakeman, alias Private Lyons Wakeman, 153rd Regiment, New York State Volunteers /
edited by Lauren Cook Burgess ; with a foreword by James M. McPherson.
imprint
New York : Oxford University Press, 1995.
description
xvii, 110 p. : ill., maps ; 21 cm.
ISBN
0195102436
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
added author
imprint
New York : Oxford University Press, 1995.
isbn
0195102436
general note
Originally published: Pasadena, Md. : Minerva Center, 1994.
catalogue key
1409456
 
Includes bibliographical references (p. 103-108) and index.
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
Lauren Cook Burgess is Associate Vice Chancellor for University Relations at Fayetteville State University.
Reviews
Review Quotes
"A fascinating story, and retold by just the right person--Burgess once went to court to win the right to participate in previously all-male Civil War battle re-enactments."--San Jose Mercury News
"Author Lauren Cook Burgess fill the...book's...pages with lengthyexplanatory notes, photographs, maps, and orders of battles."--The Herald, RockHill, SC
"Author Lauren Cook Burgess fill the...book's...pages with lengthy explanatory notes, photographs, maps, and orders of battles."--The Herald, Rock Hill, SC
"A work of exceptional importance....Remarkable."--Blue and GreyMagazine
"A work of exceptional importance....Remarkable."--Blue and Grey Magazine
"Burgess has done remarkable detective work in editing the letters and inpiecing together the story of Wakeman's life up to the time of herdeath."--Georgia Historical Quarterly
"Burgess has done remarkable detective work in editing the letters and in piecing together the story of Wakeman's life up to the time of her death."--Georgia Historical Quarterly
"Fascinating....Her letters, brief and simple as they are, plus theexcellent introduction, notes, and photos, expand the horizons of the terribletragedy of the War between the States."--KLIATT
"Fascinating....Her letters, brief and simple as they are, plus the excellent introduction, notes, and photos, expand the horizons of the terrible tragedy of the War between the States."--KLIATT
"Intriguing....Highly recommended."--Library Journal
"Should be of great interest."--The Herald
"Skillful editing and [a] thoughtful introduction complement genuine detective work....Pathbreaking."--Catherine Clinton, editor of Divided Houses: Gender and the Civil War
"Skillful editing and [a] thoughtful introduction complement genuine detective work....Pathbreaking."--Catherine Clinton, editor ofDivided Houses: Gender and the Civil War
"Skillful editing and [a] thoughtful introduction compliment genuinedetective work....Pathbreaking."--Catherine Clinton, editor of Divided Houses:Gender and the Civil War
"Skillful editing and [a] thoughtful introduction compliment genuine detective work....Pathbreaking."--Catherine Clinton, editor of Divided Houses: Gender and the Civil War
"There may be no more unvarnished and eloquent record of how American women went to war in the 1860s than the letters of Sarah Rosetta Wakeman."--Smithsonian Magazine
"These letters are more than uncommon; they are unique....Superb."--James M. McPherson, author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Battle Cry of Freedom
"Burgess has done remarkable detective work in editing the letters and in piecing together the story of Wakeman's life up to the time of her death."--Georgia Historical Quarterly"Fascinating....Her letters, brief and simple as they are, plus the excellent introduction, notes, and photos, expand the horizons of the terrible tragedy of the War between the States."--KLIATT"Should be of great interest."--The Herald"A fascinating story, and retold by just the right person--Burgess once went to court to win the right to participate in previously all-male Civil War battle re-enactments."--San Jose Mercury News"Author Lauren Cook Burgess fill the...book's...pages with lengthy explanatory notes, photographs, maps, and orders of battles."--The Herald, Rock Hill, SC"Intriguing....Highly recommended."--Library Journal"There may be no more unvarnished and eloquent record of how American women went to war in the 1860s than the letters of Sarah Rosetta Wakeman."--Smithsonian Magazine"These letters are more than uncommon; they are unique....Superb."--James M. McPherson, author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Battle Cry of Freedom"Skillful editing and [a] thoughtful introduction compliment genuine detective work....Pathbreaking."--Catherine Clinton, editor of Divided Houses: Gender and the Civil War"A work of exceptional importance....Remarkable."--Blue and Grey Magazine
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Authored Title
Letters of a New York farmer's daughter who disguised herself as a man to enlist in the Union Army in 1862-only the 2nd such published account.
Main Description
"I don't know how long before i shall have to go into the field of battle. For my part i don't care. I don't feel afraid to go. I don't believe there are any Rebel's bullet made for me yet." --Pvt. Lyons Wakeman Similar sentiments were expressed by tens of thousands of Civil War soldiers in their diaries and in their letters to loved ones at home. What transforms the letters of Pvt. Lyons Wakeman from merely interesting reading into a unique and fascinating addition to Civil War literature is who wrotethem--for Private Wakeman was not what "he" seemed to be. The five-foot tall soldier's true identity was that of a simple young farm girl from central New York state named Sarah Rosetta Wakeman. Her letters, the only such correspondence known to exist, provide a rare glimpse of what life was likefor a woman fighting as a common soldier in the Civil War under the guise of a man. Written shortly after she left home to pursue her fortune in 1862, Rosetta's letters over the next two years tell of army life in the defences of Washington, D.C. and on the march and in battle during the 1864 Louisiana Red River Campaign. She wrote frequently to her family in Afton, NY, and herletters contain feelings and observations like those expressed by the majority of her fellow soldiers. We read of her determination to perform honorably the duty required of a soldier, the trials of hard marching and combat, her pride in being able to "drill just as well as any man" in her regiment,and her eventual fatalistic attitude toward military service, and her frequent expressions of faith in God and the afterlife. Although Rosetta did not survive the war, her letters remain as an singular record of female military life in the ranks, a phenomenon largely ignored by historians andresearchers. Private Wakeman was not alone in embarking on her strange adventure. Hundreds of women, from both the North and South, disguised themselves as men and enlisted in the armies of our nation's bloodiest war. The experiences of these women during the Civil War are just beginning to be recognized as elemental to understanding the life of this country during those turbulent times. Little is known about these women precisely because they enlisted and served in constant secrecy, fearful of revealingtheir true identities. This unique collection of letters offers a firsthand look at the personality and character of a woman who defied convention to take a man's place in the Union army.
Main Description
"I don't know how long before i shall have to go into the field of battle. For my part i don't care. I don't feel afraid to go. I don't believe there are any Rebel's bullet made for me yet."--Pvt. Lyons Wakeman. Similar sentiments were expressed by tens of thousands of Civil War soldiers in their diaries and in their letters to loved ones at home. What transforms the letters of Pvt. Lyons Wakeman from merely interesting reading into a unique and fascinating addition to Civil War literature is who wrote them--for Private Wakeman was not what "he" seemed to be. The five-foot tall soldier's true identity was that of a simple young farm girl from central New York state named Sarah Rosetta Wakeman. Her letters, the only such correspondence known to exist, provide a rare glimpse of what life was like for a woman fighting as a common soldier in the Civil War under the guise of a man. Written shortly after she left home to pursue her fortune in 1862, Rosetta's letters over the next two years tell of army life in the defences of Washington, D.C. and on the march and in battle during the 1864 Louisiana Red River Campaign. She wrote frequently to her family in Afton, NY, and her letters contain feelings and observations like those expressed by the majority of her fellow soldiers. We read of her determination to perform honorably the duty required of a soldier, the trials of hard marching and combat, her pride in being able to "drill just as well as any man" in her regiment, and her eventual fatalistic attitude toward military service, and her frequent expressions of faith in God and the afterlife. Although Rosetta did not survive the war, her letters remain as an singular record of female military life in the ranks, a phenomenon largely ignored by historians and researchers. Private Wakeman was not alone in embarking on her strange adventure. Hundreds of women, from both the North and South, disguised themselves as men and enlisted in the armies of our nation's bloodiest war. The experiences of these women during the Civil War are just beginning to be recognized as elemental to understanding the life of this country during those turbulent times. Little is known about these women precisely because they enlisted and served in constant secrecy, fearful of revealing their true identities. This unique collection of letters offers a firsthand look at the personality and character of a woman who defied convention to take a man's place in the Union army.
Table of Contents
Forewordp. xi
Prefacep. xv
Introductionp. 1
August, 1862--June, 1863p. 17
July, 1863--December, 1863p. 35
January, 1864--May, 1864p. 59
Epiloguep. 77
History of the 153rd Regiment, New York State Volunteersp. 89
Wakeman Genealogyp. 101
Bibliographyp. 103
Indexp. 109
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

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