Genre: Biography & Autobiography
The New York Times best-selling biography of one of America’s most storied military figures. General William Tecumseh Sherman’s 1864 burning of Atlanta solidified his legacy as a ruthless leader. Evolving from a spirited student at West Point, Sherman became a general who fought in some of the Civil War’s most decisive campaigns—Shiloh, Vicksburg, Atlanta—until finally, seeking a swift ending to the war’s horrendous casualties, he devastated southern resources on his famous March to the Sea across the Carolinas. Later, as general-in-chief of the U.S. Army, Sherman relentlessly paved the way west during the Indian wars. James Lee McDonough’s fresh insight reveals a man tormented by fears that history would pass him by and that he would miss his chance to serve his country. Drawing on years of research, McDonough delves into Sherman’s dramatic personal life, including his strained relationship with his wife, his personal debts, and his young son’s death. The result is a remarkable, illuminating portrait of an American icon.
By learning about history from a particular and unique biographical perspective, each student will learn about the following social studies curricular themes: - culture- individual development and identity- power, authority, and governance- global connections- people, places, and environments- individuals, groups, and institutions- production, distribution, and consumption- civic ideals and practices
According to Cothren, in his "History of Ancient Woodbury, Connecticut," the Sherman family came from Dedham, Essex County, England. The first recorded name is of Edmond Sherman, with his three sons, Edmond, Samuel, and John, who were at Boston before 1636; and farther it is distinctly recorded that Hon. Samuel Sherman, Rev. John, his brother, and Captain John, his first cousin, arrived from Dedham, Essex County, England, in 1634. Samuel afterward married Sarah Mitchell, who had come (in the same ship) from England, and finally settled at Stratford, Connecticut. The other two (Johns) located at Watertown, Massachusetts. From Captain John Sherman are descended Roger Sherman, the signer of the Declaration of Independence, Hon. William M. Evarts, the Messrs. Hoar, of Massachusetts, and many others of national fame. Our own family are descended from the Hon. Samuel Sherman and his son; the Rev. John, who was born in 1650-'51; then another John, born in 1687; then Judge Daniel, born in 1721; then Taylor Sherman, our grandfather, who was born in 1758. Taylor Sherman was a lawyer and judge in Norwalk, Connecticut, where he resided until his death, May 4, 1815; leaving a widow, Betsey Stoddard Sherman, and three children, Charles R. (our father), Daniel, and Betsey. When the State of Connecticut, in 1786, ceded to the United States her claim to the western part of her public domain, as defined by her Royal Charter, she reserved a large district in what is now northern Ohio, a portion of which (five hundred thousand acres) composed the "Fire-Land District," which was set apart to indemnify the parties who had lost property in Connecticut by the raids of Generals Arnold, Tryon, and others during the latter part of the Revolutionary War. Our grandfather, Judge Taylor Sherman, was one of the commissioners appointed by the State of Connecticut to quiet the Indian title, and to survey and subdivide this Fire-Land District, which includes the present counties of Huron and Erie. In his capacity as commissioner he made several trips to Ohio in the early part of this century, and it is supposed that he then contracted the disease which proved fatal. For his labor and losses he received a title to two sections of land, which fact was probably the prime cause of the migration of our family to the West. My father received a good education, and was admitted to the bar at Norwalk, Connecticut, where, in 1810, he, at twenty years of age, married Mary Hoyt, also of Norwalk, and at once migrated to Ohio, leaving his wife (my mother) for a time. His first purpose was to settle at Zanesville, Ohio, but he finally chose Lancaster, Fairfield County, where he at once engaged in the practice of his profession. In 1811 he returned to Norwalk, where, meantime, was born Charles Taylor Sherman, the eldest of the family, who with his mother was carried to Ohio on horseback. Judge Taylor Sherman's family remained in Norwalk till 1815, when his death led to the emigration of the remainder of the family, viz., of Uncle Daniel Sherman, who settled at Monroeville, Ohio, as a farmer, where he lived and died quite recently, leaving children and grandchildren; and an aunt, Betsey, who married Judge Parker, of Mansfield, and died in 1851, leaving children and grandchildren; also Grandmother Elizabeth Stoddard Sherman, who resided with her daughter, Mrs. Betsey Parker, in Mansfield until her death, August 1,1848.
William Tecumseh Sherman is known primarily for having cut a swath of destruction through Georgia and the Carolinas during the Civil War. From the fame of these years, however, he moved into an eighteen-year phase of “insuring the tranquility” of the vast region of the American West. As commander of the Division of the Missouri from 1865 to 1869 and General of the Army of the United States under President Grant from 1869 to 1883, Sherman facilitated expansion and settlement in the West while suppressing the raids of the Cheyenne, Arapahoe, Kiowa, Comanche, and Crow Indians. Robert G. Athearn explores Sherman’s and his army’s roles in the settling of the West, especially within the broad framework of railroad construction, Indian policy, political infighting, and popular opinion.
A profile of the iconic Civil War general explores the paradoxes attributed to his character to discuss such topics as his achievements as a military strategist, his contributions to the Transcontinental Railroad and his tempestuous family relationships. 20,000 first printing.