By James M. McPherson

This ebook is a political and army historical past at its top. As many reviewers have already commented, for a one-volume merchandise this can be most likely the best.

McPherson makes use of a chronological method of conceal the war's historical past, battles, political advancements and intrigue, characters, and lots more and plenty extra. The dispassionate remedy of the way slavery was once just a detonator excuse (the actual purposes are even more complex) yet slowly grew to become a determining consider the struggle is admittedly favored. He truly indicates admiration for Lincoln with the president discovering because the nice old determine he's (I stay up for learn his brief biography). this can be additionally no longer a North or South biased ebook, with generals Lee and furnish (among others) portrayed with an analogous devotion.

conflict Cry for Freedom is a brilliant photo of the conflict and its reasons. it is also a really attention-grabbing and enjoyable learn.

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Extra info for Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era (Volume VI of The Oxford History of the United States)

Sample text

Yet the population continued to grow at the same pace through the whole period—about 35 percent each decade—because rising im­ migration offset the decline of the birth rate. For the half-century as a whole, the margin of births over deaths caused three-quarters of the population increase while immigration accounted for the rest. E c o n o m i c growth fueled these demographic changes. T h e population doubled every twenty-three years; the gross national product doubled every fifteen. E c o n o m i c historians do not agree when this "intensive" rate of growth began, for the data to measure it are fragmentary before 1840.

Even the public schools still re­ flected their Protestant auspices. Since 1 8 3 0 a rapid expansion and ra­ tionalization of the public school system had spread westward and southward from N e w England—though it had not yet penetrated very far below the Ohio. As secretary of the Massachusetts State Board of Education and a tireless publicist, Horace M a n n presided over reforms which included the establishment of normal schools to train teachers, the introduction of standardized graded curricula, the evolution of var­ ious kinds of rural district schools and urban charity schools into a pub­ lic school system, and extension of public education to the secondary level.

T h e slaves, of course, did not attend school and only about one-tenth of them could read and write. Even counting the slaves, nearly four-fifths of the American population was literate in the 1850s, compared with two-thirds in Britain and northwest Europe and one-fourth in southern and eastern Europe. Counting only the free pop­ ulation, the literacy rate of 90 percent in the United States was equaled only by Sweden and D e n m a r k . T h e rise of schooling in these countries since the seventeenth century had grown out of the Protestant Reformation.

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