(In the Civil War Mississippi experienced a protracted and...)
In the Civil War Mississippi experienced a protracted and devastating invasion, and Confederate and Union armies fought fiercely at Corinth, Holly Springs, Iuka, Port Gibson, Vicksburg, and many other sites throughout the state. With both tourists and Civil War buffs in mind, archivist Michael Ballard has written Civil War Mississippi: A Guide, the first comprehensive coverage of the war in the state. Containing easy-to-follow maps and a wealth of historical material, the book discusses the campaigns, the present-day battlefields, the battles, and the soldiers and generals who fought. The war was complex in Mississippi, for it involved sieges, trench warfare, naval bombardments, and brilliant cavalry engagements. Some of the most storied names of the war-- Ulysses S. Grant, William T. Sherman, Nathan Bedford Forrest, and John Pemberton-- experienced their most triumphant and harrowing moments on Mississippi battlegrounds. Ballard captures all the destruction, drama, and bravery of Mississippi's war. He examines the major campaigns, emphasizing why engagements occurred, how the battles ended, and how the war in Mississippi affected the ongoing struggle nationwide. Maps include current highways and Ballard has added present-day photos and recommendations about touring the sites. Both the novice and the Civil War expert will relish this tour of the state's war legacy. Michael Ballard is University Archivist and Coordinator of the Congressional Collection for Special Collections of the Mississippi State University Libraries. Author of numerous works on the war, he has published A Long Shadow: Jefferson Davis and the Final Days of the Confederacy, and Pemberton: A Biography with the University Press of Mississippi. Both were History Book Club selections.
(A Long Shadow is a fascinating narrative account of the f...)
A Long Shadow is a fascinating narrative account of the fall of the Confederacy told from the perspective of Jefferson Davis, his official entourage, and his family as they tried to hold the government together while staying one step ahead of their Union Army pursuers. The "martyred" Davis is one of the most enduring symbols of the Lost Cause of the Confederacy. Michael B. Ballard maintains that this image began to take form during the last days of Davis's presidency as the doomed leader rose nobly to adversity, handling sensitive political and military issues and devastating setbacks with dignity and faith. It was Davis's willingness to sacrifice everything, combined with his postwar imprisonment, Ballard contends, that cemented his status in the hearts and minds of southerners.
(It was the sad fate of General John C. Pemberton (1814-18...)
It was the sad fate of General John C. Pemberton (1814-1881), a northerner serving in the Confederate army, to die in disgrace and humiliation. Because he surrendered Vicksburg to General Grant, many Confederates considered him a traitor. Because he lost this strategic southern port on the Mississippi, Pemberton was branded as an incompetent. In this biography, the first to examine Pemberton's life and career in full scope, Michael B. Ballard credits Pemberton for military prowess that previous Civil War scholars have denied him. Here his strength is shown to be in administration, not in the theater of combat. Ballard persuasively argues that if Pemberton's abilities had been properly used, he could have made a positive contribution to the Confederate cause. Ballard focuses upon Pemberton's theory of command in South Carolina, where his foremost conviction was the preservation of his army. Pressure from both state officials and the Confederate War Department in Richmond, however, dictated that he must hold Charleston at all costs. Submitting to his superiors, Pemberton carried this new philosophy to Mississippi for his next assignment, where his main objective was to defend Vicksburg, a city whose river defenses blocked Union commerce along the Mississippi River. Throughout the winter of 1862-63 Pemberton's forces held off Ulysses S. Grant's army, but in the spring of 1863 Grant's complex diversions confused Pemberton and allowed the Union to gain a beachhead on the east bank of the river and to launch an inland campaign that trapped Confederates in Vicksburg. Remembering the lesson of Charleston, Pemberton tried to save this river city, but he lost both Vicksburg and his men. Ballard's slant on Pemberton's life, fair and revisionist, must be considered in future assessments, for it details fateful moments in Pemberton's career and offers new insights gained from family papers and manuscripts not previously examined. "I find the author's arguments to be convincing," says Civil War historian Herman Hattaway, "and like him, I am led to a keener appreciation of Pemberton than I ever had before."
(Born the eighth child in a wealthy Mississippi plantation...)
Born the eighth child in a wealthy Mississippi plantation family in 1843, David Eldred Holt joined Company K of the 16th Mississippi Regiment in 1861 and served in the Eastern theater throughout the Civil War. Late in his life, at a time when many former soldiers, both Union and Confederate, were reliving their memories of that event, Holt penned this memoir, recounting the idyllic life of an affluent southern boy before the war and the exhilarating, sometimes humorous, often terrifying experiences of a common soldier in camp and in battle. This new edition has been expanded to include Holt's never-before-published diary entries from the last year of the war.
(What made Ulysses S. Grant tick? Perhaps the greatest gen...)
What made Ulysses S. Grant tick? Perhaps the greatest general of the Civil War, Grant won impressive victories and established a brilliant military career. His single-minded approach to command was coupled with the ability to adapt to the kind of military campaign the moment required. In this exciting new book, Michael B. Ballard provides a crisp account of Grant's strategic and tactical concepts in the period from the outset of the Civil War to the battle of Chattanooga―a period in which U. S. Grant rose from a semi-disgraceful obscurity to the position of overall commander of all Union armies. The author carefully sifts through diaries and letters of Grant and his inner circle to try to get inside Grant's mind and reveal why those early years of the war were formative in producing the Civil War's greatest general.
(Mississippi State University was founded in 1878 and open...)
Mississippi State University was founded in 1878 and opened its doors in 1880 as a land-grant school de-signed for teaching agriculture and mechanical arts. Building upon the work of John K. Bettersworth, Michael B. Ballard traces the evolution of this institution. From the beginning, first president Stephen D. Lee wanted to expand the university\'s vi-sion beyond agriculture and engineering. While admit-ting that these should be the focal points, the school gra-dually introduced studies in the humanities. The university evolved around the expectation of being the \"People\'s Col-lege,\" drawing students from rural areas and poor back-grounds and giving them a chance to succeed in higher education. There remains a broad cross-section in the student body from many backgrounds, including a substantial number of African American and international students. This kind of mix, which extends to the faculty, has strengthened the research capabilities of the university and broadened the academic landscape in ways Lee never dreamed. The author covers many other facets of MSU, such as how it has been affected by national events through the years, including the Great Depression, World Wars I and II, and the civil rights movement of the 1960s. Michael B. Ballard is the university archivist and coordinator of the Congressional and Political Research Center at Mississippi State University. He is the author of numerous books on the Civil War, including Pemberton: The General Who Lost Vicksburg and Civil War Mississippi: A Guide, both from University Press of Mississippi.
(Michael Ballard provides a concise yet thorough study of ...)
Michael Ballard provides a concise yet thorough study of the 1863 battle that cut off a crucial river port and rail depot for the South and split the Confederate nation, providing a turning point in the Civil War. The Union victory at Vicksburg was hailed with as much celebration in the North as the Gettysburg victory and Ballard makes a convincing case that it was equally important to the ultimate resolution of the conflict.
Ballard received his education at Mississippi State University in 1975. He continued studying for degree of Master of Arts till 1976. In 1983 he graduated from it with a degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
Ballard started his career at Mississippi State University as a university archivist in 1983. Then he worked at Golden Triangle Civil War Roundtable as a newsletter editor. He also worked as an adult class Sunday school teacher at Church Elder and session clerk at the Old Presbyterian Church and has assumed full-time duties as Coordinator of the Congressional and Political Research Center.
Ballard was also an associate editor of the U. S. Grant publishing projects.
As an author wrote numerous historical books and articles including A Long Shadow: Jefferson Davis and the Final Days of the Confederacy in 1986, Landscapes of Battle: The Civil War in 1988, Pemberton: A Biography in 1991, A Mississippi Rebel in the Army of Northern Virginia: The Memoirs of Private David Holt in 1995, and most recently, Civil War Mississippi: A Guide in 2000.
He also served as a consultant to several university presses and in 1998 appeared as a guest historian on the Greystone Television production regarding the fate of Confederate gold; the program has aired on the History Channel and the A&E Network.
(A Long Shadow is a fascinating narrative account of the f...)1986
(In the Civil War Mississippi experienced a protracted and...)200
(Michael Ballard provides a concise yet thorough study of ...)2010
(Born the eighth child in a wealthy Mississippi plantation...)2001
(Mississippi State University was founded in 1878 and open...)2008
(It was the sad fate of General John C. Pemberton (1814-18...)1991
(What made Ulysses S. Grant tick? Perhaps the greatest gen...)2005
Ballard was a member of the Organization of American Historians, the Society of American Archivists, the Southern Historical Association, the Society of Civil War Historians and the Mississippi Historical Society.
Ballard was married to Jan Rodgers Ballard.