VICKSBURG, Miss. — Sunbury Press has released Taking Lady Gibraltar: Grant’s Convoluted Tour de Force in the West, Dick Schwirian’s historical novel about the capture of Vicksburg, Mississippi by Union forces in 1863.
About the Book:
Taking of Lady Gibraltar is about one of the major events of the Civil War, the campaign to seize Vicksburg by Union forces under Ulysses S. Grant. Before 1863, Vicksburg, situated on high bluffs overlooking the Mississippi River, was thought to be impregnable. Grant created a new reality. The capture of Vicksburg and its garrison was, if not the signature northern victory of the Civil War, at least among the top contenders. It denied the Confederacy free access to the Mississippi River, it split the South in two, and, perhaps most importantly, it ultimately persuaded Abraham Lincoln to appoint Grant commander of all Union armies. In the words of the sixteenth president: “I can’t spare this man. He fights.”
It may be inaccurate to say that Grant won the Civil War for the North, but there is truth in the claim. His success, first in the west and later in the east, was phenomenal. Was he a military genius? Probably not. But he had a keen sense for the opportunistic moment and the fortitude to pursue a course of action relentlessly, once chosen. The Taking of Lady Gibraltar illustrates these qualities—and some shortcomings—in an exciting and stimulating read for anyone who loves Civil War history and historical fiction.
April 7, 1862 – The Shiloh Battlefield
On the second day of battle, Union skirmishers began forming their lines at 3:00 AM and were ordered to find the enemy. They did. The evening before, P.G.T. Beauregard had entertained great hopes for taking the day for the Confederacy but was unaware of the Union reinforcements under Don Carlos Buell, who were then arriving from Nashville under cover of darkness. Beauregard had lost half his men on the first day of battle; Grant had gained twenty thousand more. The fighting on the second day was intense but brief. By 4:00 PM, Beauregard ordered a general withdrawal to Corinth, Mississippi in the middle of a cold, relentless hailstorm, some of the hailstones as big as eggs and as hard as musket balls.
Had he wanted to, Grant could have pursued and destroyed Beauregard’s exhausted army. Pursuit of a defeated foe was, after all, a maxim of military tactical manuals. However, pursuit was an undertaking that his own bone-weary, mud-caked army might not be able to sustain. They were tired too.
About the Author:
Dick Schwirian resides in the South Hills of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with his wife Jo.
Taking Lady Gibraltar: Grant’s Convoluted Tour de Force in the West
Authored by Dick Schwirian
List Price: $19.95
6″ x 9″ (15.24 x 22.86 cm)
Black & White on Cream paper
Sunbury Press, Inc.
BISAC: Fiction / War & Military
Also available on Kindle
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