Original Civil War Publications

The nation is currently celebrating the sesquicentennial (150th anniversary) of the American Civil War. From 1861 to 1864, an estimated 700,000 people died from battle and disease. At the time, the population of the United States was a mere 31 million. That means nearly 2.5% of the population was wiped out. While that may not seem like a large number, when you apply it to today’s population of 314 million, it works out to almost 8 million people! A loss of that many Americans in a span of 4 years would be unthinkable in today’s world.

The Monroe Library’s Special Collections & Archives features numerous first editions, original publications, and printings of Civil War diaries, battle histories, and official records. Topics covered by these documents include the South’s participation in the war, especially Louisiana troops, women in the South, Freedmen in the South, etc. Stop by Monday – Friday between 8:30 and 4:45 to see them for yourself!

Here are just a few examples of what can be found in Special Collections & Archives:

Progression, or, The South Defended by Millie Mayfield

A book of poetry by a Southern woman from New Orleans defending her home and the Southern ‘Cause.’ This publication can also be read online through the Internet Archive.

The Army of the Potomac by General George B. McClellan

A report by Major-General George B. McClellan upon the organization of the Army of the Potomac, and its campaigns in Virginia and Maryland, from July twenty-sixth, 1861, to November seventh, 1862. McClellan was the most charismatic of the Union Army’s many commanders.

General Butler in New Orleans… by James Parton

Read about the notorious General Butler and his treatment of and by the city of New Orleans after its fall to Union forces in 1862. This publication can also be read online through the Internet Archive.

War Flowers, Reminiscences of Four Years’ Campaigning. Respectfully Dedicated to the Ladies of New Orleans by John Alcée Augustin

A book of poems by a Civil War soldier. This publication can also be read online thought the Internet Archive.

A Southern Record: The History of the Third Regiment Louisiana Infantry by William H. Tunnard

A history of one of Louisiana’s regiments. This publication can also be read online through the Internet Archive.

Found in the Archives is a recurring series of crazy cool stuff found in the Monroe Library’s Special Collections & Archives.

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