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A diary with a difference:  My Diary, North and South by William Howard Russell, commences March 1861(before the Attack on Fort Sumter) and finishes in March 1862, as McClellan heads towards the Peninsula. Therefore, this work contains nothing concerning the fighting at Battle of Shiloh.

However, what makes this report unusual:  William H. Russell was a journalist for The Times of London, and was dispatched to America to report on the increasingly bellicose affairs taking place; Russell sent those weekly reports back to London for publication (which directly influenced the way England viewed the American upheaval), and also had many columns printed in New York newspapers. And Russell was granted access -- North and South -- to the key leaders and decision-makers who would gain prominence as events unfolded. The very observant reporter, with a gift for portrayal of people and places, met and recorded his impressions of the following: President Lincoln and his Cabinet (from page 38), President Davis and his Cabinet (page 172), PGT Beauregard (page 121), Braxton Bragg (p.206), William Hardee (p.193), Gideon Pillow (p.306), David Dixon Porter (p.202), Benjamin Prentiss (p.329), fellow Englishman Henry Binmore (p.333), John C. Fremont (p.397), William "Bull" Nelson (page 48), and many others (enter last name in Search Box at top of archive.org page.) As well, impressions of Philadelphia, New York City (before and after start of war), Washington, Baltimore, Montgomery, Pensacola, New Orleans, Memphis and Cairo (and Fort Sumter and Fort Pickens) make for interesting reading.

Over 600 pages, this work was published in Boston in 1863; and is available at archive.org:  http://archive.org/stream/mydiarynorth00russrich#page/n9  

Cheers

Ozzy

 

 

 

 

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