This book will captivate readers interested in the legacy of the Civil War, the role of military veterans after they return to civilian life, and the fight against racism in America. Steven A. Goldman looks at the contentious post-Civil War era from the perspective of that special breed, Union soldiers who lived by the bayonet and survived to carry on the fight for equality in the decades to come. He explores the root causes of this historic contest, the changing attitudes of northern servicemen with respect to the Civil War’s purpose, and the psychological effect of involvement in what, from hindsight, was an unfinished work in the cause of freedom and equality for all Americans. Relying on unpublished letters and other primary sources, Goldman uses the veterans’ words and actions to depict their steadfast struggle to preserve the memory and understanding of why the war was fought, and to confront the implications of remembrance, commemoration and reconciliation for America's future.
Steven A. Goldman is a practicing psychiatrist with more than 30 years experience studying the effects of war on veterans. He has spoken to numerous Civil War organizations and served on the board of the Abraham Lincoln Institute. He resides in Potomac, Maryland.