Field Armies and Fortifications in the Civil War

The Eastern Campaigns, 1861-1864

By Earl J. Hess

448 pp., 6.125 x 9.25, 45 illus., 23 maps, appends., notes, bibl., index

  • Paperback ISBN: 978-1-4696-0993-5
    Published: August 2013
  • eBook ISBN: 978-0-8078-7639-8
    Published: March 2006

Civil War America

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Earl J. Hess provides a narrative history of the use of fortifications--particularly trenches and other semi-permanent earthworks--used by Confederate and Union field armies at all major battle sites in the eastern theater of the Civil War. Hess moves beyond the technical aspects of construction to demonstrate the crucial role these earthworks played in the success or failure of field armies. A comprehensive study which draws on research and fieldwork from 300 battle sites, Field Armies and Fortifications in the Civil War is an indispensable reference for Civil War buffs and historians.

About the Author

Earl J. Hess is Stewart W. McClelland Chair in history at Lincoln Memorial University. He is author of many books on the Civil War, including, most recently, The Civil War in the West: Victory and Defeat from the Appalachians to the Mississippi.
For more information about Earl J. Hess, visit the Author Page.


"One of the most significant historiographical debates among currently practicing Civil War military historians. . . . A valuable contribution."--The North Carolina Historical Review

"This groundbreaking book should inspire other historians to take on similar difficult but important topics. . . . When completed, [this] remarkable study will be as original, as sophisticated, as significant, and as welcome as any Civil War military history yet published."--The Register of the Kentucky Historical Society

"Recommended to anyone interested in the creation, use, and effectiveness of Civil War field fortifications."--On Point

"A visit to one of the sites covered in the work will profit from Hess' description of the terrain and the armies' fortifications."--Civil War News

"This valuable study deserves to be read and digested by military students at all levels and will likely prove to be an important reference work for some time to come."--North & South

"[Field Armies and Fortifications in the Civil War: the Eastern Campaigns, 1861-1864] belongs on the 'must read' list. . . . Wisely focused, widely researched and well written."--America's Civil War

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