Jefferson Davis: The Man and His Hour

William C. Davis, Author HarperCollins Publishers $40 (784p) ISBN 978-0-06-016706-6
This portrait puts the emphasis on Davis's private warmth, public coolness, personal insecurity and indecisiveness during the Civil War. Relying mostly on contemporary sources, the author ( Image of the War ) explores how Davis's attitudes and values were developed at West Point and during his Mexican War service and how they were put to the test in his years as U.S. senator, as secretary of war under Franklin Pierce and as president of the Southern Confederacy. The author defends Davis (1808-1889) against the charge that he interfered with his generals, partly by showing how well he and Robert E. Lee worked together. The book also makes clear that Davis lacked managerial skill, was inflexible, could not admit making a mistake and had great difficulty delegating authority. Nevertheless, as the author points out, Davis built the systems that kept the Confederacy afloat from his inauguration in 1862 until he was captured by Union troops in 1865. This is a pragmatic but sympathetic biography that explains why Davis was respected but never loved by the citizens of the Confederate states. Illustrated. (Dec.)
Reviewed on: 12/02/1991
Release date: 12/01/1991
X
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Email Address

Password

Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email pw@pubservice.com with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.