The Sword of Lincoln is the first authoritative single-volume history of the Army of the Potomac in many years.
From Bull Run to Gettysburg to Appomattox, the Army of the Potomac repeatedly fought -- and eventually defeated -- Robert E. Lee and his Army of Northern Virginia. Jeffry D. Wert, one of our finest Civil War historians, brings to life the battles, the generals, and the common soldiers who fought for the Union and ultimately prevailed. The Army of the Potomac endured a string of losses under a succession of flawed commanders -- McClellan, Burnside, and Hooker -- until at Gettysburg it won a decisive battle under a new commander, General George Meade. Within a year the Army of the Potomac would come under the overall leadership of the Union's new general-in-chief, Ulysses S. Grant. Under Grant the army would finally trap and defeat Lee and his forces.
Wert's history draws on letters and diaries, some previously unpublished, to show us what army life was like. Throughout the book Wert shows how Lincoln carefully monitored the operations of the Army of the Potomac, learning as the war progressed, until he found in Grant the commander he'd long sought.
Perceptive in its analysis and compellingly written, The Sword of Lincoln is the finest modern account of the army that was central to the Civil War.
Jeffry D. Wert is the author of eight previous books on Civil War topics, most recently Cavalryman of the Lost Cause and The Sword of Lincoln. His articles and essays on the Civil War have appeared in many publications, including Civil War Times Illustrated, American History Illustrated, and Blue and Gray. A former history teacher at Penns Valley High School, he lives in Centre Hall, Pennsylvania, slightly more than one hour from the battlefield at Gettysburg.