An intriguing and well-documented account of Confederate espionage activities during the Civil War profiles famous and obscure spies who served the Southern cause. True stories of undercover agents in Washington, at Bull Run, Gettysburg and elsewhere make an engrossing read for Civil War buffs, American History students and anyone who enjoys spy stories.
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(215mm x 137mm x 22mm)
Dover Publications Inc.
Publisher: Dover Publications Inc.
Country of Publication:
US Kirkus Review »
John Bakeless, who has previously tracked down Turncoats, Traitors, and Heroes of the American Revolution (1960), here celebrates the cloak-and-dagger exploits of Confederate secret agents, without any measurable blue, grey, or antiwar bias. The South began the Civil War with an espionage system already in full swing, penetrating to the highest Federal headquarters and government offices. Many rebel sympathizers stayed right on in their Washington jobs, in ideal positions for secret service, and strategically located Southern belles applied their considerable charms to eliciting indiscretions from smitten Union beaux. Doyenne of these Dixieland sirens was "Rebel Rose" Greenhow, a highly placed Washington hostess and head of an important Confederate spy ring, whose timely messages helped General Beauregard win the Battle of Bull Run. But the prima donna of the femme fatales was flamboyant Virginian Belle Boyd, a spunky young Scarlett O'Hara with a nose for military secrets whose most famous deed was her dash across the battlefield at Front Royal with vital last-minute intelligence for Stonewall Jackson. Bakeless pursues these and other tales of individual intrigue and organized conniving in roughly chronological order through the Appomattox surrender. No mean historian, Bakeless nonetheless likes a good story well enough to rely on somewhat dubious documentation (though these sources are often indicated right in the text). But on the whole, the history's sound and adventures abound - in spy ring exploits with period-piece appeal. (Kirkus Reviews)
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