Instead of offering another look at the most significant military and political events, Curiosities of the Civil War focuses on relatively unknown and obscure aspects of the war.
It is estimated that 623,000 soldiers died during the Civil War. If the June 1865 surrender of Kirby-Smith's forces is taken as the last hurrah of the Confederacy, then the war lasted almost fifty months. Fighting took place on each of the war's approximately 1,396 days from 1861 to 1865; as tabulated by Frederick H. Dyer, 10,455 military "events" took place during the war. Millions of men and thousands of encounters produced a multitude of extraordinary things.
Numerous chapters in Curiosities of the Civil War focus upon events or emphases that have been neglected-maybe because they're hard to locate. It is all but impossible to find more than an occasional reference to banishment or deportation, and major multi-volume works seldom include an index entry dealing with "hostages." Subjects such as "atrocities" and "appraisals by contemporaries," to say nothing of "Lincoln's appearance," are not found in standard Civil War encyclopedias and dictionaries.
Even seasoned readers are likely to discover much that is new and fresh here. Whether you're a lifelong enthusiast or just beginning to get acquainted with the Civil War, you'll find a trove of conversation-starters here.