Sunday, February 7, 2010


This book is a group of essays that cover all aspects of the War For Southern Independence in Texas. Chapters cover the secession of Texas, the role played by  the Knights of the Golden Circle (KGC) in the pre-war secession movement and the seizure of U.S. Army property in San Antonio early in the war, the various military operations and the social and cultural aspects of the war in Texas.

On February 1, 1861, delegates at the Texas Secession Convention elected to leave the Union. The people of Texas supported the actions of the convention in a statewide referendum, paving the way for the state to secede and to officially become the seventh state in the Confederacy. Soon the Texans found themselves engaged in a bloody and prolonged civil war against their northern brethren. During the course of this war, the lives of thousands of Texans, both young and old, were changed forever.

The book is edited by Kenneth W. Howell, assistant professor at Prairie View A&M University.   

The chapters are written by some of the best historians on the Trans-Mississippi, including Alwyn Barr, Archie P. McDonald, James M. Smallwood, Linda S. Hudson, John W. Gorman, Mary Jo O'Rear, Donald Willett, Edward T. Cotham Jr., Charles D. Spurlin, Charles D. Grear, Gary D. Joiner, Kenneth E. Hendrickson Jr., Vicki Betts, Ronald E. Goodwin and Bruce A. Glasrud, Carol Taylor, and Bill Stein.

The chapter by Linda Hudson on the KGC's role in secession and early war military actions was fascinating and very illuminating.  I also particularly enjoyed the chapters by Edward Cotham on the battles of Galveston and Sabine Pass, and Gary Joiner's on the Texas Cavalry in the Red River Campaign.

The Seventh Star of the Confederacy: Texas During the Civil War; University of North Texas Press, Denton, Texas,, $34.95.

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