This edition of John Morton’s 1909 classic memoir/biography has been specially formatted for electronic reader, and annotated and illustrated by Lucy Booker Roper, a former history teacher who grew up near Brice’s Crossroads, the site of one ofMoreThis edition of John Morton’s 1909 classic memoir/biography has been specially formatted for electronic reader, and annotated and illustrated by Lucy Booker Roper, a former history teacher who grew up near Brice’s Crossroads, the site of one of Forrest’s most brilliant victories in battle.
This publication has been glossed with extra information such as comments from the best biographers of Forrest, in addition to having been re-typeset for compatibility with electronic readers. Unlike scanned copies of this book, the type may be enlarged and other features of electronic readers utilized.There are myriads of books about Nathan Bedford Forrest. Many of them are quite good. However, this particular book has a distinctiveness that sets it apart from the others: it was written by a man who served under Forrest and whose brilliance as an artillerist (he has been called the John Pelham of the west) contributed to many of Forrest’s triumphs.
There was an extraordinary relationship between General Forrest and his Chief of Artillery. The one complimented the other. Their special friendship also continued beyond the war years and the author also chronicles some post-bellum events.
Morton is candid in his book and presents an open and honest view into Forrest’s personality. Yet the reader will see no syrupy “hero-worship” as is sometime the case when one close friend writes about another. Still, Morton is not restrained about his admiration for and defense of his commander.
Neither is Morton timid about delving into difficult topics ─ such as Forrest’s affray with Lt. Gould and Forrest’s purported involvement with the Ku Klux Klan. In fact, he renders indisputable evidence that Forrest could not have possibly been the FOUNDER of the KKK as so often is incorrectly reported in contemporary times.Most of the major battles in which Forrest was engaged are covered, and while the editor has taken nothing from Morton’s original work, some annotations and additional information have been added, quoting from the best of Forrest’s biographers. The author has interspersed his work with some poetry of the period, to which a few modern readers might be unaccustomed- but the poetry by no means dominates the book.
And we must remember that John Morton was a product of the Victorian era when sentimental poetry was the order of the day. Astute readers will take this into account. Most, however, will like and appreciate Morton’s inclusion of these poems ─ they do have historical relevance and reflect the heartbeat and emotions of the people who were affected by the war.
Indeed they compose only a miniscule part of this book.The best accounts are not those written by historians well over hundred years of the actual events, but by those close to the source ─ who lived in the times of which they wrote. Few men were closer to Nathan Bedford Forrest than John Morton, Forrest’s boy artillery prodigy.