New Nonfiction Compiles Letters from Civil War Soldiers

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Author/historian gives epistolary look at life during war while honoring the 44th Indiana Volunteer Infantry

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Letter writing during the American Civil War offered an important means of historically documenting the conflict. In his new book The Iron 44th: The Story of Company H of the 44th Indiana Volunteer Infantry as told by the Men of This Company in Letters Sent Home and to the Local Newspaper (published by AuthorHouse), author and Civil War enthusiast Robert Willey compiled letters written by the soldiers of Lagrange County, Indiana, during the Civil War.

Also including newspaper articles from the period, The Iron 44th presents a unique look into the battles of the Civil War. The letters featured in Willey’s compilation include those written while in camp, on the march and following battles. As postal services were often interrupted during the war, letters from the field were often sent to the town newspaper. “Sometimes these letters were sent to the editor of the Lagrange Standard newspaper and printed in that paper for citizens of that community to read,” explains Willey, who also adds that the arrangement had a unique trade off. “The agreement was that if the men would send letters to the editor that he (the editor) would send newspapers to the soldiers in the field so that they could read of the happenings back home.”

A large number of the men from the 44th Indiana Volunteer Infantry would lose their lives in battle or shortly thereafter due to fatal wounds and sicknesses. Those who returned home suffered battles of their own as they were forced to readjust to a world outside of battle.

Uncensored and unabridged, the letters and articles that Willey amasses in The Iron 44th capture, in the solder’s own words, the realities of war. “There is no better way to honor these men for their sacrifices than to read their words and try to understand where they stood and where they fell.”

About the Author
Robert Willey has studied and collected Civil War memorabilia for 60 years. Before retiring, he was a member of several historic societies and Civil War roundtable groups, including The Company of Military Historians, The Forts and Fortifications Research Study Group and The Moments in Military History Museum. He is also the author of Fighting for Liberty and Right, published by the University of Tennessee Press.

AuthorHouse, an Author Solutions, Inc. self-publishing imprint, is a leading provider of book publishing, marketing, and bookselling services for authors around the globe and offers the industry’s only suite of Hollywood book-to-film services. Committed to providing the highest level of customer service, AuthorHouse assigns each author personal publishing and marketing consultants who provide guidance throughout the process. Headquartered in Bloomington, Indiana, AuthorHouse will celebrate 15 years of service to authors in Sept. 2011.For more information or to publish a book visit authorhouse.com or call 1-888-519-5121. For the latest, follow @authorhouse on Twitter.

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