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Spring 1865Spring 1865

The Closing Campaigns of the Civil War

Perry D. Jamieson

Narrated by Steve Rausch

Approximately 8 hours


Downloadable edition:

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Book published by University of Nebraska Press

When Gen. Robert E. Lee fled from Petersburg and Richmond, Virginia, in April 1865, many observers did not realize that the Civil War had reached its nadir. A large number of Confederates, from Jefferson Davis down to the rank-and-file, were determined to continue fighting. Though Union successes had nearly extinguished the Confederacy’s hope for an outright victory, the South still believed it could force the Union to grant a negotiated peace that would salvage some of its war aims. As evidence of the Confederacy’s determination, two major Union campaigns, along with a number of smaller engagements, were required to quell the continued organized Confederate military resistance.

In Spring 1865 Perry D. Jamieson juxtaposes for the first time the major campaign against Lee that ended at Appomattox and Gen. William T. Sherman’s march north through the Carolinas, which culminated in Gen. Joseph E. Johnston’s surrender at Bennett Place. Jamieson also addresses the efforts required to put down armed resistance in the Deep South and the Trans-Mississippi. As both sides fought for political goals following Lee’s surrender, these campaigns had significant consequences for the political-military context that shaped the end of the war as well as Reconstruction.

Perry D. Jamieson is a historian for the United States Air Force. He is the coauthor, with Grady McWhiney, of Attack and Die: Civil War Military Tactics and the Southern Heritage.


“A valuable addition to Civil War historiography.”

Military Review

“The true value of this book is Jamieson's in-depth portrayal of the armies and their leaders, heroes and fools as they struggled to the bitter end.”


“Jamieson covers the many facets of his history with extraordinary precision and verve, offering rich biographical detail, solid research, appropriate maps and illustrations, and spot-on analysis.”

Library Journal

“Readers looking for an authoritative single volume on the campaigns that ended the Civil War will want to consider Spring 1865. Jamieson proves himself an able master of the narrative who never discards his penchant for strong analysis. As a balanced synthesis of the best interpretations available, it is a welcome addition to the "Great Campaigns" series.”

Civil War Book Review

“In vigorous prose Perry Jamieson narrates the military campaigns of the Civil War’s final months on the two principal fronts in the Carolinas and Virginia. This book’s clarity of organization and accuracy of description, coupled with interpretive insights, enable the reader to grasp both the details and the larger picture of the war’s end.”

—James M. McPherson, author of the Pulitzer Prize‚Äìwinning Battle Cry of Freedom

“This book is well worth your time.”

Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society

“Jamieson should be applauded for his work in synthesizing not just the most recent scholarship but also these important campaigns, which benefit equally by being viewed together.”

Gettysburg Magazine

“This book is highly recommended to any student of the Civil War.”

Army History

“The last spring of the Civil War witnessed a series of compelling episodes that assured Union triumph after four tumultuous years that reshaped the republic. Perry D. Jamieson does full justice to the unfolding drama in a narrative rich in biographical detail, perceptive analysis, and scrupulous attention to the geographical sweep of the story.”

—Gary W. Gallagher, John L. Nau III Professor in the History of the American Civil War at the University of Virginia and author of The Union War

“An engaging narrative of how the final six months played out and the military and political decisions that led to the final outcome.... Crisp, page-turning.”

—Judkin Browning, author of The Seven Days‚Äô Battles: The War Begins Anew

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University Press Audiobooks