“Maney’s Confederate Brigade at the Battle of Perryville” New book highlights crucial part of Kentucky’s largest Civil War battle

 

The action was so overwhelming that one of Maney’s soldiers, Private Sam Watkins, exclaimed, “I do not remember of a harder contest and more evenly fought battle than that of Perryville.”

Stuart W. Sanders, former executive director of the Perryville Battlefield Preservation Association, has written his third Civil War book.

Published by The History Press on March 25, “Maney’s Confederate Brigade at the Battle of Perryville” examines a Southern unit that endured some of the heaviest fighting.

“Maney’s Brigade is the perfect lens through which to view the battle,” Sanders said. “Several of Maney’s regiments lost nearly fifty percent casualties and they played a major role in determining how the action unfolded. An appreciation of what these troops accomplished is a key to understanding the entire fight,” he added.

Tasked with breaking the Union left flank, Maney’s Tennessee and Georgia troops captured two important Federal positions but were unable to crack that side of the Union line. The Confederates’ inability to win a decisive victory at Perryville kept the Bluegrass State in Union hands for the remainder of the war.

The action was so overwhelming that one of Maney’s soldiers, Private Sam Watkins, exclaimed, “I do not remember of a harder contest and more evenly fought battle than that of Perryville.”

Sanders, who has also written a book about the aftermath of the Battle of Perryville, noted that the heaviest number of casualties was found on that side of the Union line. Maney reported that he lost “some of the bravest and best” from his command.

According to Sanders, the actions of the commander were ultimately questioned. “Although his troops performed admirably, Maney later fought a duel to defend himself against charges that he had shirked his duty at Perryville,” Sanders said.

In addition to showcasing the hardest fighting of the battle, Sanders said that the book provides a ground-level view of what soldiers endured at Perryville.

Sanders worked for the Perryville Battlefield Preservation Association for nearly ten years. His other books are “Perryville Under Fire: The Aftermath of Kentucky’s Largest Civil War Battle” and “The Battle of Mill Springs, Kentucky,” also published by The History Press.

Sanders has contributed essays to the books “Kentuckians in Gray: Confederate Generals and Field Officers of the Bluegrass State,” multiple volumes of “Confederate Generals in the Western Theater,” and two volumes of “Confederate Generals of the Trans-Mississippi.” He has also written for “Civil War Times Illustrated,” “America’s Civil War,” “Military History Quarterly,” “Hallowed Ground,” “Blue and Gray,” and several other publications. He is currently a public history administrator for the Commonwealth of Kentucky.

Both books are available on Amazon.com and from The History Press.

 

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