Grant Under Fire


“Grant Under Fire” and “Lincoln’s Autocrat”

Civil War News has finally posted my response to Dr. John Marszalek’s unprofessional and mistake-ridden review of Grant Under Fire. As the Executive Director of the Ulysses S. Grant Association, whose mission it is to “preserve the knowledge of [Ulysses S. Grant’s] importance in American history,” Dr. Marszalek should have recused himself if chosen for this task. Especially if he himself selected Grant Under Fire for a review, his own […]


A response to John F. Marszalek’s review of Grant Under Fire 2 comments

I would have hoped that, as Executive Director of the Ulysses S. Grant Association and with 29 years as a professor (and as a Distinguished Professor Emeritus and director of a Distinguished Scholars Program), Dr. John F. Marszalek would have provided an objective, comprehensive, and professional book review or else recused himself for partiality, especially as he charges me with a lack of objectivity and impartiality. He complains that Grant […]


America’s Civil War (March 2016): Review of “Grant Under Fire”

Dr. Ethan Rafuse, in his review from the March 2016 edition of America’s Civil War, offers a good description of Grant Under Fire: An Exposé of Generalship & Character in the American Civil War. It “offers a strident, contrarian take on the union commander, ” he noted, and ”Rose’s book will surely be welcomed by admirers of other Union generals.” In what appears to be a commendation of the research […]


Did General Joe Hooker disrespect Ulysses S. Grant? 2 comments

Yesterday, I helped confirm one of the many smaller points that Grant Under Fire makes. General Joe Hooker is often criticized for trying it on with his superior, Ulysses S. Grant, on November 21, 1863 at Stevenson, Ala., while the latter was on his way to Chattanooga, Tenn. When Hooker sent a staff officer and wagon to take Grant from the railroad station to Hooker’s headquarters, Grant responded: “If Gen. […]


Directions for Lew Wallace at Shiloh on April 6, 1862 1 comment

Although Grant tried to argue that he wanted Lew Wallace merely to march to Pittsburg Landing and had ordered him there, the evidence contradicts him. Even John Rawlins used a different destination while defending Grant and assailing Wallace.The Third Division’s destination was assuredly William Sherman’s right flank. Lew Wallace and four of his subordinates identified the orders’ stated objective as the right of the army, denoting Sherman’s right. Algernon Baxter, […]


Fallacies concerning the Personal Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant 1 comment

Michael B. Ballard’s review of Chris Mackowski’s Grant’s Last Battle: The Story Behind the Personal Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant (November 2015 Civil War News Book Review), exemplifies the mind-set that my book, Grant Under Fire, so comprehensively opposes. Grant “did not rewrite history,” Dr. Ballard maintains, “he wrote it as he understood and lived it.” The reviewer does refer to “the accuracy, or lack thereof, of the memoirs,” yet […]


Bill O’Reilly credits U.S. Grant for Lincoln’s eminence

In an interview in AARP, October/November 2015, Bill O’Reilly stated, “Lincoln, I think the greatest American president, would not have been that without U.S. Grant. It’s not just one person.” Well, I also argue that it’s not just one person, when I hear the constantly reiterated refrain, “Ulysses S. Grant won the American Civil War.” But in Lincoln’s case, I would assert that Grant was actually a drag on his […]


Civil War Bookshelf review of Grant Under Fire

Another positive review for Grant Under Fire just appeared on Dimitri Rotov’s Civil War Bookshelf. He’s too nice in saying that the book, with “798 erudite, well-researched pages, delivers a profound, perhaps unforgettable reading experience,” and “We are in the hands of a fair, informed and intelligent author who delivers a compelling read.” Although the book directly opposes the conventional view of Ulysses S. Grant, I wrote it for those […]


Interview: Joseph A. Rose, “Grant Under Fire”

Harry Smeltzer has just published a lengthy interview with me on his Bull Runnings website. It provides a good perspective on the genesis of Grant Under Fire. Although it will be difficult to change the minds of many who’ve grown up on a diet of adulatory biographies of Ulysses S. Grant, people who’ve actually read the book have been quite complimentary on the depth of its research. I’m even more […]


President Grant ladles out money to the rich 1 comment

From the book: “For whatever reasons—he seemed fascinated by men of wealth—Grant offered unstinting support to capitalists and big business. He desired, and the very first law he signed mandated, the payment in gold for huge numbers of bonds bought during the Civil War, mostly with depreciated greenbacks, even though the government was not contractually obligated to do so. This provided the bondholders with a gigantic—and wholly unjustified—windfall. With better […]


Commenting on this blog

Please feel free to leave a comment about the website, issues or controversies concerning Ulysses S. Grant, or the forthcoming book, Grant Under Fire. To leave a comment, click on an individual blog post. Along with a discussion of the various Civil War-related issues, I heartily request the identification of any errors found in Grant Under Fire. With all comments, please provide primary source citations to substantiate your findings whenever […]