University of Alabama Press


Perhaps the most tenuous claim in this otherwise fine collection of essays on the history and peoples of Florida between 1860 and 1865 comes in the opening paragraph. “Florida is often the forgotten front of the Civil War, both for scholars and in memory,” Seth Weitz declares in the volume’s Introduction, “as many often overlook the subject and tend to focus on what they deem to be the more significant theaters and participants in the conflict.” (1) That is an accurate description if browsing for Florida in general histories of the war, and one that might, in fairness, be said for any number of other states. But labeling the so-called Land of Flowers as “forgotten” tends to downplay the excellent scholarship by, among other historians, Stephen Ash, Robert Taylor, George Buker, and William Nulty. The editors might have better framed the volume by emphasizing that they take advantage of the latest historiographical trends to draw new conclusions about Florida’s contested past.