Why does the Civil War still enthrall Americans and generate such keen interest? Why is it that people just won't let it go, insisting on reenacting battles and clinging to any bit of personal history that connects them with the war? Perhaps because oral history is such an important part of American culture, and this terrible war was so close to home. A new book gives voice to America's past in a unique way.

The Civil War: Unstilled Voices, by Chuck Lawliss, is a special collection of replicas of letters, memoirs, and newspaper articles that describes the war in different voices, from different perspectives. The war's varied participants tell their stories the soldiers, spies, nurses, writers, and prisoners, to name a few, both famous and unknown. These items can be removed from their envelopes as if readers have discovered them after many years. What an ingenious way to encourage interest in American history!

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