Some useful resources for more information

May 09, 2004|By Nicholas Prindle | Nicholas Prindle,SUN STAFF

Civil War re-enactments have become a popular form of entertainment for families and individuals throughout the region, but the precise events and significance of battles such as New Market can remain a mystery to the most curious onlooker. Fortunately, several resources are available to those who wish to learn more before or after attending a re-enactment.

The Enoch Pratt Free Library, 400 Cathedral St., Baltimore, has a large collection of Civil War materials, ranging from basic overviews to detailed accounts of single battles. Included in the library's reference collection are general Civil War encyclopedias such as the five-volume, alphabetical Encyclopedia of the American Civil War: A Political, Social and Military History, published in 2000. The seven-volume The American Civil War: A Multicultural Encyclopedia, published in 1984, is ideal for young adults.

Patrons can find several copies of George Walsh's Damage Them All You Can: Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia, published in 2003. The book contains accounts of several battles, large and small, and has received acclaim for its selection of detail in the battle of New Market in particular.

William C. Davis' The Battle of New Market, published in 1975, is the only full-length modern study dedicated solely to the Virginia battle. Another book devoted exclusively to New Market, The Battle of New Market: A Story of VMI, by Paxton Davis, published in 1963, is a work of historical fiction written for young adults, but a notable resource for children and adults alike.

While many holdings are exclusive to the Pratt's central library, the Pratt Library's system of interlibrary loans makes it easy for individuals throughout the region to obtain any book from more than 700 libraries in Maryland.

To supplement these print resources, the Internet also provides a wealth of relevant information.

Online research is made simple by the United States Civil War Center (, an organization that offers the definitive search engine for Civil War information on the Web. The site features a browsable index, divided between Civil War information and resources, as well as a search function that allows users to locate key terms anywhere in the organization's database.

A search for the battle at New Market offers, among other results, a link to an online pub- lication of Joseph W. A. Whitehorne's self-guided tour guide to the battlegrounds ( ewmarket/nm-fm.htm). The text directs visitors to particular landmarks, both descriptively and with the aid of maps, and explains the greater significance of each to the battle.

A printed copy of the book, including additional illustrations, is also available in the reference section of the Pratt Library. Both versions of the publication offer a chronology and other background information about the battle of New Market.

Additional Internet resources include and

Nicholas Prindle is a senior, majoring in creative writing, at Loyola College in Baltimore. This article was written as part of an academic internship at The Sun.

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.