Historians, professional and otherwise, have written thousands of regimental histories, county histories, and town histories of the Civil War years. These studies make the coming of the war concrete and compelling. Inspired by such accounts, it seemed to me that two local portrayals could be even better than one, that exploring communities on both sides of the Mason-Dixon Line as they each confronted the events from the late fifties to the late sixties might make both sides more comprehensible.

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Copyright © 2008 Kent State University Press. This book chapter first appeared in More Than a Contest Between Armies: Essays on the Civil War Era.

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