Life in Mr. Lincoln's Navy

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The Sailor's calling has its own unique joys and challenges – be it in the Navy of today or the Navy of the Civil War. Every aspect of the common Sailor's life in the Union navy – from recruiting, clothing, training, shipboard routine, entertainment, and wages to diet, health, and combat experience – is addressed in this book, the first to examine the subject in rich detail.

As he examines daily life in the Union navy, author Dennis Ringle also calls attention to the enlisted Sailor's enormous contributions to the development of the U.S. Navy as it moved from wood and sail to iron and steam. To reconstruct daily life, Ringle draws on a large number of published and unpublished diaries, journals, and letters, giving the narrative an authentically human side.

Ultimately, this is a book imbued with respect for the courageous Union Sailors who helped save the nation; it's a work that brings these unsung heroes their due recognition, just as Bell Irvin Wiley's landmark volumes The Life of Billy Yank and The Life of Johnny Reb did for Civil War Soldiers. As one reviewer put it, Life in Mr. Lincoln's Navy is "a must for any American naval library."

In its attention to the crucial role played by the enlisted Sailor during our nation's defining clash, this book helps modern Sailors understand and appreciate the greatness of their Navy legacy, to feel a common bond with Sailor's of yesteryear, and to realize the vital importance of the contributions of those who serve on the deckplate level to the Navy's mission and the Navy's glory.