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June 19, 2013

ULM professor publishes 16th "Disunion" article in the New York Times

Dr. Terry L. Jones, professor of history, has contributed another article to the New York Times online “Disunion” series commemorating the Civil War’s sesquicentennial, and three of his previous articles are included in the new book Disunion! published by the Times

Jones was also invited by the British Broadcasting Company’s BBC History Magazine to write an article for its special 150th Anniversary Edition on the Civil War. 

“The Mississippi Marine Brigade” is Dr. Jones’ latest “Disunion” article. 

It was published May 17 and explains how the unit became one of the most controversial of the Civil War. 

Officially a part of the U.S. Army, the Marine Brigade was stationed on ships and patrolled the Mississippi River Valley fighting Confederate guerrillas.

The brigade was under neither the army nor navy’s command and answered directly to the Secretary of War. 

Soon the Marine Brigade became notorious for looting and arson. It burned every Louisiana village along the Red River from Alexandria to the Mississippi and was involved in the burning of Richmond, the parish seat of Madison Parish, Louisiana.

Because of its criminal activity and questionable military effectiveness, the Marine Brigade was eventually abolished by the War Department.

The New York Times compiled 106 of the “Disunion” articles into a book by the same name that was released this month.

The book is being offered as a monthly book club selection by the History Book Club.

Three of Dr. Jones articles were included:  “The Southern Cross” (an examination of how the Confederate battle flag came to be adopted), “Under the Knife” (a look at Civil War surgical practices), and “The Free Men of Color Go to War” (a short history of the Louisiana African American soldiers known as the Native Guards). 

The editor of the BBC History Magazine enjoyed Dr. Jones “Disunion” pieces and invited him to write an article for its 150th Anniversary Edition about the Civil War. 

Jones’ article “Generals in Command” presents short biographical of eight of the war’s most important generals.

To read "The Mississippi Marine Brigade", visit:

For Further Reading

The New York Times has published 15 other articles by Jones since 2011, and are available for reading on the New York Times' Web site:

The Codes of War (March 2013) deatials how both the North and South frequently used ciphers and codes to encrypt sensitive information that was transmitted through written orders, telegrams, and flag signals.

The Canal to Nowhere (January 2013) tells the story of Gen. U.S. Grant digging a canal to try to change the course of the Mississippi River;

The Fighting Irish Brigade (December 2012) is a history of the Union’s famous Irish Brigade, a unit made up of mostly Irish immigrants;

Under the Knife (November 2012) takes a look at surgical practices during the Civil War;

The Free Men of Color Go to War (October 2012), tells the story of the Louisiana Native Guards, the first African American unit in the U.S. Army;

The Fighting Bishop (October 2012) tells the story of Gen. Leonidas Polk, Louisiana’s Episcopal Bishop;

The Dead of Antietam (September 2012), discusses the Louisiana Tigers in the Battle of Antietam and two photographs;

The Battle of Baton Rouge (Aug. 2012), discusses the symbolic battle for the fight over the Louisiana capital;

Brothers in Arms (July 2012), details how two units, one Union; one Confederate, fought against each other in 1862 found themselves fighting alongside each other in Iraq;

The Jewish Rebel (April 2012), which delivers an insightful look into the life of Confederate War Department Secretary Judah P. Benjamin;

The Fall of New Orleans(April 2012), which details how Union Flag Officer David Farragut and the Navy won a "stunning victory" that put the Union one step closer to securing the entire Mississippi River;

The Beast in the Big Easy (May 2012), describes Benjamin F. Butler's brutal rule over New Orleans;

Tiger Execution (Dec. 2011), details how two Louisiana soldiers were among the first to be executed in the Civil War;

The Terrifying Tigers (Sept. 2011), tells how Louisiana soldiers in Virginia became famous for both misbehaving and battlefield heroics; and

The Southern Cross (July 2011), which details how Louisiana soldiers gave birth to the famous Confederate battle flag.

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