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Old 07-18-2009, 07:45 AM   #1
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Altsheler, Joseph A: The Tree of Appomattox. V1. 18 July 2009

Altsheler was born in Three Springs, Kentucky to Joseph and Louise Altsheler. In 1885, he took a job at the Louisville Courier-Journal as a reporter and later, an editor. He started working for the New York World in 1892, first as the paper's Hawaiian correspondent and then as the editor of the World's tri-weekly magazine. Due to a lack of suitable stories, he began writing children's stories for the magazine.
Altsheler married Sarah Boles on May 30, 1888, and had one son. He and his family were in Germany when World War I began. The difficult journey home took a huge toll on Altsheler's health and he was never the same. He died in New York City in 1919.

Excerpt
“The Tree of Appomattox” concludes the series of connected romances dealing with the Civil War, begun in “The Guns of Bull Run,” and continued successively through “The Guns of Shiloh,” “The Scouts of Stonewall,” “The Sword of Antietam,” “The Star of Gettysburg,” “The Rock of Chickamauga” and “The Shades of the Wilderness” to the present volume. It has been completed at the expense of vast labor, and the author has striven at all times to be correct, wherever facts are involved. So far, at least, no historic detail has been challenged by critic or reader. More than half a century has passed since the Civil War’s close. Not many of the actors in it are left. It was one of the most tremendous upheavals in the life of any nation, and it was the greatest of all struggles, until the World War began, but scarcely any trace of partisan rancor or bitterness is left. So, it has become easier to write of it with a sense of fairness and detachment, and the lapse of time has made the perspective clear and sharp. However lacking he may be in other respects, the author perhaps had an advantage in being born, and having grown up in a border state, where sentiment was about equally divided concerning the Civil War. He was surrounded during his early youth by men who fought on one side or the other, and their stories of camp, march and battle were almost a part of the air he breathed. So he hopes that this circumstance has aided him to give a truthful color to the picture of the mighty combat, waged for four such long and terrible years.
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