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Synopsis

John Esten Cooke and his brother Philip Pendleton Cooke were very successful writers and novelists before the Civil War broke out in the United States in 1861. Hailing from Virginia, John wrote proudly about the state in the 1850s, becoming noted for his writings about Virginian life during the antebellum period. In 1862, Cooke became a volunteer aide for famous cavalry officer J.E.B. Stuart, a position secured through his family ties to Stuarts wife. In May 1862 he was commissioned as a lieutenant, becoming an official member of Stuarts staff. Cooke participated in Stuarts cavalry during its most famous campaign, the ride around George McClellans Army of the Potomac in 1862, and he was present for several other campaigns in the East, including Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, and Gettysburg. Cooke continued to serve under Stuart until May 1864, when Stuart was mortally wounded at the Battle of Yellow Tavern in Virginia on May 11. He served the remainder of the war for various generals staffs, and by the end of the war he had rubbed shoulders with famous generals like Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson. After the war, Cooke set about writing Wearing of the Gray, using his strong writing skills to tell a flourishing, romantic tale of his experience and the Civil War in general, making it both entertaining and an early example of the type of Lost Cause literature that depicted a glorious antebellum South and almost legendary Army of Northern Virginia. This edition includes a Table of Contents and pictures of some of the war's famous leaders and generals.

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