Thunder On The River Summary

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A review of Thunder On the River The Civil War in Northeast Florida by Daniel L. Schafer Growing up in the northern state of Illinois, a student was always taught in school that the Civil War was about slavery and president Abraham Lincoln. Reading this book gives the reader a point of view that is not normally explained in northern states. Daniel L. Schafer the Author of the Book Thunder on the river, explains in great detail with firsthand accounts of how the Civil War started, who was involved and what happened, before during and after the war. In the Preface of the book, Schafer explains how he was able to write the book; he was asked to edit the draft of Richard A. Martin 's two volume history of Jacksonville more than twenty five years…show more content…
It showed me a new perspective on the south and its ways of life before and after the war. Before reading this a person from the north only saw how the south had slaves and didn 't want to give them up; being taught that the south was just keeping slaves and that the war started because this did not adhere to the Emancipation Proclamation. In reading this book, the reader learns how the laws made to prevent slaves from uprising or creating a balanced system was not going to happen anytime while living in North Florida after the war. Most slaves couldn 't even live within the city limits without paying a fee or 5 days in jail (Schafer 11). The fact that during Lincoln 's first election, he wasn 't even on the Florida Ballot was a shock. One really interesting connection is the name of my hometown, Ottawa, Illinois and its neighboring town of Seneca names of Indians from the area. The ships also carried the same names and at one point both fought on the St Johns River. However we did not hear or were taught of these ships until reading about them in battle. The Ottawa is the ship that fought a train, shooting at a train car, thinking it was filled with soldiers hitting the rear which exploded furniture everywhere(Schafer 48). The Seneca was used to patrol and used to transport slaves (Schafer 78,87). This little connection gave me a great deal of interest in the book. The connection to the south was a small but important as well,…show more content…
Reading this book, he seems to want to tell the reader about how things happened accurately. With all that happened in this timeline he covers a great amount of information and relays that to the reader as well. It was written in a uniform way, Schafer is clear and consistently stays on topic. Not being much a reader, some of the information can get a little overwhelming at times if the reader does not focus and possibly has to reread some of the pages to stay on topic. However Schafer 's opinion does not seem to show throughout the book, but his passion for writing and history pour out on the pages. Schafer 's way of making a book enjoyable can be difficult for someone like me to read at times, if not for the amazing details and great historical accounts given about the war. He has a way of making sure the reader could not only read it, but also they could see and hear it in their mind 's eye. That is where a reader can separate a writer that is just writing for money, from a professional writer that loves their
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