The past twenty years of Civil War scholarship have delved deeply into the human stories behind the war. From Shelby Foote's exhaustive research to Ken Burns' weeklong documentary (that seemed at times to border on telenovella), we as a nation have learned more about the humanity and emotional lives of the soldiers who fought on both sides. Charles Bracelen Flood's Grant & Sherman: The Friendship That Won the Civil War tackles the intertwined lives of Ulysses S. Grant and William Tecumseh Sherman, two of the Union's most prominent leaders. The men shared a bond of failure in their lives before the war, but in the crucible of battle, the two became spiritually inseparable, even when they were physically separated by great distances. "We were as brothers," Sherman said of his crony, with whom he shared cigars as well as discussions of tactics for both the battlefield and for the peace they knew they would have to forge when the war was over. Flood reads from and discusses his book at 7 p.m. at St. Louis County Library Headquarters (1640 South Lindbergh Boulevard, Ladue; 314-367-6731 or www.left-bank.com) as the guest of Left Bank Books. Admission is free.
Thu., Sept. 21