The stories contain several common themes:
- The last veterans lived over one hundred.
- Most of them outlived their wives and many were married several times.
- Nearly all of the veterans were teenagers when they joined the war.
- After the war, most of them returned to or became farmers, factory workers, or common laborers.
- The men were remarkably healthy and only a few suffered from battle wounds.
- The veterans were revered in the community and celebrated at state and national events.
A few of the veterans were found to be frauds. Some men proclaimed their service to obtain pensions, while others sought the fame associated with being the state's oldest Civil War veteran. The author includes an Appendix with a collection of the longest living survivors from various battles, historic events, and circumstances.
Mr. Grzyb is the author of six other books and numerous articles on the Civil War for newspapers and magazines. He is a member of the Rhode Island Civil War Round Table.
The Last Civil War Veterans is a fine addition to your Civil War library that reveals how men who survived the war became peaceful citizens.
You can order The Last Civil War Veterans from McFarland on their website (www.Mcfarlandpub.com) or by phone (800-253-2187).