Lincolns Forgotten Ally: Judge Advocate General Joseph Holt of Kentucky Elizabeth D. Leonard

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432 pages


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Lincolns Forgotten Ally: Judge Advocate General Joseph Holt of Kentucky  by  Elizabeth D. Leonard

Lincolns Forgotten Ally: Judge Advocate General Joseph Holt of Kentucky by Elizabeth D. Leonard
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Joseph Holt, the stern, brilliant, and deeply committed Unionist from Kentucky, spent the first several months of the American Civil War successfully laboring to maintain Kentuckys loyalty to the Union, then went on to serve as President LincolnsMoreJoseph Holt, the stern, brilliant, and deeply committed Unionist from Kentucky, spent the first several months of the American Civil War successfully laboring to maintain Kentuckys loyalty to the Union, then went on to serve as President Lincolns judge advocate general.

In Lincolns Forgotten Ally, Elizabeth Leonard offers the first full-scale biography of Holt, who has long been overlooked and misunderstood by historians and students of the war.In his capacity as the administrations chief arbiter and enforcer of military law, Holt strove tenaciously, often against strong resistance, to implement Lincolns wartime policies, including emancipation. After Lincolns assassination, Holt accepted responsibility for pursuing and bringing to justice everyone involved in John Wilkes Booths conspiracy. It was because of this role, in which he is often portrayed as a brutal prosecutor, and because of his hard position toward the South, Leonard contends, that Holts reputation suffered.

Leonard argues, however, that Holt should not be defined by what Southern sympathizers and proponents of the Lost Cause came to think of him. Lincolns Forgotten Ally seeks to restore Holt, who dedicated both his energy and his influence to ensuring that the Federal victory would bring about lasting positive change for the nation, to his rightful place in American memory.



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