This distinguished addition to the field of Civil War literature is divided into two parts: an illustrated Almanac and an illustrated Encyclopedia. The first is a day-by-day account in which the reader can trace the course of events as they unfold simultaneously on the battlefield, in naval warfare, and in Washington, D.C., and Richmond, Virginia, the respective capitals of Union and Confederate forces. Illustrated by more than 350 maps, photographs, and paintings, the first half of this invaluable reference provides the reader with an overview of the personalities, passions, and events that culminated in America's bloodiest war – a conflict that still reverberates into the present day. Following upon this chronological account is the Encyclopedia, which has more than 1,000 entries, from extended essays to succinct definitions. More than 350 biographies of major Civil War figures, including their strategies and tactics, are described here, along with the weapons, equipment, uniforms, flags and other appurtenances of what has been justifiably called the world's first total war. This section, too, is abundantly illustrated in both color and black and white. General Editor John S. Bowman is a graduate of Harvard University and did his post-graduate work at Trinity College, Cambridge, and the University of Munich. He has edited a number of volumes on American and Civil War history, including The Almanac of American History and The Almanac of the American West. He also played a major role in the compilation of the Cambridge University Press Dictionary of American Biography.