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Book notices.

Memoir of William Francis Bartlett. By Francis Winthrop Palfrey. Boston: Houghton, Osgood & Co.

We have received from the publishers, through J. W. Randolph & English, Richmond, a copy of this beautifully gotten up book.

It is the biography of a young man of fine talents and culture who entered the Federal army as captain in the Twentieth Massachusetts regiment and rose to the rank of brigadier-general; who lost his leg and was otherwise wounded in the service; whose whole soul was in the cause he espoused, but who seems to have fully recognized that the war closed when the Confederate armies surrendered, and to have devoted himself earnestly to bringing about real peace between the North and the South.

The book is well written, and the extracts from his diary and private letters give freshness to the narrative. If we were disposed to criticise the fact that some bitter and (as we hold) very unjust expressions towards the South in his army letters are allowed to mar the spirit of the narrative, we would be reminded that these indicate the true feelings of the times, and that these are atoned for by the very different spirit in which he wrote and spoke after the close of the war. E. g., if he called us in ‘61 “traitors” who “viper-like” had fired on the flag which protected us, he said in a public speech at Lexington, Massachusetts, on the 19th of April, 1875: . . . “As an American, I am as proud of the men who charged so bravely with Pickett's division on our lines at Gettysburg, as I am of the men who so bravely met and repulsed them there. Men cannot always choose the right cause; but when, having chosen that which conscience dictates, they are ready to die for it, if [48] they justify not their cause, they at least ennoble themselves. And the men who, for conscience' sake, fought against their government at Gettysburg, ought easily to be forgiven by the sons of men who, for conscience' sake, fought against their government at Lexington and Bunker Hill.”

A sketch of the life of Randolph Fairfax. By Reverend Philip Slaughter,. D. D.

We are indebted to the author (through Woodhouse & Parham) for this beautiful story of a noble life. It was published during the war in tract form, and it was our privilege to circulate a number of copies of it among our soldiers. This is a new edition, beautifully gotten up, and with some valuable additions. Dr. Slaughter has done a valuable service in preserving this story of the life of a bright, noble, educated young man of high social position, illustrious ancestry and humble piety, who marched forth at his country's call and freely gave his brave young life for the land he loved so well. There could be no higher tribute to this gifted young man than the following letter:

camp near Fredericksburg, December 28th, 1862.
My Dear Doctor — I have grieved most deeply at the death of your noble son. I have watched his conduct since the commencement of the war, and have pointed with pride to the patriotism, self-denial and manliness of character he has exhibited. I had hoped that an opportunity would have occurred for the promotion he deserved; not that it would have elevated him, but have shown that his devotion to duty was appreciated by his country. Such an opportunity would undoubtedly have occurred; but he has been translated to a better world, for which his purity and his piety have eminently fitted him. You do not require to be told how great his gain. It is the living for whom I sorrow. I beg you will offer to Mrs. Fairfax and your daughters my heart-felt sympathy, for I know the depth of their grief. That God may give you and them strength to bear this great affliction, is the earnest prayer of your early friend

Life of Albert Sidney Johnston. By his son, Colonel Wm. Preston Johnston. D. Appleton & Co.

This book is announced in our advertising columns as now ready, and we have had the privilege of reading some of the advanced sheets.

Reserving a full review until we shall have an opportunity of reading the whole book, we will only say now that it is the story of the life of a noble man whose career shed lustre on the American name — that the narrative displays that delicacy of feeling, chaste diction and vigorous style that we expected from the accomplished author, and that the book will be a most valuable contribution to our history and one that will be widely read and appreciated.

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