The Seven-Day Scholar: The Civil War

Exploring History One Week at a Time


By Dennis Gaffney

By Peter Gaffney

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$55.00 CAD



  1. Hardcover $44.00 $55.00 CAD
  2. ebook $13.99 $17.99 CAD

This item is a preorder. Your payment method will be charged immediately, and the product is expected to ship on or around May 10, 2011. This date is subject to change due to shipping delays beyond our control.

“A bite of history a day, all year long.” Flawless storytelling, expert research, and a whole new way of providing history in intriguing, one-page essays makes The Seven-Day Scholar: The Civil War a book that anyone interested in the topic will want on their bookshelf. This volume in the Seven-Day Scholar series brings to life significant moments in our nation’s heroic tragedy, the Civil War, and coincides with its 150th anniversary. The book is organized into fifty-two chapters, corresponding to the weeks in a year; and each week has a theme-what ignited the war, Antietam, soldiers’ food and drink, the 54th Massachusetts, the Gettysburg Address, Vicksburg, medical care, Lincoln’s assassination, why the North won, and many more. Each chapter includes seven related narrative entries, one for every day of the week. These one-page entries, which read like historical fiction, bring to life crucial political decisions, unforgettable people, key battlefield moments, scholarly debates, and struggles on the home front. The book also explores many little-known episodes, answering questions such as:
  • Why did Jefferson and Varina Davis take in a mixed-race child during the war
  • What were the causes of riots in New York City and Richmond
  • Why was General William Sherman demoted for “insanity”
  • Why did the Union Army turn Robert E. Lee’s estate into a cemetery
Entries also include follow-up resources where curious readers can learn more. Readers can sweep through the book from beginning to end, or use it as a reference book, periodically dipping in and out of topics they want to explore. This is the perfect book for history buffs, and for those who missed out on learning about this captivating period in American history.


  • "As a life-long student of the war, I found this unique history of the period to be a first-rate publication. Through its innovative layout and creative design, Gaffney provides both seasoned enthusiasts and newcomers with an opportunity to learn about this tragic moment in American history. If, as the historian David McCullough once wrote, " History is who we are and why we are the way we are," then this publication does a wonderful job of telling us where we came from as a people."—Jim Lighthizer, President and CEO of the Civil War Trust
  • "Through compelling stories and carefully researched interpretations, the authors explain, analyze, and spark curiosity about the Civil War. The unique calendar format invites teachers, students, and families to discuss the multiple causes, the immediate impact, and the long-term legacy of our nation in conflict."—Cathy Gorn, Executive Director, National History Day
  • "For the reader, it will be easy to comprehend how and why the American Civil War still has an impact on our lives today, and is a perfect companion to take along while visiting one of our treasured battlefield parks."—John Heiser, Ranger/Historian, Gettysburg National Military Park
  • "A delightfully good volume that provides a clear, concise, and comprehensive presentation of the Civil War in all its complexity. Had only such a volume been available when I was in school!"—Terrence J. Winschel, Historian, Vicksburg National Military Park, and author of Triumph & Defeat: The Vicksburg Campaign
  • "This book takes readers on a comprehensive journey through the defining event in American history. Story by story, the authors describe the causes, conduct, and consequences of the Civil War in a text that is rich in content and accessible to scholars, teachers, students, and the general public."—Brent D. Glass, Historian

On Sale
May 10, 2011
Page Count
496 pages
Hachette Books

Dennis Gaffney

About the Author

Dennis Gaffney is an adjunct professor at the University at Albany SUNY, and also a journalist who has written for The New York Times, Mother Jones, and Reader’s Digest. Peter Gaffney is Senior VP, Programming, Scheduling and Acquisitions for HISTORY.

Peter Gaffney is the Vice President of Program Planning &amp Acquisitions for HISTORY Channel and A&amp E.

Learn more about this author