Commander of All Lincoln's Armies

A Life of General Henry W. Halleck

By John F. Marszalek ’63M.A., ’68Ph.D. (Harvard University Press)


General Halleck, the man known for his failure in leading the Union troops from 1862 to 1864 as Abraham Lincoln’s chief war adviser, comes under the microscope in this biography. Halleck’s early achievements ranged from his service in Mexican War battles to his writing on military theory to his highly regarded work as a lawyer and as an entrepreneur. While these successes earned Halleck an early reputation as a man of action, the author analyzes what he sees as the psychological traits that led to Halleck’s inability to make important wartime decisions.

The author is a professor emeritus of history at Mississippi State University and a prize-winning historian who has written extensively on the Civil War.

(May 2005)