David Nelson | Elk Grove, Ca United States | 02/13/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The Civil War Journal is a very informative and entertaining look at the Civil War with original pictures and personal narratives ala Ken Burns. Civil War Journal draws on more sources though and delves deeper into specific areas where Ken Burns didn't have the time. The use of interviews with historians and authors lets the experts relate some human interest to the history.
Danny Glover is a good choice as the host. he presents well and The History Channel throws in some reenacting to bring a little color to the program. I would like to see The History Channel release the rest of the series on DVD."
GREAT INTRODUCTION TO THE COMMANDERS!
Steven Hancock | Winston Salem, NC United States | 12/21/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Civil War Journal" is a fantastic documentary series that deals with the personal and political struggles in addition to the already-legendary military conflicts. This DVD collects four episodes that deal with the famous commanders of the conflict. The first program shows how West Point classmates would end up commanding troops on both sides of the conflict. The second and third programs showcase the lives of Robert E. Lee and Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson. Some points must be taken off for the last documentary, which is about William T. Sherman and the March to the Sea. While it does point out the instances of rape and murder (which, although rare, DID happen), as well as the total destruction of property, did occur on this march, the documentary almost seems to excuse these travesties, which were crimes of war that Sherman was never held accountable for. However, the documentary does point out that he was not only ignorant of these incidences, but was also a racist. It shows that he was a less-than-stellar person, both on the battlefield and off.
"Civil War Journal: The Commanders" is a great introduction to the leaders who would lead both Confederate and Union troops into the bloodiest conflict in America's history. Historians and DVD collectors will not be disappointed!
Excellent overview fo the commanders
Fruit Loop | Down South | 08/30/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This excellent series, "Civil War Journal" gives another great set for its fans and is a must-see for serious students of the war. While the general's names are well known, their motivations get a thorough examination. So many of the key players had friends and even kin on "the other side." West Point Classmates gives an excellent in-depth look at the early training and molding of values that influenced the sometimes heartbreaking choices these American heroes were forced to make. Highly recommend."