Friday, May 23, 2014

Controversial Savas Beatie Book Wins Award

Savas Beatie Title Wins 2014 Albert Castel Book Award
El Dorado Hills, CA May 23, 2014 - John Bell Hood:  The Rise, Fall, and Resurrection of a Confederate General by Stephen M. Hood was selected as the 2014 winner of the Albert Castel Book Award.
The award is given biennially by the Kalamazoo Civil War Round Table to authors writing on the subject of the Civil War in the Western Theater.
According to reviewing members of the Kalamazoo CWRT: 
"The voluminous inclusion of citations to historical documents and other primary source material challenge previous interpretations of Hood's military actions. A look back at past author's interpretations of John Bell Hood's record reveals the biases, inventions, and myths that have darkly colored his Civil War reputation. This book refutes the aspersions of 'historians' to name Hood the sole cause of the loss of Atlanta, and failure at Spring Hill, Franklin and Nashville." -Margean Gladysz
"Anyone who wants the true story of the fall of Atlanta and the Tennessee campaign needs to study this book."
-Graham Hollis
"Sam Hood makes a compelling case that Hood's reputation has been unjustifiably tarnished over the years by authors who have repeated half-truths and myths that are not supported by primary sources. Even people with little or no interest in Hood should read it as a cautionary tale that the things that 'everybody knows' are not always true." -Dave Jordan
"I knew we had a very special book from the moment I first read the manuscript, but all of us at Savas Beatie are thrilled and humbled that John Bell Hood won such a prestigious award," said Theodore P. Savas, the managing director for Savas Beatie. "We were always confident that anyone who actually took the time to read Stephen Hood's book, whether in reviewing it or for pleasure, would find it original, well-researched, and truly ground-breaking in what it exposes about the state of this slice of Civil War historiography. It surprises people, I think, when they find out Sam's work is not an argument that Hood was the overlooked Jackson or Lee," continued Savas. "It is about intellectual honesty and rigorous scholarship, and a cautionary tale about both. Anyone writing about General Hood or his tenure with the Army of Tennessee in the future who ignores this book and/or his recently discovered personal papers will do so at his peril."
John Bell Hood was one of the Confederacy's most enigmatic generals. He died at 48 after a brief illness in August of 1879, leaving behind the first draft of his memoirs Advance and Retreat: Personal Experiences in the United States and Confederate States Armies. Published posthumously the following year, the memoirs immediately became as controversial as their author. A careful and balanced examination of these "controversies," however, coupled with the recent discovery of Hood's personal papers (which were long considered lost) finally sets the record straight in John Bell Hood: The Rise, Fall, and Resurrection of a Confederate General.
About Stephen M "Sam" Hood.: Stephen M. "Sam" Hood graduated from Kentucky Military Institute, Marshall University (BBA, 1976), and is a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve. A collateral descendant of General Hood, Sam is a retired industrial construction company owner, past member of the Board of Directors of the Blue Gray Education Society, and a past president of the Board of Directors of Confederate Memorial Hall Museum in New Orleans.  He lives in his hometown of Huntington, West Virginia, with his wife of 37 years, Martha, and is the proud father of two sons: Derek Hood of Lexington, Kentucky, and Taylor Hood of Huntington, West Virginia.
About Savas Beatie LLC: Savas Beatie LLC is a leading military and general history publishing company. Read more about John Bell Hood: The Rise, Fall and Resurrection of a Confederate General, including excerpts and an interview with the author.


  1. Sir,

    Thank you for recognizing my 2014 Albert Castel Award, but I find your headline rather curious. You describe my book as "Controversial" yet the article provides no specific examples of any controversial content. The book is indeed a critical expose' of the historiography and literature of John Bell Hood, but all of my factual assertions are supported by over 1,000 footnotes, most of which are primary sources. Despite being released over nine months ago, I have yet to receive any denials or objections from any of the numerous historians whom I cite; in fact, none have even engaged me in debate in defense of their portrayals of Hood.


    Stephen M. "Sam" Hood

  2. Thank you for writing Mr. Hood. The article is a direct copy and paste from your publisher Savas Beatie announcing your award.

    At this point I have not read your book and my article title was in no means a knock against your work. I stand by my word though that when the book was published it did generate a large buzz. Personally, I think that is a good thing and helped draw people to your book and allowed John Bell Hood to be reexamined by many.

    Congratulations on winning the Albert Castel Book Award. May it be the first of many that recognize your work!

    1. Fair enough Robert. Understood.


      SM Hood