Kentucky's German Americans in the Civil War


Following is a list of books by or about Germans fighting in the American Civil War. If you know of any others, please let me know.
Contact Joe Reinhart at

Books of Civil War Letters Written by Germans

Bender, Robert Patrick , ed., Like Grass before the Scythe: The Life and Death of Sgt. William Remmel, 121st New York Infantry. Tuscaloosa: Univ. of Alabama Press, 2007.

Byrne, Frank L.,  and Jean Powers Soman, eds., Your True Marcus: The Civil War Letters of a Jewish Colonel. Kent, O., Kent State Univ. Press, 1985.

Goyne, Minetta Altgelt, trans. and ed., Lone Star and Double Eagle: Civil War Letters of a German-Texas Family  N. p.: Texas Christian Univ. Press, 1982.

Holtmann, Antonius, A Lost American Dream: Civil war Letters (1862–1863) of Immigrant Theodor Heinrich Brandes in Historical Coxtext. Eberhard Reichmann, trans. and ed. of American Edition. Indianapolis: Max Kade German-American Center & Indiana German Heritage Society, 2005.

Horner, John B., Captain John M Sachs: His Long Road Back to Gettysburg Gettysburg, Pa.: Horner Enterprises, 1994.

Janeski, Paul, comp., A Civil War Soldier’s Last Letters. New York: Vantage Press, 1975.

Kamphoefner,  Walter D.,  and Wolfgang Helbich, eds. and Susan Carter Vogel, trans. Germans in the Civil War: The Letters They Wrote Home. Chapel Hill: Univ. of North Carolina Press, 2006.

Lyftgot, Kenneth, ed. Left for Dixie: The Civil War Diary of John Rath. Parkersburg Iowa: Mid-Prairie Books, 1991.

Reinhart, Joseph R., trans. and ed. Two Germans in the Civil War: The Diary of John Daeuble and the Letters of Gottfried Rentschler, 6th Kentucky Infantry. Knoxville: Univ. of Tenn. Press, 2004.

Reinhart, Joseph R., trans. and ed. August Willich’s Gallant Dutchmen: Civil War Letters from the 32nd Indiana Infantry. Kent, Ohio: Kent, State Univ. Press, 2006.

Reinhart, Joseph R., trans. and ed. A German Hurrah: The Civil War Letters of Friedrich Berstch and Wilhelm Stängel, 9th Ohio Infantry (Kent, Ohio: Kent, State Univ. Press, ( June 30, 2010).

Schaller, Frank, Mary W. Schaller, and Martin N. 

Schaller,  Soldiering for Glory: The Civil War Letters of

Colonel Frank Schaller, Twenty-second Mississippi

Infantry (Columbia, S.C.: University of South Carolina

Press, 2007).

Wickesberg, Charles, Civil War Letters of Sergeant Charles Wickesberg (Milwaukee: A. Wickesberg, 1961).

Winkler, William K., ed, Letters of Frederic C. Winkler 1862–1865. N. p.: William K. Winkler, 1963.

See also Earl J. Hess, ed., A German in the Yankee Fatherland: The Civil War Letters of Henry A. Kircher. Kent, Ohio: Kent State Univ. Press, 1983, for an outstanding collection of letters authored by a soldier born in Illinois of German immigrant parents.


Ahsenmacher, Henry, The Civil war Diary of a Minnesota Volunteer: Henry    Ahsenmacher 1862–1865. St. Paul: Minnesota Genealogical Society, 1990.

Hedrick, David T. and Gordon Barry Davis, Jr., eds. I Am Surrounded by Methodists: Diary of John H. W. Stuckenburg, Chaplain of the 145th Pennsylvania. Gettysburg, Pa.: Thomas Publications, 1995.

Horner, John B., Captain John M. Sachs: Hiss Long Road Back to Gettysburg. Gettysburg, Pa.: Horner Enterprises, 1994.

Patrick, Charles, ed. Giesecke's Civil War Diary: The Story of the Fourth Regiment of the First Texas Cavalry Brigade of the Army of the Confederate States of America (1861–1865). Manor, Texas: Patrick Historical Research, 1999.

Scherneckau, August, James E. Potter and Edith Robbins, Marching With the First Nebraska: A Civil War Diary. Norman: Univ. of Oklahoma Press, 2007.

Spurlin, Charles D. ed. The Civil War Diary of Charles A. Leuschner—Sixth Texas Infantry (CSA). Austin, Texas: Eakin Press, 1999.



Gould, David ed., Memoirs of a Dutch Mudsill. Kent, Ohio: Kent State University Press, 2004.

Hood, Dennis (Compiler), Cynthia Johnson (Editor),  A Civil War Campaign through Missouri: Recollections of a German Soldier, (Bolivar, Mo.: Leonard Press)

Scheibert, Capt. Justus, Seven Months in the Rebel States During the North American War, ed. Wm. Stanley Hoole, tran. Joseph C. Hayes, (Tuscaloosa, Ala.:Confederate Publishing Co., Inc., 1958)

 Regimental Histories


Allendorf, Donald, Long Road to Liberty: The Odyssey of a Germans Regiment in the Yankee Army, the 15th Missouri Volunteer Infantry (Kent, Ohio: Kent State Univ. Press, 2006)

Boethel, Paul C., The Big Guns of Fayette (Creuzbaur's Battery or Welhausen's Battery, C. S. A.) (n. p.: no publisher, 1965)

Grebner, Constantin, “We Were the Ninth”: A History of the Ninth Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry, April 17, 1861, to June 7, 1864, trans. and ed. Frederic Trautmann (Kent, Ohio: Kent State Univ. Press, 1987)

Martin, David G. 1987. Carl Bornemann's Regiment: The 41st New York Infantry in the Civil War. ([S.l.]: [s.n.], 1987).

Pula, James S., The Sigel Regiment: The Twenty-sixth Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry, 1862–1865 (Campbell, Calif.: Savas Publishing Company, 1998)


Smith, Jacob. 1910; reprint, Camps and Campaigns of the

107th Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry (Navarre, Ohio: Indian

River Graphics, 2000). Authored by an Anglo-American in the 

regiment, little included about Germanness of the regiment.


Engle, Stephen D.,  Yankee Dutchman: The Life of Franz Sigel Fayetteville: Univ. of Arkansas Press, 1993) 

Freitag, Sabine and Steven W. Rowan, Friedrich Hecker: Two Lives for Liberty (St. Louis, Mo.: St. Louis Mercantile Library, 2006)

Kautz, Lawrence G.  August Valentine Kautz, USA: Biography

of a Civil War General(Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland & Co.,

Publishers, 2008).

Trefousse, Hans Louis, Carl Schurz, a Biography . North's Civil

War, no. 5. Bronx, NY: Fordham University Press, 1998.

Townsend, Mary Bobbitt Yankee Warhorse: A Biography of Maj. Gen. Peter J. Osterhaus (Columbia: Univ. of Missouri Press, 2010)

Other Books

Hood, Dennis (Compiler), Cynthia Johnson (Editor), Stephen Trobisch, A Civil War Campaign Through Missouri (Boliber, Mo.: Leonard Press, 2012)


Kaufmann, Wilhelm, The Germans in the American Civil War trans. Steven Rowan, ed. Don Heinrich Tolzmann with Werner D. Mueller and Robert E. Ward, (1911 reprint; Carlisle, Pa.: John Kallmann, Publishers, 1999).

Keller, Christian B, Chancellorsville and the Germans: Nativism, Ethnicity and Civil War Memory: New York: Fordham Univ. Press, 2007.

Keller, Christian B. and David L. Valuska, Damn Dutch: Pennsylvania Germans at Gettysburg  Mechanicsburg, Pa.: Stackpole Books, 2004).

Mehrländer, Andrea, The Germans of Charleston, Richmond and New Orleans during the Civil War Period, 1850-1870: A Study and Research Compendium. (Berlin: De Gruyter, 2011).

Miller, C. Eugene ed., Der Turner Soldat: Calmer Publications, 1988. 

Öfele, Martin W., German-Speaking Officers in the U. S. Colored Troops, 1863­­–1867  (Gainesville: Univ. of Florida Press, 2004).

Peake, Michael, Blood Shed in This War : Civil War Illustrations by Captain Adolph Metzner, 32nd Indiana  (Indianapolis: Indiana Historical Society, 2010)

Tafel, Gustav, and Don Heinrich Tolzmann. The Cincinnati Germans in the Civil War. (Milford, Ohio: Little Miami Pub. Co., 2010).

Germans  and Other Immigrants

Burton, William L., Melting Pot Soldiers: The Union’s Ethnic Regiments, 2nd ed.: New York: Fordham Univ. Press, 1998

Lonn, Ella, Foreigners in the Confederacy: Chapel Hill: Univ. of North Carolina Press, 1940);

Lonn, Ella, Foreigners in the Union Army and Navy: Baton Rouge: Louisiana State Univ. Press, 1951;

Mahin, Dean B., The Blessed Place of Freedom: Europeans in the Civil War: Brasseys, Inc., 2002.

(Kaufmann, Lonn, and Burton, must be used with caution because they are outdated, filiopietistic, tend to use ethnic stereotypes, or rely mainly on other secondary sources. As pointed out by Keller and Valuska: “Both Lonn and Burton fail to treat Civil War-era Germans as that disunified, multifaceted conglomeration of people they were; they tend to view Germans largely as a bloc and play down the differences among them. This approach is  . . . inaccurate.” Lonn and Burton also maintained that the Civil War served to Americanize its German participants without providing supporting evidence. Burton also incorrectly concluded that there was little difference between the Germans in blue and their Anglo-American comrades and that German regiments lost their ethnic character as the war progressed. Despite their faults these studies do contain much useful information.)

Selected Articles

Keller, Christian B., "New Perspectives in Civil War Ethnic History and Their Implications for Twenty-First Century Scholarship" in Slap, Andrew L., and Michael Thomas Smith, This Distracted and Anarchical People: New Answers for Old Questions about the Civil War-era North. (New York: Fordham University Press, 2013)

Keller, Christain B., "Flying Dutchmen and Drunken Irishmen: The Myths and Realities of Ethnic Civil War Soldiers."  The Journal of Military History 73 (January 2009): 117-145.

Keller, Christian B., " 'All We Ask Is Justice' : German-American Reactions to the Battle of Chancellorsville." Yearbook of German-American Studies 41 (2006): 1–26.

Horowitz, Murray A., "Ethnicity and Command: The Civil War Experience" in Military Affairs, Dec. 1978, Vol. 42 Issue 4, 182–89.

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