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Robertson, James I., Jr. 1930- (James Irvin Robertson, Jr.)

Robertson, James I., Jr. 1930- (James Irvin Robertson, Jr.)

Personal

Born July 18, 1930, in Danville, VA; son of J. Irvin (a banker) and Mae (Kympton) Robertson; married Elizabeth Green, June 1, 1952; children: Beth Robertson Brown, James I., III, Howard. Education: Randolph-Macon College, B.A., 1955; Emory University, M.A., 1956, Ph.D., 1959. Religion: Anglican.

Addresses

Home—405 Stonegate Dr. NW, Blacksburg, VA 24060. Office—Department of History, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, VA 24061.

Career

Historian and educator. University of Iowa, Iowa City, editor of Civil War History, 1959-61; George Washington University, Washington, DC, associate professorial lecturer, 1962-65; University of Montana, Missoula, associate professor of history, 1965-67; Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, professor of history, 1967-76, C.P. Miles Professor of History, beginning 1976, chair of department, 1969-76, alumni distinguished professor, 1991—. Executive director, U.S. Civil War Centennial Commission, 1961-65; charter member of Virginia Civil War Sesquicentennial Commission. Certified football official, Atlantic Coast Conference.

Member

American Historical Association, Organization of American Historians, Jefferson Davis Association (member of board of directors), Ulysses S. Grant Association (member of board of directors), Southern Historical Association, Virginia Historical Society (member of board of directors).

Awards, Honors

Harry S Truman Historical award; Mrs. Simon Baruch University award; Bennett Memorial Historical award of Randolph-Macon College; centennial medallion, U.S. Civil War Centennial Commission; honorary degrees from Randolph-Macon College and Shenandoah University.

Writings

(Editor and author of foreword) Sarah Dawson, A Confederate Girl's Diary, Indiana University Press (Bloomington, IN), 1960.

(Editor and author of introduction and notes) From Manassas to Appomattox: Memoirs of the Civil War in America, Indiana University Press (Bloomington, IN), 1960.

Virginia, 1861-1865: Iron Gate to the Confederacy (booklet), Virginia Civil War Commission, 1961.

(Editor and author of introduction and notes) Walter Herron Taylor, Four Years with General Lee, Indiana University Press (Bloomington, IN), 1962, new edition, 1996.

(Editor) Dolly Sumner Burge, Diary, University of Georgia Press, 1962.

The Stonewall Brigade, Louisiana State University Press (Baton Rouge, LA), 1963.

The Civil War: A Student Handbook, U.S. Civil War Centennial Commission, 1963.

The Sack of Lawrence: What Price Glory?, World Co. (Lawrence, KS), 1963.

(Compiler) Civil War History: Cumulative Index, 1955-1959, Volumes I-V, State University of Iowa, 1963.

(Editor) John H. Worsham, One of Jackson's Foot Cavalry, McCowat-Mercer, 1965.

(Editor) The Civil War Letters of General Robert McAllister, Rutgers University Press (Rutgers, NJ), 1965.

(Editor with Allan Nevins and Bell I. Wiley) Civil War Books: A Critical Bibliography, two volumes, Louisiana State University Press (Baton Rouge, LA), 1967-69.

The Concise Illustrated History of the Civil War, Stackpole, 1971.

(Editor) Four Years in the Stonewall Brigade, Morningside Bookshop, 1972.

(Editor with Richard McMurry) Rank and File: Civil War Essays in Honor of Bell Irvin Wiley, Presidio Press, 1977.

(Compiler) An Index Guide to the Southern Historical Society Papers, 1876-1959, two volumes, Kraus International, 1980.

Civil War Sites in Virginia, University Press of Virginia (Charlottesville, VA), 1981.

4th Virginia Infantry, H.E. Howard (Lynchburg, VA), 1982, 2nd edition, 1991.

18th Virginia Infantry, H.E. Howard (Lynchburg, VA), 1984.

Tenting Tonite: The Soldier's Life, Time-Life Books (Alexandria, VA), 1984.

General A.P. Hill: The Story of a Confederate Warrior, Random House (New York, NY), 1987.

Soldiers Blue and Gray, University of South Carolina Press (Columbia, SC), 1988.

Civil War Virginia: Battleground for a Nation, University Press of Virginia (Charlottesville, VA), 1991.

"Civil War!": America Becomes One Nation, Knopf (New York, NY), 1992.

The Civil War's Common Soldier, Eastern National Park and Monument Association (Conshohocken, PA), 1994.

(Author of text) Jackson and Lee: Legends in Gray: The Paintings of Mort Künstler, Rutledge Hill Press (Nashville, TN), 1995.

Stonewall Jackson: The Man, the Soldier, the Legend, Macmillan (New York, NY), 1997.

(Author of text) The Confederate Spirit: Valor, Sacrifice, and Honor: The Paintings of Mort Künstler, Rutledge Hill Press (Nashville, TN), 2000.

(Editor with Hill Jordan and J.H. Segars) Bell Irvin Wiley, The Bell Irvin Wiley Reader, Louisiana State University Press (Baton Rouge, LA), 2001.

Standing like a Stone Wall: The Life of General Thomas J. Jackson, Atheneum Books for Young Readers (New York, NY), 2001.

(Author of text) Gods and Generals: The Paintings of Mort Künstler (companion to film Gods and Generals), Greenwich Workshop Press (Shelton, CT), 2002.

(Editor) Stonewall Jackson's Book of Maxims, Cumberland House (Nashville, TN), 2002.

(Editor) Soldier of Southwestern Virginia: The Civil War Letters of Captain John Preston Sheffey, Louisiana State University Press (Baton Rouge, LA), 2004.

(Editor, with William C. Davis) Virginia at War, 1861, University Press of Virginia (Lexington, VA), 2005.

Robert E. Lee: Virginian Soldier, American Citizen, Atheneum Books for Young Readers (New York, NY), 2005.

(Editor, with William C. Davis) Virginia at War, 1862, University Press of Virginia (Lexington, VA), 2007.

Editor of Proceedings of the Advisory Council of the State of Virginia, Virginia State Library, 1977. Contributor to anthology Gods and Generals: The Illustrated Story of the Epic Civil War Film, Newmarket Press (New York, NY), 2003. Contributor to periodicals. Member of board of editors, Civil War History, Lincoln Herald, and American History Illustrated.

Sidelights

James I. Robertson, Jr. told SATA: "My interest in U.S. Civil War history is lifelong. I was born in the city known as the ‘Last Capital of the Confederacy,’ and had antecedents who fought in that war. I worked my way through college as a big-band drummer; and in the graduate-school years, I was also employed by an Atlanta funeral home. For twenty-eight years into my career, I devoted much of the autumns as a football official. For sixteen years, I served as a varsity official in the Atlantic Coast Conference.

"I regard myself as a social historian in a military period. My primary interest are not battles and leaders so much as they are the common soldiers, women behind the lines, and socio-military topics such as medicine, religion, prisons, and music.

"In recent years, I have tended to focus more on Virginia's role in the Civil War.

"The nature of my professorship involves my traveling across the country regularly for speaking engagements. I average 100 to 150 talks per year."

Biographical and Critical Sources

PERIODICALS

Booklist, March 15, 1993, review of "Civil War!": America Becomes One Nation, p. 1341; November 15, 2005, Carolyn Phelan, review of Robert E. Lee: Virginian Soldier, American Citizen, p. 36.

Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, July, 1992, review of "Civil War!", p. 303; September, 2001, review of Standing like a Stone Wall: The Life of General Thomas J. Jackson, p. 32; November, 2005, Deborah Stevenson, review of Robert E. Lee, p. 153.

Choice, February, 1998, M. Muir, Jr., review of Stonewall Jackson: The Man, the Soldier, the Legend, p. 1153; October, 2006, W.W. Rogers, Jr., review of Virginia at War, 1861, p. 361.

Kirkus Reviews, October 15, 2005, review of Robert E. Lee, p. 1145.

Kliatt, May, 2003, John E. Boyd, review of Standing like a Stone Wall, p. 54.

Library Journal, June 1, 1987, Joseph G. Dawson, III, review of General A.P. Hill: The Story of a Confederate Warrior, p. 107; February 15, 1997, Judy R. Reis, review of Stonewall Jackson, p. 142.

New Yorker, July 20, 1987, review of General A.P. Hill, p. 59.

Publishers Weekly, April 3, 1987, review of General A.P. Hill, p. 61; February 3, 1997, review of Stonewall Jackson, p. 86.

School Library Journal, June, 2001, Andrew Medlar, review of Standing like a Stone Wall, p. 180; January, 2005, Jane G. Connor, review of Robert E. Lee, p. 162.

Voice of Youth Advocates, October, 2005, review of Robert E. Lee, p. 340; December, 2001, review of Standing like a Stone Wall, p. 383.

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