Praise for Battle of Big Bethel

"Cobb, Hicks and Holt have done a masterful job providing the reader an easy to read, well-researched, and documented story of the Virginia peninsula during the early months of the Civil War."

- On Point, The Journal of Army History

"The research is impeccable and the authors give us a very readable book that presents this event in a very organized and logical manner."

- Book Bargains and Previews

“A very well written study of the first planned battle of the Civil War”

- The Civil War Courier

“A solid contribution to Civil War history.”

- The Civil War Monitor

"The Battle of Big Bethel is a terrific book and I learned a lot. With excellent writing and remarkable research, the narrative evokes the scene at the beginning of the war in a very convincing way. Complete with powerful battle scenes, the authors do a wonderful job of describing the motivations and mindsets of both the U.S. and Confederate soldiers at the outset of the conflict and handle slavery very effectively throughout."

- Edward L. Ayers, author of In the Presence of Mine Enemies: The Civil War in the Heart of America, 1859-1863

“Big Bethel has occasionally gotten the attention of article writers, but not until now has a whole book been devoted to it, and a fine one at that. J. Michael Cobb, Edward B. Hicks, and Wythe Holt’s Battle of Big Bethel: Crucial Clash in Early Civil War Virginia, must instantly make claim to being a definitive account. The authors’ research is impressive, more in depth than that often devoted to much larger engagements. Their mining of contemporary material is especially commendable, while their narrative is seamless for a book with multiple authors. The maps and illustrations further enhance an already outstanding contribution to the literature. Years from now the majority of average Americans may still cite Bull Run as the first battle of the war, but for those who want to know better, Battle of Big Bethel is the perfect corrective.”

- William C. Davis

"The work includes an excellent set of maps that detail key locations and troop movements, and it is well illustrated with period sketches and photographs of participants. This is a well-written military history that goes beyond the minutiae of troop movements. By delving into the attitudes, expectations, and personalities of those involved in the clash, the authors have produced an insightful study."

- Virginia Magazine of History and Biography

"A well-researched book. . . . A valuable addition to anyone's Civil War library."

- Civil War News

"I am convinced that other Civil War enthusiasts will come to the same conclusion I have. This book is a superb addition to their library."

– Emerging Civil War

"The research is impeccable and the authors give us a very readable book that presents this event in a very organized and logical manner."

- Book Bargains and Previews

"Combatants at Big Bethel shared an understandable desire to document their experiences in a history-making event. The authors of The Battle of Big Bethel: Crucial Early Clash in Civil War Virginia have seized the opportunity and produced a comprehensive study of the Civil War's first major battle. It is an admirable view of the American fighting man's experience, well leavened with strategic and political context."

- Robert E. L. Krick, author of Staff Officers in Gray