This image is the cover for the book Searching for George Gordon Meade

Searching for George Gordon Meade

A historian chronicles the life of the Union Civil War general while recounting his own unusual journey during his investigation into the past.

Who was George Gordon Meade? He should be remembered as one of the Civil War’s most important generals. Instead, history has pushed him aside. The hot-tempered Meade received command of the Union’s dysfunctional Army of the Potomac only three days before he defeated Robert E. Lee’s Confederates at Gettysburg. After that, Meade watched his reputation decline, thanks in part to the escape of Lee’s army, hostility from politicians and the press, the machinations of Gen. Daniel Sickles, and the rise of Ulysses S. Grant. “I suppose after a while,” Meade once grumbled, “it will be discovered I was not at Gettysburg at all.”

The Rodney Dangerfield of Civil War generals, Meade gets no respect—and author Tom Huntington wanted to find out why. In Searching for George Gordon Meade, he tells the story of the general’s life and his participation in the Civil War’s great engagements, from George McClellan’s Richmond Campaign to Appomattox. Huntington also provides accounts of his own investigations of Meade’s legacy. Along the way he hikes across battlefields, recites the names of fallen soldiers at a candlelit ceremony at Gettysburg, drinks a champagne toast at Meade’s grave on New Year’s Eve, and visits a severed leg, a buried arm, and a horse’s head. The result is a quirky and compelling mash-up of history, biography, travel, and journalism that casts new light on an overlooked figure from the past.

Praise for Searching for George Gordon Meade

“Unique and irresistible.” —Harold Holzer, chairman of Lincoln Bicentennial Foundation

“Huntington’s wry, boisterous biography-within-a-travel journal . . . strives to remake the reputation of Meade and offers a compelling new way to approach biography.” —John G. Shelby, Meade: The Price of Command, 1863–1865

“It’s the rare reader who will not enjoy accompanying Huntington on his search for Meade.” —America’s Civil War

"A refreshingly readable and well-researched book. . . . Searching for George Gordon Meade should be required reading for all those interested in Civil War history.” —Civil War News

Tom Huntington

Tom Huntington lives in Camp Hill, Pennsylvania, and is an editor for Stackpole Magazines. He is the former editor of Historic Traveler and American History magazines. His articles on historical topics have appeared in Civil War Times, America's Civil War, American Heritage, Smithsonian, Yankee, America in WWII, Air & Space, and British Heritage.

Stackpole Books