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The name Judah P. Benjamin has little meaning for most people today except to historians but Benjamin was for three years the third ranking civilian in the confederacy. From a sudden departure from Yale before graduation, to New Orleans where he was admitted to the bar, he went on to Washington as a member of the U.S. Senate. With Louisiana's secession from the Union he resigned from the Senate to become attorney general in the Confederate cabinet of Jefferson Davis. Shortly thereafter he became Secretary of War although before long it was obvious that he was incapable of directing such men as Lee, Stonewall Jackson and Joseph Johnston. Within a year he was made Secretary of State and it was here that his energies and abilities were best realized. At the close of the war he fled to England where he was admitted to the bar in London. These are the facts surrounding the name but the man never materializes in Mr. Neiman's book. It would seem to be a popular biography (no footnotes, no substantiation of facts, no bibliography- as yet seen) and as such it is a series of loosely affiliated anecdotes. The serious student of history must still turn to Butler or Meade for information on Judah P. Benjamin, statesman.

Publisher: Bobbs-Merrill