A signal contribution to Lincolniana in a study of the development of Lincoln's military policy towards his generals, Fremont, Banks, Grant, Sherman, McClellan, Scott. This overlaps to some degree territory covered by Catton's recent Mr. Lincoln's Army (1950- P. 744), though the focus there is on the Army of the Potomac- and here the range of appraisal is wider. A chronological survey, with accompanying comment on personalities and social problems, this might be viewed as a portrait of the creation and growth of the modern American command system. With Grant as central figure and Lincoln and Congress as architects, there came intensified liaison between the military and the presidency, increased strategic planning on a grand scale. In the perspective, Lee is portrayed as the last of the great traditional fighters, his ultimate failure due in part to the over-taxing of his time which should have been used for strategic planning through the demands made on it by routine activities and traditional methods. Once again, McClellan emerges as a non-fighting general who stood for tactical and barren victories. The human side throughout is revealing. The technical handling of the military aspects is important in the light it throws on today's parallels.