On April 15th 1861, the day after the fall of Fort Sumter, President Abraham Lincoln issued a call for 75,000 volunteers to enlist for three months' service to defend the Union. This 90-day period proved entirely unrealistic and was followed by further, and much more extensive, mobilizations. Despite this, for the first few months the defence of the Capitol depended heavily on a hastily gathered, but extremely loyal, army of militiamen and volunteers. Mostly inexperienced, poorly trained, weakly officered, and provided with motley uniforms, equipment and weapons, they bought the Union time during the vital first months. Through a wide range of period sources, this title describes and illustrates the actual appearance of this diverse and colorful force, including photographs, eyewitness accounts in period newspapers and letters, the reports of government agents, and the records of the many manufacturers who received orders to clothe and equip their state troops.
Ron Field was Head of History at the Cotswold School in Bourton-on-the-Water, until his retirement in 2007. Awarded a Fulbright Scholarship in 1982, he taught History at Piedmont High School in California from 1982 to 1983. Ron was also associate editor of the Confederate Historical Society of Great Britain, from 1983 to 1992. He is an internationally acknowledged expert on US military history, and was elected a Fellow of the Company of Military Historians, based in Washington, DC, in 2005. Adam Hook studied graphic design, and began his work as an illustrator in 1983. He specializes in detailed historical reconstructions, and has illustrated Osprey titles on subjects as diverse as the Aztecs, the Ancient Greeks, Roman battle tactics, several 19th-century American subjects, the modern Chinese Army, and a number of books in the Fortress series. His work features in exhibitions and publications throughout the world.