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Selected Works

A Brutal Reckoning: Andrew Jackson, the Creek Indians, and the Epic War for the American South

What began as a vicious internal conflict among the Creek Indians evolved into the Creek War of 1813–1814, which shattered Native American control of the Deep 

South and led to the infamous Trail of Tears, in which the government forcibly removed the southeastern Indians from their homeland. The episode remains one of the most tragic in American

 history, leading to the greatest loss of Native American life on what is now U.S. soil. The war also gave Andrew Jackson his first combat leadership role, and his newfound popularity after defeating the Creeks would set him on the path to the White House.


A Brutal Reckoning recovers this forgotten yet essential moment in U.S. history, portraying the vibrant cultures and ways of life of the Creeks and their Indian neighbors before conflict undid them, and introducing us to a young Andrew Jackson, a military commander with unbridled ambition, a taste for cruelty, and a fraught sense of honor and duty. Jackson would not have won the war without the help of Native American allies, yet he denied their role and even insisted on their displacement, together with all the Indians of the American South.


A struggle involving not only white Americans and Native Americans but also the British and the Spanish, the Creek War opened the Deep South to the Cotton Kingdom, setting the stage for the American Civil War. No other Indian conflict had such a significant impact on the fate of America.

Tecumseh and the Prophet: The Shawnee Brothers Who Defied a Nation

The first biography of the great Shawnee leader in more than twenty years, and the first to make clear that his misunderstood younger brother Tenskwatawa was an equal partner in the greatest Indian alliance the United States ever confronted.

The Earth Is Weeping: The Epic Story of the Indian Wars for the American West

In exploring the wars and negotiations that destroyed tribal ways of life even as they created the modern American West, Cozzens gives us both sides in comprehensive and singularly intimate detail. The Earth Is Weeping offers the fullest account to date of how the West was won--and lost.

Shenandoah 1862: Stonewall Jackson’s Valley Campaign

One of the most intriguing and storied episodes of the Civil War, the 1862 Shenandoah Valley Campaign has heretofore been related only from the Confederate point of view. Moving seamlessly between tactical details and analysis of strategic significance, Peter Cozzens presents a balanced, comprehensive account of a campaign that has long been romanticized but little understood. He offers new interpretations of the campaign and the reasons for Stonewall Jackson's success, demonstrates instances in which the mythology that has come to shroud the campaign has masked errors on Jackson's part, and provides the first detailed appraisal of Union leadership in the Valley Campaign, with some surprising conclusions.

This Terrible Sound: The Battle of Chickamauga

Chickamauga was a battle of missed opportunities, stupendous tactical blunders, and savage fighting. Offering startling new interpretations that challenge the conventional wisdom on key moments of the battle, Cozzens writes movingly of both the heroism and suffering of the common soldiers and of the strengths and tragic flaws of their commanders.

The Shipwreck of Their Hopes: The Battles for Chattanooga

The battles around Chattanooga in the late fall of 1863 were among the most decisive of the Civil War, opening the Deep South to the Union and setting the stage for Atlanta Campaign and the March to the Sea. Cozzens presents the clearest and fullest account to date of these battles that helped turn the tide of the war.

No Better Place to Die: The Battle of Stones River

Over twenty thousand Union and Confederate soldiers were lost in the bloody New Year's Battle of Stones River. No Better Place to Die pays tribute to the heroes, the scoundrels, the mistakes, the bravery, and the grief at Stones River.

The Darkest Days of the War: The Battles of Iuka and Corinth

The only book-length study of the little-known but crucial battles of Iuka and Corinth. In addition to a vivid and detailed battle narrative, Cozzens provides compelling portraits of the campaigns' key leaders.