Historical Society on The Civil War: What was General William Tecumsah Sherman Really Like?

Hits: 13


The Daniel E. Sickles Civil War Roundtable

In association with

The White Plains Historical Society


The American Civil War

A program series – open to the Public


Sherman’s Demons


with Founding Member of the Civil War Forum of Metropolitan New York
Jim Santagata

December 3, 2014

Most Civil War enthusiasts know all about Sherman’s military accomplishments, but relatively few realize the myriad of personal demons he had to conquer and the depths from which he had to climb before he finally achieved military success. Sherman’s early life was filled with doubts and fears, failures and frustrations.

As he re-entered the army after the war had begun he was so certain he was not at all qualified to lead an army that he actually obtained, from none other than President Lincoln, a promise that he would never be trusted with an independent command! It wasn’t long before that promise was broken, and the nation’s newspapers were soon shouting that Sherman was insane!

So who was the real Sherman? In this talk Jim will examine the complex personality of this charismatic yet controversial general, and interpret Sherman’s life as a series of struggles for the order he so desperately craved in his life. And although he eventually conquered every one of the demons of his earlier life, it was an old familiar acquaintance that emerged, many years after the war had ended, as the one demon he could not conquer.

Jim Santagata


Jim is a 69 year resident of Brooklyn NY, and an Engineering graduate of the Cooper Union, where Lincoln’s famous speech in February 1860 is said to have won him the Presidency. He is a retired engineer from the food industry, where he spent his final and his favorite years working in the pasta industry. He now has plenty of time to enjoy his Civil War interests, his cycling and his life and travels with his wife Matti, although not necessarily in that order. They now split their retirement between their home in Brooklyn and their condo on Siesta Beach in Sarasota FL.


Jim was one of the founding members of the Civil War Forum of Metropolitan NY in 2009 after the group split from the CW Roundtable of NY. He has been the group’s Secretary since its founding, and is now the only one of the original officers who has held his original position for the organization’s entire existence. 


Programs are held at The Purdy House: 60 Park Ave. ♦ White Plains, NY 10603 at 7:30 pm

For further information, please contact: (914) 949-4679 • Program@CivilWarNY150.org

Comments are closed.