11 American Civil War Books

This is part of a series called 11 Lists of 11 BooksI have read all books unless otherwise noted.

Civil War on Sunday (Magic Tree House Series) by Mary Pope Osborne – fiction 

In this well-known series, Jack and Annie travel back in time – this time to the American Civil War! There, they meet famed nurse Clara Barton and help wounded stories!
About the level of the Magic Tree House, “Who was” is a series of biographies of notable people in history. This one profiles Harriet Tubman, an escaped slave who travels back into the Southern states helping many slaves reach freedom.
This six-book series follows young Addy Walker and her family from their journey from slavery to freedom. Each book explores a new aspect of life as a newly freed slave. Addy also has a mystery, called Shadows on Society Hill: An Addy Mystery and a large picture book called Welcome to Addy’s World: 1864.
Escape to Freedom by Barbara Brook Simon 
I haven’t read this yet, but it seems to be very popular. This National Geographic book is about the Underground Railroad.
The American Girl History Mysteries is for girls who have slightly grown out of American Girl series, but still love the adventure and female protagonists.
It’s nearly the end of the Civil War, and Cassie and her family are struggling on their Virginia farm. After news of her brothers death, Cassie soon discovers odd things missing around the house. Who is stealing from them, and why?
Libby Norstad is a spoiled 12 year-old girl growing up with her wealthy aunt. However, her father, who is captain of the boat Christina, wants to spend more time with her. Libby soon runs into the mysterious cabin boy Caleb, and the two do not begin well. She longs to get the better of him, but her search leads her tangled in the Underground Railroad and helping a young fugitive and his family escape.
Note: they have been retitled “Freedom Seekers” and are NOT as scary as the cover implies.
The Boys War is a large coffee-table style picture book that explores the soldiers – 16 and under – who fought during the American Civil War. Both Union and Confederate stories are present, and no story is presented as “on the right side” or “on the wrong side”. It’s simply about a bunch of kids who grew up way to fast. Told through diaries, letters, journals, and photos, this book provides a wealth of information while being interesting at the same time.
As of currently, you can get this hardcover book on Amazon for a cent. I read this book in third or fourth grade and I loved it. It is a great book about American Civil War slavery in America.

Pink and Say by Patricia Polacco
In a true story, Pinkus Aylee, a black Union soldier, finds Sheldon Curtis left for dead and carries him home to be tended by his mother, but when the two boys attempt to rejoin the Union troops, they are captured and sent to Andersonville Prison.
Killing Lincoln by Bill O’Reilly
This bestselling biography of Bill O’Reilly tells the story of Lincoln. I haven’t read the book, but I watched the National Geographic docudrama. I loved it, but it replayed a stabbing scene about five times. (which was really unnecessary)
NOTE: A reader informed me there was a children’s adaption, called “Lincoln’s Last Days” from this, aimed at readers 8-12 years old.

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
I recently read this for school, and loved it! It is the classic story of young Huckleberry Finn. The story is hard to read at times (it were riten liyke this sumtimes) but overall a great book! Another great Civil War classic is Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Stowe.
What are your favorite American Civil War Books?

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Samantha is an entrepreneur and a former homeschool student from Indiana, USA. When not blogging, Samantha can be found reading about WWII, trying to speak Hebrew, and wasting time on Pinterest. Her work can be found on Free Homeschool Deals, Unigo, True Aim Education, Encouraging Moms at Home, and more.


  1. We are studying history right now which I co-teach with my mom. There is a reenactment of the battle of Chickamauga going to be playing there will be about ten thousand extras in it and I can’t wait till we go! The book The Boy’s War looks neat!

    I always love looking at your blog and pinterest Samantha!


  2. Great book list. Thank you for sharing. I wanted to let you know that the Killing Lincoln book has be adapted for younger readers. It is called “Lincoln’s Last Days”. I just read it myself (I am a homeschooling mom) and think it is a quick and easy read for teens and adults but a great refresher. It is very appropriate for ages 8-12. You may want to check it out too!

  3. Across Five Aprils by Irene Hunt. This is a wonderful book in so many ways. Coming of age, family, strong character, conflict, repentance and so much historical significance. Don’t miss this one even if you are not studying the Civil War.

  4. I personally, as a grown up, love Gone With the Wind, not for it’s historic accuracy, but for the feeling and attitude it conveys. When you realize how innocently honest Margret Mitchell’s recounting of slavery and the Confederacy reflects stories and family folklore that she had been taught as a child from family that had lived through the war and reconstruction, you can easily see the influence of the times. When you consider her mother was one of the first suffragettes and helped women get the vote, you can understand the development of strong women characters. If you know that her mother once took her on a buggy ride and showed her the ruins of grand Georgia plantations standing in overgrown properties some burned out and covered in vines, you can vividly see Scarlet running to Tara in the dark and hoping to see it intact and as she strains to see her beloved home, the clouds move across the sky and the moon-shine cast it’s glow onto the standing white plantation. I strongly recommend watching ‘Margret Mitchell: An American Rebel’ on PBS.COM and a screening of the movie AFTER reading the book. I hope this will encourage y’all not to discount GWTW.

  5. I recently read Rifles for Watie by Harold Keith. It is an older newbery winner, but it really did a good job of showing the humanity, and lack of, on both sides. I thought very balanced.
    Also, I read a series called Bonnets and Bugles, which is a Christian fiction series. Probably out of print though.


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