Cold Mountain (book): any historical inaccuracies?
- My son was tasked with writing a report on the historical accuracy of
an historical fiction novel of his choice. Without getting my input,
he chose Cold Mountain, which is really difficult because the book is
Can anyone think of any inaccuracies in the book? I gave away my
copy, so I don't have the actual text to refresh my memory... but
here's a few ideas:
1) Teague's Home Guard was represented as young men who rode around
robbing and stealing in the name of the Confederate government.
However, under the conscription laws in effect at that point in the
war, weren't most of the Home Guard under the age of 17, led by an
officer of the state militia? So realistically, Teague would have
been a graybeard and his "men" would have been saplings.
2) If I remember correctly, the chapter that covers the Battle of the
Crater begins with men milling about in the trenches. However, the
mine under the crater was actually detonated just before dawn and
most of the men posted to the area were still in the camps behind the
3) For some reason, I remember the book describing Esco as a 40-
something. This could very well be wrong, but if so, he would have
been hiding from the home guard along with the others by this point
in the war.
4) I can't remember, but how did Inman come across his LeMat? Only
2,500 of these made their way through the blockade, and I believe it
was mostly a cavalry weapon. How many infantrymen carried sidearms?
I would imagine very few. Between the extra weight and the
difficulty of finding the 44 cal. ammo, it would be difficult for an
infantryman to maintain a LeMat. For hand-to-hand situations, a
bayonet would suffice almost as well at no extra bulk and almost no