Buckley's work on the agonizingly long and complex courtship of a distinguished Presbyterian minister (and later Confederate officer) and the divorced daughter of a Governor of Virginia is extraordinary.
The number of letters contained in this volume, PAINSTAKINGLY transcribed from handwriting that is (at least 50%) illegible, is astounding. The story told is compelling for even a cynical 21st century observer of love and life . . . and a rare chronicle of the political and personal impact of 19th-century Presbyterian varying "insights" into the mind, will, and intent of an sometimes angry and always fearsome God.
The notes and bibliography are priceless. They alone make the book a must-have resource for anyone interested in the 19th century history of southern Presbyterian protestantism, women's rights, religious bigotry, Rockbridge County, Lexington and most of the rest of Virginia. . . . . not to mention the geneaologies of perhaps half the population of the entire valley of Virginia.
Detailed, execellent, and pound for pound . . . no better value.
A credit to an editor's labor of love . . . and to the University of Nebraska Press for publishing it.