Book Review: MUSKETS AND BAYONETS: THE STORY OF JAMES B. WASSON, COMPANY “B” AND THE SECOND COLORADO VOLUNTEER CAVALRY IN THE CIVIL WAR, 1861-1865

The 2nd Colorado Volunteers in the Civil WarFor anyone interested in the history of the Second Colorado, a recent book has been published in Phoenix, Arizona by the Western History Press in 2011. It’s titled MUSKETS AND BAYONETS: THE STORY OF JAMES B. WASSON, COMPANY “B” AND THE SECOND COLORADO VOLUNTEER CAVALRY IN THE CIVIL WAR, 1861-1865. The ISBN number is 978-0-9833750-0-5, and sells for $16 published here.95. The author is Don M. Mahan, whose wife is the great granddaughter of James B. Wasson.

The first and last parts of the book deal with the background of Wasson before the war, and then the postwar period. Most of the book, which runs to 249 pages, covers the history of the Second Colorado from New Mexico, to Kansas and Indian Territory,

To Missouri. In spite of the title, the period when the Second was an infantry unit is covered.

What makes this book special is the fact that most of the material on the Second Colorado comes from contemporary periodicals, which are dated within the text. The author’s original manuscript was well over 600 pages with a bibliography of almost 100 pages.

If anyone is interested in obtaining a copy, they can contact the author at histotianone@gmail.com. The book is still “light” on operations in Indian Territory, but there is some new material there. I do recommend this for anyone who wants to know more about the Second Colorado.

Phil Bevers