Dr. Don Frazier Wins 21st Annual Austin Civil War Round Table’s Laney Book Prize

  Gary Ellison
  Tuesday, May 3, 2016 9:05 AM
  Archives 2014 - 2015

Abilene, TX

Dr. Donald Frazier, professor of history at McMurry University in Abilene, Texas, has won the twenty first annual Daniel M. & Marilyn W. Laney Book Prize given by the Austin Civil War Round Table, Inc. The Daniel M. & Marilyn W. Laney Prize is awarded yearly by the Austin Civil War Round Table, Inc. for distinguished scholarship and writing on the military or political history of the Civil War.

The winning work is Blood on the Bayou: Vicksburg, Port Hudson, and the Trans-Mississippi, the third volume of a planned four volume history of the Civil War in the Trans-Mississippi, published by State House Press. This is Frazier’s second award of the Laney Prize; the first prize was awarded to Frazier in 2010 for the first volume of the Trans-Mississippi quadrille, Fire in the Cane Field.

Blood on the Bayou tells the story of the closing of the Mississippi River by Federal forces in the summer of 1863 but told from the perspective of the west side of the river, describing the lesser known actions that occurred during that summer. The book details how the fighting on this side of the river affected the recently emancipated slaves, created a black army of occupation and forever changed the social and economic landscape of Louisiana and the entire nation.

One critic of the book wrote, “Frazier has talent as a writer. He skillfully sets scenes and paces action well. He moves smoothly from the big picture to the personal anecdote. The handling of personalities and perspectives feels balanced. The research seems both broad and deep. The editing and publishing is also well done. The maps are clear and simple, yet informative. The book is full of photographs and lithographs that enhance the reading experience… Regardless of what Dr. Frazier does next, I look forward to it.”  Another critic reviewing the book said, “Dr. Frazier successfully captures the importance of Louisiana to both the Federal and Confederate war effort. Through his research, the author's work plainly paints the importance of Louisiana's slave population to the cause of the war; both its political and military goals. Through detailed accounts of the battles that raged across the Teche and Vicksburg/Port Hudson Campaigns, the reader is transported to the epicenter of this conflict.”

The Laney Prize money of $2,000 will be awarded to Frazier at the June 23, 2016 meeting of the Austin Civil War Round Table, Inc.


Press Contact

Gary Ellison