Hot Off the Press! Book Review of North Carolina’s Confederate Hospitals

North Carolina’s Confederate Hospitals, 1861-1863, Volume I by Colonel Wade Sokolosky (Ret.)

Reviewed by Fred D. Taylor

Having been a fan of Colonel (Ret.) Wade Sokolosky’s prior works related to Tar Heel Civil War history, I was excited to read his latest project, North Carolina’s Confederate Hospitals1861-63, Volume 1 (Fox Run Publishing, 2022).

In recent memory, although some minor scholarship has been devoted to the subject of North Carolina and its Confederate hospitals, without question, Sokolosky’s book brings together a complete history on this oft overlooked topic.   Starting with background on the organization of the Confederate medical department, Sokolosky leads the reader through the various officers and politicians involved with the creation of the state’s medical system.  Further chapters present full coverage of the day to day operations of the hospitals in North Carolina (and some outside of the state that NC contributed toward) during the period 1861-63, to include perspectives from numerous individuals from Doctors to Nurses, Matrons, and a variety of other key personnel.  

Clearly, NC’s Confederate Hospitals checks many boxes for professional historians, students, and the average lover of North Carolina Civil War history alike.  As a reference work, the book is a go to for when and where hospitals operated, their capacities, and who ran them – whether it be the Confederate government, the state of North Carolina, or private efforts from local aid societies.  The book is similarly a resource to the historian or genealogist studying a particular soldier or civilian involved within the system, whether it be in a medical role or as a patient.  And for the casual reader, the book gives a unique look behind the curtain of the care for sick and wounded Confederate soldiers in the midst of War.

In sum, I highly recommend NC’s Confederate Hospitals, and am eager to see Colonel Sokolosky complete his efforts on this unique story with the publication of Volume II.