Author Information


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Using his years in the New Mexico Army National Guard and as a living historian/reenactor Phillip writes soldier centric civil war fiction; stories that spin close tied historical facts with historic and fictional characters to teach and entertain about this period of US history.

Phillip M. Bryant attended the University of New Mexico and earned his bachelor’s degree in history and with a minor in American studies. He has been active in local New Mexico reenacting and on the national level is a member of the 23rd SNY as part of the Army of the Pacific, 1st Federal Division. He has been researching the American Civil War for over 25 years. His sources have included diary accounts, autobiographies, historical monographs and first-hand reports on the actions taken 150 ago published in the War of the Rebellion battle reports and War Department communications.

Phillip served 15 years in the Army, New Mexico National Guard, with the 44th Army Band in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

13 responses to “Author Information

  1. Interesting thing. I grew up in Grand Junction, TN which is a short distance from Shiloh and spent my childhood and teenage years roaming the battlefield whenever the family went there for an outing.

    But unless I’m going to a War Between the States site, New Mexico is my favorite palce. I love the food, scenery and the culture.

    • Yes, New Mexico is far flung from the Civil War battlefields that take a special trip to plan to visit for me, but the weather and view can’t be beat! My wife and I re-visited Shiloh in 2008 to get pictures and the lay of the land for filling in some scenes in the novel but I still remember my first trip there when I was young (about 10 or so) and the color bearer graves from the 16th Michigan under the oak tree in the cemetery on the bluff overlooking the Landing.

  2. When I was in school (a long time ago) the 5 seige guns that Grant used were deployed in the correct location along the bluff. The bluff right there has since caved in and the guns relocated. One, I believe is in Savanah. Also, the water in the Tennnessee River used to be a clear blue.

    • definitely no longer blue. Along the bluff would have been the best place, the line where the remaining ones are now would have been less advantageous for sure given the line of sight and trees (different trees). I also forget that time has made changes along the way in the river course, etc. Thanks for the comment!

  3. I just discovered you over on Kindle boards. Your blog is GREAT (can’t stop reading it . . . ok, stopping now . . . seriously . . . ), and I’m going to pick up your book to read on my Kindle.

    You could be related to my husband and his family (4 Bryant sisters married 4 Murray brothers back there in the 1800’s — my husband is a descendant). He is also the oldest son of oldest son in a line that extends back to before the Revolutionary War in the US, and he still has a deed for land his great, great, great (etc) grandfather (John Murray) was granted the 24th July 1779 (yeah, I just read the date from the original document).

    The American Civil War changed EVERY field of human endeavor, and I’m always amazed by that fact which is reinforced every time I read anything about that time.

    Looking forward to reading your book! Thanks for all your hard work and research.

    Anna Murray

    • I’m glad you are finding good information; I’ve enjoyed looking at these images and relating what I know to others. Interesting on the family background. My father is from Texas and we trace our roots to German stock, my Mother’s Mother was Pennsylvania Dutch in a line that is now gone, Wiltimeth. So, I did have ancestors on both sides of the conflict. Hope you enjoy the read.

  4. Richard Buxton

    Hi Phillip,
    I live in the UK and have begun writing US Civil War fiction for the western theater. I’m enjoying your blog and a lot of the issues of fiction vs history are one’s I’m wrestling with too. I hope next summer to come over to Kentucky and Tennessee for some research and inspiration. I’d be interested in any events planned for Chickamauga of Missionary Ridge or the campaign that led to Rosecrans taking Chattanooga. But mainly I wanted to just say thanks for the blog,
    Richard Buxton

    • Hi Richard, thanks for the comment and I hope you are able to spend some time here in the states with your research.

      I can tell you that Missionary Ridge in Chattanooga is all built up, but the parks department has little islands of federal property where unit markers dot the ridge top from both sides, so you’ll find cannon and monuments amidst private housing. Lookout Mountain has a bit more pristine preservation and plenty of markers. My 5th novel will be about the siege of Chattanooga. I suppose it is a good struggle to balance story with the history otherwise we might overweight story just to get it out and not follow fact as much or the other way around.

      Stone’s River is a nice battlefield, but not as heavily marked but if you come out west do not miss Shiloh. Chickamauga is another site that is really well marked and you can spend days at either site just following units around. Do some homework before going to either by knowing what units to trace, they sell marker maps at both locations that will allow you to track down specific units.

  5. Richard Buxton

    Thanks Phillip,
    Useful advice. I’ve already visited Shiloh, but my novel is mostly in ’65 and touches on Donelson (the later smaller battle), the early occupation of Franklin and later Chickamauga and Missionary Ridge. So I’m provisionally planning a road trip down from Chicago to Chattanooga taking those spots in as well as a few others. I’m just waiting to see what events might get scheduled for the 150 before firming things up.
    Slightly unrelated, but do you know of any Website that publish Civil War short stories? I like to dabble in this when the novel hits a slow patch.
    kind regards,
    Richard

    • Unfortunately I do not know of any sites that specialize in short stories, my own Kindle short is a hard sell as well. There are those who seem to sell short stories well but I think it is genre dependent somewhat.

  6. Pingback: Author Interview with Philip M. Bryant « Marji Laine: Author

  7. Laura

    Hi Mr. Bryant. I saw a comment you left years ago on another site as I was browsing the internet. You stated on that comment that you have a framed photo of The Shaw Memorial on your wall at your home. I am desperately trying to find one for my home and I was wondering if you would be so kind as to tell me where/how you purchased yours? Also, I am so glad I saw your post as it let me to this site and I love it.

    • Back in 1997 at the Smithsonian Museum of Art the traveling Saint-Gauden plaster replica was on display and we bought a poster from the gift shop commemorating the event. I do not know if you can still purchase this anywhere or not.

      I’ve also seen the original bronze relief in Boston. Thanks for the comment and hopefully you might be able to find the poster somewhere for sale.

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