A Student of History

November 23, 2007

Images Mixed Up on Book Covers

Filed under: Early America — John Maass @ 1:04 pm

Osprey Publishing has a series of book son key campaigns in military history, such as one onthe 1781 battle of Guilford Courthouse, N.C.  The cover is below.

The problem?  The image on the cover of the book is actually that of the battle of Eutaw Springs, fought about six months later.  But, lest you think the eagle eyes at Osprey (get it?) were forgetting something, have no fear.  They used a Guilford image on a book about the battle for New York in 1776!

New York 1776 (Campaign)



  1. You are entirely correct to point out the uncertainty over the cover image on Guilford Courthouse 1781, the book references it directly inside. But the New York 1776 has changed (this was a pre-publication holding image), see here for details: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Campaign-192-Continentals-battle-Battle/dp/1846032857/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1196070457&sr=8-1
    As for amateurs I have to disagree. Angus Konstam is the author of over 50 books, 30 of which are published by Osprey. A former naval officer and museum professional, he worked as the Curator of Weapons at the Tower of London and as the Chief Curator of the Mel Fisher Maritime Museum in Key West, Florida. David Smith is a graduate of the Military Studies Master’s Degree programme at the University of Chester.
    If you would like to review New York 1776 in more detail I would be happy to send you a copy.

    Thank you for an excellent blog.

    Comment by Richard Sullivan — November 26, 2007 @ 10:03 am | Reply

  2. Thanks for your offer Mr. Sullivan, and comments. Are you an Osprey employee? It is good to hear also that the New York 1776 book has a proper image on its cover now.

    As for the Guilford book, what does “the book references it directly inside” mean?

    I must point out that you are off the mark with your comments about Mr. Konstam. Given that he is a museum professional, now works as a full-time author and historian, and is a former Curator of Weapons at the Tower of London, that hardly makes him an amateur, and thus you have objected to a point that I did not make in the first place.

    Comment by John Maass — November 26, 2007 @ 3:00 pm | Reply

  3. Yes I work out of the UK office in Oxford but am lucky enough to get over to the US fairly regularly.

    In the Guilford book the illustration can be found on page 80 and the author points out that the topography makes it more likely to be Eutaw Springs.

    And I was only responding to the title of the post, sorry if I jumped too hard, we value our authors a great deal!

    Comment by Richard Sullivan — November 27, 2007 @ 4:08 pm | Reply

  4. Thank you Mr. Sullivan.

    I’m still not sure however why Osprey used the ES drawing for a book on Guilford?

    By the way, I have a number of Osprey titles, and have reviewed in print “Empires Collide” quite favorably in the Journal of Backcountry Studies this year.

    Comment by John Maass — November 27, 2007 @ 4:22 pm | Reply

  5. In fairness to Mr. Konstam, I have changed the title of this post, as the original one implied that I think he is an amateur. His record shows he is certainly not.

    Comment by John Maass — November 27, 2007 @ 5:42 pm | Reply

  6. Thank you. And yes when we reprint Eutaw Springs we won’t be using that image. Thank you for spotting it.

    Comment by Richard Sullivan — November 28, 2007 @ 11:02 am | Reply

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