A Confederate General from Big Sur is Richard Brautigan's first novel, published in 1964.
The story takes place in 1957. A man named Lee Mellon believes he is a descendant of a Confederategeneral who was originally from Big Sur, California. This general is not in any books or records and there is no proof of his existence, although Mellon meets a drifter from the Pacific Northwest who has also heard of this general. Mellon seeks the truth of his own modern-day war against the status quo of the modern United States in light of the Confederacy's past struggle with the Union. The novel's overall theme is the struggle of the human mind's perceptions and beliefs versus reality.
Brautigan completed the novel in 1961 but it was not published until January 22, 1964. The novel sold poorly and soon went out of print but was later republished when Brautigan developed something of a cult following, largely based on his reputation developed in response his next major work, the novella Trout Fishing in America.