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Newly Published: Cold War Frequencies

New on our bookshelf:

Cold War Frequencies: CIA Clandestine Radio Broadcasting to the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe
Richard H. Cummings

Published for the first time, the history of the CIA’s clandestine short-wave radio broadcasts to Eastern Europe and the USSR during the early Cold War is covered in-depth. Chapters describe the “gray” broadcasting of Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty in Munich; clandestine or “black” radio broadcasts from Radio Nacional de Espana in Madrid to Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Ukraine; transmissions to Bulgaria, Romania, Albania, Ukraine and the USSR from a secret site near Athens; and broadcasts to Byelorussia and Slovakia. Infiltrated behind the Iron Curtain through dangerous air drops and boat landings, CIA and other intelligence service agents faced counterespionage, kidnapping, assassination, arrest and imprisonment. Excerpts from broadcasts taken from monitoring reports of Eastern Europe intelligence agencies are included.

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Newly Published: Women of Valor

New on our bookshelf:

Women of Valor: The Rochambelles on the World War II Front, rev. ed.
Ellen Hampton

Women in an armored division! General Leclerc had never heard of such a thing. But if he wanted the 19 brand-new ambulances, he would have to take their women drivers too. Known as the Rochambelles, their courage won the admiration of their comrades and changed many minds. These women learned to drive through mortar fire, to pull men from burning tanks, to stanch blood and ease pain. Above all, they learned that no matter who was doing the shooting, the greater enemy was hatred. Only three of the fifty-one women who served in the group published a memoir, and their stories have been all but lost. This book, newly revised and updated, reveals their daring and accomplishments, from Normandy to Berchtesgaden.

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Newly Published: Marcus Reno in the Valley of the Little Big Horn

New on our bookshelf:

Marcus Reno in the Valley of the Little Big Horn: Limited Means, Excessive Aims
Frederic C. Wagner III

Major Marcus Reno’s actions at the Battle of Little Big Horn have been both criticized and lauded, often without in-depth analysis. This book takes a fresh look the battle and events leading up to it, offering answers to unanswered questions. The author examines the meanings of “orders” given in Custer’s command and how they were treated, the tactics and fighting in the valley, Reno’s alcoholism, and his last stand on the hilltop named for him.

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Newly Published: Putin Confronts the West

New on our bookshelf:

Putin Confronts the West: The Logic of Russian Foreign Relations, 1999–2020
René De La Pedraja

Russia’s surprising return to the world stage since 2000 has aroused the curiosity—if not the fear—of the West. Gradually, the Kremlin went from a policy of deference to foreign powers to acting with independence. The driver of this transformation was President Vladimir Putin, who with skillful caution navigated Russia back into the ranks of global powers. In theaters of conflict such as Georgia, Syria and Ukraine, the Kremlin won significant victories at little cost to consolidate its decisive position.

Following a chronological approach from the fall of the Soviet Union to the present, this book draws on new documents to describe how Russia regained its former global prominence. Clear accounts of key decisions and foreign policy events—many presented for the first time—provide important insights into the major confrontations with the West.

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Newly Published: William Barksdale, CSA

New on our bookshelf:

William Barksdale, CSA: A Biography of the United States Congressman and Confederate Brigadier General
John Douglas Ashton

An aggressive and colorful personality, William Barksdale was no stranger to controversy. Orphaned at 13, he succeeded as lawyer, newspaper editor, Mexican War veteran, politician and Confederate commander. During eight years in the U.S. Congress, he was among the South’s most ardent defenders of slavery and advocates for states’ rights. His emotional speeches and altercations—including a brawl on the House floor—made headlines in the years preceding secession.

His fiery temper prompted three near-duels, gaining him a reputation as a brawler and knife-fighter. Arrested for intoxication, Colonel Barksdale survived a military Court of Inquiry to become one of the most beloved commanders in the Army of Northern Virginia. His reputation soared with his defense against the Union river crossing and street-fighting at Fredericksburg, and his legendary charge at Gettysburg. This first full-length biography places his life and career in historical context.

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Newly Published: Money in American Politics

New on our bookshelf:

Money in American Politics: The First 200 Years
Richard Lawrence Miller

The people who run our government are affected by money just like the rest of us. Over the years, many of these officials have worried about meeting mortgage payments, holding off creditors, and avoiding bankruptcy. Others made fortunes by devoting their time to supervising their business interests. Either way, these distractions affected the lives of everyday citizens–from the price of shirts to the decisions for war or peace.

In school, students are taught about governmental principles underlying political controversies, but instructors seldom talk about money that presidents and cabinet members stood to gain or lose, depending on who prevailed in a political dispute. This book will help fill the gaps in that knowledge. To ignore the business activities of our leaders is to ignore most of their adult lives. Having such awareness allows voters to see motivations in government decisions that may otherwise be obscure. Concentrating on presidents and cabinet members, from the birth of the U.S. through the Carter administration, this book tells how they and their associates gained and lost wealth, and how this affected their nation’s well-being.

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Newly Published: The Gun Makers of Birmingham, 1660–1960

New on our bookshelf:

The Gun Makers of Birmingham, 1660–1960
Joseph McKenna

Tracing the history and development of gun-making in Birmingham, England–for many years a center of the world’s firearms industry–this book covers innovations in design and manufacture of both military and sporting arms from 1660 through 1960. The city is perhaps best known for mass-producing some of the most battle-tested weapons in history, including the Brown Bess musket, the Webley revolver and the Lee-Enfield rifle. Yet Birmingham’s gun-makers have carried on a centuries-long tradition of crafting high quality hand-made sporting guns.

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Newly Published: Draining the Swamp, Southern Style

New on our bookshelf:

Draining the Swamp, Southern Style: North Carolina and Florida Wetlands and the Wright Report Scandal, 1896–1926
Bruce D. Epperson

In 1912, a Congressional committee met to investigate allegations that the Secretary of Agriculture had suppressed a report by J. O. Wright on drainage in the Florida Everglades. The following seven months of committee hearings uncovered a veritable horror-show of corruption, self-dealing, misuse of government personnel and property for private gain, the tarring of reputations in order to protect high-level officials, and outright blackmail within the Department of Agriculture and the state governments of Florida and North Carolina.

The “Wright Report Incident” is most commonly understood in its connection to the Everglades, and few histories have included its effects on the North Carolina Pocosin wetland and other coastal plain swamps. This book seeks fills that gap. It details the timeline, intricate politics, and webs of corruption that make up the story of the Wright Incident and, specifically, its connection to land management practices in coastal North Carolina that continue to impact the industries of the state almost 100 years later.

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Newly Published: American Sports and the Great War

New on our bookshelf:

American Sports and the Great War: College, Military and Professional Athletics, 1916–1919
Peter C. Stewart

Drawing on newspaper accounts, college yearbooks and the recollections of veterans, this book examines the impact of World War I on sports in the U.S. As young men entered the military in large numbers, many colleges initially considered suspending athletics but soon turned to the idea of using sports to build morale and physical readiness. Recruits, mostly in their twenties, ended up playing more baseball and football than they would have in peacetime. Though most college athletes volunteered for military duty, others replaced them so that the reduction of competition was not severe. Pugilism gained participants as several million men learned how to box.

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Newly Published: Encyclopedia of Easter Celebrations Worldwide

New on our bookshelf:

Encyclopedia of Easter Celebrations Worldwide
William D. Crump

At Eastertime, the most important holiday in the Christian world, religious processions in many Latin American countries pass over ornate street “carpets” fashioned from colored sawdust, flowers and fruit. Children in Finland and Sweden dress as “Easter witches.” In the Caribbean, those who swim on Good Friday risk bad luck. In the Philippines, some penitents volunteer to be crucified. In some European countries, Easter Monday is the day for dousing women with water. With 240 entries, this book explores these and scores of other unusual and sometimes bizarre international Holy Week customs, both sacred and secular, from pilgrimages to Jerusalem to classic seasonal films and television specials.

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Women’s Studies Sale and New Catalog

Women made 2020 a banner year for diversity and inclusivity. In sports, representation on and off the field erupted with the leadership of Kim Ng, Sarah Fuller and Katie Sowers. Scientists Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer A. Doudna jointly earned the Nobel Prize in Chemistry. And in politics, women like Cori Bush, Sarah McBride, Yvette Herrell and others were elected to ever-diversifying legislatures, while Kamala Harris ascended to the highest elected position a woman has yet to hold. To honor Women’s History Month and to nurture the path forward, we’re offering 20% off our catalog through March 31st with coupon code WOMEN20.

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Newly Published: Saints and Sinners in Queen Victoria’s Courts

New on our bookshelf:

Saints and Sinners in Queen Victoria’s Courts: Ten Scandalous Trials
Tom Zaniello

This chronicle of ten controversial mid–Victorian trials features brother versus brother, aristocrats fighting commoners, an imposter to a family’s fortune, and an ex-priest suing his ex-wife, a nun. Most of these trials—never before analyzed in depth—assailed a culture that frowned upon public displays of bad taste, revealing fault lines in what is traditionally seen as a moral and regimented society. The author examines religious scandals, embarrassments about shaky family trees, and even arguments about which architecture is most likely to convert people from one faith to another.

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Newly Published: America’s Early Women Celebrities

New on our bookshelf:

America’s Early Women Celebrities: The Famous and Scorned from Martha Washington to Silent Film Star Mary Fuller
Angela Firkus

Well before television and the internet, there were women who sought fame, flirted with infamy, and actively engaged with their fan base. In today’s pop culture world, it can be hard to understand what the lives of these women were like. In their pre-suffrage world, women who attracted attention were considered scandalous and it was largely uncommon for women to become celebrities. Women who rose to fame in those times had to put up with societal standards for women on top of the lack of privacy and free speech.

This book provides the details and context to let us know the women who captured America’s heart in the 19th century. Rather than looking at influential women who strictly avoided notoriety, it covers the lives of 18 celebrities like Lydia Maria Child, Sojourner Truth, and Jane Addams.

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Newly Published: Ride the Frontier

New on our bookshelf:

Ride the Frontier: Exploring the Myth of the American West on Screen
Flavia Brizio-Skov

With fresh appraisals of popular Westerns, this book examines the history of the genre with a focus on definitional aspects of canon, adaptation and hybridity.

The author covers a range of largely unexplored topics, including the role of “heroines” in a (supposedly) male-oriented system of film production, the function of the celluloid Indians, the transcultural and transnational history of the first spaghetti Western, the construction of femininity and masculinity in the hybrid Westerns of the 1950s, and the new paths of the Western in the 21st century.

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Newly Published: The French Terror Wave, 2015–2016

New on our bookshelf:

The French Terror Wave, 2015–2016: Al-Qaeda and ISIS Attacks from Charlie Hebdo to the Bataclan Theatre
Marc E. Vargo

A torrent of Islamist terrorism swept across France in 2015 and 2016, executed by militant jihadists on behalf of al-Qaeda and the Islamic State (ISIS). Their targets ranged from the Paris offices of Charlie Hebdo magazine to the Bataclan Theatre on the Boulevard Voltaire to a parish church in a Normandy village and a beachfront promenade on the Mediterranean. This book reconstructs these and other terrorist offensives France weathered during this period. Placing each attack in its sociopolitical context, the author examines the backgrounds and motives of the perpetrators, the attributes of the victims and the legacy of the attacks for the people.

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Newly Published: Valley Forge to Monmouth

New on our bookshelf:

Valley Forge to Monmouth: Six Transformative Months of the American Revolution
Jim Stempel

From December 1777 through June 1778, the American Revolution achieved a remarkable turnaround. I these months the Continental Army recovered from abject demoralization at Valley Forge to achieve a stunning victory against the British at Monmouth Courthouse. This compelling history chronicles how the war began to turn–from the consequential leadership of General Washington and the Marquis de Lafayette to the experiences of the men who marched and fought in the ranks–and reexamines one of the most controversial periods of early American history.

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Newly Published: Newspaper-Real Estate Schemes of the 1920s

New on our bookshelf:

Newspaper-Real Estate Schemes of the 1920s: Pell Lake and Other Vacation Colonies for Working Class Subscribers
Margaret B. Barker

In the 1920s, newspapers and real estate developers colluded in a scheme to sell tiny vacation lots to subscribers. A zealous advertising campaign spawned a land-buying frenzy that sprouted dozens of waterfront summer colonies across the country. The resulting legal, social and environmental mayhem caused some of these communities to disappear or be drastically altered in character, while others managed to survive more or less intact.

Drawing on newspaper accounts of the day, this book explores how the scheme eluded accusations of fraud, creating an assembly line for middle class resorts through a lucrative merger of real estate and journalism. Pell Lake, Wisconsin, serves as a case study that yields the best evidence for determining if it was all a scam. Told here for the first time, the story of this unusual alliance and the communities it created offers lessons for today’s entrepreneurs, journalists, advertisers, real estate developers, environmentalists and anyone who has ever lived in a resort community.

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Newly Published: The African Experience in Colonial Virginia

New on our bookshelf:

The African Experience in Colonial Virginia: Essays on the 1619 Arrival and the Legacy of Slavery
Edited by Colita Nichols Fairfax

The State of Virginia recognizes the 1619 landing of Africans at Point Comfort (present-day Hampton) as a complicated beginning. This collection of new essays reckons with this historical fact, with discussions of the impacts 400 years later.

Chapters cover different perspectives about the “20 and odd” who landed, offering insights into how enslavement continues to affect the lives of their descendants. The often overlooked experiences of women in enslavement are discussed.

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Newly Published: The China Incident

New on our bookshelf:

The China Incident: Igniting the Second Sino-Japanese War
G. William Whitehurst

In 1937, Japan blundered into a debilitating war with China, beginning with a minor incident near Peking (now Beijing) that quickly escalated. The Japanese won significant battles and captured the capital, Nanking, after a horrific massacre of its citizens. Chiang Kai-shek, China’s acknowledged leader, would not surrender—each side believed it could win a war of attrition. The U.S. sided with China, primarily because of President Roosevelt’s personal bias in their favor.

Drawing on a wealth of sources including interviews with key players, from soldiers to diplomats, this history traces America’s unexpected and unpopular involvement in an Asian conflict, and the growing recognition of Japan’s threat to world peace and the inevitability of war.

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Newly Published: Running Toward the Guns

New on our bookshelf:

Running Toward the Guns: A Memoir of Escape from Cambodia
Chanty Jong with Lee Ann Van Houten-Sauter

Running Toward the Guns is an autobiographical story and an accounting of Chanty Jong’s personal inner self-healing journey that led to a successfully unexpected discovery. Jong survived the Cambodian genocide during the Khmer Rouge regime of 1975–1979, witnessing the horrors of the killing fields, torture, starvation and much more. Her vivid narrative recounts the suffering under the Khmer Rouge, her perseverance to survive physically and emotionally and her perilous escape to America. Her memoir relives the traumatic memories of her experiences and traces her arduous personal transformation toward a life of inner peace through intensive meditation.

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Newly Published: Have You Seen This Person?

New on our bookshelf:

Have You Seen This Person?: Ten Unsolved Disappearances, 2000–2013
LJ Roberts

Each year, hundreds of thousands of people are reported missing in the United States alone. The majority of those who disappear turn up within a week, but a small percentage are never heard from again.

Why did a Swedish teenager on an Australian adventure mail a cryptic letter to his family in Stockholm before disappearing forever? What became of a young woman whose car was found crashed and abandoned off a cliffside in Whatcom County, Washington? How can an individual vanish without a trace in a world so connected and monitored?

This book explores ten unsolved missing persons cases from around the world, from a 12-year-old British boy who purchased a one-way ticket to London King’s Cross never to return, to an American traveler who walked into the Himalayas not to be seen again. Included are exclusive interviews, statistical information and a case-by-case analysis of the most common and probable theories for each disappearance.

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Newly Published: The Banisters of Rhode Island in the American Revolution

New on our bookshelf:

The Banisters of Rhode Island in the American Revolution: Liberty and the Costs of Loyalties
Marian Mathison Desrosiers

When Thomas Banister fought for the British during the American Revolution, his farm and business were confiscated. He was exiled in far-off Nova Scotia, before he returned to a secluded life on Long Island. His older brother, John Banister married with a child, swore allegiance to the United Colonies, then witnessed the destruction of his Newport lands by the British Army.

Convinced British laws supported remuneration, John left for England, where he sought justice for four years. His wife, Christian Stelle Banister, managed the family property and raised their son while the state threatened confiscation and the French Army lived in Newport.

Tracing the lives of three young Americans during the Revolution, this study of the Banister family of Rhode Island contributes to an understanding of the war’s effects on the lives of ordinary people.

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BOOK REVIEWS: The People of the Sagas

Here are the latest book reviews for Icelanders in the Viking Age: The People of the Sagas by William R. Short.

• “Provides information on the daily lives, culture, history, and society of the Icelanders in a clear and well-structured fashion that invites and informs modern readers. The 13 chapters are concise, and clearly laid out sections allow readers to review specific themes or read the work as a whole. Using both literary and archaeological sources, Short presents a detailed, succinct, and informative overview of Icelanders of the saga age as well as the sagas themselves. Readers are enticed into further exploration of Viking–age Iceland with the inclusion of detailed chapter notes and recommendations for further readings. This useful introduction to the Viking age is an essential companion to the medieval narratives…. The author’s in-depth research makes this a compelling, informative addition to almost any collection dealing with the sagas or the Viking age. Highly recommended. General and academic collections, all levels.”—Choice

• “Informative…Short has done an excellent job…most interesting…I unhesitatingly recommend this book to anyone with even a shred of interest in the Viking era…faultless…tells a coherent story…this is a book stuffed full of interesting material for anyone interested in the sagas, the Viking age, the Icelandic Commonwealth, and early contact with the New World. Highly recommended”—Armed and Dangerous

• “A warning to readers. You may find you need to hide your copy of this book…chapters on pretty much all aspects of daily life…. You don’t need to be a specialist in anthropology or history to understand…illustrated with numerous black and white photographs of Iceland and Icelandic artifacts, drawings and maps…enjoyed it very much. You’ve got to hand it to McFarland as they publish some fascinating books”—Green Man Review

• “A perfect companion or an introduction to reading the sagas…very easy to read, and covers many topics in the life of the people in Iceland during those times…covers religion, laws, feuds, home life, and the settlement, among other topics…truly gives you an overview of what everyday life was like…[Short’s] research is flawless, and his sources are well-documented…bibliography is impressive…very well-indexed…entertaining, easy-to-read and very educational”—Lögberg-Heimskringla

• “Well-structured, easily understandable and practical…digs deep into a wide range of archaeological and literary sources…presents readers with a realistic account of life in the saga age…excellent…thorough and accurate…interesting…especially helpful”—Iceland Review

• “Riveting exploration…a solid addition”—Midwest Book Review

• “Fresh and interesting…a most readable book”—SMART: Studies in Medieval and Renaissance Teaching

• “Comprehensive but accessible history…. All aspects of society are covered including laws, conflict, domestic work, agriculture, gender roles, trade and production. Blending literature, legal codes, chronicles and archaeology and embellishing them with pictures, many of which he took himself. Short’s book is a perfect companion to the study of the Icelandic sagas”—Reference and Research Book News

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Newly Published: Dying for Chocolate

New on our bookshelf:

Dying for Chocolate: Cordelia Botkin and the 1898 Poisoned Candy Murders
Kerry Segrave

On a summer day in 1898, a family in Dover, Delaware, shared a box of chocolates they received in the mail from an anonymous sender. Within days, two of the seven family members were dead; the other five became ill but recovered. The search for the perpetrator soon moved from Delaware to California, where a suspect was quickly identified: Cordelia Botkin, lover of the husband of one of the poisoned women.

This book chronicles the shoddy investigation that led to Botkin’s indictment and the two sensational trials, adjudicated in the press, that found her guilty. National attention was drawn by the cross-country nature of the crime and the fact that the supposed perpetrator had never been in Delaware in her life. It was also a trial over what was viewed as the moral and sexual depravity of the two main participants, Botkin and Dunning (the husband), with most of that criticism directed at Botkin.

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Newly Published: Circle in the Square Theatre

New on our bookshelf:

Circle in the Square Theatre: A Comprehensive History
Sheila Hickey Garvey

Based on years of research as well as interviews conducted with Circle in the Square’s major contributing artists, this book records the entire history of this distinguished theatre from its nightclub origins to its current status as a Tony Award-winning Broadway institution. Over the course of seven decades, Circle in the Square theatre profoundly changed ideas of what American theatre could be. Founded by Theodore Mann and José Quintero in an abandoned Off–Broadway nightclub just after WWII, it was a catalyst for the Off–Broadway movement. The building had a unique arena-shaped performance space that became Circle in the Square theatre, New York’s first Off–Broadway arena stage and currently Broadway’s only arena stage. The theatre was precedent-setting in many other regards, including operating as a non-profit, contracting with trade unions, establishing a school, and serving as a home for blacklisted artists. It sparked a resurgence of interest in playwright Eugene O’Neill’s canon, and was famous for landmark revivals and American premieres of his plays. The theatre also fostered the careers of such luminaries as Geraldine Page, Colleen Dewhurst, George C. Scott, Jason Robards, James Earl Jones, Cecily Tyson, Dustin Hoffman, Irene Papas, Alan Arkin, Philip Bosco, Al Pacino, Amy Irving, Pamela Payton-Wright, Vanessa Redgrave, Julie Christie, John Malkovich, Lynn Redgrave, and Annette Bening.

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Newly Published: The Constitution and American Racism

New on our bookshelf:

The Constitution and American Racism: Setting a Course for Lasting Injustice
David P. Madden

Racism has permeated the workings of the U.S. Constitution since ratification. At the 1787 Constitutional Convention, supporters of slavery ensured it was protected by rule of law. The federal government upheld slavery until it was abolished by the Civil War; then supported the South’s Jim Crow power structure. From Reconstruction through the Civil Rights Era until today, veneration of the Constitution has not prevented lynching, segregation, voter intimidation or police brutality against people of color. The Electoral College—a Constitutional accommodation for slaveholding aristocrats who feared popular government—has twice in 20 years given the presidency to the candidate who lost the popular vote. This book describes how pernicious flaws in the Constitution, included to legalize profiting from human bondage, perpetuate systemic racism, economic inequality and the subversion of democracy.

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New in Softcover: Encyclopedia of Ancient Deities

Now available in softcover:

Encyclopedia of Ancient Deities
Charles Russell Coulter and Patricia Turner

Throughout history, humans have pondered the question of their existence. In nearly every society, part of the answer has included some form of god or goddess. For the Mayans, one such deity was Ajtzak, who tried to create humans from wood; for the Yorubas of Africa, Shango controlled the thunder and lightning. The Chinese of the Shang dynasty era worshipped Shang Ti. Evil deities were also part of the answer, as in the case of the Kuvera, the Hindu chief of evil in the Vedic period, and Tu, the Persian or Islamic demon of fatal accidents.

All of the known ancient gods, many heretofore obscure or known only from mythological literature, are included in this exhaustive reference work. The focus is on their origins, histories, and functions. The people who believed in each deity are identified, along with alternate names or spellings both old and modern. The descriptions that follow are of the functions, origins and physical nature of the deities. Extensive cross references are provided for alternate spellings and names.

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Vikings Catalog and Sale

On the threshold of winter, it is not untoward to turn one’s thoughts to hearty beards.  So it is here at McFarland, and ours have specifically turned to Vikings and representations of medieval Nordic-ness in myth, literature and popular culture.  We’ve collected all our related McFarland titles into this catalog, and you’ll find a full range of books covering topics such as the intellectual inspirations for Tolkien’s legendarium, the Vikings television series that successfully summoned their historical world, and insights into the people of the great Icelandic medieval sagas.  If you have an interest in Norse mythology in heavy metal music, McFarland has a book for that, too!  Through December 31, get 30% off these books with coupon code VIKINGS30.

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Newly Published: Political Assassins, Terrorists and Related Conspiracies in American History

New on our bookshelf:

Political Assassins, Terrorists and Related Conspiracies in American History
Scott P. Johnson

Political assassinations and terrorism have both outraged and fascinated the public throughout American history, particularly in the modern era. Providing biographical summaries of more than 100 assassins and terrorists, this book aims at a more complete understanding of the motivations behind violent extremism.

The lives of the subjects are analyzed with a focus on psychological and ideological factors, along with details of investigations and criminal trials. Conspiracy theories are evaluated for credibility. Social media features prominently in explaining political violence by members of extremist groups in the 21st century, including radical Islamic terrorists, anti-abortion activists and white supremacists.

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Newly Published: Voices from Srebrenica

New on our bookshelf:

Voices from Srebrenica: Survivor Narratives of the Bosnian Genocide
Ann Petrila <I>and</I> Hasan Hasanović

In the hills of eastern Bosnia sits the small town of Srebrenica—once known for silver mines and health spas, now infamous for the genocide that occurred there during the Bosnian War. In July 1995, when the town fell to Serbian forces, 12,000 Muslim men and boys fled through the woods, seeking safe territory. Hunted for six days, more than 8000 were captured, killed at execution sites and later buried in mass graves. With harrowing personal narratives by survivors, this book provides eyewitness accounts of the Bosnian genocide, revealing stories of individual trauma, loss and resilience.

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Newly Published: Boone Before Boone

New on our bookshelf:

Boone Before Boone: The Archaeological Record of Northwestern North Carolina Through 1769
Tom Whyte

Native Americans have occupied the mountains of northwestern North Carolina for around 14,000 years. This book tells the story of their lives, adaptations, responses to climate change, and ultimately, the devastation brought on by encounters with Europeans. After a brief introduction to archaeology, the book covers each time period, chapter by chapter, beginning with the Paleoindian period in the Ice Age and ending with the arrival of Daniel Boone in 1769, with descriptions and interpretations of archaeological evidence for each time period. Each chapter begins with a fictional vignette to kindle the reader’s imaginings of ancient human life in the mountains, and includes descriptions and numerous images of sites and artifacts discovered in Boone, North Carolina, and the surrounding region.

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Newly Published: Pakistan Since Independence

New on our bookshelf:

Pakistan Since Independence: A History, 1947 to Today
Stanley B. Sprague

This concise and balanced account details Pakistan’s turbulent 73-year history of civil war, military coups, political assassinations, wars with India, cooperation with the U.S. during the Afghan-Soviet war, and events following 9/11. An unpredictable nuclear nation, Pakistan has been variously described as the center of international terrorism, the world’s biggest nuclear weapons proliferator, the most dangerous place in the world and, some experts predict, the most likely site of the world’s first nuclear war.

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Newly Published: The National Security League, 1914–1922

New on our bookshelf:

The National Security League, 1914–1922: Wall Street and the War Machine
Kerry Segrave

The early 20th century saw the founding of the National Security League, a nationalistic nonprofit organization committed to an expanded military, conscripted service and meritocracy. This book details its history, from its formation in December 1914 through 1922, at which point it was a spent force in decline. Founded by wealthy corporate lawyers based in New York City, it had secret backers in the capitalist class, who had two goals in mind. One was to profit immensely from the newly begun World War I. The other was to control the working classes in times of both war and peace.

This agenda was presented to the public under the guise of preparedness, patriotism, and Americanization. Although the league was eventually found by Congress to have violated election spending limits, no sanctions of any kind were ever applied. This history details the secret machinations of an organization dedicated to solidifying the grip of the capitalist class over workers, all under the cover of American pride.

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Newly Published: The Herrin Massacre of 1922

New on our bookshelf:

The Herrin Massacre of 1922: Blood and Coal in the Heart of America
Greg Bailey

In 1922, a coal miner strike spread across the United States, swallowing the heavily-unionized mining town of Herrin, Illinois. When the owner of the town’s local mine hired non-union workers to break the strike, violent conflict broke out between the strikebreakers and unionized miners, who were all heavily armed. When strikebreakers surrendered and were promised safe passage home, the unionized miners began executing them before large, cheering crowds.

This book tells the cruel truth behind the story that the coal industry tried to suppress and that Herrin wants to forget. A thorough account of the massacre and its aftermath, this book sets a heartland tragedy against the rise and decline of the coal industry.

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Newly Published: James Strong

New on our bookshelf:

James Strong: A Biography of the Methodist Scholar
Samuel J. Rogal

This is the first full biography of Biblical scholar and theological seminary professor James Strong (1822–1894). It describes his upbringing, early and higher education, the schools and colleges where he taught, his academic colleagues, his contributions to the development of nineteenth-century American Methodism, and his numerous publications—particularly his Biblical Concordance (1894) which continues as a standard and essential reference work. It includes edited versions of selected sermons and letters never before published, as well as comments from his students, the details of his experience in the development of the early nineteenth-century American railroad system, and detailed obituaries and reactions to his death.

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Newly Published: War Pigeons

New on our bookshelf:

War Pigeons: Winged Couriers in the U.S. Military, 1878–1957
Elizabeth G. Macalaster

For more than seven decades, homing pigeons provided the U.S. military with its fastest most reliable means of communication. Originally bred for racing in the early 1800s, homing pigeons were later trained by pigeoneers to fly up to 60 mph for hundreds of miles, and served the United States for almost 75 years, through four wars on four continents. Barely weighing a pound, these extraordinary birds carried messages in and out of gas, smoke, exploding bombs and gunfire. They flew through jungles, deserts and mountains, not faltering even when faced with large expanses of ocean to cross. Sometimes they arrived nearly dead from wounds or exhaustion, refusing to give up until they reached their objective.

This book is the first complete account of the remarkable service that homing pigeons provided for the American armed forces, from its fledgling beginnings after the Civil War to the birds’ invaluable role in communications in every branch of the U.S. military through both World Wars and beyond. Personal narratives, primary sources and news articles tell the story of the pigeons’ recruitment and training in the U.S., their deployment abroad and use on the home front.

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Newly Published: Western Water Rights and the U.S. Supreme Court

New on our bookshelf:

Western Water Rights and the U.S. Supreme Court
James H. Davenport

Exploring the little-known history behind the legal doctrine of prior appropriation—“first in time is first in right”—used to apportion water resources in the western United States, this book focuses on the important case of Wyoming v. Colorado(1922). U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Willis Van Devanter, a former Chief Justice of Wyoming, ruled in that state’s favor, finding that prior appropriation applied across state lines—a controversial opinion influenced by cronyism. The dicta in the case, that the U.S. Government has no interest in state water allocation law, drove the balkanization of interstate water systems and resulted in the Colorado River Interstate Compact between Wyoming, Colorado, Utah, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada and California.

The exhaustive research that has gone into this book has uncovered the secret that Associate Justice Van Devanter had waited eleven years to publish his opinion in this important, but politically self-serving, case, at last finding a moment when his senior colleagues were sufficiently absent or incapacitated to either concur or dissent. Without the knowledge of his “brethren,” save his “loyal friend” Taft, and without recusal, Van Devanter unilaterally delivered his sole opinion to the Clerk for publication on the last day of the Supreme Court’s October 1921 Term.

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New in Softcover: Chronology of the American Revolution

Now available in softcover:

Chronology of the American Revolution: Military and Political Actions Day by Day
Bud Hannings

From the Battle of Lexington and Concord on 19 April, 1775, up through the reduction of the victorious Continental Army to a single regiment in January 1784, this book is a day-to-day chronicle of the American Revolution, both on the battlefield and in the halls of the Continental Congress. Covered in detail are the movements of not only the Continental Army and Navy, but the Marines—not covered comprehensively in other sources—and the militia. Information on the actions of Congress highlights each day’s business, including the resolutions pertinent to the war.

Drawing on such vital primary documents as the Journals of the Continental Congress and the Diplomatic Correspondence of the American Revolution, the book offers a close-up view of the political and military tension of the time, the perilous situation of the colonists, and the concerns of the soldiers and sailors immersed in battle. It also provides insight into the moves and counter-moves of British and American forces as intelligence flowed in both directions to influence the course of combat. All military campaigns of the revolution, from Canada to Florida and Louisiana, are included. The result is unmatched coverage of the battles, both military and legislative, that gave birth to America.

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Newly Published: Engines and Other Apparatus of the Milwaukee Fire Department

New on our bookshelf:

Engines and Other Apparatus of the Milwaukee Fire Department: An Illustrated History
Wayne Mutza

The vehicles and other firefighting equipment of the Milwaukee Fire Department, like the department itself, are unique among the fire service. It built more of its own apparatus than any other American city and few can match the scope and character of apparatus used to serve and protect life and property in Milwaukee.

Through detailed research, firsthand narratives, and captivating photos, the author walks the reader through the fascinating history of the incredible machines that served Cream City from the mid-nineteenth century to modern times. This volume traces the ever-changing face of Milwaukee’s fire-fighting and life-saving equipment in parallel with the city’s own history and growth. The fire department workshop’s reputation for ingenuity is shown through its adaptations to disastrous fires that brought about changes in laws, economic growth and decline, the establishment of Milwaukee’s ethnic neighborhoods, the difficult transition from horses to motorization, the wartime and post-war experience, the corporate world of apparatus manufacturers, and Milwaukee’s fireboat fleet.

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Newly Published: Saigon to Pleiku

New on our bookshelf:

Saigon to Pleiku: A Counterintelligence Agent in Vietnam’s Central Highlands, 1962‒1963
David Grant Noble

Initially stationed at the U.S. Army’s counterintelligence headquarters in Saigon, David Noble was sent north to launch the army’s first covert intelligence-gathering operation in Vietnam’s Central Highlands. Living in the region of the Montagnards—Vietnam’s indigenous tribal people, deemed critical to winning the war—Noble documented strategic hamlets and Green Beret training camps, where Special Forces teams taught the Montagnards to use rifles rather than crossbows and spears. In this book, he relates the formidable challenges he confronted in the course of his work.

Weaving together memoir, excerpts from letters written home, and photographs, Noble’s compelling narrative throws light on a little-known corner of the Vietnam War in its early years—before the Tonkin Gulf Resolution and the deployment of combat units—and traces his transformation from a novice intelligence agent and believer in the war to a political dissenter and active protester.

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New in Softcover: The White House

Now available in softcover:

The White House: An Illustrated Architectural History
Patrick Phillips-Schrock

Formerly known as the President’s House, then the Executive Mansion, and now for a long time the White House, this famous structure has a fascinating architectural history of ongoing change. The white painted façade of James Hoban’s original structure has been added to and strengthened for more than 200 years, and its interior is a repository of some of America’s greatest treasures. Artists such as Benjamin Latrobe, Pierre-Antoine Bellangé, the Herter Brothers, Louis Tiffany, Charles McKim, Lorenzo Winslow, Stephane Boudin, Edward Vason Jones, and a host of others fashioned interiors that welcomed and inspired visitors both foreign and domestic. This meticulous history, featuring more than 325 photographs, diagrams and other illustrations, captures each stage of the White House’s architectural and decorative evolution.

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Newly Published: The Beginning of Boxing in Britain, 1300–1700

New on our bookshelf:

The Beginning of Boxing in Britain, 1300–1700
Arly Allen

Many books have discussed boxing in the ancient world, but this is the first to describe how boxing was reborn in the modern world. Modern boxing began in the Middle Ages in England as a criminal activity. It then became a sport supported by the kings and aristocracy. Later it was again outlawed and only in the 20th century has it become a sport popular around the world.

This book describes how modern boxing began in England as an outgrowth of the native English sense of fair play. It demonstrates that boxing was the common man’s alternative to the sword duel of honor, and argues that boxing and fair play helped Englishmen avoid the revolutions common to France, Italy and Germany during the eighteenth, nineteenth and twentieth centuries. English enthusiasm for boxing largely drove out the pistol and sword duels from English society. And although boxing remains a brutal sport, it has made England one of the safest countries in the world.

It also examines how the rituals of boxing developed: the meaning of the parade to the ring; the meaning of the ring itself; why only two men fight at one time; why the fighters shake hands before each fight; why a boxing match is called a prizefight; and why a knock-down does not end the bout. Its sources include material from medieval manuscripts, and its notes and bibliography are extensive.

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Newly Published: Patterns of American Popular Heroism

New on our bookshelf:

Patterns of American Popular Heroism: From Roman and Biblical Roots to Modern Media
James G. Shoopman

The American popular hero has deeply bipolar origins: Depending on prevailing attitudes about the use or abuse of authority, American heroes may be rooted in the traditions of the Roman conquerors of The Aeneid or of the biblical underdog warriors and prophets.

This book reviews the history of American popular culture and its heroes from the Revolutionary War and pre-Civil War “women’s literature” to the dime novel tales of Jesse James and Buffalo Bill. “Hinge-heroes” like The Virginian and the Rider’s of the Purple Sage paved the way for John Wayne’s and Humphrey Bogart’s champions of civilization, while Jimmy Stewart’s scrappy rebels fought soulless bankers and cynical politicians. The 1960s and 1970s saw a wave of new renegades—the doctors of MASH and the rebel alliance of Star Wars—but early 21st Century terrorism called for the grit of world weary cops and the super-heroism of Wonder Woman and Black Panther to make the world safe.

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Newly Published: Buffalo Bill Cody

New on our bookshelf:

Buffalo Bill Cody: The Man Who Shaped the Wild West Legend
Lew Freedman

William F. “Buffalo Bill” Cody (1846-1917) rose from humble origins in Iowa to become one of the most famous and most photographed people in the world. He became a leading scout during the American Indian Wars, winner of the Congressional Medal of Honor, and a renowned show business fixture whose traveling Wild West exhibitions played to millions of spectators the world over for 30 years. He hobnobbed with presidents, kings, queens and European heads of state, befriending many legendary individuals of the West, from General George Armstrong Custer and Sitting Bull to Wild Bill Hickok and Annie Oakley. Aside from these achievements, Cody’s most important legacy may be how he shaped the world’s enduring views of the American West through his shows, which he considered to be educational events rather than entertainment. This biography is a fresh look at the life of Buffalo Bill.

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New in Softcover: Forts of the United States

Now available in softcover:

Forts of the United States: An Historical Dictionary, 16th through 19th Centuries
Bud Hannings

From forts to blockhouses, garrison houses to trading posts, stations to presidios, missions to ranches and towns, this work provides a history of the primary fortifications established during 400 tumultuous years in what would become the United States of America. Under each state’s heading, this substantial volume contains alphabetized entries with information regarding each structure’s history. The earliest forts established by the Danes, Dutch, English, French, Portuguese, Swedes and Mexicans and by the temporary appearance of the Russians are listed. The colonial American forts, many of which were previously established by the European powers, are covered in detail. Beginning with the American Revolution, each of the American military fortifications, militia forts, settlers’ forts and blockhouses is listed and described. Helpful appendices list Civil War defenses (and military hospitals) of Washington, D.C.; Florida Seminole Indian war forts; Pony Express depots; Spanish missions and presidios; and twentieth-century U.S. forts, posts, bases, and stations. A chronology of conflicts that paralleled the growth of the United States is also provided, offering insight into the historical context of fort construction.

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Newly Published: Advancement in Ancient Civilizations

New on our bookshelf:

Advancement in Ancient Civilizations: Life, Culture, Science and Thought
Harald Haarmann

Traditional scholarship on how ancient civilizations emerged is outmoded and new insights call for revision. According to the well-established paradigm, Mesopotamia is considered the cradle of civilization. Following the cliché of ex oriente lux (“light from the East”) all major achievements of humankind spread from the Middle East. Modern archaeology, cultural science and historical linguistics indicate civilizations did not originate from a single prototype. Several models produced divergent patterns of advanced culture, developing both hierarchical and egalitarian societies. This study outlines a panorama of ancient civilizations, including the still little-known Danube civilization, now identified as the oldest advanced culture in Europe. In a comparative view, a new paradigm of research and a new cultural chronology of civilizations in the Old and New Worlds emerges, with climate change shown to be a continual influence on human lifeways.

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Newly Published: From Kathmandu to Kilimanjaro

New on our bookshelf:

From Kathmandu to Kilimanjaro: A Mother-Daughter Memoir
Margaret Elizabeth Lovett Wilson and Sylvie Wilson Emmanuel

Margaret (Peggy) Wilson, born in England in 1897, was the model of the new woman, serving as a medical volunteer during World War I, and later going to medical school to become a doctor of tropical diseases. In 1926, Peggy traveled to Kathmandu, and four years later married her friend from medical school who was on assignment with the British Colonial Medical Service in Tanganyika (modern-day Tanzania). Peggy and Donald spent the next 30 years working side-by-side on malaria research and public health, winning multiple awards in the process. Peggy’s daughter Sylvie, born in 1935, recalls World War II in Tanganyika and Kenya, boarding school, and university at Cambridge. After university, Sylvie returned home to teach and married a Greek Tanganyikan farmer. They welcomed independence and the nation of Tanzania, yet struggled under the impacts it had for expats. While most of the Greek community left Tanzania, Sylvie and her husband persisted on the slopes of Kilimanjaro, participating in building new Tanzania.

Drawn from Peggy’s unpublished memoir and the letters, diaries and photographs that Sylvie meticulously collected, this inspiring mother-daughter memoir spans three continents and a century of travel, love, defiance, wars, medical research, and revolutions.

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Newly Published: Hellenistic Land Battles 300–167 BCE

New on our bookshelf:

Hellenistic Land Battles 300–167 BCE: A History and Analysis of 130 Engagements
Fred Eugene Ray, Jr.

The Hellenistic Period (323–31 BCE) saw the Grecian phalanx—long dominant in Mediterranean warfare—challenged by legionary formations from the rising city-state of Rome. The Roman way of war would come to eclipse phalanx-based combat by the 160s yet this was not evident at the time. Rome suffered numerous defeats against the phalanxes of Pyrrhus and Hannibal, its overseas campaign against the brilliant Spartan mercenary Xanthippus met disaster, and several Roman victories over Hellenistic foes were not decisive. The story of combat in this pivotal era is not well documented. This book for the first time provides detailed tactical analyses for all 130 significant land engagements of Hellenistic armies 300–167 BCE.

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Newly Published: Rachel Donelson Jackson

New on our bookshelf:

Rachel Donelson Jackson: The First Lady Who Never Was
Betty Boles Ellison

Rachel Jackson, wife of President Andrew Jackson, never wanted to be First Lady and tried to dissuade him from his political ambitions. Yet she publicly supported his political advancement and was the first wife of a presidential candidate to take to the campaign trail. Privy to his political decisions, she offered valued counsel, and Jackson sometimes regretted not taking her advice. Denied a traditional education by her father, Rachel’s innate business savvy made the Jacksons’ Tennessee plantation and businesses profitable during her husband’s continual absences.

This biography chronicles the life of a First Lady who rebelled against 19th-century constraints on women, overcame personal tragedies to become an inspirational figure of persistence and strength, and found herself at the center of one of the vilest presidential smear campaigns in history.

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Newly Published: Lincoln’s Jewish Spy

New on our bookshelf:

Lincoln’s Jewish Spy: The Life and Times of Issachar Zacharie
E. Lawrence Abel

Born into a Sephardic Jewish immigrant family, Dr. Issachar Zacharie was the preeminent foot doctor for the American political elite before and during the Civil War. An expert in pain management, Zacharie treated the likes of Henry Clay, John C. Calhoun, General George McClelland and most notably, President Abraham Lincoln.

As Zacharie’s professional and personal relationship with Lincoln deepened, the President began to entrust the doctor with political missions. Throughout Lincoln’s presidency, Zacharie traveled to southern cities like New Orleans and Richmond in efforts to ally with some of the Confederacy’s most influential Jewish citizens.

This biography explores Dr. Zacharie’s life, from his birth in Chatham, England, through his medical practice, espionage career and eventual political campaigning for President Lincoln.

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Newly Published: William McKinley versus William Jennings Bryan

New on our bookshelf:

William McKinley versus William Jennings Bryan: The Great Political Rivalry of the Turn of the 20th Century
John M. Pafford

The clashes between William McKinley and William Jennings Bryan during the 1896 and 1900 presidential elections changed the course of American politics. Prior to Bryan’s candidacy, the Democratic Party was slightly more conservative than the Republican Party. At the 1896 Democratic National Convention, Bryan’s dramatic “Cross of Gold” speech stampeded the delegates left-of-center—a position the party has traditionally held since.

Most Americans, though, rejected this new wave, remained conservative and twice elected McKinley. These were dramatic years for the country as it continued its rise to become a major world economic and military power. Significantly, freedom increased for those now within the American orbit.

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Newly Published: American Indian Sovereignty

New on our bookshelf:

American Indian Sovereignty: The Struggle for Religious, Cultural and Tribal Independence
J. Mark Hazlett II

Since the arrival of European settlers, Native American cultural sovereignty has been under attack. Self-determination is a tribal right of Native people, but colonial oppression banned their traditions and religion, purloined and misused sacred sites, and betrayed treaties when convenient. Over time, the settlers usurped Native American culture and lands, and these destructive behaviors continue today. Within the decimated Native American culture left after forced assimilation, American Indians still struggle to retain their rights. In this historical account of the despotism against Native American culture, the altercations of sovereignty, territory, and pluralistic democracy are analyzed in an effort to provide a path towards justice.

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Newly Published: Media and the Murderer

New on our bookshelf:

Media and the Murderer: Jack the Ripper, Steven Avery and an Enduring Formula for Notoriety
Rebecca Frost

Some criminals become household names, while others—even those who seek recognition through their crimes—are forgotten. The criminal’s actions are only a part of every famous true crime story. Other factors, such as the setting and circumstances of the crimes and the ways in which others take control of the narrative, ultimately drive their notoriety. Through a comparison of the tellings and retellings of two famous cases more than a century apart—the Jack the Ripper killings in 1888, and the murder trials of Steven Avery as documented in Making a Murderer—this book examines the complicated dynamics of criminal celebrity.

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Newly Published: Henry Box Brown

New on our bookshelf:

Henry Box Brown: From Slavery to Show Business
Kathleen Chater

Henry Box Brown is well known in America for escaping slavery by being packed in a box and mailed from Virginia to Philadelphia. The passing of the Fugitive Slave Act in 1850 made it unsafe for Brown to remain in America. He relocated to England where he had a very successful career, initially as a speaker on abolitionism before he began speaking on other subjects and then branched out into other forms of entertainment, including magic. He married Jane Floyd, who, with their children, appeared in his acts.

This book concentrates on the relatively unknown period of his life in Britain, detailing both how he was received and how he developed as a performer. It is the biography of a brave, intelligent individualist who was always willing to learn and to take chances, becoming the first black man to achieve landmarks in British law and entertainment.

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Nursing Sale

Over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, health care workers have truly put their lives on the line in order to help save their patients. We are incredibly grateful for all health care workers and essential workers during this time. 2020 is also Florence Nightingale’s 200th birthday, making this year the “Year of the Nurse”; Nightingale was a statistician, social reformer, and the founder of modern nursing. In recognition of the Year of the Nurse, we are offering 20% off all nursing books through August 31, 2020, with coupon code NURSING20!

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Newly Published: James Connolly

New on our bookshelf:

James Connolly: Irish Revolutionary
Seán Cronin

Revolutionary, unionist and socialist James Connolly is best known for his part in organizing the bloody Easter Rising of 1916. Yet the Rising was just one defining event in a career devoted to peaceful activism for Irish independence, social justice for the working class, and the rights of women. This biography traces the political life of an unassuming advocate for nonviolent social change at the ballot box, who later helped lead a violent insurrection to establish an Irish Republic and was executed by a British firing squad.

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Newly Published: The Rise and Fall of the Future

New on our bookshelf:

The Rise and Fall of the Future: America’s Changing Vision of Tomorrow, 1939–1986
Gordon Arnold

Mid–20th century America envisioned a wondrous future of comfort, convenience and technological advancement. Popular culture—including World’s Fairs, science fiction and advertising—fed high hopes even when war and hardship threatened. American ingenuity and consumer culture promised to deliver flying cars, undersea cities, household robots and space travel. By the 1960s political assassinations, the civil rights and women’s movements, the Vietnam War and the “generation gap” eroded that optimism, refocusing attention on the issues of the present. The nation’s utopian dream was brief but revealing. Based on a wide range of sources, this book takes a fresh look at America’s precipitous fall from futurism to disillusionment.

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Newly Published: General Rufus Putnam

New on our bookshelf:

General Rufus Putnam: George Washington’s Chief Military Engineer and the “Father of Ohio”
Robert Ernest Hubbard

During the Revolutionary War, Rufus Putnam served as the Continental Army’s chief military engineer. As designer and supervisor of the construction of major fortifications, his contribution helped American forces drive the British Army from Boston and protect the Hudson River. Several years after the War, Putnam personally founded the first permanent American settlement in the Northwest Territory at Marietta, Ohio. Putnam’s influence and vote prevented the introduction of slavery in Ohio, leading the way for Illinois, Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin to enter the U.S. as free states. This first full-length biography in more than 130 years covers his wartime service and long public career.

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Newly Published: George Washington on Coins and Currency

New on our bookshelf:

George Washington on Coins and Currency
Heinz Tschachler

George Washington is the most popular subject on coins, medals, tokens, paper money and postage stamps in America. Attempts to eliminate one-dollar bills from circulation, replacing them with coins, have been unsuccessful. Americans’ reluctance to part with their “Georges” are beyond rational considerations but tap into deep-felt emotions. To discard one-dollar bills means discarding the metaphorical Father of His Country.

Alexander Hamilton, the nation’s first Secretary of the Treasury, said that monetary tokens were “vehicles of useful impressions.” This numismatic history of George Washington traces the persistence of his image on American currency. These images are mostly from the late 18th-century. This book also offers a close look at the pictorial tradition in which these images are rooted.

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Newly Published: Dictionary of World Monasticism

New on our bookshelf:

Dictionary of World Monasticism
Steven Olderr

The roots of monasticism may go back as far as 1700 BCE, to ascetic practices in ancient India. Since that time, the monastic world has naturally developed its own extensive and distinct vocabulary. Countless volumes have been written on monasticism yet many do not clearly define obscure or vernacular terms. Some terms may be found in standard dictionaries but without in-depth explanations.

This first comprehensive dictionary—not a proselytizing work but a reference with historical and biographical focus—fills the gap, with a worldwide scope covering not only Christianity, but all faiths that have monastic traditions, including but not limited to Buddhism, Jainism and Hinduism.

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Newly Published: The Liberation of Manila

New on our bookshelf:

The Liberation of Manila: 28 Days of Carnage, February–March 1945
John A. Del Gallego

During the early months of World War II, Winston Churchill maneuvered to get the U.S. involved in the war to save his country from German invasion. Roosevelt, scheming to lure Hitler into a casus belli, ensnared Japan instead, resulting in the attack on Pearl Harbor and the Pacific War that followed. When the doomed U.S. garrison in the Philippines soon capitulated to the Japanese, the atrocities inflicted on the Filipino and American units that surrendered were portents for the inhabitants of Manila.

The history chronicles the 1945 recapture of Manila largely from the perspective of the civilian population, which suffered horrific brutality from the Japanese, followed by destruction and heavy loss of life during the American assault. Individual stories are included of citizens caught in the crossfire between the tenacious Japanese defenders and American troops determined to seize the capital city while minimizing their own casualties, regardless of the cost in civilian lives. More than 175 photographs document the events described.

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Newly Published: Architect of Death at Auschwitz

New on our bookshelf:

Architect of Death at Auschwitz: A Biography of Rudolf Höss
John W. Primomo

Rudolf Höss has been called the greatest mass murderer in history. As the longest-serving commandant of Auschwitz, he supervised the killing of more than 1.1 million people. Unlike many of his Nazi colleagues who denied either knowing about or participating in the Holocaust, Höss remorselessly admitted, both at the Nuremberg war crimes trial and in his memoirs, that he sent hundreds of thousands of Jews to their deaths in the gas chambers, frankly describing the killing process. His “innovations” included the use of hydrogen cyanide (derived from the pesticide Zyklon B) in the camp’s gas chambers. Höss lent his name to the 1944 operation that gassed 430,000 Hungarian Jews in 56 days, exceeding the capacity of the Auschwitz’s crematoria.

This biography follows Höss throughout his life, from his childhood through his Nazi command and eventual reckoning at Nuremberg. Using historical records and Höss’ autobiography, it explores the life and mind of one of history’s most notorious and sadistic individuals.

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Newly Published: Twenty Years in a Siberian Gulag

New on our bookshelf:

Twenty Years in a Siberian Gulag: Memoir of a Political Prisoner at Kolyma
Leonid Petrovich Bolotov

Caught up in one of the many purges that swept the Soviet Union during the Great Terror, Leonid Petrovich Bolotov (1906–1987) was one of 86 engineers arrested at Leningrad’s Red Triangle Rubber Factory and sent to the Gulag as “enemies of the people.” He would be the only one to survive and return to his family after enduring two decades in the infamous Kolyma labor camps.

Translated into English and published here for the first time, Bolotov’s memoir narrates with growing intensity his arrest, imprisonment and interrogation, his “confession” and trial, his exile to hard labor in Arctic Siberia, and his rehabilitation in 1956 following the official end of Stalin’s personality cult.

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Newly Published: Spiritualism in the American Civil War

New on our bookshelf:

Spiritualism in the American Civil War
R. Gregory Lande

America’s Civil War took a dreadful toll on human lives, and the emotional repercussions were exacerbated by tales of battlefield atrocities, improper burials and by the lack of news that many received about the fate of their loved ones. Amidst widespread religious doubt and social skepticism, spiritualism—the belief that the spirits of the dead existed and could communicate with the living—filled a psychological void by providing a pathway towards closure during a time of mourning, and by promising an eternal reunion in the afterlife regardless of earthly sins.

Primary research, including 55 months of the weekly spiritual newspaper, Banner of Light and records of hundreds of soldiers’ and family members’ spirit messages, reveals unique insights into battlefield deaths, the transition to spirit life, and the motivations prompting ethereal communications. This book focuses extensively on Spiritualism’s religious, political, and commercial activities during the war years, as well as the controversies surrounding the faith, strengthening the connection between ante- and postbellum studies of Spiritualism.

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Newly Published: B-17 Gunner

New on our bookshelf:

B-17 Gunner: Charles M. Eyer, Survivor of 59 Combat Missions and a Year in Nazi Captivity
Craig A. Kleinsmith

For three years, Staff Sergeant Charles M. Eyer served as a B-17 ball turret gunner over Europe during World War II. Based in part on a secret journal he kept as a prisoner of war, this book records Eyer’s firsthand account of his harrowing 59 combat missions (B-17 crewmen could not expect to survive 10), his escape from a burning B-17 deep inside Germany, the horrors of confinement in a Nazi POW camp, and his survival of an 80-day forced march during the brutal winter of 1944–45.

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Newly Published: Reagan’s Cowboys

New on our bookshelf:

Reagan’s Cowboys: Inside the 1984 Reelection Campaign’s Secret Operation Against Geraldine Ferraro
John B. Roberts II

When rumors about Geraldine Ferraro—the first woman vice-presidential nominee by a major party in U.S history—reached First Lady Nancy Reagan during the 1984 presidential election, a secret operation was launched to investigate her. It revealed Ferraro’s ties to organized crime and the extent to which she would have been subject to pressure or blackmail by the Mafia if elected. Written by an insider responsible for running the investigation, this never-before-told story goes behind the scenes as an incumbent president’s campaign works to expose a political opponent’s mob connections. Part detective story, part political thriller, the narrative features all the major players in the Reagan White House and 1984 reelection committee, with revealing anecdotes about Ronald and Nancy Reagan.

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Newly Published: Civil War Scoundrels and the Texas Cotton Trade

New on our bookshelf:

Civil War Scoundrels and the Texas Cotton Trade
Walter E. Wilson

During the Civil War, scoundrels from both the Union and Confederate sides were able to execute illicit, but ingenious, schemes to acquire Texas cotton. Texas was the only Confederate state that bordered a neutral country, it was never forcibly conquered, and its coast was impossible to effectively blockade.
Using little known contemporary sources, this story reveals how charlatans exploited these conditions to run the blockade, import machinery and weapons, and defraud the state’s most prominent political, military and civilian leaders in the process. Best known for his role in the romantic entanglements of his co-conspirator William Sprague, Harris Hoyt stands out due to his sharp intellect and fascinating character. Hoyt was able to draw most of Abraham Lincoln’s inner circle into his web of deceit and even influenced the impeachment of President Andrew Johnson. This is the first account to expose the depth and breadth of the many Texas cotton trading scams and the sheer audacity of the shadowy men who profited from them, but managed to escape the gallows.

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Newly Published: Poland and the Holocaust in the Polish-American Press, 1926–1945

New on our bookshelf:

Poland and the Holocaust in the Polish-American Press, 1926–1945
Magdalena Kubow

Contrary to the common notion that news regarding the unfolding Holocaust was unavailable or unreliable, news from Europe was often communicated to North American Poles through the Polish-language press. This work engages with the origins debate and demonstrates that the Polish-language press covered seminal issues during the interwar years, the war, and the Holocaust extensively on their front and main story pages, and were extremely responsive, professional, and vocal in their journalism. From Polish-Jewish relations, to the cause of the Second World War and subsequently the development of genocide-related policy, North American Poles, had a different perspective from mainstream society on the causes and effects of what was happening. New research for this book examines attitudes toward Jews prior to and during the Holocaust, and how information on such attitudes was disseminated. It utilizes selected Polish newspapers of the period 1926-1945, predominantly the Republika-Górnik, as well as survivor testimony.

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Newly Published: The B-25 in the Backyard

New on our bookshelf:

The B-25 in the Backyard: My Father’s Historic Airplane Sanctuary
Wally Soplata

Only in America could Walter A. Soplata, the son of penniless Czech immigrants, accomplish so much single-handedly saving historic aircraft from World War II and other periods. After a childhood spent building model airplanes while dreaming about having his own airfield, Soplata worked in a large scrapyard taking apart hundreds of warplane engines. Shocked to see a rare engine or sometimes a complete warplane on its way to the recycling furnace, he began collecting whatever he could find and afford. He eventually collected nearly 20 complete airplanes and countless pieces of others. One of his Corsair fighters included the experimental F2G Corsair #74 that won the Cleveland National Air Races in 1947. Among other priceless airplanes he rescued was an experimental XP-82 Twin Mustang, an F-82E Twin Mustang, an X-prototype Skyraider, a stainless steel BT-12, and an F7U Cutlass—Soplata hauled the Cutlass fuselage home by stuffing it inside a junked school bus for its 600-mile journey. The story of a workaholic father and his aviation-obsessed son, this book records the accomplishments of a rare bird, just like the many airplanes he saved.

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Newly Published: Victoria, Queen of the Screen

New on our bookshelf:

Victoria, Queen of the Screen: From Silent Cinema to New Media
Leigh Ehlers Telotte

Both in life and death, Queen Victoria is among the most popular monarchs to be committed to film. Her reign was characterized by an explosion in media coverage that began to rely on images rather than words to tell her story. Even though Victoria has been labeled the “first media monarch,” the sheer magnitude of her screen presence has been neither chronicled nor fully appreciated until now.

This book examines the growth and evolution of Queen Victoria’s on-screen image. From the satirical cartoons and silent films of the 19th century to the television shows, video games, and webcomics of the 21st, it demonstrates how the protean Victoria character has evolved, ultimately meaning many different things to many different people in many different ways. Each chapter looks at a facet of her character and includes analysis of how these media present Queen Victoria as a real person and shape her as a character acting within a narrative. The book includes a comprehensive and international filmography.

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Newly Published: The Snow Killings

New on our bookshelf:

The Snow Killings: Inside the Oakland County Child Killer Investigation
Marney Rich Keenan

Over 13 months in 1976­–1977, four children were abducted in the Detroit suburbs, each of them held for days before their still-warm bodies were dumped in the snow near public roadsides. The Oakland County Child Murders spawned panic across southeast Michigan, triggering the most extensive manhunt in U.S. history. Yet after less than two years, the task force created to find the killer was shut down without naming a suspect. The case “went cold” for more than 30 years, until a chance discovery by one victim’s family pointed to the son of a wealthy General Motors executive: Christopher Brian Busch, a convicted pedophile, was freed weeks before the fourth child disappeared. Veteran Detroit News reporter Marney Rich Keenan takes the reader inside the investigation of the still-unsolved murders—seen through the eyes of the lead detective in the case and the family who cracked it open—revealing evidence of a decades-long coverup of malfeasance and obstruction that denied justice for the victims.

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Newly Published: World War II Veterans in Hollywood

New on our bookshelf:

World War II Veterans in Hollywood
Art Evans

Profiling World War II veterans who became famous Hollywood personalities, this book presents biographical chapters on celebrities like Audie Murphy, “America’s number one soldier”; Clark Gable, the “King of Hollywood”; Jimmy Stewart, combat pilot; Gene Autry, the “singing cowboy,” who flew the infamous Hump; the amorous Mickey Rooney; Jackie Coogan, “the Kid” who crashed gliders in the jungle; James Arness, who acquired his Gunsmoke limp in the mountains of Italy; Tony Bennett, who discovered his voice during the Battle of the Bulge; and Lee Marvin, a Marine NCO who invaded 29 islands. Profiles of these and 21 others include little-known stories and details.

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Newly Published: The Many Ways Jews Loved

New on our bookshelf:

The Many Ways Jews Loved: A History from Printed Words and Images
Constance Harris

While acknowledging the ways in which persecution inevitably affects a community, this book deviates from most Jewish studies to survey the ways in which Jewish history has been shaped by the everyday experience of love. It examines erotic poetry, sensual art and literature, and biblical and rabbinic stories about lust. It reviews the ways in which Jewish law has both encouraged and regulated sexual interaction and studies the diversity of Jewish attitudes toward such relationships, found in a vast array of works whose authors and artists often speak to the confusion and failure of love while also finding a purpose in its pursuance. It tells the stories of those people who revel in love and of others who remember love and grieve in its absence.

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Newly Published: West Point Graduates and the United States Air Force

New on our bookshelf:

West Point Graduates and the United States Air Force: Shaping American Aerospace Power
Charles F.G. Kuyk, Jr., with Charles F.G. Kuyk III

West Point graduates played a central role in developing U.S. military air and space power from the earliest days of mechanized flight through the establishment of the U.S. Air Force in 1947, and continuing through the Persian Gulf War. These graduates served at a time when the world’s greatest wave of technological advancement occurred: in aviation, nuclear weapons, rocketry, ICBMs, computers, satellite systems in inner space and man in outer space.

This history traces the advancement of weapons and space technology that became the hallmark of the U.S. Air Force, and the pivotal role that West Point graduates played in integrating them into a wide variety of Air Force systems and programs. Many became aircraft commanders, test pilots, astronauts and, later in their careers, general officers who helped shape and implement technologies still in use today.

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New in Softcover: The Ku Klux Klan in Mississippi

Now available in softcover:

The Ku Klux Klan in Mississippi: A History
Michael Newton

Since 1866 the Ku Klux Klan has been a significant force in Mississippi, enduring repeated cycles of expansion and decline. Klansmen have rallied, marched, elected civic leaders, infiltrated law enforcement, and committed crimes ranging from petty vandalism to assassination and mass murder. This is the definitive history of the KKK in Mississippi, long recognized as one of the group’s most militant and violent realms. The campaigns of terrorism by the Klan, its involvement in politics and religion, and its role as a social movement for marginalized poor whites are fully explored.

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Newly Published: Ippolita Maria Sforza

New on our bookshelf:

Ippolita Maria Sforza: The Renaissance Princess Who Linked Milan and Naples
Jeryldene M. Wood

In April 1455, ten-year-old Ippolita Maria Sforza, a daughter of the Duke and Duchess of Milan, was betrothed to the seven-year-old crown prince of the Kingdom of Naples as a symbol of peace and reconciliation between the two rival states. This first full-scale biography of Ippolita Maria follows her life as it unfolds at the rival courts of Milan and Naples amid a cast of characters whose political intrigues too often provoked assassinations, insurrections, and wars. She was conscious of her duty to preserve peace despite the strains created by her husband’s arrogance, her father-in-law’s duplicity, and her Milanese brothers’ contentiousness. The duchess’s intelligence and charm calmed the habitual discord between her families, and in time, her diplomatic savvy and her great friendship with Lorenzo de’ Medici of Florence made her a key player in the volatile politics of the peninsula for almost 20 years.

Drawing on her letters and contemporary chronicles, memoirs, and texts, this biography offers a rare look into the private life of a Renaissance woman who attempted to preserve a sense of self while coping with a tempestuous marriage, dutifully giving birth to three children, and supervising a large household under trying political circumstances.

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Newly Published: Voices of the 9/11 Pentagon Recovery Effort

New on our bookshelf:

Voices of the 9/11 Pentagon Recovery Effort: Essays from the U.S. Army’s Old Guard
Mark Joseph Mongilutz

9/11 is more commonly associated with New York and the World Trade Center than with the Pentagon, whose destruction received far less coverage. But those who helped extinguish the fires, tend to the wounded, and clean up the aftermath will never forget such a loss.

Thousands took part in the Pentagon recovery effort following 9/11, but few knew exactly what they were signing up for. A nearby Army unit, the 3rd United States Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard), sent its soldiers to contribute where they could, as best they could, and in any capacity they could. In this book, soldiers of The Old Guard have elected to share their experiences. Their accounts attest to the honor and camaraderie that were necessary for picking up the pieces, as well as the traumatic effects of being enveloped in the aftermath of tragedy.

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Newly Published: The Dakota Conflict and Its Leaders, 1862–1865

New on our bookshelf:

The Dakota Conflict and Its Leaders, 1862–1865: Little Crow, Henry Sibley and Alfred Sully
Paul Williams

Custer, Sitting Bull and Little Bighorn are familiar names in the history of the American West. Yet the Great Sioux War of 1876 was a less notorious affair than earlier events in Minnesota during 1862 when, over a few bloody weeks, hundreds of white settlers were killed by Sioux led by Little Crow. The following three years saw military thrusts under generals Sibley and Sully onto the Western Plains where hundreds of Indians, as innocent as the white victims, were cut down by American soldiers. From this carnage Sitting Bull first emerged as a military leader. This history reexamines the facts behind Sitting Bull’s legend and that of the white captive, Fanny Kelly.

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Newly Published: The Sound of Hope

New on our bookshelf:

The Sound of Hope: Music as Solace, Resistance and Salvation During the Holocaust and World War II

Kellie D. Brown

   Since ancient times, music has demonstrated the incomparable ability to touch and resonate with the human spirit as a tool for communication, emotional expression, and as a medium of cultural identity. During World War II, Nazi leadership recognized the power of music and chose to harness it with malevolence, using its power to push their own agenda and systematically stripping it away from the Jewish people and other populations they sought to disempower. But music also emerged as a counterpoint to this hate, withstanding Nazi attempts to exploit or silence it. Artistic expression triumphed under oppressive regimes elsewhere as well, including the horrific siege of Leningrad and in Japanese internment camps in the Pacific. The oppressed stubbornly clung to music, wherever and however they could, to preserve their culture, to uplift the human spirit and to triumph over oppression, even amid incredible tragedy and suffering.

   This volume draws together the musical connections and individual stories from this tragic time through scholarly literature, diaries, letters, memoirs, compositions, and art pieces. Collectively, they bear witness to the power of music and offer a reminder to humanity of the imperative each faces to not only remember, but to prevent another such cataclysm.

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Newly Published: The Lonely Hearts Killers

New on our bookshelf:

The Lonely Hearts Killers: The Bloody Passions of Martha Beck and Raymond Fernandez

Tobin T. Buhk

The shocking series of crimes committed by lovers Martha Beck and Raymond Fernandez dominated the front pages in 1949. Caught for the double homicide of a widow and her young daughter in Michigan, the first couple of crime became the focus of an intense debate over the death penalty and extradition. Their story climaxed in a sensational trial in New York City and concluded two years later inside Sing Sing’s notorious “Death House.” Pulp fiction era reporters, who followed every step taken by the accused slayers, christened Beck and Fernandez the “Lonely Hearts Killers”—a nickname that stuck and has since been used to describe an entire category of criminal behavior.

Despite the sensationalization of the killer couple’s exploits, the story of the Michigan crime that ended their spree has until now remained largely untold. Drawing on rare archival material, this book presents, for the first time anywhere, a detailed account of this lost chapter in the saga of the “Lonely Hearts Killers.” Both biography and analysis, this book also attempts to deconstruct the myths and misconceptions and to provide answers to a few unanswered questions about the case.

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Newly Published: Encyclopedia of Mythological Objects

New on our bookshelf:

Encyclopedia of Mythological Objects

Theresa Bane

Curious about the chains that bound Fenriswulf in Norse mythology? Or the hut of Baba Yaga, the infamous witch of Russian folklore? Containing more than one thousand detailed entries on the magical and mythical items from the different folklore, legends, and religions the world over, this encyclopedia is the first of its kind. From Abadi, the named stone in Roman mythology to Zul-Hajam, one of the four swords said to belong to the prophet Mohammed, each item is described in as much detail as the original source material provided, including information on its origin, who was its wielder, and the extent of its magical abilities. The text also includes a comprehensive cross-reference system and an extensive bibliography to aid researchers.

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Newly Published: Pro Football in the 1960s

New on our bookshelf:

Pro Football in the 1960s: The NFL, the AFL and the Sport’s Coming of Age

Patrick Gallivan

The 1960s were a tumultuous period in U.S. history and the sporting world was not immune to the decade’s upturn of tradition. As war in Southeast Asia, civil unrest at home and political assassinations rocked the nation, professional football struggled to attract fans. While some players fought for civil rights and others fought overseas, the ideological divides behind the protests and riots in the streets spilled into the locker rooms, and athletes increasingly brought their political beliefs into the sports world.

This history describes how a decade of social upheaval affected life on the gridiron, and the personalities and events that shaped the game. The debut of the Super Bowl, soon to become a fixture of American culture, marked a professional sport on the rise. Increasingly lucrative television contracts and innovations in the filming and broadcasting of games expanded pro football’s audiences. An authoritarian old guard, best represented by the revered Vince Lombardi, began to give way as star players like Joe Namath commanded new levels of pay and power. And at last, all teams fielded African American players, belatedly beginning the correction of the sport’s greatest wrong.

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Newly Published: Tiger Papa Three

New on our bookshelf:

Tiger Papa Three: Memoir of a Combined Action Marine in Vietnam

Edward F. Palm

The U.S. Marine Corps’ Combined Action Program (CAP) in Vietnam was an enlightened gesture of strategic dissent. Recognizing that search-and-destroy operations were immoral and self-defeating and that the best hope for victory was “winning hearts and minds,” the Corps stationed squads of Marines, augmented by Navy corpsmen, in the countryside to train and patrol alongside village self-defense units called Popular Forces.

Corporal Edward F. Palm became a combined-action Marine in 1967. His memoir recounts his experiences fighting with the South Vietnamese, his readjustment to life after the war, and the circumstances that prompted him to join the Corps in the first place. A one-time aspiring photojournalist, Palm includes photographs he took while serving, along with an epilogue describing what he and his former sergeant found during their 2002 return to Vietnam.

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Newly Published: Mission Yugoslavia

New on our bookshelf:

Mission Yugoslavia: The OSS and the Chetnik and Partisan Resistance Movements, 1943–1945

Blaž Torkar

Focusing on the wartime activities of the U.S. Office of Strategic Services (OSS) in Axis-controlled Yugoslavia during World War II, this book chronicles American policy, plans for sending aid and agents, and the establishment of the first training bases in North Africa and the Mediterranean. OSS missions and field operations with the Chetniks and Partisans are cataloged and analyzed for the first time, along with OSS views on Yugoslav border claims against Italy and Austria, the OSS position on Slovenia in postwar Yugoslavia, and the role of Yugoslavs cooperating within the OSS.

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June Transportation Sale

It’s June, gas prices are cheap, the highways are free of traffic, and holiday destinations are uncrowded. Let’s hit the road (in spirit, if not in deed)! Our automotive history line, including histories of marques famous and obscure, auto racing, biographies, reference works like J. Kelly Flory’s massive American Cars volumes, and much more, is complimented by many excellent works on locomotive, aviation, and maritime history; bicycles; and military transportation. This month, we’re offering ALL transportation titles at 40% off the list price with coupon code TRANSPORTATION40! Use this coupon code on our website through Sunday, June 28. Safe travels from your friends at McFarland!

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New in Softcover: Encyclopedia of Capital Punishment in the United States, 2d ed.

Now available in softcover:

Encyclopedia of Capital Punishment in the United States, 2d ed.
Louis J. Palmer, Jr.

This updated encyclopedia provides ready information on all aspects of capital punishment in America. It details virtually every capital punishment decision rendered by the United States Supreme Court through 2006, including more than 40 cases decided since publication of the first edition. Entries are also provided for each Supreme Court Justice who has ever rendered a capital punishment opinion. Entries on jurisdictions cite present-day death penalty laws and judicial structure state by state, with synopses of common and unique features.

Also included are entries on significant U.S. capital prosecutions; legal principles and procedures in capital cases; organizations that support and oppose capital punishment; capital punishment’s impact on persons of African, Asian, Hispanic, and Native American descent, on women, and on foreign nationals; and the methods of execution. Essential facts are also provided on capital punishment in more than 200 other nations. A wealth of statistical data is found throughout.

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New in Softcover: The War of 1812

Now available in softcover:

The War of 1812: A Complete Chronology with Biographies of 63 General Officers
Bud Hannings

Although the American Revolution ended in 1783, tensions between the United States and Britain over disruptions to American trade, the impressment of American merchant sailors by British ships, and British support of Native American resistance to American expansion erupted in another military conflict nearly three decades later. Scarcely remembered in England today, the War of 1812 stood as a veritable “second war of independence” to the victorious Americans and ushered in an extended period of peaceful relations and trade between the United States and Britain. This major reference work offers a comprehensive day-by-day chronology of the War of 1812, including its slow build-up and aftermath, and provides detailed biographies of the generals who made their marks.

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New in Softcover: The Steamboat Era

Now available in softcover:

The Steamboat Era: A History of Fulton’s Folly on American Rivers, 1807–1860
S.L. Kotar and J.E. Gessler

The steamboat evokes images of leisurely travel, genteel gambling, and lively commerce, but behind the romanticized view is an engineering marvel that led the way for the steam locomotive. From the steamboat’s development by Robert Fulton to the dawn of the Civil War, the new mode of transportation opened up America’s frontiers and created new trade routes and economic centers.

Firsthand accounts of steamboat accidents, races, business records and river improvements are collected here to reveal the culture and economy of the early to mid–1800s, as well as the daily routines of crew and passengers. A glossary of steamboat terms and a collection of contemporary accounts of accidents round out this history of the riverboat era.

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Newly Published: Confederate Veterans in Northern California

New on our bookshelf:

Confederate Veterans in Northern California: 101 Biographies
Jeff Erzin

Drawing on six years of research, this book covers the military service and postwar lives of notable Confederate veterans who moved into Northern California at the end the Civil War. Biographies of 101 former rebels are provided, from the oldest brother of the Clanton Gang to the son of a President to plantation owners, dirt farmers, criminals and everything in between.

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Newly Published: The Last Voyage of the Whaling Bark Progress

New on our bookshelf:

The Last Voyage of the Whaling Bark Progress: New Bedford, Chicago and the Twilight of an Industry
Daniel Gifford

The whaling bark Progress was a New Bedford whaler transformed into a whaling museum for Chicago’s 1893 world’s fair. Traversing waterways across North America, the whaleship enthralled crowds from Montreal to Racine. Her ultimate fate, however, was to be a failed sideshow of marine curiosities and a metaphor for a dying industry out of step with Gilded Age America. This book uses the story of the Progress to detail the rise, fall, and eventual demise of the whaling industry in America. The legacy of this whaling bark can be found throughout New England and Chicago, and invites questions about what it means to transform a dying industry into a museum piece. The whaling bark Progress was a New Bedford ship transformed into a whaling museum for Chicago’s 1893 world’s fair. Traversing waterways across North America, the whaleship enthralled crowds from Montreal to Racine. Her ultimate fate, however, was to be a failed sideshow of marine curiosities and a metaphor for a dying industry out of step with Gilded Age America. This book uses the story of the Progress to detail the rise, fall, and eventual demise of the whaling industry in America. The legacy of this whaling bark can be found throughout New England and Chicago, and invites questions about what it means to transform a dying industry into a museum piece.

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Newly Published: Captured by Aliens?

New on our bookshelf:

Captured by Aliens?: A History and Analysis of American Abduction Claims
Nigel Watson

New Hampshire couple Betty and Barney Hill provided Americans with what is essentially the original alien abduction story. Since their story became public in the early 1960s, many thousands of Americans have likewise come forward with similar stories of traumatic experiences. Sometimes the abductee has little conscious recollection of these events, but through nightmares, dreams, flashbacks and hypnosis they eventually learn more. Sometimes the participants are bewildered. To get a better understanding of the opposing viewpoints of skeptic and believer, the Betty and Barney Hill case is used to examine the wider context of such encounters, their historical origins, media influences and the latest extraterrestrial, psychological, paranormal, conspiracy and sociological theories that surround them.

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Newly Published: The Cavalries in the Nashville Campaign

New on our bookshelf:

The Cavalries in the Nashville Campaign
Dennis W. Belcher

The Nashville Campaign, culminating with the last major battle of the Civil War, is one of the most compelling and controversial campaigns of the conflict. The campaign pitted the young and energetic James Harrison Wilson and his Union cavalry against the cunning and experienced Nathan Bedford Forrest with his Confederate cavalry. This book is an analysis of contributions made by the two opposing cavalry forces and provides new insights and details into the actions of the cavalry during the battle. This campaign highlighted important changes in cavalry tactics and never in the Civil War was there closer support by the cavalry for infantry actions than for the Union forces in the Battle of Nashville. The retreat by Cheatham’s corps and the Battle of the Barricade receive a more in-depth discussion than in previous works on this battle. The importance of this campaign cannot be overstated as a different outcome of this battle could have altered history. The Nashville Campaign reflected the stark realities of the war across the country in December 1864 and would mark an important part of the death knell for the Confederacy.

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Newly Published: Santa Claus Worldwide

New on our bookshelf:

Santa Claus Worldwide: A History of St. Nicholas and Other Holiday Gift-Bringers
Tom A. Jerman

This is a comprehensive history of the world’s midwinter gift-givers, showcasing the extreme diversity in their depictions as well as the many traits and functions these characters share. It tracks the evolution of these figures from the tribal priests who presided over winter solstice celebrations thousands of years before the birth of Christ, to Christian notables like St. Martin and St. Nicholas, to a variety of secular figures who emerged throughout Europe following the Protestant Reformation. Finally, it explains how the popularity of a poem about a “miniature sleigh” and “eight tiny reindeer” helped consolidate the diverse European gift-givers into an enduring tradition in which American children awake early on Christmas morning to see what Santa brought.

Although the names, appearance, attire and gift-giving practices of the world’s winter solstice gift-givers differ greatly, they are all recognizable as Santa, the personification of the Christmas and Midwinter festivals. Despite efforts to eliminate him by groups as diverse as the Puritans of seventeenth century New England, the Communist Party of the twentieth century Soviet Union and the government of Nazi Germany, Santa has survived and prospered, becoming one of the best known and most beloved figures in the world.

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Newly Published: Waging the War Within

New on our bookshelf:

Waging the War Within: A Marine’s Memoir of Vietnam and PTSD
Tim Fortner with Elizabeth Ridley

United Sates Marine Sergeant Tim Fortner survived 14 months in Vietnam as a door gunner in a CH-46 helicopter, completing 27 strike flight missions. He was awarded the Air Medal for heroic achievement in aerial flight. Like many veterans, his real battle didn’t begin until he returned home, where he struggled to adjust to the “new normal” of American life in 1969, still haunted by his experiences during the nation’s most unpopular war. His memoir describes his military training, his unit’s harrowing missions inserting and extracting troops over landing zones under enemy fire, and his four-decade struggle with service-connected PTSD.

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Newly Published: Marketing the Frontier in the Northwest Territory

New on our bookshelf:

Marketing the Frontier in the Northwest Territory: Land Sales, Soils and the Settling of the Great Lakes Region in the 19th Century
Robert E. Mitchell

Combining narrative history with data-rich social and economic analysis, this new institutional economics study examines the failure of frontier farms in the antebellum Northwest Territory, where legislatively-created imperfect markets and poor surveying resulted in massive investment losses for both individual farmers and the national economy. The history of farming and spatial settlement patterns in the Great Lakes region is described, with specific focus on the State of Michigan viewed through a case study of Midland County. Inter and intra-state differences in soil endowments, public and private promoters of site-specific investment opportunities, time trends in settled populations and the experiences of individual investors are covered in detail.

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Newly Published: Major General Philip Kearny

New on our bookshelf:

Major General Philip Kearny: A Soldier and His Time in the American Civil War
Robert R. Laven

Union General Philip Kearny began his career as a lieutenant with the 1st U.S. Dragoons. He studied cavalry tactics in France and fought with the Chasseurs d’Afrique in Algeria, where his fearlessness earned him the nickname “Kearny le Magnifique.” Returning to America, he wrote a cavalry manual for the U.S. Army and later raised a troop of dragoons—using his own money to buy 120 matching dapple-gray mounts for his men—and led them during the Mexican War, where he lost an arm.
This biography chronicles the military life of one of the most talented field officers in the Army of the Potomac at the outbreak of the Civil War, who famously led a charge at the Battle of Williamsburg with his reins in his teeth, and sometimes disobeyed General George McClellan, once protesting an order to retreat as “prompted by cowardice or treason.” Kearny was on the verge of higher command when he was killed at the 1862 Battle of Chantilly.