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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.

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Newly Published: As I Was Burying Comrade Stalin

New on our bookshelf:

As I Was Burying Comrade Stalin: My Life Becoming a Jewish Dissident
Arkady Polishchuk

Arkady Polishchuk came of age in Stalin’s Russia, in the turbulent times before, during and after World War II. His love for the Soviet dictator persisted for years until Polishchuk, a 19-year-old Jew, was not admitted to the university. In 1952, he learned about the preparations for mass deportation of Jews to Siberia.

He celebrated Stalin’s death in 1953—but state oppression dominated his life as before. As a young reporter for the Kostroma regional newspaper, he met with destitute plowmen, teenage milkmaids and former prisoners turned woodcutters, and wrote about them. When his satirical flair outraged a Communist Party secretary, the KGB initiated a political case against him and he fled to avoid persecution.

His memoir describes his painstaking journey toward mental and spiritual liberation.

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New in Softcover: Encyclopedia of Vampire Mythology

Now available in softcover:

Encyclopedia of Vampire Mythology
Theresa Bane

From the earliest days of oral history to the present, the vampire myth persists among mankind’s deeply-rooted fears. This encyclopedia, with entries ranging from “Abchanchu” to “Zmeus,” includes nearly 600 different species of historical and mythological vampires, fully described and detailed.

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Newly Published: Henry Clay Frick and the Golden Age of Coal and Coke, 1870–1920

New on our bookshelf:

Henry Clay Frick and the Golden Age of Coal and Coke, 1870–1920
Cassandra Vivian

Once the beehive coke oven was perfected in Fayette County, Pennsylvania, the coal and coke industry began to flourish and supply other fledgling industries with the fuel they needed to succeed. The thrust of this growth came from Henry Clay Frick, who opened his first coal mines in the Morgan Valley of Fayette County in 1871. There, he helped lead the industry, making it the major developmental force in industrial America. This book traces the birth and growth of the early coal and coke industry from 1870 to 1920, primarily in Fayette and Westmoreland Counties. Beyond Frick’s importance to the industry, other major topics covered in this history include the lives and struggles of the miners and immigrants who worked in the industry, the growth of unions and the many strikes in the region, and the attempts to clean the surrounding waterways from the horrific pollution that resulted from industrial development. Perhaps the most significant fact is that this book uses primary sources contemporary with the golden age of the coal and coke industry. That effort offers an alternative view and helps repair the common portrayal of Frick as corrupt by showing his work as that of an industrial genius.

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Newly Published: The Bundy Murders

New on our bookshelf:

The Bundy Murders: A Comprehensive History, 2d ed.
Kevin M. Sullivan

In this revised, updated and expanded edition, the author explores the life of Theodore Bundy, one of the more infamous—and flamboyant—American serial killers on record. Bundy’s story is a complex mix of psychopathology, criminal investigation, and the U.S. legal system. This in-depth examination of Bundy’s life and his killing spree that totaled dozens of victims is drawn from legal transcripts, correspondence and interviews with detectives and prosecutors. Using these sources, new information about several murders is unveiled. The biography follows Bundy from his broken family background to his execution in the electric chair.

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Newly Published: Overland Explorations of the Trans-Mississippi West

New on our bookshelf:

Overland Explorations of the Trans-Mississippi West: Expeditions and Writers of the American Frontier
Hunt Janin and Ursula Carlson

In 1528, the Spanish explorer Álvar Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca and his three companions were shipwrecked and, looking for help, began an eight-year trek through the deserts of the American West. Over three centuries later, the four “Great Surveys” in the United States were consolidated into the U.S. Geological Survey.

The frontiers were the lands near or beyond the recognized international, national, regional, or tribal borders. Over the centuries, they hosted a complicated series of international explorations of lands inhabited by American Indians, Spanish, French-Canadians, British, and Americans. These explorations were undertaken for wide-ranging reasons including geographical, scientific, artistic-literary, and for the growth of the railroad. This history covers over 350 years of exploration of the West.

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Newly Published: The American Eagle Squadrons of the Royal Air Force

New on our bookshelf:

The American Eagle Squadrons of the Royal Air Force: Operational Records and Combat Reports, 1940–1942
Edited by Timothy S. Good

While the United States sought to remain neutral in the early years of World War II, some Americans did not. This book is the first to provide the operational records and combat reports of the three American “Eagle” Royal Air Force squadrons—units comprised of volunteer American pilots who served with the British prior to the U.S. entering the war.

The records tell the story of the more than 200 pilots who, against federal law, flew with the British in their fight against Nazi Germany. While some Americans served individually in other RAF units, these three squadrons—the 71st, 121st and 133rd—were the only ones organized exclusively for Americans. They were the first of dozens of American fighter squadrons that would soar over Europe.

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Newly Published: Adolph Sutro

New on our bookshelf:

Adolph Sutro: King of the Comstock Lode and Mayor of San Francisco
William R. Huber

Adolph Sutro was forever seeking challenges. Emigrating from Prussia to the U.S. at age 20, the California gold rush lured him west. At the Comstock Lode in Nevada, he conceived an idea for a tunnel to drain the hot water that made the mines perilous and inefficient. But he would have to overcome both physical obstacles and powerful opposition by the Bank of California to realize his vision.

Back in San Francisco, Sutro bought one twelfth of the city, including the famous Cliff House perched over the Pacific Ocean. When it burned to cinders on Christmas Day, 1894, he built a massive, eight-story Victorian replacement. He used his expertise in tunneling and water solutions to create the world’s largest enclosed swimming structure, the Sutro Baths—six glass-covered heated saltwater pools with capacity of 1,000 swimmers.

challenges followed but Sutro was not invincible. After a two-year term as mayor of San Francisco, he succumbed to debilitating strokes which left him senile. His death in 1898 started disputes among his heirs—six children by his wife and two by his mistress—that lasted more than a decade.

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Newly Published: The Westford Knight and Henry Sinclair

New on our bookshelf:

The Westford Knight and Henry Sinclair: Evidence of a 14th Century Scottish Voyage to North America, 2d ed.
David Goudsward

The Westford Knight is a mysterious, controversial stone carving in Massachusetts. Some believe it is an effigy of a 14th century knight, evidence of an early European visit to the New World by Henry Sinclair, the Earl of Orkney and Lord of Roslin. In 1954, an archaeologist encountered the carving, long known to locals and ascribed a variety of origin stories, and proposed it to be a remnant of the Sinclair expedition. The story of the Westford Knight is a mix of history, archaeology, sociology, and Knights Templar lore. This work unravels the threads of the Knight’s history, separating fact from fantasy.

This revised edition includes a new foreword and four new chapters which add context to the myth-building that has surrounded the Westford Knight and artifacts like it.

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Newly Published: Brothers in the Mekong Delta

New on our bookshelf:

Brothers in the Mekong Delta: A Memoir of PBR Section 513 in the Vietnam War
Godfrey Garner

Following the Tet Offensive, a shift in U.S. naval strategy in 1967–1968 saw young men fresh out of high school policing the canals and tributaries of South Vietnam aboard PBRs (patrol boat, riverine)—unarmored yet heavily armed and highly maneuverable vessels designed to operate in shallow, weedy waterways. This memoir recounts the experiences of the author and his shipmates as they cruised the Viet Cong-occupied backwaters of the Mekong Delta, and their emotional metamorphosis as wartime events shaped the men they would be for the remainder of their lives.

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True Crime Sale

April means we’re halfway to our next Halloween, and we think it’s a great time to celebrate all things macabre. This month, we’re offering readers 40% off our most riveting—and often downright frightening—books on real-life monsters and mayhem with our true crime sale. Through April 19th, use coupon code TRUECRIME40 on all of our reads about serial killers, unsolved crimes, famous robberies and more. Browse our true crime catalog here!

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Newly Published: Boss of Murder, Inc.

New on our bookshelf:

Boss of Murder, Inc.: The Criminal Life of Albert Anastasia
Michael Newton

Umberto Anastasio, better known as Albert Anastasia, was an Italian-American mobster and hitman who became one of the deadliest criminals in American history and one of the founders of the modern American Mafia in New York City. For all-out savagery and ruthlessness, few other leaders of the Mafia worldwide have rivaled Anastasia, known to peers as “The Mad Hatter” and to journalists as “The Lord High Executioner.” After escaping a death sentence in 1921 and multiple other arrests for murder, he later served as director of the national crime syndicate’s contract murder department (“Murder, Inc.”) from 1931 until informers brought it down ten years later. By 1951 he led one of New York City’s Five Families, a post he held until his public barbershop assassination in October 1957.

This first-ever book-length biography of Anastasia traces the mobster’s life and the ripple effects his career had on the American crime world. The story also tracks his brothers and their families, while debunking certain widespread myths about their parentage, various deportations, trials, convictions, and eventual retirement from the mob, dead or alive.

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Newly Published: The 6th Michigan Volunteer Infantry in the Civil War

New on our bookshelf:

The 6th Michigan Volunteer Infantry in the Civil War: A History and Roster
Eric R. Faust

The 6th Michigan Volunteer Infantry first deployed to Baltimore, where the soldiers’ exemplary demeanor charmed a mainly secessionist population. Their subsequent service along the Mississippi River was a perfect storm of epidemic disease, logistical failures, guerrilla warfare, profiteering, martinet West Pointers and scheming field officers, along with the doldrums of camp life punctuated by bloody battles. The Michiganders responded with alcoholism, insubordination and depredations.

Yet they saved the Union right at Baton Rouge and executed suicidal charges at Port Hudson. This first modern history of the controversial regiment concludes with a statistical analysis, a roster and a brief summary of its service following conversion to heavy artillery.

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Newly Published: Film History Through Trade Journal Art, 1916–1920

New on our bookshelf:

Film History Through Trade Journal Art, 1916–1920
Jeff Codori

The period in film history between the regimentation of the Edison Trust and the vertical integration of the Studio System—roughly 1916 through 1920—was a time of structural and artistic experimentation for the American film industry. As the nature of the industry was evolving, society around it was changing as well; arts, politics and society were in a state of flux between old and new. Before the major studios dominated the industry, droves of smaller companies competed for the attention of the independent exhibitor, their gateway to the movie-goer. Their arena was in the pages of the trade press, and their weapons were their advertisements, often bold and eye-catching.

The reporting of the trade journals, as they witnessed the evolution of the industry from its infancy towards the future, is the basis of this history. Pulled from the pages of the journals themselves as archived by the Media History Digital Library, the observations of the trade press writers are accompanied by cleaned and restored advertisements used in the battle among the young film companies. They offer a unique and vital look at this formative period of film history.

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New to Kindle, March 2020

The following titles are now available on Kindle:

A Century in Uniform: Military Women in American Films
African American Entertainers in Australia and New Zealand: A History, 1788–1941
Apocalypse TV: Essays on Society and Self at the End of the World
Apocalyptic Ecology in the Graphic Novel: Life and the Environment After Societal Collapse
Autogenic Training: A Mind-Body Approach to the Treatment of Chronic Pain Syndrome and Stress-Related Disorders, 3d ed.
Baseball in Europe: A Country by Country History, 2d ed.
Chasing the Bounty: The Voyages of the Pandora and Matavy
Colonels in Blue—Missouri and the Western States and Territories: A Civil War Biographical Dictionary
Electric Trucks: A History of Delivery Vehicles, Semis, Forklifts and Others
Ethics After Poststructuralism: A Critical Reader
Film History Through Trade Journal Art, 1916–1920
Final Battles of Patton’s Vanguard: The United States Army Fourth Armored Division, 1945–1946
George “Mooney” Gibson: Canadian Catcher for the Deadball Era Pirates
Girl of Steel: Essays on Television’s Supergirl and Fourth-Wave Feminism
Hollywood’s Hard-Luck Ladies: 23 Actresses Who Suffered Early Deaths, Accidents, Missteps, Illnesses and Tragedies
Italian Crime Fiction in the Era of the Anti-Mafia Movement
Japan’s Spy at Pearl Harbor: Memoir of an Imperial Navy Secret Agent
Joe Quigley, Alaska Pioneer: Beyond the Gold Rush
John Derek: Actor, Director, Photographer
Kenny Riley and Black Union Labor Power in the Port of Charleston
Managing Organizational Conflict
Nick McLean Behind the Camera: The Life and Works of a Hollywood Cinematographer
Parenting Through Pop Culture: Essays on Navigating Media with Children
Philip K. Dick: Essays of the Here and Now
Quaker Carpetbagger: J. Williams Thorne, Underground Railroad Host Turned North Carolina Politician
Rhode Island’s Civil War Dead: A Complete Roster
Rosalie Gardiner Jones and the Long March for Women’s Rights
Rosenblatt Stadium: Essays and Memories of Omaha’s Historic Ballpark, 1948–2012
Sacred and Mythological Animals: A Worldwide Taxonomy
Sailing Under John Paul Jones: The Memoir of Continental Navy Midshipman Nathaniel Fanning, 1778–1783
Section 27 and Freedman’s Village in Arlington National Cemetery: The African American History of America’s Most Hallowed Ground
Sicily on Screen: Essays on the Representation of the Island and Its Culture
Springsteen as Soundtrack: The Sound of the Boss in Film and Television
Taking Fire!: Memoir of an Aerial Scout in Vietnam
The 6th Michigan Volunteer Infantry in the Civil War: A History and Roster
The Civil War in the South Carolina Lowcountry: How a Confederate Artillery Battery and a Black Union Regiment Defined the War
The General Aviation Industry in America: A History, 2d ed.
The Man Who Made Babe Ruth: Brother Matthias of St. Mary’s School
The Showgirl Costume: An Illustrated History
The USS Swordfish: The World War II Patrols of the First American Submarine to Sink a Japanese Ship
The Women of City Point, Virginia, 1864–1865: Stories of Life and Work in the Union Occupation Headquarters
Themes in Latin American Cinema: A Critical Survey, 2d ed.
Understanding Nazi Ideology: The Genesis and Impact of a Political Faith
Virtual Tribe: Indigenous Identity in Social Media
Why the Axis Lost: An Analysis of Strategic Errors
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Newly Published: Sacred and Mythological Animals

New on our bookshelf:

Sacred and Mythological Animals: A Worldwide Taxonomy
Yowann Byghan

From the household cat to horses that can fly, a surprisingly wide range of animals feature in religions and mythologies all across the world. The same animal can take on different roles: the raven can be a symbol of evil, a harbinger of death, a wise messenger or a shape-changing trickster. In Norse mythology, Odin’s magical ravens perch on his shoulders and bring him news.

This compendium draws upon religious texts and myths to explore the ways sacred traditions use animal images, themes and associations in rituals, ceremonies, texts, myths, literature and folklore across the world. Sections are organized by the main animal classifications such as mammals, birds, reptiles, fish, amphibians and insects. Each chapter covers one significant grouping (such as dogs, cats or horses), first describing an animal scientifically and then detailing the mythological attributes. Numerous examples cite texts or myths. A final section covers animal hybrids, animal monsters and mythical animals as well as stars, constellations and Zodiac symbols. An appendix describes basic details of the religions and mythologies covered. A glossary defines uncommon religious terms and explains scientific animal names.

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Newly Published: Ethics After Poststructuralism

New on our bookshelf:

Ethics After Poststructuralism: A Critical Reader
Edited by Lee Olsen, Brendan Johnston and Ann Keniston

The present era of economic devastation, legacies of colonization and imperialism, climate change and habitat loss, calls for a new understanding of ethics. These essays on otherness, responsibility and hospitality raise urgent questions. Contributors range from the prominent—including Levinas, Michel Foucault, Jacques Derrida and Giorgio Agamben—to recent theorists such as Judith Butler, Enrique Dussell and Rosi Braidotti. The essays emphasize the always vulnerable status of a radically different Other, even as they question what responsibility to that Other might mean.

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Newly Published: Kenny Riley and Black Union Labor Power in the Port of Charleston

New on our bookshelf:

Kenny Riley and Black Union Labor Power in the Port of Charleston
Ted Reed and John J. Yurechko

Their ancestors may have been cargo in the slave ships that arrived in Charleston, S.C. Today, the scale has been rebalanced: black longshoremen run the port’s cargo operation. They are members of the International Longshoremen’s Association, a powerful labor union, and Kenny Riley is the charismatic leader of the Charleston local.

Riley combines commitment to the civil rights movement with the practicality to ensure that Charleston remains a principal East Coast port. He emerged on the international stage in 2000, rallying union members worldwide to the defense of “The Charleston Five,” longshoremen arrested after a confrontation with police turned violent. This is Riley’s story as well as a behind-the-scenes look at organized black labor in a Deep South port.

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Newly Published: Chasing the Bounty

New on our bookshelf:

Chasing the Bounty: The Voyages of the Pandora and Matavy
Edited by Donald A. Maxton

Popular films about the Bounty mutiny only scratch the surface. This rebellion on a British vessel in 1789 sparked the voyages of H.M.S. Pandora—dispatched to track down the mutineers and return them to England for court-martial—and the Matavy, a schooner built by the mutineers in Tahiti.

This is the first book to include eyewitness accounts from five men who endured these voyages. Presented in overlapping, chronological order are the first publication of a narrative by a member of Matavy’s crew, who vividly describes a desperate struggle to survive with meager provisions among islands filled with hostile natives. A previously unpublished poem by an anonymous sailor on Pandora recounts the ship’s sinking, the survivors’ tortuous journey to the Dutch East Indies, and their return to England. The captain’s unedited statement on the loss of Pandora is included and appendices summarize the Bounty and Pandora courts-martial and the later history of each narrator.

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Newly Published: Final Battles of Patton’s Vanguard

New on our bookshelf:

Final Battles of Patton’s Vanguard: The United States Army Fourth Armored Division, 1945–1946
Don M. Fox

By January 1945, Nazi Germany’s defeat seemed inevitable yet much fighting remained. The shortest way home for American troops was towards Berlin. General George S. Patton’s Third Army would carve its way into the German heartland, the Fourth Armored Division once again serving as his vanguard.

This companion volume to the author’s Patton’s Vanguard: The United States Army Fourth Armored Division covers the final months of combat: the drive to Bitburg; the daring exploitation of the bridgeheads on the Moselle, Rhine and Main Rivers; Patton’s ill-fated raid to rescue his son-in-law from a prisoner of war camp deep behind enemy lines; the first liberation of a concentration camp on the Western Front; the drive toward Chemnitz; the controversial push into Czechoslovakia; and the little-known encounter with General Andrey Vlasov’s turncoat Russian Liberation Army.

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Newly Published: Understanding Nazi Ideology

New on our bookshelf:

Understanding Nazi Ideology: The Genesis and Impact of a Political Faith
Carl Müller Frøland
Translated by John Irons

Nazism was deeply rooted in German culture. From the fertile soil of German Romanticism sprang ideas of great significance for the genesis of the Third Reich ideology—notions of the individual as a mere part of the national collective, and of life as a ceaseless struggle between opposing forces.

This book traces the origins of the “political religion” of Nazism. Ultra-nationalism and totalitarianism, racial theory and anti–Semitism, nature mysticism and occultism, eugenics and social Darwinism, adoration of the Führer and glorification of violence—all are explored. The book also depicts the dramatic development of the Nazi movement—and the explosive impact of its political faith, racing from its bloody birth in the trenches of World War I to its cataclysmic climax in the Holocaust and World War II.

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Newly Published: Rosalie Gardiner Jones and the Long March for Women’s Rights

New on our bookshelf:

Rosalie Gardiner Jones and the Long March for Women’s Rights
Zachary Michael Jack

In February 1913 young firebrand activist “General” Rosalie Gardiner Jones defied convention and the doubts of better-known suffragists such as Alice Paul, Jane Addams, and Carrie Chapman Catt to muster an unprecedented equal rights army. Jones and “Colonel” Ida Craft marched 250 miles at the head of their all-volunteer platoon, advancing from New York City to Washington, DC in the dead of winter, in what was believed to be the longest dedicated women’s rights march in American history. Along the way their band of protestors overcame violence, intimidation, and bigotry, their every step documented by journalist-embeds who followed the self-styled army down far-flung rural roads and into busy urban centers bristling with admiration and enmity. At march’s end in Washington, more than 100,000 spectators cheered and jeered Rosalie’s army in a reception said to rival a president’s inauguration.

This first-ever book-length biography details Jones’s indomitable and original brand of boots-on-the-ground activism, from the 1913 March on Washington that brought her international fame to later-life campaigns for progressive reform in the American West and on her native Long Island. Consistently at odds with conservatives and conformists, the fiercely independent Jones was a prototypical social justice warrior, one who never stopped marching to her own drummer. Long after retiring her equal rights army, Jones advocated nonviolence and fair trade, authored a book on economics and international peace, and ran for Congress, earning a law degree, a PhD, and a lifelong reputation as a tireless defender of the dispossessed.

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Newly Published: Section 27 and Freedman’s Village in Arlington National Cemetery

New on our bookshelf:

Section 27 and Freedman’s Village in Arlington National Cemetery: The African American History of America’s Most Hallowed Ground
Ric Murphy and Timothy Stephens

From its origination, Arlington National Cemetery’s history has been compellingly intertwined with that of African Americans. This book explains how the grounds of Arlington House, formerly the home of Robert E. Lee and a plantation of the enslaved, became a military camp for Federal troops, a freedmen’s village and farm, and America’s most important burial ground. During the Civil War, the property served as a pauper’s cemetery for men too poor to be returned to their families, and some of the very first war dead to be buried there include over 1,500 men who served in the United States Colored Troops. More than 3,800 former slaves are interred in section 27, the property’s original cemetery.

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Newly Published: Why the Axis Lost

New on our bookshelf:

Why the Axis Lost: An Analysis of Strategic Errors
John Arquilla

The factors leading to the defeat of the Axis Powers in World War II have been debated for decades. One prevalent view is that overwhelming Allied superiority in materials and manpower doomed the Axis. Another holds that key strategic and tactical blunders lost the war—from Hitler halting his panzers outside Dunkirk, allowing more than 300,000 trapped Allied soldiers to escape, to Admiral Yamamoto falling into the trap set by the U.S. Navy at Midway.

Providing a fresh perspective on the war, this study challenges both views and offers an alternative explanation: the Germans, Japanese and Italians made poor design choices in ships, planes, tanks and information security—before and during the war—that forced them to fight with weapons and systems that were too soon outmatched by the Allies. The unprecedented arms race of World War II posed a fundamental “design challenge” the Axis powers sometimes met but never mastered.

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Newly Published: Taking Fire!

New on our bookshelf:

Taking Fire!: Memoir of an Aerial Scout in Vietnam
David L. Porter

As a first lieutenant in the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment, U.S. Army pilot David Porter was section leader in an Aerial Scout platoon in Vietnam. Their mission was to conduct reconnaissance in OH-6 aircraft (a.k.a. Light Observation Helicopter or “Loach”) near the Cambodian border. Finding and engaging the enemy at low altitude in coordination with an AH-1 Cobra gunship circling above, these units developed a remarkable method of fighting the Viet Cong: Hunter-Killer Operations.

The tactic had great local success but died with the war. Few today are aware of the hazards these pilots faced during times of intense combat. Porter’s vivid memoir recounts the internal workings of a legendary air cavalry troop, in-the-cockpit combat actions, and the men who were key players on this perilous battleground.

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Newly Published: From Omaha Beach to Nuremberg

New on our bookshelf:

From Omaha Beach to Nuremberg: A Memoir of World War II Combat and the International Military Tribunal
Daniel Altman with Fawn Zwickel

A tough Jewish kid from the Bronx, Dan Altman enlisted in the Army when the U.S. entered World War II. Adapting street smarts to soldiering, he became a skilled sharpshooter and attained the rank of sergeant in the 1st Infantry Division.

On D-Day, Altman’s unit was among the second wave to assault the German defenses at Normandy. Surviving the invasion, the fighting in the lethal hedgerow country, the Hürtgen Forest, and the Battle of the Bulge, he was later assigned to gather information on the Nazi atrocities performed at the concentration camps for the trials at Nuremburg.

Beginning with his plunge into the blood-tinged surf at Omaha Beach, his candid, often graphic memoir is presented here as told to his granddaughter.

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Newly Published: The General Aviation Industry in America

New on our bookshelf:

The General Aviation Industry in America: A History, 2d ed.
Donald M. Pattillo

The industry known as “general aviation”—encompassing all flying outside of the military and commercial airlines—dates from the early days of powered flight. As technology advanced, making possible smaller aircraft that could be owned and operated by civilians, manufacturers emerged to a serve a growing market.

Increasingly this meant business flying, as companies used aircraft in a variety of roles. The industry struggled during the Great Depression but development continued; small aircraft manufacturers became vital to the massive military production effort during World War II.

After the war, rapid technological advancement and a robust, prosperous middle class were expected to result in a democratized civil aviation industry. For many reasons this was never realized, even as general aviation roles and aircraft capabilities expanded. Despite its many reverses and struggles, entrepreneurship has remained the driving factor of the industry.

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Newly Published: Japan’s Musical Tradition

New on our bookshelf:

Japan’s Musical Tradition: Hogaku from Prehistory to the Present
Miyuki Yoshikami

What makes Japanese music sound Japanese? Each genre of Japan’s pre–Western music (hogaku) morphed from the preceding one with singing at its foundation. In ancient Shinto prayers, words of power recited in a prescribed cadence communicated veneration and community needs to the divine spirit (kami). From the prayers, Japan’s word-based music evolved into increasingly more sophisticated recitations with biwa, shamisen, and koto accompaniment.

This examination reveals shortcomings in the typical interpretation of Japanese music from a pitch-based Western perspective and carefully explores how the quintessential musical elements of singing, instrumental accompaniment, scale, and format were transmitted from their Shinto inception through all of Japan’s music. Japan’s culture, with its unique iemoto system and teaching methods, served to exactly replicate Japan’s music for centuries. Considering Japan’s music in the context of its own culture, logic, and sources is essential to gaining a clear understanding and appreciation of Japan’s music and dissipating the mystery of the music’s “Japaneseness.” Greater enjoyment of the music inevitably follows.

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Newly Published: Skates Made of Bone

New on our bookshelf:

Skates Made of Bone: A History
B.A. Thurber

Ice skates made from animal bones were used in Europe for millennia before metal-bladed skates were invented. Archaeological sites have yielded thousands of examples, some of them dating to the Bronze Age. They are often mentioned in popular books on the Vikings and sometimes appear in children’s literature.

Even after metal skates became the norm, people in rural areas continued to use bone skates into the early 1970s. Today, bone skates help scientists and re-enactors understand migrations and interactions among ancient peoples.

This book explains how to make and use them and chronicles their history, from their likely invention in the Eurasian steppes to their disappearance in the modern era.

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Newly Published: Notes from the Fireground

New on our bookshelf:

Notes from the Fireground: Memoir of a New York Firefighter
Thomas Dunne

In a 33-year career with the New York City Fire Department, Tom Dunne fought hundreds of fires, survived near death incidents, crawled down burning hallways, met unforgettable characters, and witnessed the 9/11 terrorist attack. From working in glittering mid-Manhattan high-rises to squalid ghetto tenements, he saw how people in crisis lived and survived and how the firefighters who served them worked and bonded. Exploring both the positive and controversial aspects of being a firefighter, this no-holds barred memoir provides an honest account of an unusual occupation that outsiders seldom get to see.

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Newly Published: George Washington and Political Fatherhood

New on our bookshelf:

George Washington and Political Fatherhood: The Endurance of a National Myth
Heinz Tschachler

More than two hundred years after his death, George Washington is still often considered the metaphorical father of the United States. He was first known as the “Father of His Country” during his lifetime, when the American people bestowed the title upon him as a symbolic act of resistance and rebirth. Since then, presidents have stood as paternal figureheads for America, often serving as moral beacons.

This book tracks political fatherhood throughout world history, from the idea of the pater patriae in Roman antiquity to Martin Luther’s Bible translations and beyond. Often using George Washington as a paradigm, the author explores presidential iconography in the U.S., propaganda and the role of paternal rhetoric in shaping American sociopolitical history—including the results of the 2016 presidential election.

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Newly Published: Christopher H. Tebault, Surgeon to the Confederacy

New on our bookshelf:

Christopher H. Tebault, Surgeon to the Confederacy
Alan I. West

Among the top physicians of the Confederacy, Christopher H. Tebault distinguished himself as a surgeon during the Civil War. Recognized for his medical contributions after the war, he was nominated Surgeon General of the United Confederate Veterans, a position he used to compile the history of Confederate medicine, advocate for veterans and contribute to Southern literature. A staunch “Lost Cause” proponent, he also fought Reconstruction policies and the enfranchisement of former slaves.

Drawing on his own writings, this first biography of Tebault describes his notable medical education in New Orleans and the ingenuity he used to treat wounds and illness, as well as his struggles against Reconstruction policies, situating his story in the problematic context of Confederate history that persists today.

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New in Softcover: American Military Cemeteries, 2d ed.

Now available in softcover:

American Military Cemeteries, 2d ed.
Dean W. Holt

This updated edition of the 1992 reference work (“exhaustive…fascinating”—Library Journal) contains comprehensive information about United States military cemeteries, including how each cemetery was chosen, why it was established, and notable individuals buried therein. Covered are cemeteries operated by the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Department of the Army, the National Park Service, the American Battle Monuments Commission, and the various states, among others, along with smaller and “lost” cemeteries. Appendices provide lists of installations by state and by year of establishment, as well as information on headstones, markers and the Medal of Honor.

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New in Softcover: Nazi Films in America, 1933–1942

Now available in softcover:

Nazi Films in America, 1933–1942
Harry Waldman

From 1933 until America’s entry into World War II in 1941, nearly 500 Nazi films were shown in American theaters, accounting for nearly half of all foreign language film imports during the period. These poorly disguised propaganda films were produced by Germany’s top studios and featured prominent pro–German and Nazi actors, directors and technicians. The films were replete with overt and covert anti–Jewish imagery and themes, but in spite of this obvious intent to use the medium to justify Nazi ascendancy, viewers and film critics from such prominent publications as the New York TimesVariety, the Washington Post and the Chicago Times consistently overlooked the films’ anti–Semitic message, dubbing them harmless entertainment.

This is the complete history of German films shown in America from the founding of the Nazi government to America’s involvement in the war. Summaries, descriptions and discussions of these almost 500 films serve to examine the major filmmakers and distributors who kept the German film industry alive during the rule of Hitler and the Third Reich. Special emphasis is placed on films directly commissioned by Joseph Goebbels, head of the German Ministry for the Enlightenment of the People and Propaganda and the man directly responsible for ensuring that the anti–Semitic ideology of the new regime was reflected in all films produced after January 30, 1933. Rarely seen photographs and illustrations complete an in-depth study of the Nazi use of this global medium.

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New in Softcover: Edwin Booth

Now available in softcover:

Edwin Booth: A Biography and Performance History
Arthur W. Bloom

The great nineteenth-century stage actor Edwin Booth began his long career in 1849 as a young teenager, following in his father’s footsteps. This biography traces his life and career as a tragic actor, including his childhood; his early acting tours of California, Australia and Hawaii; his rise to fame as a touring star; his two marriages; his relationship with his brother John Wilkes Booth; his disastrous management of Booth’s Theatre in New York City; and his death in 1891. The book includes an extensive performance history detailing every known Edwin Booth performance during his more than 30 years on the stage, with reviews and other supplementary materials.