Here, from New York Times bestselling author Thomas Fleming, is the story of that June day in 1775 that made the American Revolution inevitable.
Bunker Hill brings alive the stories of the men on both sides who fought on these steep slopes in the blazing heat of June and dispels the myths and distortions which have long clouded the battle. It shows how closely and tragically intertwined were the lives of these men who from this day would call themselves either British or American.
The brother of General William Howe, the British commander, had died in Colonel Israel Putnam's arms near Fort Ticonderoga. Colonel William Prescott had fought beside General William Howe at the siege of Louisburg and had been offered a commission in the Royal Army for his valor. Now, only fifteen years after their joint victories as comrades in arms, Prescott and Putnam steadied their raw American troops with harsh advice to withhold their fire on the advancing British ranks until "you can see their buttons," or "the whites of their eyes."
After the British forces came ashore, the battle opened with a deftly launched flanking movement by the British right. John Stark arrived with his New Hampshire men in time to predict the point at which Howe would first attack and to seal that gap with British dead - "I never saw sheep lie as thick in the fold." Howe did not pause to maneuver but assaulted the American fortifications along the whole front. The young farmers did not give way, and the British reeled back. "There was a moment," Howe, a veteran and victor of many battles against the French in Europe and North America, recalled later, "that I never felt before." But the British doggedly advanced again up the murderous hill in the ninety-degree heat.
The forces that impelled these men to that terrible moment of battle and the courage of both sides are the powerful substance of Bunker Hill.
Along with French General Jean-Baptiste Rochambeau, George Washington made an astonishing march through New Jersey and trapped British General Charles Cornwallis and his forces in Yorktown, Virginia, where they unleashed a tremendous artillery assault, with the support of the French navy. But victory was never certain - both sides made a series of dramatic attacks and counterattacks.
Using the diaries and letters of participants in the siege, Fleming creates a moving and exciting depiction of the days in October 1781 that ended the American Revolution and changed the world.
The defining moments of the American Revolution did not occur on the battlefield or at the diplomatic table, writes New York Times bestselling author Thomas Fleming, but at Valley Forge. Fleming transports us to December 1777. While the British army lives in luxury in conquered Philadelphia, Washington's troops huddle in the barracks of Valley Forge, fending off starvation and disease even as threats of mutiny swirl through the regiments. Though his army stands on the edge of collapse, George Washington must wage a secondary war, this one against the slander of his reputation as a general and patriot. Washington strategizes not only against the British army but against General Horatio Gates, the victor in the Battle of Saratoga, who has attracted a coterie of ambitious generals devising ways to humiliate and embarrass Washington into resignation.
Using diaries and letters, Fleming creates an unforgettable portrait of an embattled Washington. Far from the long-suffering stoic of historical myth, Washington responds to attacks from Gates and his allies with the skill of a master politician. He parries the thrusts of his covert enemies, and, as necessary, strikes back with ferocity and guile. While many histories portray Washington as a man who has transcended politics, Fleming's Washington is exceedingly complex, a man whose political maneuvering allowed him to retain his command even as he simultaneously struggled to prevent the Continental Army from dissolving into mutiny at Valley Forge.
Written with his customary flair and eye for human detail and drama, Thomas Fleming's gripping narrative develops with the authority of a major historian and the skills of a master storyteller. Washington's Secret War is not only a revisionist view of the American ordeal at Valley Forge - it calls for a new assessment of the man too often simplified into an American legend. This is narrative history at its best and most vital.
The year 1776 ended with both the Americans and the British stripped of their illusions. Each side had been forced to abandon the myth of invincibility and confront the realities of human nature on and off the battlefield.
For the Americans, it had been a shock to discover that it was easy to persuade people to cheer for life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, but it was another matter to convince them to make real sacrifices for these ideals. For the British, their goal of achieving proper subordination of America to England was frustrated forever.
Seventeen seventy-six was a tragic year: Americans fighting in the name of liberty persecuted and sometimes killed fellow Americans who chose to remain loyal to the old order. Seventeen seventy-six was a year of heroes: It brought forth the leaders who had the courage to fight for freedom. Seventeen seventy-six was a disgraceful year: Americans revealed a capacity for cowardice, disorganization, and incompetence.
Here, in this masterful book, is the true story of 1776.
New York Times bestselling author Thomas Fleming realized that finding the truth was no simple matter. But Fleming discovered the real Washington by reading what the men and women who knew him said about him in their letters and journals as well as through Washington's own correspondence. Slowly, the remarkable person behind the legend emerged.
In this book, anecdotes from friends and enemies alike give a firsthand vision of Washington's character. Little-known and colorful incidents - from Washington as an untutored boy of eleven to the seasoned general and statesman he grew to be - make First in Their Hearts fascinating and memorable reading.
Interwoven in this political history is a moving, almost forgotten personal drama - the conflict between Franklin and his son William, the royal governor of New Jersey, the "thorough courtier," as Franklin called him. Year by year, we watch the two men drift apart as the quarrel between America and England deepens - yet always reaching across the gulf with words of personal affection.
Finally comes the climactic confrontation, when a fully disillusioned Franklin returns from eleven years in England to confront the son for whom independence is a hated word. With him, Franklin brings William's son Temple, educated in England. The bitter political quarrel soon forces father and grandfather to fight for the boy's loyalty.
This personalization of history is Thomas Fleming's hallmark.
Almost as revealing as the dramatization of Franklin's battle with his son is the chronicle of Franklin's years in England before the Revolution. We see the network of friendships he created, the deep feeling with which he and William visited the ancestral village of Ecton, the fascinating blend of emotion and reason in his crucial testimony before Parliament at the height of the Stamp Act furor in 1766.
Then we see this innate passion for England slowly fade during the next eight years as Franklin struggles to defend America from Parliament's greedy prejudice and - another forgotten story - simultaneously to establish a fourteenth colony on the Ohio. As always, Fleming combines colorful anecdote and shrewd analysis of men and motives. And Franklin being Franklin, there is also the constant spice of humor.
We see him stopping at a country inn and emptying the chairs by the fire by booming: "Boy, get my horse a quart of oysters." Solemnly, he informs historian Edward Gibbon that he would provide him with "ample materials" on the decline and fall of the British Empire. The war won, he cheerfully assures English friends that their only hope now was to dissolve Parliament for good and "send delegates to Congress."
We see him using humor to cope with the egotism and paranoia of other Americans in Paris. Finally, we witness him as mon cher papa, the friend and aspiring lover of two beautiful French women, wooing them with the wittiest essays ever written by a seventy-six-year-old suitor.
But in all the byplay, personal and political, one theme dominates: Franklin's dedication to America - a commitment that transcended all others in his life and inspired him to dare the political lightning. It is what makes this book important reading now and in the future.
With masterly skill, New York Times bestselling historian Thomas Fleming gives us life-size portraits of the Pilgrim leaders. The Pilgrims' unique achievements - the Mayflower Compact, their tolerance of other faiths, the strict separation of church and state - are discussed in the context of the first year's anxieties and crises. Fleming writes admiringly of the younger men who emerged in that year as the real leaders of the colony - William Bradford and Miles Standish. And he provides new insights into the humanity and tolerance of the Pilgrims' spiritual shepherd, Elder William Brewster.
On the first Thanksgiving, the Pilgrims are already aware that they are the forerunners of a great nation. It is implicit in William Bradford's words, "As one small candle may light a thousand, so the light kindled here has shone unto many. . . ."
Freezing winds cut across the snowbound landscape. George Washington's rebel troops shiver in their huts, bellies empty, and carrying resentment sharper than their swords. Across the frozen Hudson, the British carouse in the brothels of New York, while their leaders plot to break the deadlock that threatens to bleed the British Empire dry. Thomas Flemings's Revolutionary War masterpiece, Dreams of Glory, takes place in the bitter winter of 1780 in the fifth year of the American War for Independence.
The British conspire to kidnap Washington and bring the war to an end in one bold and daring raid. A tide of espionage ebbs and flows between the opposing armies. Two very different men are sucked into these vicious currents: young, earnest Caleb Chandler and sleek, self-serving Congressman Hugh Stapleton. Despite their mutual dislike, both are destined to follow the same path, which leads to the heart of Flora Kuyper and the grasp of British spymaster Walter Beckford. Caught amidst the dangerous affections of Flora, the machinations of Beckford, and the bitter patriotism of counterpart Benjamin Stallworth, there is no safety for man or woman. This is a world of plot and counterplot, where a night of love can lead to an act of treason and a man's ideals can fashion a noose around his neck.
"Thomas Fleming is one of my favorite writers because he combines powerful storytelling with the skills of a superb historian." - John Jakes
In Europe, America's only ally, France, teetered on the verge of bankruptcy and was soon reeling from a disastrous naval defeat in the Caribbean. A stubborn George III dismissed Yorktown as a minor defeat and refused to yield an acre of "my dominions" in America. In Paris, Ambassador Benjamin Franklin confronted violent hostility to France among his fellow members of the American peace delegation.
In his riveting new book, Thomas Fleming moves elegantly between the key players in this drama and shows that the outcome we take for granted was far from certain. Not without anguish, General Washington resisted the urgings of many officers to seize power and held the angry army together until peace and independence arrived. With fresh research and masterful storytelling, Fleming breathes new life into this tumultuous but little known period in America's history.
To this end, they have convened a secret military tribunal in Lee's former home in Arlington, Virginia.
Jeremiah O'Brien of the New-York Tribune, a long-time protégé of Dana's, is the only reporter allowed to attend the trial. His exclusive reports on this momentous event, and the book he intends to write, will surely make his fortune.
Yet as the trial proceeds, pitting the general against his accusers, O'Brien finds himself torn between his loyalty to Dana, his love for a Confederate spy, and his growing respect and compassion for Lee himself. The young reporter is supposed to be only an observer, but, in the end, it is O'Brien who must evaluate the evidence and determine the true meaning of honor.
Written by New York Times bestselling author and historian Thomas Fleming, The Secret Trial of Robert E. Lee brings to life a fascinating chapter in American history that might well have happened - and perhaps truly did.
New York Times bestselling author Thomas Fleming personalizes the war in the Pacific in this compelling novel of intrigue, love, and honor set aboard the fictional USS Jefferson City. From the night battles off Guadalcanal to the kamikaze-ridden skies of Okinawa, Time and Tide contrasts the horrors of war with the passions of love in this epic tale of Americans on the cutting edge of history.
In Berlin, Berthe von Hoffman dreams of an angel in the depths, embracing her husband's submarine – and remembers Kristallnacht, when Hitler declared all-out war on the Jews. The stench of evil in that memory draws her to the headquarters of Admiral Wilhelm Canaris, enigmatic head of the German secret service – and guiding spirit of the Schwarze Kapelle, the circle of courageous men and women who comprise the secret dangerous resistance to Nazism.
Aboard the USS Spencer Lewis off Iceland, Lieutenant Commander Jonathan Trumbull Talbot is denouncing President Franklin D. Roosevelt's unconstitutional undeclared war against Germany when a torpedo fired by Berthe's husband, Kapitanleutnant Ernst von Hoffmann, cut the destroyer in half. Out of this conjunction grows a tormented tangle of love and jealousy and patriotic deceit when the three meet in Spain after Pearl Harbor has catapulted American into the war.
By that time, Talbot's criticism of the president has wrecked both his naval career and his marriage to Annie Richman, daughter of a congressman whose power depends on FDR's political wizardry. When Talbot returns from Spain to urge negotiations with Canaris and other leaders of the German resistance, Annie, now a powerful journalist, becomes a player in the struggle for the mind of the intransigent, mortally ill president. At its gripping climax, Loyalties draws everyone into an anguished confrontation with the limits of patriotism and God's baffling role in the middle of human destiny.
From murderous contests between rival intelligence agencies in Spain to the labyrinthine political machinations in Washington, London, and Berlin to warfare beneath the North Atlantic, Loyalties is a dazzling mosaic of men and women caught in the crossfire of history – yet finding in the midst of destruction and chaos inexplicable glimpse of meaning and hope.
The work can be described as a series of interlocking propositions: the proverbial view of human nature can be explained by evolutionary theory. Biological differences between men and women are responsible for family, community and group life. Social evolution goes through stages which are recapitulated in the moral life of individuals. A well-defined federal system mirrors human development. And finally, for Fleming, most problems in social and political life stem from violations of this federalist system.
Fleming's volume takes up a variety of issues: sex and gender differences, democracy and dictatorship, individual and familial patterns of association. He does so in the context of showing how forms of legitimate authority such as families, communities and nations establish such authority by appeals to human nature, and that these appeals, while presumably resting on empirical evidence, also confirm the existence of normative structures. Fleming's work is an effort of synthesis that is sure to arouse discussion and debate. It represents a serious addition to a literature retrieved from the historical dustbins to which it has been repeatedly consigned.
Led by the Continental Congress, the Americans almost lost the war for independence because their military thinking was badly muddled. Following the victory in 1775 at Bunker Hill, patriot leaders were convinced that the key to victory was the home-grown militia--local men defending their families and homes. But the flush of early victory soon turned into a bitter reality as the British routed Americans fleeing New York.
General George Washington knew that having and maintaining an army of professional soldiers was the only way to win independence. As he fought bitterly with the leaders in Congress over the creation of a regular army, he patiently waited until his new army was ready for pitched battle. His first opportunity came late in 1776, following his surprise crossing of the Delaware River. In New Jersey, the strategy of victory was about to unfold.
In The Strategy of Victory, preeminent historian Thomas Fleming examines the battles that created American independence, revealing how the creation of a professional army worked on the battlefield to secure victory, independence, and a lasting peace for the young nation.
Ethnic diversity made New Jersey an early testing ground for the melting pot, as Yankees, Irish, Italians, and blacks strove for a chance at the good life. To many, that meant a job in the factories that made the state an industrial pioneer; to others, it meant life on the farms that made New Jersey truly the "Garden State."Mr. Fleming concludes that today New Jersey may be in the vanguard of a new American way of life, "the first metropolitan state with equally convenient access to cities and to countryside." He foresees an "equally-oriented New Jersey, honestly and efficiently governed," reminding the nation that divisiveness and acrimony can have more than one outcome. After all, New Jerseyites may have voted repeatedly for the "Boss of Bosses," Frank Hague, but they also once chose as their governor a Princeton professor named Woodrow Wilson.
George Washington, Revolutionary War general, Founding Father, and first president of the United States was a warm and fascinating man. He suffered the agony of adolescent passion, fell in love with his best friend's wife, and married the wealthy widow Martha Custis. He poured out his political and military woes to his brother Jack in the dark days of 1776, and in the midst of a miserable winter camped with his troops in Valley Forge, he wrote a chatty letter to a friend in England. All these incidents are here in Washington's own words.
Only through what Washington called his "letters of friendship" can we fully understand this complex man. They show him joking with his favorite Frenchman, the Marquis de Lafayette, advising his younger relatives on love and marriage, writing with emotion to the unobtainable woman he loved, and reconnecting with her in his old age.
Selected and edited by New York Times bestselling historian Thomas Fleming from the thirty-seven volumes of Washington's collected writings, this book will be a revelation to all.
A born politician, Mahan rose in the Church with unquestioning belief in its doctrines. But the Vatican Council made him begin to doubt his faith. These doubts torment him as he tries to deal with priests and laymen who demand change in the Church's teaching on birth control, divorce, and clerical celibacy, while conservative churchmen urge blind support of Rome's uncompromising stand on these issues.
As it examines and exposes the inner workings of the Catholic Church, The Good Shepherd, by New York Times bestselling author Thomas Fleming, is the extraordinary story of a man of God coping in the world of men.
Pulitzer Prize-winning author Ron Chernow presents a landmark biography of Alexander Hamilton, the Founding Father who galvanized, inspired, scandalized, and shaped the newborn nation.
In the first full-length biography of Alexander Hamilton in decades, Ron Chernow tells the riveting story of a man who overcame all odds to shape, inspire, and scandalize the newborn America. According to historian Joseph Ellis, Alexander Hamilton is “a robust full-length portrait, in my view the best ever written, of the most brilliant, charismatic and dangerous founder of them all.”
Few figures in American history have been more hotly debated or more grossly misunderstood than Alexander Hamilton. Chernow’s biography gives Hamilton his due and sets the record straight, deftly illustrating that the political and economic greatness of today’s America is the result of Hamilton’s countless sacrifices to champion ideas that were often wildly disputed during his time. “To repudiate his legacy,” Chernow writes, “is, in many ways, to repudiate the modern world.” Chernow here recounts Hamilton’s turbulent life: an illegitimate, largely self-taught orphan from the Caribbean, he came out of nowhere to take America by storm, rising to become George Washington’s aide-de-camp in the Continental Army, coauthoring The Federalist Papers, founding the Bank of New York, leading the Federalist Party, and becoming the first Treasury Secretary of the United States.Historians have long told the story of America’s birth as the triumph of Jefferson’s democratic ideals over the aristocratic intentions of Hamilton. Chernow presents an entirely different man, whose legendary ambitions were motivated not merely by self-interest but by passionate patriotism and a stubborn will to build the foundations of American prosperity and power. His is a Hamilton far more human than we’ve encountered before—from his shame about his birth to his fiery aspirations, from his intimate relationships with childhood friends to his titanic feuds with Jefferson, Madison, Adams, Monroe, and Burr, and from his highly public affair with Maria Reynolds to his loving marriage to his loyal wife Eliza. And never before has there been a more vivid account of Hamilton’s famous and mysterious death in a duel with Aaron Burr in July of 1804.
Chernow’s biography is not just a portrait of Hamilton, but the story of America’s birth seen through its most central figure. At a critical time to look back to our roots, Alexander Hamilton will remind readers of the purpose of our institutions and our heritage as Americans.
“Nobody has captured Hamilton better than Chernow” —The New York Times Book Review
Ron Chernow's new biography, Grant, will be published by Penguin Press in October 2017.
Published anonymously in 1776, this landmark political pamphlet spread across the colonies more rapidly than any document of its kind ever had before. Its words were read aloud in town squares, its pages affixed to tavern walls. Both a clear-eyed, plainly stated case for separation from Great Britain and a stirring call to action, Common Sense sparked the imagination of a fledgling nation and played a decisive role in the march toward revolution. Thomas Paine’s masterpiece is crucial reading for any student of American history.
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“This is my kind of history book. Get ready. Here’s the action.” —BRAD MELTZER, bestselling author of The Fifth Assassin and host of Decoded
When George Washington beat a hasty retreat from New York City in August 1776, many thought the American Revolution might soon be over. Instead, Washington rallied—thanks in large part to a little-known, top-secret group called the Culper Spy Ring. He realized that he couldn’t defeat the British with military might, so he recruited a sophisticated and deeply secretive intelligence network to infiltrate New York.
Drawing on extensive research, Brian Kilmeade and Don Yaeger have offered fascinating portraits of these spies: a reserved Quaker merchant, a tavern keeper, a brash young longshoreman, a curmudgeonly Long Island bachelor, a coffeehouse owner, and a mysterious woman. Long unrecognized, the secret six are finally receiving their due among the pantheon of American heroes.
In this powerful, epic biography, David McCullough unfolds the adventurous life journey of John Adams, the brilliant, fiercely independent, often irascible, always honest Yankee patriot who spared nothing in his zeal for the American Revolution; who rose to become the second president of the United States and saved the country from blundering into an unnecessary war; who was learned beyond all but a few and regarded by some as “out of his senses”; and whose marriage to the wise and valiant Abigail Adams is one of the moving love stories in American history.
This is history on a grand scale—a book about politics and war and social issues, but also about human nature, love, religious faith, virtue, ambition, friendship, and betrayal, and the far-reaching consequences of noble ideas. Above all, John Adams is an enthralling, often surprising story of one of the most important and fascinating Americans who ever lived.
Acclaimed historian Doris Kearns Goodwin illuminates Abraham Lincoln's political genius in this highly original work, as the one-term congressman and prairie lawyer rises from obscurity to prevail over three gifted rivals of national reputation to become president.
On May 18, 1860, William H. Seward, Salmon P. Chase, Edward Bates, and Abraham Lincoln waited in their hometowns for the results from the Republican National Convention in Chicago. When Lincoln emerged as the victor, his rivals were dismayed and angry.
Throughout the turbulent 1850s, each had energetically sought the presidency as the conflict over slavery was leading inexorably to secession and civil war. That Lincoln succeeded, Goodwin demonstrates, was the result of a character that had been forged by experiences that raised him above his more privileged and accomplished rivals. He won because he possessed an extraordinary ability to put himself in the place of other men, to experience what they were feeling, to understand their motives and desires.
It was this capacity that enabled Lincoln as president to bring his disgruntled opponents together, create the most unusual cabinet in history, and marshal their talents to the task of preserving the Union and winning the war.
We view the long, horrifying struggle from the vantage of the White House as Lincoln copes with incompetent generals, hostile congressmen, and his raucous cabinet. He overcomes these obstacles by winning the respect of his former competitors, and in the case of Seward, finds a loyal and crucial friend to see him through.
This brilliant multiple biography is centered on Lincoln's mastery of men and how it shaped the most significant presidency in the nation's history.
More than a million readers have thrilled to Bill O'Reilly's Killing Lincoln, the page-turning work of nonfiction about the shocking assassination that changed the course of American history. Now the iconic anchor of The O'Reilly Factor recounts in gripping detail the brutal murder of John Fitzgerald Kennedy—and how a sequence of gunshots on a Dallas afternoon not only killed a beloved president but also sent the nation into the cataclysmic division of the Vietnam War and its culture-changing aftermath.
In January 1961, as the Cold War escalates, John F. Kennedy struggles to contain the growth of Communism while he learns the hardships, solitude, and temptations of what it means to be president of the United States. Along the way he acquires a number of formidable enemies, among them Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev, Cuban dictator Fidel Castro, and Allen Dulles, director of the Central Intelligence Agency. In addition, powerful elements of organized crime have begun to talk about targeting the president and his brother, Attorney General Robert Kennedy.
In the midst of a 1963 campaign trip to Texas, Kennedy is gunned down by an erratic young drifter named Lee Harvey Oswald. The former Marine Corps sharpshooter escapes the scene, only to be caught and shot dead while in police custody.
The events leading up to the most notorious crime of the twentieth century are almost as shocking as the assassination itself. Killing Kennedy chronicles both the heroism and deceit of Camelot, bringing history to life in ways that will profoundly move the reader. This may well be the most talked about book of the year.
J. B. West, chief usher of the White House, directed the operations and maintenance of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue—and coordinated its daily life—at the request of the president and his family. He directed state functions; planned parties, weddings and funerals, gardens and playgrounds, and extensive renovations; and, with a large staff, supervised every activity in the presidential home. For twenty-eight years, first as assistant to the chief usher, then as chief usher, he witnessed national crises and triumphs, and interacted daily with six consecutive presidents and first ladies, as well as their parents, children and grandchildren, and houseguests—including friends, relatives, and heads of state.
J. B. West, whom Jackie Kennedy called “one of the most extraordinary men I have ever met,” provides an absorbing, one-of-a-kind history of life among the first ladies. Alive with anecdotes ranging from Eleanor Roosevelt’s fascinating political strategies to Jackie Kennedy’s tragic loss and the personal struggles of Pat Nixon, Upstairs at the White House is a rich account of a slice of American history that usually remains behind closed doors.
In this masterful book, David McCullough tells the intensely human story of those who marched with General George Washington in the year of the Declaration of Independence—when the whole American cause was riding on their success, without which all hope for independence would have been dashed and the noble ideals of the Declaration would have amounted to little more than words on paper.
Based on extensive research in both American and British archives, 1776 is a powerful drama written with extraordinary narrative vitality. It is the story of Americans in the ranks, men of every shape, size, and color, farmers, schoolteachers, shoemakers, no-accounts, and mere boys turned soldiers. And it is the story of the King’s men, the British commander, William Howe, and his highly disciplined redcoats who looked on their rebel foes with contempt and fought with a valor too little known.
Written as a companion work to his celebrated biography of John Adams, David McCullough’s 1776 is another landmark in the literature of American history.
The iconic anchor of The O'Reilly Factor recounts one of the most dramatic stories in American history—how one gunshot changed the country forever. In the spring of 1865, the bloody saga of America's Civil War finally comes to an end after a series of increasingly harrowing battles. President Abraham Lincoln's generous terms for Robert E. Lee's surrender are devised to fulfill Lincoln's dream of healing a divided nation, with the former Confederates allowed to reintegrate into American society. But one man and his band of murderous accomplices, perhaps reaching into the highest ranks of the U.S. government, are not appeased.
In the midst of the patriotic celebrations in Washington D.C., John Wilkes Booth—charismatic ladies' man and impenitent racist—murders Abraham Lincoln at Ford's Theatre. A furious manhunt ensues and Booth immediately becomes the country's most wanted fugitive. Lafayette C. Baker, a smart but shifty New York detective and former Union spy, unravels the string of clues leading to Booth, while federal forces track his accomplices. The thrilling chase ends in a fiery shootout and a series of court-ordered executions—including that of the first woman ever executed by the U.S. government, Mary Surratt. Featuring some of history's most remarkable figures, vivid detail, and page-turning action, Killing Lincoln is history that reads like a thriller.
In those four years, Hill was by Mrs. Kennedy’s side for some of the happiest moments as well as the darkest. He was there for the birth of John, Jr. on November 25, 1960, as well as for the birth and sudden death of Patrick Bouvier Kennedy on August 8, 1963. Three and a half months later, the unthinkable happened.
Forty-seven years after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, the one vivid image that never leaves Clint Hill’s mind is that of President Kennedy’s head lying on Mrs. Kennedy’s lap in the back seat of the limousine, his eyes fixed, blood splattered all over the back of the car, Mrs. Kennedy, and Hill as well. Sprawled on the trunk of the car as it sped away from Dealey Plaza, Hill clung to the sides of the car, his feet wedged in so his body was as high as possible.
Clint Hill jumped on the car too late to save the president, but all he knew after that first shot was that if more shots were coming, the bullets had to hit him instead of the First Lady.
Mrs. Kennedy’s strength, class, and dignity over those tragic four days in November 1963 held the country together.
This is the story, told for the first time, of the man who perhaps held her together.
But the shot didn’t kill Garfield. The drama of what happened subsequently is a powerful story of a nation in turmoil. The unhinged assassin’s half-delivered strike shattered the fragile national mood of a country so recently fractured by civil war, and left the wounded president as the object of a bitter behind-the-scenes struggle for power—over his administration, over the nation’s future, and, hauntingly, over his medical care. A team of physicians administered shockingly archaic treatments, to disastrous effect. As his condition worsened, Garfield received help: Alexander Graham Bell, the inventor of the telephone, worked around the clock to invent a new device capable of finding the bullet.
Meticulously researched, epic in scope, and pulsating with an intimate human focus and high-velocity narrative drive, The Destiny of the Republic will stand alongside The Devil in the White City and The Professor and the Madman as a classic of narrative history.