Lincoln Legends

Author: Edward Steers
Publisher: University Press of Kentucky
ISBN: 0813172756
Format: PDF, ePub
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In the more than 140 years since his death, Abraham Lincoln has become America’s most revered president. The mythmaking about this self-made man began early, some of it starting during his campaign for the presidency in 1860. As an American icon, Lincoln has been the subject of speculation and inquiry as authors and researchers have examined every aspect— personal and professional —of the president’s life. In Lincoln Legends, noted historian and Lincoln expert Edward Steers Jr. carefully scrutinizes some of the most notorious tall tales and distorted ideas about America’s sixteenth president. These inaccuracies and speculations about Lincoln’s personal and professional life abound. Did he write his greatest speech on the back of an envelope on the way to Gettysburg? Did Lincoln appear before a congressional committee to defend his wife against charges of treason? Was he an illegitimate child? Did Lincoln have romantic encounters with women other than his wife? Did he have love affairs with men? What really happened in the weeks leading up to April 14, 1865, and in the aftermath of Lincoln’s tragic assassination? Lincoln Legends evaluates the evidence on all sides of the many heated debates about the Great Emancipator. Not only does Steers weigh the merits of all relevant arguments and interpretations, but he also traces the often fascinating evolution of flawed theories about Lincoln and uncovers the motivations of the individuals—occasionally sincere but more often cynical, self-serving, and nefarious—who are responsible for their dispersal. Based on extensive primary research, the conclusions in Lincoln Legends will settle many of the enduring questions and persistent myths about Lincoln’s life once and for all. Steers leaves us with a clearer image of Abraham Lincoln as a man, as an exceptionally effective president, and as a deserving recipient of the nation’s admiration.

Hoax

Author: Edward Steers, Jr.
Publisher: University Press of Kentucky
ISBN: 0813141605
Format: PDF, Docs
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Did a collector with a knack for making sensational discoveries really find the first document ever printed in America? Did Adolf Hitler actually pen a revealing multivolume set of diaries? Has Jesus of Nazareth's burial cloth survived the ages? Can the shocking true account of Abraham Lincoln's assassination be found in lost pages from his murderer's diary? Napoleon famously observed that "history is a set of lies agreed upon," and Edward Steers Jr. investigates six of the most amazing frauds ever to gain wide acceptance in this engrossing book. Hoax examines the legitimacy of the Shroud of Turin, perhaps the most hotly debated relic in all of Christianity, and the fossils purported to confirm humanity's "missing link," the Piltdown Man. Steers also discusses two remarkable forgeries, the Hitler diaries and the "Oath of a Freeman," and famous conspiracy theories alleging that Franklin D. Roosevelt had prior knowledge of the planned attack on Pearl Harbor and that the details of Lincoln's assassination are recorded in missing pages from John Wilkes Booth's journal. The controversies that Steers presents show that there are two major factors involved in the success of a hoax or forgery -- greed and the desire to believe. Though all of the counterfeits and conspiracies featured in Hoax have been scientifically debunked, some remain fixed in many people's minds as truth. As Steers points out, the success of these frauds highlights a disturbing fact: If true history fails to entertain the public, it is likely to be ignored or forgotten.

Getting It Wrong

Author: W. Joseph Campbell
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520965116
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Many of American journalism’s best-known and most cherished stories are exaggerated, dubious, or apocryphal. They are media-driven myths, and they attribute to the news media and their practitioners far more power and influence than they truly exert. In Getting It Wrong, writer and scholar W. Joseph Campbell confronts and dismantles prominent media-driven myths, describing how they can feed stereotypes, distort understanding about the news media, and deflect blame from policymakers. Campbell debunks the notions that the Washington Post’s Watergate reporting brought down Richard M. Nixon’s corrupt presidency, that Walter Cronkite’s characterization of the Vietnam War in 1968 shifted public opinion against the conflict, and that William Randolph Hearst vowed to “furnish the war” against Spain in 1898. This expanded second edition includes a new preface and new chapters about the first Kennedy-Nixon debate in 1960, the haunting Napalm Girl photograph of the Vietnam War, and bogus quotations driven by the Internet and social media.

Blood on the Moon

Author: Edward Steers
Publisher: University Press of Kentucky
ISBN: 0813170826
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Winner of the 2001 The Lincoln Group of New York's Award of Achievement A History Book Club Selection The assassination of Abraham Lincoln is usually told as a tale of a lone deranged actor who struck from a twisted lust for revenge. This is not only too simple an explanation; Blood on the Moon reveals that it is completely wrong. John Wilkes Booth was neither mad nor alone in his act of murder. He received the help of many, not the least of whom was Dr. Samuel Alexander Mudd, the Charles County physician who has been portrayed as the innocent victim of a vengeful government. Booth was also aided by the Confederate leadership in Richmond. As he made his plans to strike at Lincoln, Booth was in contact with key members of the Confederate underground, and after the assassination these same forces used all of their resources to attempt his escape. Noted Lincoln authority Edward Steers Jr. introduces the cast of characters in this ill-fated drama, he explores why they were so willing to help pull the trigger, and corrects the many misconceptions surrounding this defining moment that changed American history. After completing an acclaimed career as a research scientist at the National Institutes of Health, Edward Steers Jr. has turned his research skills to the Lincoln assassination. He is the author of several books about the president, including The Trial. He lives in Berkeley Springs, West Virginia.

The Trial

Author: Edward Steers
Publisher: University Press of Kentucky
ISBN: 0813127246
Format: PDF, Docs
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" With commentary by Terry Alford, Burrus Carnahan, Joan L. Chaconis, Percy Martin, Betty Ownsbey, Edward Steers Jr., Thomas R. Turner, and Laurie Verge On April 14, 1865, John Wilkes Booth assassinated President Abraham Lincoln. By April 26, eight of the ten people eventually charged as accomplices in Lincoln’s murder were in custody. Booth was killed resisting capture and John Surratt was in Canada, his whereabouts unknown to Federal authorities. In the days that followed, President Johnson issued an Executive Order directing that the persons charged with Lincoln’s murder stand trial before a military tribunal. During the fifty-day trial, over three hundred and sixty witnesses gave testimony. Benn Pitman, a recognized expert in the art of phonography (an early form of shorthand), was awarded a government contract to produce a true and accurate transcription of the testimony. Working with four assistants, Pitman produced transcripts that served the general public through daily releases to select members of the press as well as to the prosecution and the defense. Pitman was given the right to publish the transcriptions for public sale, and he skillfully winnowed the 4,300 pages of transcription into a single 421-page volume. Copies of the original 1865 edition, as well as subsequent reprints, are exceedingly rare. Here for the first time, leading experts in the field lend their insight in a series of commentaries that complement Pitman’s published transcript—included here in its entirety—exposing various perjuries, explaining testimony that has escaped scholarly attention, and clarifying the events surrounding the assassination as never before.

The political Lincoln

Author: Paul Finkelman
Publisher: CQ Press
ISBN: 9780872894860
Format: PDF
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Alphabetically arranged entries examine the political ideals, policies, associates, presidential decisions, and legacy of America's sixteenth president.