U.S. History
Featured Items
The Search for Order, 1877-1920
The Search for Order, 1877-1920
Paperback      ISBN: 0809001047

At the end of the Reconstruction, the spread of science and technology, industrialism, urbanization, immigration, and economic depressions eroded Americans' conventional beliefs in individualism and a divinely ordained social system. In The Search for Order, Robert Wiebe shows how, in subsequent years, during the Progressive Era of Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson, Americans sought the organizing principles around which a new viable social order could be constructed in the modern world. This subtle and sophisticated study combines the virtues of historical narrative, sociological analysis, and social criticism.

The Civil War: An Illustrated History
The Civil War
An Illustrated History
1st Edition    Hardcover      ISBN: 0394562852

The companion volume to the celebrated PBS television series, with a new preface to mark its twenty-fifth anniversary

With more than 500 illustrations: rare Civil War photographs--many never before published--as well as paintings, lithographs, and maps reproduced in full color

It was the greatest war in American history. It was waged in 10,000 places--from Valverde, New Mexico, and Tullahoma, Tennessee, to St. Albans, Vermont, and Fernandina on the Florida coast. More than 3 million Americans fought in it and more than 600,000 men died in it. Not only the immensity of the cataclysm but the new weapons, the new standards of generalship, and the new strategies of destruction--together with the birth of photography--were to make the Civil War an event present ever since in the American consciousness. Thousands of books have been written about it. Yet there has never been a history of the Civil War quite like this one.

A wealth of documentary illustrations and a narrative alive with original and energetic scholarship combine to present both the grand sweep of events and the minutest of human details. Here are the crucial events of the war: the firing of the first shots at Fort Sumter; the battles of Shiloh, Chancellorsville, and Gettysburg; the siege of Vicksburg; Sherman's dramatic march to the sea; the surrender at Appomattox. Here are the superb portraits of the key figures: Abraham Lincoln, claiming for the presidency almost autocratic power in order to preserve the Union; the austere Jefferson Davis, whose government disappeared almost before it could be formed; Robert E. Lee and Ulysses S. Grant, seasoned generals of fierce brilliance and reckless determination. Here is the America in which the war was fought: The Civil War is not simply the story of great battles and great generals; it is also an elaborate portrait of the American people--individuals and families, northerners and southerners, soldiers and civilians, slaves and slaveowners, rich and poor, urban and rural--caught up in the turbulence of the times.

An additional resonance is provided by four essays, the work of prominent Civil War historians. Don E. Fehrenbacher discusses the causes of the war; Barbara J. Fields writes about emancipation; James M. McPherson looks at the politics of the 1864 election; C. Vann Woodward speculates on how the war has affected the American identity. And Shelby Foote talks to filmmaker Ken Burns about wartime life on the battlefield and at home.

A magnificent book. In its visual power, its meticulous research, its textual brilliance, and the humanity of its narrative, The Civil War will stand among the most illuminating and memorable portrayals of the American past.
Mary Todd Lincoln: A Biography
Mary Todd Lincoln
A Biography
Paperback      ISBN: 0393305864

Mary Todd, daughter of the founders of Lexington, Kentucky, was raised in a world of frontier violence. First abandoned at the age of six when her mother died, Mary later fled a hostile stepmother for Springfield, where she met and, after a stormy romance, married the raw Illinois attorney, Abraham Lincoln. Their marriage lasted for twenty five years until his assassination, from which Mary never fully recovered. The desperate measures she took to win the acknowledgement she sought all her life led finally to the shock of a public insanity hearing instigated by her eldest son.

Language and Politics
Language and Politics
Paperback      ISBN: 0921689349

A series of previously unpublished interviews, spanning the twenty year period from 1968 to 1988, that looks at the connection between Chomsky's linguistic studies and his political analysis. Prepared for Chomsky in celebration of his sixtieth birthday. "This wide-ranging book offers glimpses of his studies on language, anarchist theory and critiques of radical politics."--"NACLA Report on the Americas"

The Free Women of Petersburg: Status and Culture in a Southern Town, 1784-1860
The Free Women of Petersburg
Status and Culture in a Southern Town, 1784-1860
Paperback      ISBN: 0393952649

By looking at what the Petersburg women did and thought and comparing their behavior with that of men, Lebsock discovers that they placed high value on economic security, on the personal, on the religious, and on the interests of other women. In a society committed to materialism, male dominance, and the maintenance of slavery, their influence was subversive. They operated from an alternative value system, indeed a distinct female culture.
The Real American Cowboy
The Real American Cowboy
Paperback      ISBN: 0941533271

No figure has contributed as much to American culture as that of the cowboy. Describing American dreams and values as seen through the cowboy image, Jack Weston contrasts that image with reality: the hardworking rider who had to fight not only the elements but his employer in order to make a slender living. The Real American Cowboy is a fascinating account of real life in the Wild West-not glamorous as in the movies, but full of the excitement of a hard and dangerous trade. The very special treatment of the cowboy image in nineteenth-century journalism and the dime novel, and in the twentieth-century media as well, explains the growth of the cowboy myth and its effect on America's goals and assumptions. In analyzing the differences between the myth and the historical reality, this book offers an important new assessment of the Western-and the West-in fiction, film, and in life.

Early Schools
Early Schools
Paperback      ISBN: 0865050147

Shows what early schoolhouses were like, describes what lessons children learned, and looks at their games, activities, pranks, and punishments.

The Plantation Mistress
The Plantation Mistress
Paperback      ISBN: 0394722531

This pioneering study of the much-mythologized Southern belle offers the first serious look at the lives of white women and their harsh and restricted place in the slave society before the Civil War. Drawing on the diaries, letters, and memoirs of hundreds of planter wives and daughters, Clinton sets before us in vivid detail the daily life of the plantation mistress and her ambiguous intermediary position in the hierarchy between slave and master.

"The Plantation Mistress challenges and reinterprets a host of issues related to the Old South. The result is a book that forces us to rethink some of our basic assumptions about two peculiar institutions -- the slave plantation and the nineteenth-century family. It approaches a familiar subject from a new angle, and as a result, permanently alters our understanding of the Old South and women's place in it.
Francis Parkman: France and England in North America : Count Frontenac and New France Under Louis XIV a Half-Century of Conflict Montcalm
Francis Parkman
France and England in North America : Count Frontenac and New France Under Louis XIV a Half-Century of Conflict Montcalm
Hardcover      ISBN: 0940450119

This is the second of two Library of America volumes (the companion volume here) presenting, in compact form, all seven parts of Francis Parkman's monumental narrative history of the struggle for control of the American continent. Thirty years in the writing, Parkman's "history of the American forest" is an accomplishment hardly less awesome than the explorations and adventures he so vividly describes. The story reaches its climax with the fatal confrontation of two great commanders at Quebec's Plains of Abraham--and a daring stratagem that would determine the future of a continent.

Count Frontenac and New France under Louis XIV (1877) details how France might have won her imperial struggle with England. Frontenac, a courtier who was made governor of New France by that most sagacious of monarchs, oversaw the colony's brightest era of growth and influence. Had Canada's later governors possessed his administrative skill and personal force, his sense of diplomacy and political talent, or his grasp of the uses of power in a modern world, the English colonies to the south might have become part of what Frontenac saw as a continental scheme of French dominion.

England's American colonies flourished, while France, in both the Old World and the New, declined from its greatness of the late seventeenth century. Conflict over the developing western regions of North America erupted in a series of colonial wars. As narrated by Parkman in A Half-Century of Conflict (1892), these American campaigns, while only part of a larger, global struggle, prepared the colonies for the American Revolution.

In Montcalm and Wolfe (1884) Parkman describes the fatal confrontation of the two great French and English commanders whose climactic battle marked the end of French power in America. As the English colonies cooperated for their own defense, they began to realize their common interests, their relative strength, and their unique position. In this imperial war of European powers we also begin to see the American figures--Benjamin Franklin, George Washington--soon to occupy a historical stage of their own.

LIBRARY OF AMERICA is an independent nonprofit cultural organization founded in 1979 to preserve our nation's literary heritage by publishing, and keeping permanently in print, America's best and most significant writing. The Library of America series includes more than 300 volumes to date, authoritative editions that average 1,000 pages in length, feature cloth covers, sewn bindings, and ribbon markers, and are printed on premium acid-free paper that will last for centuries.
The Puzzle Palace: Inside America's Most Secret Intelligence Organization
The Puzzle Palace
Inside America's Most Secret Intelligence Organization
Paperback      ISBN: 0140067485

In this remarkable tour de force of investigative reporting, James Bamford exposes the inner workings of America's largest, most secretive, and arguably most intrusive intelligence agency. The NSA has long eluded public scrutiny, but The Puzzle Palace penetrates its vast network of power and unmasks the people who control it, often with shocking disregard for the law. With detailed information on the NSA's secret role in the Korean Airlines disaster, Iran-Contra, the first Gulf War, and other major world events of the 80s and 90s, this is a brilliant account of the use and abuse of technological espionage.