Before John Glenn orbited the Earth or Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, a group of dedicated female mathematicians known as "human computers" used pencils, slide rules, and adding machines to calculate the numbers that would launch rockets and astronauts into space. Among these problem solvers were a group of exceptionally talented African American women, some of the brightest minds of their generation.
"Great read on this history of our country"
Emmy Award-winning news anchor and New York Times best-selling author Chris Hayes argues that there are really two Americas: a Colony and a Nation. America likes to tell itself that it inhabits a postracial world, but nearly every empirical measure - wealth, unemployment, incarceration, school segregation - reveals that racial inequality hasn't improved since 1968.
"Great food for thought!"
Over the course of his distinguished career, David McCullough has spoken before Congress, colleges and universities, historical societies, and other esteemed institutions. Now, at a time of self-reflection in America following a bitter election campaign that has left the country divided, McCullough has collected some of his most important speeches in a brief volume designed to identify important principles and characteristics that are particularly American.
The Irish-American story, with all its twists and triumphs, is told through the improbable life of one man. A dashing young orator during the Great Famine of the 1840s, in which a million of his Irish countrymen died, Thomas Francis Meagher led a failed uprising against British rule, for which he was banished to a Tasmanian prison colony. He escaped and six months later was heralded in the streets of New York - the revolutionary hero, back from the dead, at the dawn of the great Irish immigration to America.
"This is your country, this is your world, this is your body, and you must find some way to live within the all of it." In a profound work that pivots from the biggest questions about American history and ideals to the most intimate concerns of a father for his son, Ta-Nehisi Coates offers a powerful new framework for understanding our nation's history and current crisis. Americans have built an empire on the idea of "race", a falsehood that damages us all but falls most heavily on the bodies of black women and men.
"A Heartfelt Self-aware Literary Masterpiece"
The War Below is a dramatic account of extraordinary heroism, ingenuity, and perseverance—and the vital role American submarines played in winning the Pacific War. Focusing on the unique stories of the submarines Silversides, Drum, and Tang—and the men who skippered and crewed them—James Scott takes readers beneath the waves to experience the thrill of a direct hit on a merchant ship and the terror of depth charge attacks.
"Unique. Engaging. Worth your credit."
John Foster Dulles was secretary of state while his brother, Allen Dulles, was director of the Central Intelligence Agency. In this book, Stephen Kinzer places their extraordinary lives against the backdrop ofAmerican culture and history. He uses the framework of biography to ask: Why does the United States behave as it does in the world?
"Cold war and intrigue - who could ask for more"
In a thrilling narrative showcasing his gifts as storyteller and researcher, Erik Larson recounts the spellbinding tale of the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition. Also available abridged.
"A Rich Read!"
A classic since its original landmark publication in 1980, Howard Zinn's A People's History of the United States is the first scholarly work to tell America's story from the bottom up - from the point of view of, and in the words of, America's women, factory workers, African-Americans, Native Americans, the working poor, and immigrant laborers.
"Horrible Editing Ruins Experience"
In the dark winter of 1917, as World War I was deadlocked, Britain knew that Europe could be saved only if the United States joined the war. But President Wilson remained unshakable in his neutrality. Then, with a single stroke, the tool to propel America into the war came into a quiet British office. One of countless messages intercepted by the crack team of British decoders, the Zimmermann telegram was a top-secret message from Berlin inviting Mexico to join Japan in an invasion of the United States.
"US entry to World War I"
In Paddy Whacked, best-selling author and organized crime expert T. J. English brings to life nearly two centuries of Irish American gangsterism, which spawned such unforgettable characters as Mike "King Mike" McDonald, Chicago's subterranean godfather; Big Bill Dwyer, New York's most notorious rumrunner during Prohibition; Mickey Featherstone, troubled Vietnam vet turned Westies gang leader; and James "Whitey" Bulger, the ruthless and seemingly untouchable Southie legend.
From the birth of the Republican Party to the Confederacy's first convention, the Underground Railroad to the Emancipation Proclamation, the Battle of Gettysburg to the assassination of Abraham Lincoln,Bill O'Reilly's Legends and Lies: The Civil War reveals the amazing and often little-known stories behind the battle lines of America's bloodiest war and debunks the myths that surround its greatest figures.
While he was the curator of the CIA Museum, Nicholas Reynolds, a longtime military intelligence expert, began to discover tantalizing clues that suggested Ernest Hemingway's involvement in the Second World War was much more complex and dangerous than has been previously understood. Writer, Sailor, Soldier, Spy brings to light for the first time this riveting secret side of Hemingway's life - when he worked closely with both the American OSS and the Soviet NKVD to defeat Adolf Hitler and the Nazis.
"So entertaining you'd think it was fiction"
Why we think it’s a great listen: If you ever thought history was boring, David McCullough’s performance of his fascinating book will change your mind. In this stirring audiobook, 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.
"Front Seat on History"
In White Trash, Nancy Isenberg upends assumptions about America's supposedly class-free society. Poor whites were central to the rise of the Republican Party in the early 19th century, and the Civil War itself was fought over class issues nearly as much as it was fought over slavery. Reconstruction pitted poor white trash against newly freed slaves, which factored in the rise of eugenics. These poor were at the heart of New Deal reforms and LBJ's Great Society; they haunt us in reality TV shows like Here Comes Honey Boo Boo and Duck Dynasty.
"400 Year Head Start Squandered"
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.
"Beautiful, Heartbreaking, and Informative"
In Washington: A Life celebrated biographer Ron Chernow provides a richly nuanced portrait of the father of our nation. This crisply paced narrative carries the reader through his troubled boyhood, his precocious feats in the French and Indian War, his creation of Mount Vernon, his heroic exploits with the Continental Army, his presiding over the Constitutional Convention, and his magnificent performance as America's first president.
"A sad day when my book was done!"
The 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. But one man and his band of murderous accomplices are not appeased....
"History Made Interesting"
Here is the first insider account of the precipitous fall of Hillary Clinton. How the scandals of a lifetime finally reached critical mass. How, in the last few days of the campaign, some on her staff saw the ghostly shroud of defeat creeping over them but were helpless to act, frozen by the self-denial of the group.
Just two months into his presidency, Ronald Reagan lay near death after a gunman's bullet came within inches of his heart. His recovery was nothing short of remarkable - or so it seemed. But Reagan was grievously injured, forcing him to encounter a challenge that few men ever face. Could he silently overcome his traumatic experience while at the same time carrying out the duties of the most powerful man in the world?
In A Vast Conspiracy, the best-selling author of The Run of His Life casts an insightful, unbiased eye over the most extraordinary public saga of our time - the Clinton sex scandals. A superlative journalist known for the skillfulness of his investigating and the power of his writing, Jeffrey Toobin tells the unlikely story of the events that began over doughnuts in a Little Rock hotel and ended on the floor of the United States Senate, with only the second vote on presidential removal in American history.
Dereliction of Duty is a stunning analysis of how and why the United States became involved in an all-out and disastrous war in Southeast Asia. Fully and convincingly researched, based on transcripts and personal accounts of crucial meetings, confrontations and decisions, it is the only book that fully re-creates what happened and why.
David M. Potter's Pulitzer Prize-winning The Impending Crisis is the definitive history of antebellum America. Potter's sweeping epic masterfully charts the chaotic forces that climaxed with the outbreak of the Civil War: westward expansion, the divisive issue of slavery, the Dred Scott decision, John Brown's uprising, the ascension of Abraham Lincoln, and the drama of Southern secession.
For more than 40 years, the US government has researched extrasensory perception, using it in attempts to locate hostages, fugitives, secret bases, and downed fighter jets, to divine other nations' secrets, and even to predict future threats to national security. The intelligence agencies and military services involved include CIA, DIA, NSA, DEA, the navy, air force, and army - and even the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Now, for the first time, New York Times best-selling author Annie Jacobsen tells the story of these radical, controversial programs.
From George Washington's reluctant oath-taking through George W. Bush's leadership challenges after September 11, 2001, we view ambitious and fallible men through the new lens of the 21st century. Where did they succeed? Where did they fail? And what do we know now that we could not have known at the time?
In 1874 the Hoo Doo War erupted in the Texas Hill Country of Mason County. The feud began with the rise of the mob under Sheriff John Clark, but it was not until the premeditated murder of rancher Timothy Williamson in 1875, a murder orchestrated by Sheriff Clark, that the violence escalated out of control. His death drew former Texas Ranger Scott Cooley to the region seeking justice, and when the courts failed, he began a vendetta to avenge his friend.
In Divided Highways, Tom Lewis offers an encompassing account of highway development in the United States. In the early twentieth century Congress created the Bureau of Public Roads to improve roads and the lives of rural Americans. The Bureau was the forerunner of the Interstate Highway System of 1956, which promoted a technocratic approach to modern road building sometimes at the expense of individual lives, regional characteristics, and the landscape.
Many of the brothel madams were kind hearted. For instance, Madame Pauline, on hearing of a desperate family in dire straits, provided them a house and a job for the father. In the west, the bawdy house girls filled an obvious need or they wouldn't have survived. Many girls left the trade as soon as they could, usually by marriage. Others became hooked on drugs or committed suicide.
Following World War II, through the 1990s, there existed a sense of mutual distrust between the United States and the Soviet Union. The hostile environment included American fears of a Russian plan to control the world and the USSR's resentment over US intervention in foreign countries. The Cold War includes such speeches as JFK's address to the nation on the arms buildup in Cuba and commending West Berliners on their dedication to democracy.
The United States has never had a shortage of cults based on religious teachings and charismatic leaders, but perhaps none are as infamous as Jim Jones and the Peoples Temple, which remain notorious for the mass murder-suicide event in Jonestown, Guyana, on November 18, 1978, during which nearly 900 people drank cyanide-laced Flavor Aid, including nearly 300 children.
Obama's presidency has suffered the fiercest opposition any administration has had and yet Mr. Obama has managed to lead the country to financial recovery, end the senseless war in Iraq, implement universal healthcare, put an end to Iran's nuclear ambitions and re-open diplomatic relations with Cuba all the while remaking US standing in the world. But Republicans believe he is the worst president the country has had.
On Tuesday, May 9, 1893, seven-year-old Emma Werner was the victim of a brutal and lethal attack in Chicago, Illinois. The dreadful murder came at the start of the city's much ballyhooed 1893 World's Columbian Exposition, also known as the Chicago World's Fair. It coincided with the heinous crimes of ruthless serial killer Herman Webster Mudgett, who went by the name H.H. Holmes and built a hotel called the World's Fair Hotel to house and profit from the Fair visitors needing a place to stay.
The struggles and victories of the UAW form an important chapter in the story of American democracy. American Vanguard is the first and only history of the union available for both general and academic audiences.
The policy of manifest destiny increased tensions with Mexico in the 1840s. Mexico's northern half formed the western border of the territory bought in the Louisiana Purchase. Naturally, notions of the United States expanding to the Pacific Ocean alarmed Mexico, which held what is today the west coast of the United States. However, Mexico first came to regard American expansion as a serious problem with the immigration of Americans into its northeastern territory.
And what of Francis Scott Key, this brilliant lawyer who was born into slave-holding Maryland and himself held slaves even as he wrote of "the land of the free"? He was, to say the least, complex, as he at times fought in court both for and against slaves seeking their freedom. He was a founding member of an organization seeking to return captured slaves to their homelands, yet he also fought abolition tooth and claw. He seems to have been, like many men of his age, torn nearly to pieces by these contradictions.
In 1898, one of Spain's last possessions in the New World, Cuba, was waging a war for independence, and many Americans believed that the United States should side with Cuba against Spain. Initially, Republican President William McKinley wanted to avoid any wars, and for its part, Spain also wanted to avoid any conflict with United States and its powerful navy. However, Spain also wanted to keep Cuba. All the while, American economic interests were being harmed by the ongoing conflict between Cuban nationalists and Spain.
Constitutional scholar Geoffrey R. Stone traces the evolution of legal and moral codes that have attempted to legislate sexual behavior from the ancient world to America's earliest days to today's fractious political climate. Stone crafts a remarkable narrative in which he shows how agitators, moralists, legislators, and especially the justices of the Supreme Court have historically navigated issues as explosive and divisive as abortion, homosexuality, pornography, and contraception.
How ordinary men in American history lived extraordinary lives of service to their country! This book contains the fundamental history, early influences, life changing events, and lasting impact of historical figures such as Martin Luther King, Ronald Reagan, Teddy Roosevelt, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Abraham Lincoln, George Washington, and others!
On May 14, 1804, a party of explorers dispatched by President Thomas Jefferson set off up the Missouri River into America's newly acquired Louisiana Territory. Under the leadership of Meriwether Lewis and William Clark, the men of the Corps of Discovery would cross the continent and into history.
In this groundbreaking epic biography, Douglas Brinkley draws on never-before-published materials to examine the life and achievements of our "naturalist president." By setting aside more than 230 million acres of wild America for posterity between 1901 and 1909, Theodore Roosevelt made conservation a universal endeavor. This crusade for the American wilderness was perhaps the greatest U.S. presidential initiative between the Civil War and World War I.
"dull and wordy"
On July 30, 1945, the USS Indianapolis was torpedoed in the South Pacific by a Japanese submarine. An estimated 300 men were killed upon impact; close to 900 sailors were cast into the Pacific Ocean, where they remained undetected by the navy for nearly four days and nights. Battered by a savage sea, they struggled to stay alive, fighting off sharks, hypothermia, and dementia. By the time rescue arrived, all but 317 men had died. The captain's subsequent court-martial left many questions unanswered
"A haunting riveting account of survival at sea"
In this groundbreaking historical expose, Douglas A. Blackmon brings to light one of the most shameful chapters in American history - an Age of Neoslavery that thrived from the aftermath of the Civil War through the dawn of World War II.
At the height of World War II, Oak Ridge, Tennessee, was home to 75,000 residents, consuming more electricity than New York City. But to most of the world, the town did not exist. Thousands of civilians - many of them young women from small towns across the South - were recruited to this secret city, enticed by solid wages and the promise of war-ending work. Kept very much in the dark, few would ever guess the true nature of the tasks they performed each day in the hulking factories in the middle of the Appalachian Mountains.
"Important story of this secret city"
Based on remarkable new research, acclaimed historian Alexander Rose brings to life the true story of the spy ring that helped America win the Revolutionary War. For the first time, Rose takes us beyond the battlefront and deep into the shadowy underworld of double agents and triple crosses, covert operations and code breaking, and unmasks the courageous, flawed men who inhabited this wilderness of mirrors—including the spymaster at the heart of it all.
"The Story Behind the Story"
The first book to appear in the illustrious Oxford History of the United States, this critically-acclaimed volume - a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize - offers an unsurpassed history of the Revolutionary War and the birth of the American republic.
"Strong History Rich With Behind The Scenes Details"
In this lively and compelling biography, Harlow Giles Unger reveals the dominant political figure of a generation. A fierce fighter in four critical Revolutionary War battles and a courageous survivor of Valley Forge and a near-fatal wound at the Battle of Trenton, James Monroe (1751 - 1831) went on to become America's first full-time politician, dedicating his life to securing America's national and international durability.
"Readable, but more hero worship than history"
In other nations, public schools are one thread in a quilt that includes free universal child care, health care, and job training. Here, schools are the whole cloth. Today we look around the world at countries like Finland and South Korea, whose students consistently outscore Americans on standardized tests, and wonder what we are doing wrong. Dana Goldstein first asks the often-forgotten question: "How did we get here?"
"Makes one think"
Lyndon Baines Johnson was a man of great ambition and enormous greed, both of which, in 1963, would threaten to destroy him. In the end, President Johnson would use power from his personal connections in Texas and from the underworld and from the government to escape an untimely end in politics and to seize even greater power. President Johnson, the thirty-sixth president of the United States, was the driving force behind a conspiracy to murder President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963. In The Man Who Killed Kennedy, you will find out how and why he did it. Political consultant, strategist, and Libertarian Roger Stone has gathered documents and used his firsthand knowledge to construct the ultimate tome to prove that LBJ was not only involved in JFK's assassination, but was in fact the mastermind. With 2013 being the fiftieth anniversary of JFK's assassination, this is the perfect time for The Man Who Killed Kennedy to be available to readers. The research and information in this book is unprecedented, and as Roger Stone lived through it, he's the perfect person to bring it to everyone's attention.
"COMPELLING BOOK - THE CROOKS ARE IN POWER"
A magnificent history of the opening years of the Civil War by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Bruce Catton. The first book in Bruce Catton's Pulitzer Prize-winning Army of the Potomac Trilogy, Mr. Lincoln's Army is a riveting history of the early years of the Civil War, when a fledgling Union Army took its stumbling first steps under the command of the controversial general George McClellan.
"Very poor reader with great material"
Six months after Pearl Harbor, the seemingly invincible Imperial Japanese Navy prepared a decisive blow against the United States. After sweeping through Asia and the South Pacific, Japan's military targeted the tiny atoll of Midway, an ideal launching pad for the invasion of Hawaii and beyond. The United States Navy would be waiting for them. Thanks to cutting-edge code-breaking technology, tactical daring, and a huge stroke of luck, the Americans under Admiral Chester W. Nimitz dealt the Japanese navy its first major defeat of the war.
"I enjoyed both the narrator and the content"
The decade of the 1790s has been called the age of passion. Fervor ran high as rival factions battled over the course of the new republic - each side convinced that the others' goals would betray the legacy of the Revolution so recently fought and so dearly won. All understood as well that what was at stake was not a moment's political advantage, but the future course of the American experiment in democracy. In this epochal debate, no two figures loomed larger than Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton.
"Well presented and insightful"
In Empire of Liberty, one of America's most esteemed historians, Gordon S. Wood, offers a brilliant account of the early American Republic, ranging from 1789 and the beginning of the national government to the end of the War of 1812. As Wood reveals, the period was marked by tumultuous change in all aspects of American life - in politics, society, economy, and culture.
"Excellent historical writing"
The UFO enigma has been part of our culture since the 1940s and is building to a worldwide explosion of acceptance today. Now, as governments around the world open their files and records on internal UFO investigations, the US remains steadfast in its denial of interest in the UFO issue. As more of the world's population accepts the possibility of an extraterrestrial presence, the demand is building for disclosure from the United States.
"tons of good research and storytelling"
One of the first personal narratives written by an ex-slave, this is also one of the few written by a woman. Harriet Jacobs (1813-97) was enslaved, along with her family, in North Carolina under a ruthless master who sexually harassed her. After several failed escape attempts, and several years of hiding, she finally made her way North to freedom, where she was eventually reunited with her children. The book was published in 1861.
Since the time of Columbus, Indian slavery was illegal in much of the American continent. Yet, as Andrés Reséndez illuminates in his myth-shattering The Other Slavery, it was practiced for centuries as an open secret. There was no abolitionist movement to protect the tens of thousands of natives who were kidnapped and enslaved by the conquistadors, then forced to descend into the "mouth of hell" of 18th-century silver mines or, later, made to serve as domestics for Mormon settlers and rich Anglos.
"overall a good book"
Beginning with a look at Christopher Columbus’s arrival through the eyes of the Arawak Indians, then leading the reader through the struggles for workers’ rights, women’s rights, and civil rights during the 19th and 20th centuries, and ending with the current protests against continued American imperialism, Zinn in the volumes of A Young People’s History of the United States presents a radical new way of understanding America’s history. In so doing, he reminds listeners that America’s true greatness is shaped by our dissident voices, not our military generals.
"An Inclusive History for Young People"
There are few moments in American history in which the course of events tipped so suddenly and so dramatically as at the Battle of Midway. At dawn of June 4, 1942, a rampaging Japanese navy ruled the Pacific. By sunset, their vaunted carrier force (the Kido Butai) had been sunk and their grip on the Pacific had been loosened forever. In this absolutely riveting account of a key moment in the history of World War II, one of America's leading naval historians, Craig L. Symonds, paints an unforgettable portrait of ingenuity, courage, and sacrifice.
"You may knock US down, but you can't knock US out"
In a ranch south of Texas, the man known as The Executioner dumps 500 body parts in metal barrels. In Brazil's biggest city, a mysterious prisoner orders hit men to gun down 41 police officers and prison guards in two days. In Southern Mexico a meth maker is venerated as a saint while enforcing Old Testament justice on his enemies. A new kind of criminal kingpin has arisen: part CEO, part terrorist, and part rock star, unleashing guerrilla attacks, strong-arming governments, and taking over much of the world's trade in narcotics, guns, and humans.
"The worst narrator for the book"