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.
"Read this book before you see the movie!"
Booker T. Washington fought his way out of slavery to become an educator, statesman, political shaper, and proponent of the "do-it-yourself" idea. In his autobiography, he describes his early life as a slave on a Virginia plantation, his steady rise during the Civil War, his struggle for education, his schooling at the Hampton Institute, and his years as founder and president of the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama, which was devoted to helping minorities learn useful, marketable skills.
"The Best Self-Help Book You'll Ever Need"
"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"
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!"
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"
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.
"Amateur hour in the production booth"
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 this debut history from one of America's most influential political journalists, Bret Baier casts the three days between Dwight Eisenhower's prophetic "farewell address" on the evening of January 17, 1961, and his successor John F. Kennedy's inauguration on the afternoon of January 20 as the final mission of one of modern America's greatest leaders.
"Gently In Manner, Strongly In Deed..."
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!"
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"
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?
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"
Although Washington is often overlooked in most accounts of the period, this masterful new history from Pulitzer Prize winner Edward J. Larson brilliantly uncovers Washington's vital role in shaping the Convention - and shows how it was only with Washington’s support and his willingness to serve as President that the states were brought together and ratified the Constitution, thereby saving the country.
"A readable history"
General George S. Patton, Jr., died under mysterious circumstances in the months following the end of World War II. For almost 70 years, there has been suspicion that his death was not an accident - and may very well have been an act of assassination. Killing Patton will take listeners inside the final year of the war and recount the events surrounding Patton's tragic demise, naming names of the many powerful individuals who wanted him silenced.
"Bill O'Reilly "Phoned It In" - Poor Performance"
More than a million listeners have thrilled to Bill O'Reilly's Killing Lincoln, the can't-stop-listening work of nonfiction about the shocking assassination that changed the course of American history. Now the 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.
"Nothing of Substance New"
McCullough's John Adams has the sweep and vitality of a great novel. This is history on a grand scale, an audiobook about politics, 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, it is an enthralling, often surprising story of one of the most important and fascinating Americans who ever lived.
"An outstanding biography"
Titan is the first full-length biography based on unrestricted access to Rockefeller’s exceptionally rich trove of papers. A landmark publication full of startling revelations, the book indelibly alters our image of this most enigmatic capitalist. Born the son of a flamboyant, bigamous snake-oil salesman and a pious, straitlaced mother, Rockefeller rose from rustic origins to become the world’s richest man by creating America’s most powerful and feared monopoly, Standard Oil. Branded "the Octopus" by legions of muckrakers, the trust refined and marketed nearly 90 percent of the oil produced in America.
"He makes Bill Gates look like a Pauper!"
This provocative book has found renewed popularity in the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks: Is this the onset of the Crisis - the Fourth Turning - of which the authors predict? Hear it and decide for yourself. An audible.com audio exclusive.
"The grand unified theory of sociology"
The must-have companion to Bill O'Reilly's historical docudrama Legends and Lies: The Patriots, an exciting and eye-opening look at the Revolutionary War through the lives of its leaders. The American Revolution was neither inevitable nor a unanimous cause. It pitted neighbors against each other as loyalists and colonial rebels faced off for their lives and futures. These were the times that tried men's souls: No one was on stable ground, and few could be trusted.
"Just Okay "
On May 1, 1915, a luxury ocean liner as richly appointed as an English country house sailed out of New York, bound for Liverpool, carrying a record number of children and infants. The passengers were anxious. Germany had declared the seas around Britain to be a war zone, and for months, its U-boats had brought terror to the North Atlantic.
"Naivety VS Barbarians Of War"
An affectionate and intimate memoir about Ronald Reagan by his longtime personal assistant, who worked closely with the president for 10 years after he left the White House.
From the best-selling author of The Greatest Stories Never Told series, the epic history of Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr's illustrious and eccentric political careers and their fateful rivalry. The day was hot and sticky. The man in the rowboat was an impetuous hothead. His row across the choppy Hudson that morning led to a confrontation that has burned bright in the American mind for more than 200 years.
As editor of the award-winning Library of America collection of George Washington's writings and a curator of the great man's original papers, John Rhodehamel has established himself as an authority of our nation's preeminent founding father. Rhodehamel examines George Washington as a public figure, arguing that the man - who first achieved fame in his early twenties - is inextricably bound to his mythic status.
This is the extraordinary story of the mutiny aboard the frigate HMS Hermione in 1797 (eight years after the mutiny on the Bounty) - the bloodiest mutiny ever suffered by the Royal Navy, which led to the extradition from America, and the hanging by the British, of the martyred sailor Jonathan Robbins. This event plunged the two-decades-old American Republic into a constitutional crisis and powerfully contributed to the outcome of the US presidential election of 1800.
James Beard award - winning author Adrian Miller vividly tells the stories of the African Americans who worked in the presidential food service as chefs, personal cooks, butlers, stewards, and servers for every First Family since George and Martha Washington. Miller brings together the names and words of more than 150 black men and women who played remarkable roles in unforgettable events in the nation's history.
"A combination history and cook book in one."
A lot of ink has been spilled covering the lives of history's most influential figures, but how much of the forest is lost for the trees? In Charles River Editors' American Legends series, listeners can get caught up to speed on the lives of America's most important men and women in the time it takes to finish a commute, while learning interesting facts long forgotten or never known.
After the Englishman Henry Hudson, under the aegis of the Dutch East India Company, sailed by Manhattan in 1609, he returned home with good news and bad news. Like the other explorers before him, he hadn't been able to find a water route to the Orient. He had, however, returned with maps and beaver pelts. With that, it became clear that the region around the bay was a promising new territory for trade and settlement, which would become a bone of contention between the Dutch and the English for the rest of the century.
Women discovered gold in California a full year before James Marshall announced his discovery. There have been repeated attempts to split California into two or more states. Wheelbarrow Johnny was one of the gold seekers who came west searching for gold. Instead, he built wheelbarrows and then went on to become one of the nation's great automobile magnates.
It was the great mystery of its time and still reads like an episode of Law and Order today. In December 1910, a wealthy young woman, thought to be sheltered and above reproach, goes missing shortly after being seen in broad daylight on Fifth Avenue in New York City. The police are called in and begin to question those closest to her, only to have her father, a wealthy manufacturer, insist it must be foul play and that his daughter was on good terms with her entire family.
Drawing on the diaries of one woman in 18th-century Maine, this intimate history illuminates the medical practices, household economies, religious rivalries, and sexual mores of the New England frontier. Between 1785 and 1812, a midwife and healer named Martha Ballard kept a diary that recorded her arduous work (in 27 years she attended 816 births) as well as her domestic life in Hallowell, Maine.
The belief that all lives matter is at the heart of our founding documents - but we must admit that this conviction has never truly reflected reality in America. Movements such as Black Lives Matter have arisen in response to recent displays of violence and mistreatment, and some of us defensively answer back, "All lives matter". But do they? Really? This audiobook is an exploration of that question.
Acclaimed historians Robert M. Utley and Wilcomb E. Washburn examine both small battles and major wars - from the Native rebellion of 1492 to Crazy Horse and the Sioux War to the massacre at Wounded Knee.
Curtis J. Austin chronicles how violence brought about the founding of the Black Panther Party in 1966 by Huey P. Newton and Bobby Seale, dominated its policies, and finally destroyed the party as one member after another - Eldridge Cleaver, Fred Hampton, Alex Rackley - left the party, was killed, or was imprisoned.
During Prohibition, while Al Capone was rising to worldwide prominence as Public Enemy Number One, the townspeople of rural Templeton, Iowa - population just 418 - were busy with a bootlegging empire of their own. Led by Joe Irlbeck, the whip-smart and gregarious son of a Bavarian immigrant, the outfit of farmers, small merchants, and even the church Monsignor worked together to create a whiskey so excellent, it was ordered by name: Templeton Rye.
In an era of grand risk, fur moguls vied to command the northwest and China markets, gambling lives and capital on the price of beaver pelts, purchases of ships and trade goods, international commerce laws, and the effects of war.
Shortly after World War II, Congress' House Committee on Un-American Activities (HUAC) began investigating Americans across the country for suspected ties to communism. The most famous victims of these witch hunts were Hollywood actors, such as Charlie Chaplin, whose "un-American activity" was being neutral at the beginning of World War II, but at the beginning of the Cold War, many Americans had the Red Scare.
Those who had decoded and seen the Japanese communications in early December 1941 would not be surprised when they heard about an attack on December 7, 1941. They would, however, be astonished when they heard where that attack took place. Posted on the other side of the world, it was early on the morning of December 8 in the Philippines when American general Douglas MacArthur received news of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor hours earlier.
The history of the border between Mexico and the United States extends alongside 200 years and 2,000 miles - the tortuous epic of a man-made line that has not only hardened and become more solid over time, but has changed meanings too. In the beginning, it was an idea - the approximate and inhospitable edge of the vast Spanish Empire and the beginning of no man's land. Then, it was a line on paper - a porous boundary with no physical barriers.
San Francisco grew from a tiny burg of 1,000 persons in 1848 to its present-day population of 825,863. The city was founded in 1776 when Spain built a fort at the site of Golden Gate Park. After World War II, San Francisco became a magnet for America's counter-culture. Hippies flocked to Haight-Ashbury in 1960 and peaked out with the Summer of Love in 1967. San Francisco's China Town is the oldest and largest in North America.
Shortly after World War II, Congress' House Committee on Un-American Activities began investigating Americans across the country for suspected ties to Communism. The most famous victims of these witch hunts were Hollywood actors, such as Charlie Chaplin, whose "Un-American activity" was being neutral at the beginning of World War II. By the late 1950s, the hysteria had waned, recognized in large measure as an overreaction.
The first full-length biography of the Civil War surgeon who, over the course of the war’s bloodiest battles - from Antietam to Gettysburg - redefined military medicine.
Jonathan Letterman was an outpost medical officer serving in Indian country in the years before the Civil War, responsible for the care of just hundreds of men. But when he was appointed the chief medical officer for the Army of the Potomac, he revolutionized combat medicine over the course of four major battles - Antietam, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, and Gettysburg - that produced unprecedented numbers of casualties.
"Maybe it reads better than the audio version."
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"
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"
As the United States marks the 150th anniversary of our defining national drama, 1861 presents a gripping and original account of how the Civil War began. 1861 is an epic of courage and heroism beyond the battlefields. Early in that fateful year, a second American revolution unfolded, inspiring a new generation to reject their parents' faith in compromise and appeasement, to do the unthinkable in the name of an ideal.
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"
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.
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.
Learn the inside scoop on Watergate, the Ford Pardon, and the 18-minute Gap. Roger Stone, The New York Times best-selling author of The Man Who Killed Kennedy: The Case Against LBJ, gives the inside scoop on Nixon’s rise and fall in Watergate in his new book Nixon’s Secrets. Stone charts Nixon’s rise from election to Congress in 1946 to the White House in 1968 after his razor-thin loss to John Kennedy in 1960, his disastrous campaign for Governor of California in 1962, and the greatest comeback in American Presidential history.
"Excellent and thank you!"
This fascinating audiobook is the first volume in a projected cultural history of the United States, from the earliest English settlements to our own time. It is a history of American folkways as they have changed through time, and it argues a thesis about the importance for the United States of having been British in its cultural origins. While most people in the United States today have no British ancestors, they have assimilated regional cultures which were created by British colonists, even while preserving ethnic identities at the same time.
"This is great, much more than title suggests"
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"
Among the men and women prominent in the public life of early 20th-century America there are but few whose names are mentioned as often as that of Emma Goldman. Yet the real Emma Goldman is almost quite unknown. Here are powerful, penetrating, prophetic essays on direct action, the role of minorities, prison reform, puritan hypocrisy, and violence.
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"
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"
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 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"
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 October 1962, when the United States confronted the Soviet Union over its installation of missiles in Cuba, few people shared the behind-the-scenes story as it is told here by the late Senator Robert F. Kennedy. In this unique account, he describes the hour-by-hour negotiations, with particular attention to the actions and views of his brother, President John F. Kennedy. In a foreword to this edition, the distinguished historian and Kennedy adviser Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr., discusses the book's enduring importance and the significance of new information about the crisis that has come to light from the former Soviet Union.
"An good inside look"
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.
The Strange Career of Jim Crow is one of the great works of Southern history. Indeed, the book actually helped shape that history. Published in 1955, a year after the Supreme Court in Brown v. Board of Education ordered schools desegregated, Strange Career was cited so often to counter arguments for segregation that Martin Luther King, Jr. called it "the historical Bible of the civil rights movement." The book offers a clear and illuminating analysis of the history of Jim Crow laws, presenting evidence that segregation in the South dated only to the 1890s.
"Worthwhile history lesson"