Josiah Wedgwood, F.R.S., His Personal History

by Samuel Smiles


Josiah Wedgwood was a celebrated entrepreneur and abolitionist. Born in England in 1730, even as a young child he showed great skill as a potter. He worked in his family business, which focused on lower quality pottery. However, Wedgewood apprenticed with Thomas Whieldon, and later worked with chemist, Joseph Priestley, to gain a much better understanding of both physical skill and manipulation of materials. Wedgewood also benefited from his marriage to Sarah Wedgwood, and her very wealthy family, which gave him the monetary requirements for starting a large pottery manufacturing business.

The Wedgwood Company specialized in creamware, a cheaper but lovely alternative to porcelain. He also developed other pottery innovations, such as green glazes, and jasperware. In order to build his business, he focused on new types of marketing, such as direct mail, free delivery, and buy one get one free sales, since his pottery innovations were often copied by competitors.

Josiah Wedgwood was an abolitionist, and created a seal for the Society for Effecting the Abolition of the Slave Trade. This medallion was reproduced countless times and distributed widely. The cameo, featuring an African male in chains with, “Am I not a man and a brother?” was found everywhere, from jewelry to hanging in professional offices, across the Americas.

This edition is dedicated to Professor India R. D’Avignon, able creator and lover of beauty.

Reminiscences of a Stock Operator

by Edwin Lefevre


“Speculation in stocks will never disappear. It isn’t desirable that it should. It cannot be checked by warnings as to its dangers. You cannot prevent people from guessing wrong no matter how able or how experienced they may be. Carefully laid plans will miscarry because the unexpected and even the unexpectable will happen. Disaster may come from a convulsion of nature or from the weather, from your own greed or from some man’s vanity; from fear or from uncontrolled hope. But apart from what one might call his natural foes, a speculator in stocks has to contend with certain practices or abuses that are indefensible morally as well as commercially.”

Edwin Lefevre writes in detail about life as a speculator in the stock market, namely, the life of Jesse Lauriston Livermore (1877-1940), a stock trader, and leading day trader. He was known for shorting just prior to major world events, like the 1929 stock market crash, and the 1906 earthquake that decimated San Francisco. Livermore’s positions during the stock market crash caused many people to directly blame him for the economic collapse. While much of the field, namely the technology around it, has changed, much of Lefevre’s advice is often sought out, as Livermore was known for studying emotion and the impact it had on the market.

This edition is dedicated to Eric Mullis, gifted banker with a keen sense of the extraordinary cycles and chaos of the financial world.

The Little Grandmother of the Russian Revolution: Reminiscences and Letters of Catherine Breshkovsky

by Catherine Breshkovsky
Edited by
Alice Stone Blackwell


Catherine Breshkovsky was the abbreviated name of Yekaterina Konstantinovna Breshko-Breshkovskaya, born on January 25, 1844 in Russia. She was born into a wealthy family and received a quality education. She married at roughly the age of 24, but she later left her husband to start an anarchist commune with her sister and another friend. Although she long had an interest in politics, she became deeply involved in the revolutionary movement, part of which involved settling into peasant villages and spreading political ideas. She was arrested at the age of 30 after her false passport was detected on political grounds, namely for being a part of the “Russian socialistic and revolutionary party.” She was convicted and exiled to Siberia.

After 22 years, she was released in 1896, and immediately joined back with the revolutionary movement, and ultimately the Socialist-Revolutionary Party. In 1910, she was sentenced again to life in exile in Siberia, but by then Breshkovsky had international prominence. There was international pressure to release Breshkovsky from solitary confinement after a failed attempt to escape. After the February Revolution of 1917, Breshkovsky was welcomed and released as a legendary figure of Russia. She spent the remainder of her life in Europe, including Paris and Prague fighting Communism.

From Slavery to Wealth, The Life of Scott Bond: The Rewards of Honesty, Industry, Economy and Perseverance

by Daniel Arthur Rudd


Scott Bond was born into slavery in Madison County, Mississippi. Due to the inhumanity of slavery, Bond’s exact birth year is not known, outside from being sometime in the early 1850s. Despite the intolerable cruelties Bond faced, he went on to become a high powered farmer and entrepreneur. He was extremely highly regarded both locally, and nationally for his skilled business acumen. He was selected to represent the National Negro Business League. Sadly, in 1933, Bond was killed by one of his bulls. At the time of his passing, he owned and farmed 12,000 acres, plus livestock, ran a large mercantile store, a gravel pit, lumber yard, saw mill and at least five cotton gins.

Biographer Daniel Arthur Rudd was a highly esteemed activist, author, founder of the Black Catholic Congress Movement, and editor and publisher of The American Catholic Tribune. He accomplished a great deal despite having been born into slavery in 1854 in Bardstown, Kentucky. By 1866, Rudd was emancipated and receiving an education while living in Springfield, Illinois. He worked as an accountant for Scott Bond. The book is co-authored with Theophilus Bond, who was Scott Bond’s second born son.

sepia toned drawing of a desert scene

Vanished Arizona: Recollections of My Army Life

by Martha Summerhayes


Born on October 21, 1844, Martha Summerhayes was raised in Nantucket, Massachusetts. She enjoyed two years abroad in Germany where she studied literature. She returned to the United States, and ultimately married a Civil War veteran, John Wyer Summerhayes, who was still actively serving in the US Army. Vanished Arizona is a work of her recollected memories of traveling with him and his regiment, across the desert, while pregnant, during the ‘Apache Wars.’ Summerhayes gives birth while on this journey and describes the difficulties of childbirth and aftercare in an unforgiving desert, with no real information available.

Summerhayes’ writing is reflective of her white, upper class attitudes, which some readers find reliable, while others find mired in prejudice. Either way, Summerhayes offers a very unique perspective of military life, and paints a very vivid portrayal of the complexities of travel, toilet, food, and medical care during the 1870s. This autobiographical account was published originally in 1908 to many accolades from both civilians and veterans. Summerhayes died on May 12, 1926, and is interred at Arlington National Cemetery with her husband, John.

Selections From the Letters and Manuscripts of the Late Susanna Mason: With a Brief Memoir of Her Life by Her Daughter

by Susanna Hopkins Mason


Susanna Hopkins Mason grew up in Maryland, with a father who was a member of the Society of Friends and a mother who was a member of the Episcopal church. Mason was fully encouraged by her parents in her educational pursuits throughout her life. Growing up, she made several visits to relatives in Philadelphia who also encouraged her education and literary talents.

Around the age of twenty, Mason became a member of the Religious Society of Friends. In 1779, she married George Mason and moved to Chester County, Pennsylvania. Mason became deeply involved in the Friends religious community. She spent a great deal of time in Philadelphia, and in the countryside to recover from several bouts of ill health. She began a school, and a relief organization for impoverished women in Baltimore. She passed away at the age of 57 in 1805. Her husband, George Mason, was the founding Virginia Governor.

This new edition is dedicated to the members of the Friends Meeting of Washington, D.C.


Sir David Wilkie

by Lord Ronald Sutherland Gower


Sir David Wilkie RA was born on November 18, 1785 in Scotland. Although he family was not terribly pleased with his devotion to the arts, they supported his choice to become a painter, and he went on to study at the Trustees’ Academy in Edinburgh. After graduation, he returned home and was commissioned to do many portraits, as his talent was already well recognized. After approximately a year, Wilkie went to study at the Royal Academy in 1805, again finding great success. Wilkie was elected an associate of the Royal Academy in 1809, and by 1811 he became a full Academician.He primarily did portraiture work, often for royalty, which was very stressful for Wilkie and took a toll on his health. He traveled through Europe and the Middle East, which broadened his influence and interests, although he remained primarily commissioned to do portraits.

Interestingly, several subjects were not terribly pleased with the outcome of his work, finding it not particularly flattering, while he served as the Royal Limner for Scotland. While traveling, Wilkie picked up a terrible illness in Malta, and passed away while heading to Britain on June 1, 1841. He was buried at sea near the Bay of Gibraltar.


Bunker Diplomacy: An Arab-American in the U.S. Foreign Service

by Nabeel Khoury


Nabeel Khoury has written a remarkably cogent memoir.  He not only details life in the Foreign Service in a highly entertaining and engaging style, but also provides provocative and telling insights into many of the crises in the Middle East…From Egypt, to ‘The Magic Kingdom’ to Iraq, Morocco and Yemen — Dr. Khoury undertook his duties with a flair that was both bold and unique. I only wish that American policy makers would read his chapters on Morocco and Yemen in particular, and benefit from his general policy recommendations – It might induce some humility and second thoughts on some important “lessons learned.”
Mark G. Hambley
Former Ambassador to Qatar and Lebanon 
This is a gripping narrative that fuses two stories in one.  The first is the academic and political journey of a fascinating man standing between two worlds — Beirut and Washington, Arabness and Westerness, the State Department and the Middle East…The second narrative is a story of America itself as a great power casting a long shadow over the Arab world. The bureaucratic battles described as occurring inside different presidential administrations over four decades reveal a foreign policy often caught between conflicting personalities and demands. Major events like the Gulf War, Iraq War, and Arab Spring are trenchantly retold from the perspective of policymakers, diplomats, and intelligence officers. That these two stories come from the same book is reason enough to read it, but that they come from the career of the same individual will make readers never forget it.
Moulay Hicham el-Alaoui
President Hicham Alaoui Foundation
Nabeel Khoury – an accomplished Arab-American diplomat – offers readers a searing personal journey through America’s trials and tribulations in the Middle East.
William J. Burns, President, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
Former Deputy Secretary of State

After twenty-five years in the Foreign Service, Dr. Nabeel A. Khoury retired from the U.S. Department of State in 2013 with the rank of Minister Counselor. He taught Middle East and US strategy courses at the National Defense University and Northwestern University. In his last overseas posting, Khoury served as deputy chief of mission at the U.S. embassy in Yemen (2004-2007). In 2003, during the Iraq war, he served as Department spokesperson at US Central Command in Doha and in Baghdad.

Follow Nabeel on Twitter @khoury_nabeel




Hannah More

by Charlotte M. Yonge


Hannah More was born in 1745 in the village of Fishponds, located near Bristol. Her father was a teacher, which helped to ensure that Hannah and her siblings were educated. She was once engaged, but the nuptials did not take place. Instead, More enjoyed an annual payment from the broken engagement from her would-be husband, William Turner. More used the money to allow her to live her dreams–to be a writer. She wrote a great deal, especially poetry in her younger days. In 1787 she became more involved in the abolition movement. A year later, her poem, “Slavery, A Poem” became a powerful call to action against slavery by bringing attention to Britain’s role and the blight on Christianity from the ungodly practice.

She continued to fight against slavery, but also turned her attentions towards building schools for impoverished children. More also became more involved in her religious community, and her writing took on more evangelical, including writing several religious tracts. She worked in conjunction with Sunday schools to create programs to combat illiteracy. She passed away in 1833, after seeing Britain finally abolish slavery.




Charles Francis Adams, 1835-1915: An Autobiography

by Charles Francis Adams


Charles Francis Adams enjoyed a variety of roles during his life. He was born on May 27, 1835 in Boston into a life of prominence, being the grandson of John Quincy Adams. In 1856, Adams graduated from Harvard University. A few years later he served in the Union Army during the Civil War in 1861. He was considered to have served the Union Army well as a lieutenant colonel. After he resigned from the Army in 1865, he began working with the Massachusetts Railroad Commission. He eventually found his way as the president of the Union Pacific Railroad in 1884. Adams pursued policies that supported business rights over those of consumers, feeling that the general public was sometimes hostile or unstable. However, these sentiments backfired while he was the president of Union Pacific, since businesses refused to collaborate and forward Adams’ policies. Adams refused to work with labor unions, like the Knights of Labor, which resulted in a horrific massacre of Chinese workers that Adams brought in. By 1890, owner Jay Gould had Adams forced out of his role.A few years later, Adams began working for the Massachusetts Park Commission, where he primarily assisted with planning park developments across the state. He also focused on historical writing, and became president of the Massachusetts Historical Society in 1895. This particular work is autobiographical, but was published posthumously. Adams passed away on May 20, 1915 and is buried in Quincy, Massachusetts.





The Mad Monk of Russia, Iliodor: Life, Memoirs, and Confessions of Sergei Michailovich Trufanoff

by Sergei Michailovich Trufanov


Sergei Michailovich Trufanov, also known as Hieromonk Iliodor, was born on October 19, 1880 in a small village near the Don River. Despite crushing poverty, which claimed several of his siblings, Trufanov was able to attend several years of school and then entered the local seminary. He went on to attend and graduate the St. Petersburg Theological Academy in 1905. Shortly after, he gave several sermons that attacked a variety of people and organizations, including politicians, aristocrats, revolutionaries, Jews, nationalists, and more. Soon after he apparently blackmailed Rasputin. He later apologized for his slander of Jewish people, then renounced the Russian Orthodox Church, and ultimately was defrocked.

After being banned from several monasteries, he fled to what is currently Norway. He continued to plot against Rasputin, starred as himself in a silent film, The Fall of the Romanovs in 1917, and then returned to Russia in 1918. A few years later, he moved to New York City and lived a relatively quiet life with his family while working as a janitor until his death on January 28, 1952. This story focuses on his earlier life, a time when one critic deemed him, “extravagantly psychopathic.”


The Life of Mason Long, the Converted Gambler

by Mason Long


Mason Long was born on September 10, 1842 in Luray, Ohio. He had a very difficult childhood, and then went on to serve in the Union Army during the Civil War. He spent three years in the service, and discusses drinking and gambling, and their popularity among soldiers during the War. Afterwards, he drifted among various occupations, including running variety and minstrel shows, and much time in and out of jail. He was by his own account a degenerate gambler. Later, he turned to religion, went sober and wrote this book to help others avoid going down the same path as him, as well as to support the Temperance Movement.

This new edition is dedicated to Bruce Rich, by no means drifter, gambler or teetotaler, but certainly an explorer of human nature and human folly.



James Monroe Buckley

by George Preston Mains

Purchase through Amazon

James Monroe Buckley was born in Rahway, NJ on December 16, 1836. He became a Methodist Church minister in 1858. He worked in Delaware, New York and Michigan. He also became the editor of The Christian Advocate in 1881 and served until 1912. In 1872, he received the degree of D. D. from Wesleyan University, and then later an LL. D. from Emory and Henry College in Virginia. He was highly regarded in the Methodist denomination and served in many important roles. In addition, he wrote a great deal, including ‘Two Weeks in the Yosemite Valley’ (1872); ‘Oats or Wild Oats’ (1885); ‘The Land of the Czar and the Nihilist’ (1886); ‘Travels in Three Continents.’




gray cover with a sketched image of Ward in the center

John Quincy Adams Ward: An Appreciation

by Adeline Adams


John Quincy Adams Ward (June 29, 1830 – May 1, 1910) was a sculptor. He was born in Ohio to a family of means. He enjoyed playing on their 600 acre estate, and in his early childhood enjoyed making sculptures out of malleable sediment from a nearby creek. He began studying with a local family friend and potter in his adolescence, but then became discouraged after seeing talented artists at a sculpture show. He studied medicine until he became quite ill. Afterwards, he decided to return to sculpture. He was most well-known for creating busts of famous male figures, most notably his work of George Washington which still stands in New York City. In addition to sculpting, Ward served as the President of the National Academy of Design for a number of years. He also founded, and then became President of the National Sculpture Society. He served on numerous boards and committees which sought to advance art, including being one of the original members of the Board of Trustees of The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Adeline Adams (1859–1948) was predominantly a writer who focused on artist biographies, but she also wrote poetry. She was born in Boston, well educated and had a lifelong appreciation for the arts. She was also involved in the women’s suffrage movement.





cover image featuring a photo of garrison

William Lloyd Garrison and His Times; or, Sketches Of The Anti-Slavery Movement in America, and of the Man Who Was Its Founder and Moral Leader

by Oliver Johnson, Introduction by John G. Whittier


William Lloyd Garrison was born on December 10, 1805. Despite the title of this work, he was certainly not the founder of the Anti-Slavery Movement in America, which had long preceded him. However, he made many notable contributions to the fight for the end of the barbarous practice. He founded the American Anti-Slavery Society, initially the New England Anti-Slavery Society, and was the editor of The Liberator. He also supported women’s suffrage, which actually split the abolitionist movement to split into various factions. Garrison never joined politics however, considering it against his morals. In 1879, Garrison passed away from kidney disease after a long and meaningful life.This work was written by Garrion’s friend, Oliver Johnson. There is much focus on Garrion’s role in the abolitionist movement, with limited and static portrayals of his family. Garrison felt he was central to the abolitionist movement, which is reflected in this biography. Fellow friend, John G. Whittier also wrote a glowing introduction to this book, which was released the year that Garrison died.

John Greenleaf Whittier was born in Haverhill, Massachusetts on December 17, 1807. His family farmed, although he was able to have access to some schooling, roughly 12 weeks annually. Whittier was motivated to learn, and became self-educated, so much so that he moved from farming to becoming an editor. Unfortunately, he was of poor health, and the occupational change suited his health needs as well. He worked for a variety of publications, including Haverhill Gazette, the New England Weekly Review, American Manufacturer in Boston, and the Pennsylvania Freeman. He gained a solid reputation through his work as an editor, and then became a politician. In 1833, William Lloyd Garrison contacted Whittier for assistance with the abolitionist movement. Whittier was dedicated to the cause, and advocated tirelessly against slavery. After the close of the Civil War, he gained fame for his narrative poem, Snowbound, which reflected both Whittier’s personal mourning the loss of his family within the turmoil of the United States during the Civil War. Whittier wrote a great deal of poetry in particular, but other content regarding the horrors and incredible injustice of slavery. This work highlighting the life and experiences of William Lloyd Garrison is an excellent example. Whittier’s life is well preserved in The Whittier Home Museum, which is a National Historic Landmark located in Amesbury, MA.





The Life of Friedrich Nietzsche

by Daniel Halévy, Translated by J. M. Hone, Introduced by T. M. Kettle


Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900) has had a profound impact on our way of life. Among other things, he was a philosopher, a poet, and a scholar. Unfortunately, he suffered from poor health, which caused him to resign from his position as the Chair of Classical Philology, which he held at the age of 24. At 44, he was so ill that his mother, and then his sister, had to care for him until his death at the age of 55. Nietzsche wrote on numerous subjects, but is commonly associated with nihilism, critiques of Christian morality, and his strong opposition to anti-Semitism and nationalism. There was a brief time when his sister reworked his manuscripts to favor Nazi ideology, but the correct manuscripts were uncovered. Many scholars have written about Nietzsche.Daniel Halévy was a French historian born in December 1872. One of his most well regarded works was Essay on the Acceleration of History. However, in the 1930s Halévy found himself to be a “man of the extreme right” and his questionable politics led to his work falling to the wayside.This is a reprinted work, with minor text defects as a result of age.





A Scholar’s Letters to a Young Lady: Passages from the Later Correspondence of Francis James Child

by Francis James Child

Purchase through Amazon

On February 1, 1825, Francis James Child was born in Boston, Massachusetts. Although his family lived in poverty, Child benefited from the public school system in Boston. His dedication and intelligence while in school was recognized with a scholarship to attend Harvard. Child was a bit shy because of his working class background, but he became popular because of his excellent work, speech and character. In 1848, he was again recognized by a benefactor, who encouraged and paid for Child to move to Germany where he could attend graduate school. The fledgling United States did not have postgraduate institutions at the time. Child had many interests, and it was his passion for mathematics and literature that moved him to focus on speech and writing. He served for 25 years as a Professor of Rhetoric, and then Professor of English, at Harvard University. He wrote a great deal on ballads, class consciousness and composition. He also was the President of the American Folklore Society for two terms, built an incredible folklore collection at Harvard University Library.

This new edition is dedicated to Professor Guillermo De Los Reyes.





Harvard Lights and Shadows: College Sketches in War Time

by Victor Rine

Purchase through Amazon

In this work, Victor Rine takes a comedic approach to life at Harvard during World War I. The war figures fairly distantly in the background, as Rine highlights his experiences at Harvard. Rine ruminates on the nature of conflict, peace, and one’s role in the world. He was very interested in the experiences of soldiers and wrote several works centered around war, including My Eloquent Corpse, Where are you running to, America?, Soldier! Soldier! The Citizen, The Patriot, and The War of Two Giant Ghosts.




Pirates with a Foreword and Sundry Decorations

by Daniel Defoe, Introduction by C. Lovat Fraser

Purchase through Amazon

Daniel Defoe has a very long history of readership. Thought to have been born on September 13, 1660 as Daniel Foe, he lived until April 24, 1731. He was many things, including a writer, trader, political thinker and spy. He wrote a great deal on politics, crime, economics and business, as well as many fiction books, including classics such as Robinson Crusoe and Moll Flanders. Tracing down Defoe’s many works can be a challenge since he used dozens of pennames.

He was often in business, but rarely solvent. He was fortunate to have married Mary Tuffley, receiving a large dowry, which temporarily bailed him out of financial straits. Together, the pair created eight children together. Life was difficult for Mary as Defoe often found himself in jail, and when not, he was often traveling throughout Europe. As the rule of England was in upheaval, Defoe’s political pamphlets often tested the tempers of the rulers, and Defoe was often flung into prison or pressed into spying. If it wasn’t political issues, Defoe was often in or hiding from debtors’ prison.

Claud Lovat Fraser was an English artist. He was born on May 15, 1890, and died at the young age of 31 on June 18, 1921. He served during World War I, and was injured by a gas attack which harmed his lungs. Due to the damage to his physical and mental health, he was discharged. He never stopped pursing his love of art, even drawing and painting while on the battlefield. After his discharge, Fraser married Grace Inez Crawford, and together they had a child. He worked for various stationary and bookshops making stationary designs, as well as theater companies. He died from a combination of illnesses and a failed operation.


Lectures on Sculpture: On the Death of Thomas Banks, Antonio Conova, and John Flaxman

by John Flaxman R.A., Contributions by Sir Richard Westmacott R.A.

Purchase through Amazon

John Flaxman (1755-1826) was an extraordinarily popular British sculptor, illustrator, and teacher. He earned his start by creating funerary monuments. Despite moving on to creating different sculpture forms and art in different media, he was still influenced by his early form of bas-reliefs and incorporated it into other projects. Having married an intelligent, hard working wife, Anne Denman, the pair enjoyed a lot of success and support of one another. Together they enjoyed many years in Rome, with Flaxman illustrating and sculpting a great deal. after nearly eight years, they returned to England, where Flaxman was made an Associate of the Royal Academy, where he exhibited for a few years before he was made a full Academician, where he went on to teach.

Flaxman remains an extremely influential figure. University College London has much of Flaxman’s work in terms of writings, drawings, and plasters and the famed Flaxman Gallery. Sadly, some of it was damaged during air raids of World War II.


Beasts, Men and Gods: Russia, Mongolia, Tibet and the Living Buddha

by Ferdynand Antoni Ossendowski

Purchase through Amazon

If the tales by Ferdinand Ossendowski are true, then he led an extraordinary life. Ossendowski begins his account in a solitary shack in Siberia. Having heard that the police are coming for him, he sneaks off in the bitter cold, armed with an axe, guns, and many shells. Not surprisingly, after reading the initial portion of Ossendowksi’s draft, the publisher sought out a confirmed account. He was assigned a translator and critical editor to get him to offer full details. In addition to his life as an adventurer, Ossendowski considered himself a scientist as he traveled extensively throughout Asia. Given that he was was billed as a “twentieth century Robinson Crusoe” possibly the reader will be well advised that the book should be taken with a grain of salt. The account abounds with both wild adventure and ethnocentrism.


Life of Brian Houghton Hodgson: British Resident at the Court of Nepal, Member of the Institute of France; Fellow of the Royal Society; a Vice-President of the Royal Asiatic Society, etc

by Sir William Wilson Hunter

Purchase through Amazon

Brian Houghton Hodgson was born on February 1, 1800. His family had troubles financially, but through Hodgson’s aptitude and some family connections, he was able to continue his studies. He was especially gifted in learning languages, namely Bengali, but also Sanskrit and Persian. In 1818, with the British East India Company, Hodgson traveled to India. He held various political posts, but arguable his passion was for research and writing, particularly on Buddhist manuscripts. He was also interested in natural history. Hodgson catalogued numerous species of animals native to the area, including ollectng over 10,000 skins and specimens for the British Museum.

Hodgson was in a long-term relationship with Mehrunnisha, a local Muslim woman, and had two children. They were sent to live in Holland with Hodgson’s sister, Ellen, also known as Fanny, but neither child made it into adulthood. Mehrunnisha died in 1843. Hodgson would marry twice more before dying in London on May 23, 1894.


Some Letters of William Vaughn Moody

by Daniel Gregory Mason

Purchase through Amazon

William Vaughn Moody was born on July 8, 1869 in Spencer, Indiana. He became an orphan at a young age when both of his parents passed. He supported himself while he was in school, going on to attend Harvard University. He graduated and then went on to become a professor at University of Chicago. In 1908, he earned a Litt.D from Yale. He wrote a great deal, including works such as The Masque of Judgment (1900), Poems (1901) and The Faith Healer (1909). Sadly, his promising life was cut short at the age of 41, as Moody had suffered from brain cancer and passed away.

This new edition is dedicated to Judy Rich Lauder, enthusiast for books of all kinds.


Letters of a Diplomat’s Wife, 1883-1900: Mission to London and Moscow

by Mary King Waddingto

Purchase through Amazon

Mary Alsop King Waddington was born on April 28, 1833 in New York City. The daughter of a prominent academic and politician, Charles King, Mary enjoyed a life of great privilege. It helped that her grandfather, Rufus King, was a US Senator, and a one-time presidential candidate, running as a Federalist.

Her family had many ties to Europe, as her father had studied at Harrow, School in England, alongside such figures as Lord Byron. Mary’s brother became an American Minister to European missions, operating out of Rome.

In 1871, Mary traveled abroad with her family, moving to France and eventually meeting her husband, William Henry Waddington in Paris. Mary wrote extensively, often about her life as the wife of a diplomat. Her husband became the Prime Minister of France in 1879, and served in several other diplomatic positions afterwards. In addition to this work, Letters of a Diplomat’s Wife, Mary also penned Italian Letters of a Diplomat’s Wife (1905), Chateau and Country Life in France (1909) and My First Years as a Frenchwoman (1914). She also had several articles published in popular magazines, such as Scibner’s Magazine. During World War I, she raised funds to helped displaced refugees and soldiers. She passed away in Paris on June 30, 1923.

Thomas Heaphy, 1775-1835, First President of the Society of British Artists

by William T. Whitley

Purchase through Amazon

Thomas Heaphy was born in 1775 to a wealthy merchant, and as such, was able to freely pursue his interest in the arts. He studied at the art school in London run by John Boyne and then became an appreciated painter and water-colorist, being appointed portrait-painter to the Princess of Wales. He wass a co-founder of the Society of British Arts, but resigned shortly after developing the organization and spent his time painting between England and Italy. Heaphy traveled to Spain to visit the Duke of Wellington and did portraits of the officers serving with the Duke. In addition to painting, he was successful at land development, and built up the areas now known as Regent’s Park and St. John’s Wood in London. The Society of British Artists was developed by Heaphy, along with 27 other artists, as an alternative to the Royal Academy. It remains in existence today as The Royal Society of British Artists.


Some Experiences of a Barrister’s Life: Curious and Famous Trials

by Serjeant William Ballantine

Purchase through Amazon

Life is a wonderfully meandering path, as is the story told in Some Experiences of a Barrister’s Life. In this autobiographical work, Serjeant Ballantine focuses on his professional career, detailing interesting cases he had a hand in, which ranged the gamut from gambling houses, strange accidents, murder, and even bizarre hairdressing incidents. Ballantine includes details of his relationship with fellow colleagues, reflections on the curiosities of the legal system, and offers a great overview of British criminal justice at the turn of the century. He ruminates about how to better the courts, and although this work is over a century old, it still offers points to consider for improving criminal justice systems around the world.


Checkered Life: In the Old and New World

by Rev. J. L. Ver Mehr

Purchase through Amazon

When J. L Ver Mehr, also known as Jean Leonhard Henri Corneille Ver Mehr, passed away in 1886. The following served as his obituary:

A Brief Sketch of the Life of a Pioneer Clergyman
Rev. Dr. J. L. Ver Mehr, of whose death brief mention was made in yesterday’s papers, was one of the first clergymen of the Protestant Episcopal Church to arrive here. He came by way of Cape Horn, reaching San Francisco in September, 1849. He preached his first sermon in California in the house of a Mr. Merrill, in this city, on the 10th of that month. A chapel was next built before the close of that year at the corner of Powell and John streets and was opened for divine service on December 30th. This was the first Grace Church, the building being 20×60 feet, and costing $8,000. In April, 1850, Dr. Ver Mehr organized Grace Parish, he being the first rector, with David 8. Tamer and E. Bryant as wardens. He preached the first sermon in a new edifice on Powell street in the Summer of 1851. He resigned the rectorship on February 25, 1854, where it was assumed by Bishop Kip, who had arrived one month before that date. Dr. Ver Mehr then took charge of a private school in Sonoma. A few years later he returned to San Francisco and, with his wife, established a seminary. In connection with this institution was the “Chapel of the Holy Innocents,” of which the doctor Was pastor. This building was located at the site of the Denman Grammar School. It was owned by the doctor and was destroyed by fire on the 10th day of October, 1860. For a year or so thereafter Dr. Ver Mehr was editor of the Pacific Churchman. He was one of the Vice-Presidents of the California Bible Society, organized in this city on October 30, 1849. His daughter is the wife of J. M. Seawell, the lawyer, and he leaves grown grandchildren. (Daily Alta California, Volume 40, Number 13095, January 20, 1886)

While the obituary highlights the physical changes Ver Mehr brought to the landscape of Northern California, it does not bring to life the many colorful experiences he had. In Checkered Life, readers are treated to an interesting account of a very full career.


James Freeman Clarke: Autobiography, Diary and Correspondence

by Edward Everett Hale

Purchase through Amazon

James Freeman Clarke was born on April 4, 1810 in New Hampshire. He was well educated, attending Harvard College, then Harvard Divinity School. He studied to be a minister in the Unitarian faith, taking the pulpit in Louisville, Kentucky. Seeing firsthand the horrors of slavery, he became
a vocal abolitionist. He wrote a great deal, crafting dozens of articles, over two-dozen books, and more than 100 pamphlets.

Clarke was interested in many things, to the enrichment of his congregations, including exploring eastern religions. He was also influenced by utopian writings and communities, and even went so far as to purchase the site of one, Brook Farm. He ended up giving the space to the US during the Civil War, where it was renamed Camp Andrew and used for training.

This new edition is dedicated to Rev. Dr. Robert M. Hardies, minister of All Souls Unitarian Church in Washington, and able leader of social causes.


Narrative of Samuel Hancock: Adventure, Escape, and Massacre During the California Gold Rush

by Samuel Hancock, Introduction by Arthur D. Howden Smith

Purchase through Amazon 

This work is an unusual autobiography, chronicling the experiences of Samuel Hancock between 1845-60. It details his journey to Oregon, his frustrating attempts to mine for gold in California, and his dramatic time as a captive under Native Americans. Hancock would go on to become a trader with the Native Americans, having used his time while under captivity to study the ceremonial rituals, building styles, medical practices, and other facets of Native American culture. Perhaps somewhat sensational, it offers interesting insights on the mindset of colonizers like Hancock.

Dr. John Dee: Elizabethan Mystic and Astrologer

by G. M. Hort

Purchase through Amazon 

This volume illustrates that, while as the saying goes, history is written by the winners, or at least predominantly by the successful, there is much to learn from the initially less successful. G. M. Hort’s account of Dr. John Dee is a different kind of biography as it paints him as a person that worked tirelessly, but in some ways never found success, and often times earned scorn instead. Despite the challenges he faced, the reader may conclude that Dr. Dee ultimately did fairly well for himself, becoming an esteemed mathematician, recognized occultist, and an erstwhile advisor to Queen Elizabeth I.

John Dee was born on July 13, 1527. While his father apparently never rose above being a “gentleman-server” in the Royal Household, the family did not want of food or shelter. Dee became an avid scholar, and very ingenuous, but his thoughtfulness and inventions were often linked to sorcery. Eventually he plunged deeper into his studies in the mysteries of sorcery and alchemy and (possibly) freemasonry. Hort gives a fascinating biography of the enigmas surrounding Dr. Dee and the times in which he lived.


Cyrus Hall McCormick: His Life and Work

by Herbert N. Casson

Purchase through Amazon 

What would become the International Harvester Company, originally was known as the McCormick Harvesting Machine Company. The McCormicks were one of many who had developed farm machinery, but their company grew due to Cyrus McCormick’s attention to building marketing, sales and improved manufacturing. However, one aspect of McCormick Harvesting Machine Company growth that has rarely been acknowledged is the slave labor that built such dynasties in the United States. For McCormick, it was Jo Anderson, an enslaved man, whose genius and hard work helped build the mechanical reaper that would make the McCormicks very wealthy. Cyrus’ father, Robert, enslaved Anderson. Together they worked on developing a mechanical alternative to improve farming. Cyrus McCormick wrote of Anderson in his work, The Century of the Reaper:
“Jo Anderson was there, the Negro slave who, through the crowded hours of recent weeks, had helped build the reaper…Anderson deserves honor as the man who worked beside him in the building of the reaper. Jo Anderson was a slave, a general farm laborer and a friend.”

Anderson died sometime in 1888, and did not live to see the success of the machinery he toiled so hard on. Rather, even after the Civil War concluded, Anderson was not able to freely live in Virginia, and remained on the farm where his labor was hired out and he received only a portion of his earnings.

Herbert Hoover: A Reminiscent Biography

by Will Irwin

Purchase through Amazon 

Herbert C. Hoover (1874-1964) served one term as President of the United States, from 1929, until 1933. He met his wife, Lou Henry, who was the only female Geology major at Stanford University, while he attended there. The pair delayed marriage so Lou could finish her education, while Herbert could build his career abroad. He was a very successful mining engineer, and later became known for his humanitarian efforts during World War I, particularly for his aid to Belgium, while he led the U.S. Food Administration. Lou was a very successful scholar, learning Latin, Chinese and continuing her work in studying metallurgy, but it was slowed down by her raising of their two children, Herbert Charles Hoover and Allan Henry Hoover.

After his only eight months in office, the Great Depression occurred. Despite attempts to control it, including the Hoover Dam, and other large public infrastructure projects, and various attempts to push for higher wages, his efforts failed. He also supported Prohibition, which made him even less popular. He was overwhelmingly defeated by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in the 1932 election. Hoover remained near politics, as a vocal opponent of federal government growth. After World War Ii, he served in a few government roles, particularly those seeking to improve efficiency and foreign relations in Europe.

This new edition is dedicated to Richard Sousa, long an important part of the Hoover Institution


The Story of Garfield: Farm-Boy, Soldier, and President

by William G. Rutherford

Purchase through Amazon 

James A. Garfield (1831-1881) was the 20th President of the United States. His term was cut short when he was assassinated in 1881, the same year he took office. Many biographies highlight the difficult circumstances Garfield overcame to become the President. He was born in Ohio on a farm and grew up helping his widowed mother. He worked many jobs to support his family, and was able to attend Williams College, graduating in 1856. He became a member of the Ohio State Senate, running as a Republican. During the Civil War he served as a major general. He then enjoyed a successful Congressional career in Washington. He rose through the ranks to become the Republican Presidential nominee during the 1880 presidential election. It was close, with Garfield beating his Democratic opponent, Winfield Scott Hancock, with a narrow margin. During his brief term, he worked to end corruption in the Post Office, and pushed civil service reform in many ways, namely the Pendleton Civil Service Reform Act, which eventually passed through by his successor, President Chester A. Arthur.

Westphalia Press occupies the mansion in Washington of Harry Garfield, longtime president of Williams, and repository of much Garfield memorabilia.



From the Farm to the Presidential Chair: The Life and Public Services of James A. Garfield

by James D. McCabe

Purchase through Amazon 

James A. Garfield (1831-1881) was the 20th President of the United States. His term was cut short when he was assassinated in 1881, the same year he took office. Many biographies highlight the difficult circumstances Garfield overcame to become the President. He was born in Ohio on a farm and grew up helping his widowed mother. He worked many jobs to support his family, and was able to attend Williams College, graduating in 1856. He became a member of the Ohio State Senate, running as a Republican. During the Civil War he served as a major general. He then enjoyed a successful Congressional career in Washington. He rose through the ranks to become the Republican Presidential nominee during the 1880 presidential election. It was close, with Garfield beating his Democratic opponent, Winfield Scott Hancock, with a narrow margin. During his brief term, he worked to end corruption in the Post Office, and pushed civil service reform in many ways, namely the Pendleton Civil Service Reform Act, which eventually passed through by his successor, President Chester A. Arthur.

Westphalia Press occupies the mansion in Washington of Harry Garfield, longtime president of Williams, and repository of much Garfield memorabilia.



The Peace Negotiations: A Personal Narrative

by Robert Lansing

Purchase through Amazon 

Robert Lansing (1864-1928) initially served the State Department as a lawyer and was known for his work on the Lansing-Ishii Agreement in 1917 with Japan over their changing relationship with China during Worpeaceld War I. He became the Secretary of State under Woodrow Wilson, and a member of the American Commission to Negotiate Peace after the close of World War I.

However, Lansing did not share the same vision for the League of Nations that Wilson did. He and Wilson had a bitter falling out, particularly when Wilson had a stroke, and Lansing called for Thomas Marshall, the Vice President, to assume presidential duties. Edith Wilson, the wife of Woodrow, requested Lansing resign, and he did. He went back to practicing law in the private sector until he died in 1928. This work by Lansing focuses on the World War I peace negotiations and highlights his very different perspective of how events unfolded, suggesting alternative actions, and gives a fascinating glimpse at secretive international negotiations behind the scenes.

This edition is dedicated to Bruce Rich, keen scholar of international relations.


Letters of General John Forbes relating to the Expedition Against Fort Duquesne

by Gen John Forbes, Compiled by Irene Stewart

Purchase through Amazon 

General John Forbes (1707-1759) was a British Army officer most known for serving during the French and Indian War. The letters contained in this volume are from the Forbes Expedition he led, which was ultimately successful in capturing the French-held Fort Duquesne. The fort was established in 1754, located in what is Pittsburgh today. Ultimately, Fort Du Quesne (as it was originally known) forbeswould be destroyed by the British and replaced by Fort Pitt. The site was a highly trafficked trading post and in a strategic location, which resulted in it being constantly under attack. The Forbes Expedition took place in 1758, with the goal of capturing the fort. Forbes led somewhere between 6,000-8,000 soldiers, but had difficulty as he was quite ill with dysentery, so he relied on Lt. Col. Henry Boquet, his second in command. It was a very slow moving process, since the army had to construct roads and traverse the Allegheny Front. This inclusive collection of letters highlights military, medical and other facets of an important episode in American history.

The new edition is dedicated to James Denton, enthusiast for American history and publisher of note.


Edwin Arlington Robinson: A Poet’s Brave Departure

Purchase through Amazon 

Edwin Arlington Robinson (1869-1935) was born in Maine to a family that wished he was a daughter. Several months after his birth, fellow vacationers named him by drawing his name out of a hat, since robinsonhis family had failed to give him one. Edwin Arlington was the name selected, though his family nicknamed him “Win,” a name he despised. Many scholars of his work trace the darkness in his writing to his unhappy childhood, which included his pain when his brother, Herman, married the love of his life, Emma Loehen Shepherd. Herman ultimately died penniless of tuberculosis, while Edwin went on to study at Harvard, earn a cushy job at the New York Customs Office after President Theodore Roosevelt took a liking to his poems, and win the Pulitzer Prize three times. He has a permanent place in the canon of American literature.

This edition is dedicated to Guillermo Izabel, for those long flights.



James A. Garfield: The Backwoods Boy Who Became President

by Frank Mundell

Purchase through Amazon  Purchase through CreateSpace

James A. Garfield (1831-1881) was the 20th President of the United States. His term was cut short when he was assassinated in 1881, the same year he took office. Many biographies highlight the difficult circbackwoodsumstances Garfield overcame to become the President. He was born in Ohio on a farm and grew up helping his widowed mother. He worked many jobs to support his family, and was able to attend Williams College, graduating in 1856. He became a member of the Ohio State Senate, running as a Republican. During the Civil War he served as a major general. He then enjoyed a successful Congressional career in Washington. He rose through the ranks to become the Republican Presidential nominee during the 1880 presidential election. It was close, with Garfield beating his Democratic opponent, Winfield Scott Hancock, with a narrow margin. During his brief term, he worked to end corruption in the Post Office, and pushed civil service reform in many ways, namely the Pendleton Civil Service Reform Act, which eventually passed through by his successor, President Chester A. Arthur. 

Westphalia Press occupies the mansion in Washington of Harry Garfield, longtime president of Williams, and repository of much Garfield memorabilia.


Dudley Wright: Writer, Truthseeker & Freemason

by John Belton

Purchase through Amazon 

Dudley Wright (1868-1950) was an Englishman who took a universalist approach to the various great Truths of Life, he travelled though many religions in his life and wrote about them all, but was probably most at home with Islam. As a professional journalist he made his living where he could. In England as Assistant Editor of The Freemason and Masonic Editor of The Times of London – and through his friendship with Joseph Fort Newton, in the USA, writing for the fabled magazine The Builder and later The Master Mason. He was one of that group of great Masonic writers that graced the American scene, unconventional enough to write well, but eventually to disband after the economic crisis that followed the Wall Street Crash of 1929. Perhaps his boldest work was to edit Gould’s 1880s History of Freemasonry, and the six volume United States version of 1936 remains the most recent complete masonic history extant.

As the son of a carriage driver Wright was always going to find it hard to become part of the establishment of late Victorian society in England. Clearly he obtained a good education but it was his passion for words and the serial exploration of various beliefs that took him to Masonic writing for a living and eventually back to Islam for his belief. The book explores the life journey of Wright through the trail of his writings.

John Belton is a well-known British researcher into the history of Freemasonry, a member of Quatuor Coronati Research Lodge in London, and Fellow of the Philalethes Society and the Masonic Society in the United States. Author of The English Masonic Union of 1813: A Tale Ancient & Modern, his main interests are in the nineteenth and especially twentieth century, and for exploring those less travelled angles to (masonic) history that are often most fascinating. He lives in an eighteenth century stone cottage in the Peak District National Park in the north of England.

Grandmother Brown’s One Hundred Years, 1827-1927: Settling the Midwest

by Harriet Connor Brown

Purchase through Amazon 

Harriet Connor Brown (1877-1859) was born in Burlington, Iowa, and attended Cornell University. She was the first female staff member of Cornell’s newspaper, Erg. After graduation, she worked for other newspapers, including the New York Journal, Buffalo Enquirer and the New York Tribune. She wrote on a wide variety of subjects—political conventions, press bulletins for the US Geological Survey, reports for the Bureau of Labor, and sometimes on federal government studies with her husband, Herbert D. Brown. She was awarded the outstanding biography prize of the Atlantic Monthly for Grandmother’s Brown’s Hundred Years, 1827-1927. Her papers, including the notes for this work, are held at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum in West Branch, Iowa.

This new edition is dedicated to Cecile Revauger, scholar, writer, and advocate of gender equality.


The Buccaneers of America

by John Esquemeling

Purchase through Amazon 

Alexandre Olivier Exquemelin (1645-1707) was known by several names due to poor transcriptions of his name, including John Esquemeling, among others. Despite how much he wrote chronicling the history of piracy in America, not much is clear about Exquemelin. It is believed that he was born in France, but then settled in Holland because he was a Huguenot, then later lived in Tortuga, working for the buccaneersFrench West India Company, served as a surgeon in Amsterdam, then served as a surgeon in the Caribbean. He was said to be a part of Henry Morgan’s pirate band, and some of their exploits are accounted for in The Buccaneers of America. Yet, not even The Buccaneers is a clear historical record. The work underwent many editions and translates across various languages, from the original Dutch to Spanish, French and English. This is perhaps the most useful version, and the new edition is dedicated to Russ Charvonia, who likes a good story and works within a beach umbrella’s shadow of the most storied slice of the California coast.

Benjamin Franklin as a Man of Letters

by John Bach McMaster

Purchase through Amazon 

Benjamin Franklin (1705-1790) is often given the title, “The First American” for his tireless advocacy for the colonies to form a union. He was, aside from being an inventor, politician, printer, inventor, diplomat, and scientist, a prolific author. While his published works are well known, his letters are a great source of inspiration as well, full of pithy wisdom. This volume offers a small glimpse of his prolific correspondence, highlighting his time as a diplomat to France, the development of the Farmers’ Almanac, and the steps he often engineered leading to the creation of the United States. They allow readers to glimpse some of Franklin’s humor, rapier wit and penetrating intellect. Far from a dry character, Franklin had a curiosity which fueled an interest in everything, and in this volume reveals himself as a true lover of all aspects of life.

This edition is dedicated to Leo Ribuffo of George Washington University, professor and researcher, mentor and friend.

Rear-Admiral Samuel Francis Du Pont: A Biography

by H. A. Du Pont

Purchase through Amazon 

Rear Admiral Samuel Francis Du Pont (1803-1865) served in the United States Navy, specifically during the Mexican-American War and the Civil War. His uncle, Eleuthere Irenee du Pont, was the founder of what is commonly known as the DuPont chemical concern, but is officially E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company. Du Pont’s family was unable to financially support his education, so Samuel enlisted in the Navy. His family’s connections obtained appointment to midshipman by President James Madison. He had an illustrious career until questions about his judgment in an attempt to capture Charleston during the Civil War became an issue when the blockade failed. Du Pont was so anguished by this that he relieved himself of command on July 5, 1863. Later events proved that he was not at fault, and nearly two decades after his death in 1865, a bronze sculpture of Du Pont and the renaming of the region in Washington DC from Pacific Circle to Du Pont Circle was dedicated on December 20, 1884. The statue was moved by the Du Pont family in 1920 to Wilmington, Delaware. It was replaced in 1921 by a memorial fountain that still stands today, one that was sculpted by Daniel Chester French and designed by Henry Bacon. Dupont Circle has remained a popular attraction for locals and tourists alike in DC. The location has slowly changed its name from Du Pont to Dupont, so this work illustrating the deeds for which the area received its namesake is especially important. This edition is dedicated to the good people of the Dupont Circle Citizens Association, guardians of what is a national treasure.

Frontier Law: A Story of Vigilante Days

by William J. Connell

Purchase through Amazon  

Gold and blood, Indians and pioneers, criminals and vigilantes! These are terms that have captivated the imagination of America for generations. Nevertheless, authentic, first-hand accounts of the vigilantes have been few indeed. The reason is plain: no one who helped to dispense the rough and salutary justice of the frontier thought it discreet to tell what they knew. But after the passing of the years, when time healed many wounds, William J. McConnell, once Governor of Idaho and also United States Senator, came forth with a story that makes the blood leap. In matter-of-fact fashion, and as vividly as if he were relating events of the day before yesterday, he tells of the overland journey to the Coast, of placer mining in California shortly after the wild days of ‘49, of homesteading in Oregon, and of farming and prospecting in Idaho. Most unusual and interesting of all, he relates the inside story of the secret Vigilantes, who restored control of territorial affairs for the people of Idaho when criminals and their satellites in office had made a mockery of the processes of justice and government.   This edition is dedicated to John Cooper, bibliophile and ever curious scholar-enthusiast for American history and the story of Westward Movement.

My Garden of Memory: An Autobiography of an Advocate for Early Child Education

by Kate Douglas Wiggin

Purchase through Amazon

Kate Douglas Wiggin (1856-1923) was a pioneer, leading the way to massive reform of children’s education in the United States, along with her sister, Nora Archibald Smith. During the late 1800s, most people had minimal education, as children went to work at very young ages. To help combat this issue, Wiggin began the Silver Street Free Kindergarten in San Francisco. Wiggin herself had had a variety of educational experiences, including home schooling, short terms at Gorham Female Seminary, Morison Academy and Abbot Academy where she graduated in 1873. 
Wiggin started the Silver Street Free Kindergarten, and then developed a school for educational training in conjunction with it. To help raise money for the schools, she wrote several popular
books, The Story of Patsy, The Birds’ Christmas Carol and Rebecca of Sunnybrook, among others. She also wrote books on teaching, such as Kindergarten Principles and Practice. My Garden of Memory was published posthumously and offers a detailed look at her interesting and meaningful life.

This edition is dedicated to Dr. Karan Powell, Provost of the American Public University System and in her own way a pioneer in extending the boundaries of learning.

John Brown: A Biography, 1800-1859

by Oswald Garrison Villard

Purchase through Amazon 

Slavery was simply an awful institution that even today in its legacy continues to plague the United States. During its height, abolitionists “waved the bloody flag” and vigorously protested to end it, though it took plunging the nation into the Civil War to result in it being finally eradicated. One person that took a memorable, radical, and extreme stand against “the peculiar institution” was John Brown. Though Brown had led forces against pro-slavery opponents earlier, it wasn’t until 1859 when he turned to violence on the national stage and led forces, particularly enslaved African Americans, at Harper’s Ferry. The movement was ultimately unsuccessful, and Brown was captured and tried for treason against the Commonwealth of Virginia (before Harper’s Ferry was part of West Virginia). He was hanged despite vocal opposition from his supporters, and his work as an abolitionist created ripples of tension that significantly fueled the drift towards war. His acts’ effectiveness has long been a source of debate.

This volume by Oswald Garrison Villard gives the opinions of a prominent early voice in the conversation about Brown’s life and impact. It is dedicated to Judy Rich Lauder, enthusiast for Civil War history in the schools and libraries.

The Days of Heroes Are Over: A Brief Biography of Vice President Richard Mentor Johnson

by Dr. David Petriello


Over the last 200 years, the country has elected a variety of colorful figures to national office. Drunkards, racists, slave holders, philanderers, war heroes, populists, demagogues, humanitarians, misogynists, embezzlers, patriots, and nepotists, all have walked the halls of the Capitol and the White House. Yet rarely has a man been sent to Washington who could be defined by all of those descriptors at once. Richard Mentor Johnson of Kentucky was one of those men. His heroic, controversial, and eccentric life made him notorious in his day, a tragic hero who walked the stage of American politics for almost half a century. Col. Dick Johnson was the epitome of a frontier Republican from the early part of the 19th century. Born into a politically active family which had migrated west during the Revolution, his early years were shaped by the Indian warfare that plagued the region. He himself achieved notoriety due to his successes against the great Native leader Tecumseh at the Battle of the Thames, allegedly killing the war-chief himself. Johnson then went on to serve in various positions in the government, at all times being involved in the growth of the nation. His eccentricities as Vice President, when combined with his scandalous relationships with various African American women, resulted in his eventual damnatio memoriae. This biography seeks to fill the gap in the historical record, examining the life and accomplishments of one of America’s more storied Vice Presidents.

David R. Petriello has taught and written on various subjects in American history. His specialties include military history, the impact of disease upon history and society, and 19th political thought. Recent publications by the author include A Military History of New Jersey, Bacteria and Bayonets: The Impact of Disease in American Military History, and an upcoming work on disease and the American presidency.

Ocean Life in the Old Sailing Ship Days

by John D. Whidden

Purchase on Amazon  |  Purchase on CreateSpace

John D. Whidden served in various roles on ships since the age of twelve. Although he portrayed himself as a roguish boy, he quickly proved himself as a ship’s gofer, and earned a mate’s position by his early twBookCoverImage-8enties. His travels saw him around the world, with stops at major ports such as Honolulu, Buenos Aires, Calcutta, and Liverpool. His life spans the changes in the shipping industry over the 19th and into the 20th century. During the Civil War, Whidden was heavily involved in profitable island trading in the Bahamas to elude Confederate sailors. However, shortly after the close of the war, in 1870, Whidden left sailing as he found it being overtaken by foreign interests. He wrote this work in 1908, partly as a memoir, but also to offer a snippet of the “old sailing ship days” before major changes occurred to its business environment, fundamentally changing its nature.

Memoirs of a Poor Relation: Being the Story of a Post-War Southern Girl and Her Battle With Destiny

by Marietta Minnigerode Andrews

Purchase on Amazon Purchase on CreateSpace

Born in Richmond, Virginia, Marietta Minnigerode Andrews (1869-1931) was the oldest of ten children in a family prominent in the Confederacy but reduced to poverty by the Civil War. She became an art teacher, stained glass artist, and author. A member of the Arts Club of Washington, her windows adorn the University of Virginia and George Washington University, as well as others.

Her husband, Eliphalet Frazer Andrews (1835-1915) helped establish the Corcoran School of Art in Washington and was its director from 1877 to 1902. His portraits of Martha Washington and Thomas Jefferson are in the White House collection.

Marietta described her work as “in one way or another, blindly, extravagantly, unwisely, hard-headedly, but loving devoted to the welfare of my kind, which is to the glory of God”. Gifted in several arts, she invokes a nostalgia in her books tempered by keen observation.

British Letters: Illustrative of Character and Social Life

by Edward T. Mason

Purchase on Amazon  |  Purchase on CreateSpace

Edward Tuckerman Mason (1847-1911) published anthologies on American humor, along with studies of Samuel Johnson and Robert Browning, as well as a still admired – and ahead of its time – work on the Italian actor Tommaso Salvini and his interpretation of Othello.

This volume is perhaps the most interesting of the three collections he compiled, as it presented his somewhat eccentric but entertaining view of British culture. To develop it, he partly relied on the help and advice of Steven Buttrick Noyes (1833-1885), who, as the head of the Brooklyn Library, built it into a major resource, partially owing to the fact that he was a distinguished bibliographer.