Lincoln legends : myths, hoaxes, and confabulations associated with our greatest president

by Steers, Edward, Jr., 1937-

Format: Print Book 2007
Availability: Available at 3 Libraries 3 of 3 copies
Available (3)
Location Collection Call #
Andrew Carnegie Free Library Civil War 973.7092 LINCOL
Location  Andrew Carnegie Free Library
Collection  Civil War
Call Number  973.7092 LINCOL
CLP - Main Library Mezzanine - Non-fiction E457.2.S795 2007
Location  CLP - Main Library
Collection  Mezzanine - Non-fiction
Call Number  E457.2.S795 2007
Penn Hills Library Non-Fiction 973.7 STE
Location  Penn Hills Library
Collection  Non-Fiction
Call Number  973.7 STE

In the more than 140 years since his death, Abraham Lincoln has become America's most revered president. The mythmaking about this self-made man began early, some of it starting during his campaign for the presidency in 1860. As an American icon, Lincoln has been the subject of speculation and inquiry as authors and researchers have examined every aspect--personal and professional--of the president's life.

In Lincoln Legends , noted historian and Lincoln expert Edward Steers Jr. carefully scrutinizes some of the most notorious tall tales and distorted ideas about America's sixteenth president. These inaccuracies and speculations about Lincoln's personal and professional life abound. Did he write his greatest speech on the back of an envelope on the way to Gettysburg? Did Lincoln appear before a congressional committee to defend his wife against charges of treason? Was he an illegitimate child? Did Lincoln have romantic encounters with women other than his wife? Did he have love affairs with men? What really happened in the weeks leading up to April 14, 1865, and in the aftermath of Lincoln's tragic assassination?

Lincoln Legends evaluates the evidence on all sides of the many heated debates about the Great Emancipator. Not only does Steers weigh the merits of all relevant arguments and interpretations, but he also traces the often fascinating evolution of flawed theories about Lincoln and uncovers the motivations of the individuals--occasionally sincere but more often cynical, self-serving, and nefarious--who are responsible for their dispersal.

Based on extensive primary research, the conclusions in Lincoln Legends will settle many of the enduring questions and persistent myths about Lincoln's life once and for all. Steers leaves us with a clearer image of Abraham Lincoln as a man, as an exceptionally effective president, and as a deserving recipient of the nation's admiration.

Published Reviews
Booklist Review: "Much that has been written about Lincoln, claims Steers, is mythmaking. It began early, at the Republican State Convention in May 1860. For 20 years, Steers has worked to correct the legend and tell the truth about the conspiracy that ended Lincoln's life and the complicity of the doctor who treated the president's murderer after the assassination. The myths include Lincoln's alleged romance with Ann Rutledge, rumors about his illegitimacy, his born-again Christian conversion and baptism, and his appearance before a congressional committee to defend his controversial wife. Chapters deal with such subjects as his birthplace cabin; his father; his speeches and writings; the myth that he was gay; missing pages from John Wilkes Booth's diary; and the identity of Peanut John Burroughs, the man who held Booth's horse. Steers, author of Blood on the Moon, has written a prodigiously researched history of a provocative subject.--Cohen, George Copyright 2007 Booklist"
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review: "Noted Lincoln scholar Steers (Blood on the Moon: The Assassination of Abraham Lincoln) succinctly and eloquently debunks 14 popular myths about the Great Emancipator's life and death. Is the so-called "Birthplace Cabin" in Kentucky the real thing? Probably not, save for a few random boards that might linger from the original structure. Was Lincoln's father of record, Thomas Lincoln, actually his father, or was Lincoln the bastard son of Nancy Hanks and another man? According to Steers, Thomas Lincoln sowed the seed in his lawfully wedded wife. Did Lincoln and Ann Rutledge have a love affair? No, says Steers. He also takes on such questions as whether Mary Lincoln was a Confederate spy (nope), whether the famous "lost draft" of the Gettysburg Address is real or a forgery (forgery) and whether the infamous Dr. Samuel Mudd was guilty of duplicity in the Lincoln assassination (guilty as charged). Additionally, Steers dismembers the myth that Lincoln was gay. Throughout, the author backs up his pronouncements with solid documentation: the surest tool for clearing the smoke of fantastic folklore that envelops the 16th president. Photos. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved"
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Additional Information
Subjects Lincoln, Abraham, -- 1809-1865 -- Legends.
Presidents -- United States -- Folklore.
Legends -- United States.
Folklore -- United States.
Publisher Lexington :University Press of Kentucky,2007
Language English
Description xvii, 264 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Bibliography Notes Includes bibliographical references (pages 231-254) and index.
ISBN 9780813124667 (hc)
0813124662 (hc)
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