Staff Pick

Author of Ambiguous Lives and Homelands and Waterways, Adele Logan Alexander taught for eighteen years at George Washington University. Princess of the Hither Isles (Yale, $30) draws on her extensive scholarship as well as on her own family history to tell the story of Adella Hunt Logan (1863-1915), a pioneering activist for social justice—and Alexander’s grandmother. Born to a white father and free woman of color in a Georgia family whose lineage also included Cherokees, Logan started teaching at age sixteen, before getting a scholarship to Atlanta University; by 1883, she was
on the faculty of the Tuskegee Institute, where she became the institution’s first woman librarian and formed a close friendship with Booker T. Washington. An advocate for equal education and universal suffrage, she wrote for The Crisis and The Colored American and was part of a circle of reformers that included Susan B. Anthony, Frederick Douglass, and W. E. B. Du Bois. While her efforts ultimately led to the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment in 1920, Logan suffered a breakdown and, just after Washington’s death in 1915, committed suicide. Alexander recounts her life with vivid historical insight and keen psychological acuity, doing justice to one of the many courageous women of color too often omitted from accounts of the suffrage movement.

Princess of the Hither Isles: A Black Suffragist’s Story from the Jim Crow South Cover Image
$30.00
ISBN: 9780300242607
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: Yale University Press - September 24th, 2019

Staff Pick

Phineas Barnum (1810-1891), American hustler, huckster, and entertainer, is best known for Barnum and Bailey’s circus, billed as “the greatest show on earth.” Robert Wilson’s elegantly written Barnum (Simon & Schuster, $28) spotlights Barnum’s humbugs and hoaxes prior to the circus days, such as the former slave, Joice Heath, he passed off as George Washington’s 161-year-old nursemaid; the Fejee Mermaid, which was part fi sh, part monkey skeleton; and his long tour with five-year-old Charley Stratton dubbed “the little general” and renamed Tom Thumb. Barnum also constructed an Oriental Villa in Connecticut which ultimately burned to the ground, and lectured on temperance reform and money-making, in spite of his own spectacular bankruptcies. Wilson, the author of two previous biographies and editor of The American Scholar, resists the urge to editorialize but his meticulous research speaks for itself. Ultimately, Barnum emerges as complicated, vain, and selfserving, and in the words of one contemporary journalist, "Barnum appears to be a vain elderly man on the best possible terms with himself."

Barnum: An American Life Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781501118623
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: Simon & Schuster - August 6th, 2019

Staff Pick

Sidney Blumenthal, a veteran journalist and former high-level government advisor, has been making impressive progress writing a monumental series on the life of Abraham Lincoln. Volume one, A Self- Made Man, appeared just three years ago and dealt with the first forty years of Lincoln’s life, through his start as a lawyer, deepening interest in politics, growing confidence and skill as a public speaker, marriage to Mary Todd, a stint in the House of Representatives, and return to Springfield in 1849 to practice law. The second volume, Wrestling with His Angel, came out just a year later and focused on the period between 1849 and 1856, a sort of wilderness period for Lincoln after his fi rst exposure to national politics. Now in All the Powers of Earth: The Political Life of Abraham Lincoln, Vol. III 1856-1860 (Simon & Schuster, $35), Blumenthal chronicles Lincoln’s political ascent, culminating in his election to the presidency. This was an extraordinarily tumultuous time in U.S. history, and Blumenthal explores extensively a number of seminal events surrounding Lincoln as he re-enters the political spotlight.

All the Powers of Earth: The Political Life of Abraham Lincoln Vol. III, 1856-1860 Cover Image
$35.00
ISBN: 9781476777283
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: Simon & Schuster - September 3rd, 2019

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