Book cover of Heroines of Mercy Street: The Real Nurses of the Civil War by Pamela Toler
Biography & Autobiography

Heroines of Mercy Street: The Real Nurses of the Civil War

Heroines of Mercy Street tells the true stories of the nurses at Mansion House, the Alexandria, Virginia, mansion turned war-time hospital and setting for the PBS drama Mercy Street. Among the Union soldiers, doctors, wounded men from both sides, freed slaves, politicians, speculators, and spies who passed through the hospital in the crossroads of the Civil War, were nurses who gave their time freely and willingly to save lives and aid the wounded. […Learn More]

Civil War

The False Cause: Fraud, Fabrication, and White Supremacy in Confederate Memory

The Lost Cause ideology that emerged after the Civil War and flourished in the early twentieth century in essence sought to recast a struggle to perpetuate slavery as a heroic defense of the South. As Adam Domby reveals here, this was not only an insidious goal; it was founded on falsehoods. The False Cause focuses on North Carolina to examine the role of lies and exaggeration in the creation of the Lost Cause narrative. […Learn More]

History

The Cabinet: George Washington and the Creation of an American Institution

The US Constitution never established a presidential cabinet—the delegates to the Constitutional Convention explicitly rejected the idea. So how did George Washington create one of the most powerful bodies in the federal government?

On November 26, 1791, George Washington convened his department secretaries—Alexander Hamilton, Thomas Jefferson, Henry Knox, and Edmund Randolph—for the first cabinet meeting. […Learn More]

Civil War

The Three – Cornered War: The Union, the Confederacy, and Native Peoples in the Fight for the West

A dramatic, riveting, and “fresh look at a region typically obscured in accounts of the Civil War. American history buffs will relish this entertaining and eye-opening portrait” (Publishers Weekly).

Megan Kate Nelson “expands our understanding of how the Civil War affected Indigenous peoples and helped to shape the nation” (Library Journal, starred review), reframing the era as one of national conflict—involving not just the North and South, but also the West. […Learn More]

Americas

Island on Fire: The Revolt That Ended Slavery in the British Empire

From a New York Times bestselling author, a gripping account of the slave rebellion that led to the abolition of slavery in the British Empire.

For five horrific weeks after Christmas in 1831, Jamaica was convulsed by an uprising of its enslaved people. What started as a peaceful labor strike quickly turned into a full-blown revolt, leaving hundreds of plantation houses in smoking ruins. By the time British troops had put down the rebels, more than a thousand Jamaicans lay dead from summary executions and extrajudicial murder. […Learn More]