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RE: Book recommendations - RJNorton - 07-18-2012 06:30 AM

I sure agree with you, Bill. It's a terrific resource. Kudos, Ed, on a great job.

Combined with The Abraham Lincoln Encyclopedia by Mark Neely, Jr. it sure helps those of us who operate websites in which we try to help others with their questions.

RE: Book recommendations - LincolnMan - 07-18-2012 08:00 AM

And just to keep things light-hearted-after all we are talking about the subject of the assassination (murder) of our beloved Lincoln-I like play in my car every now and then the audio book version of Assassination Vacation by Sarah Vowell. Anyone else familiar with it? Here is a link to Wikipedia which describes it succinctly:

Sometimes its good to lighten things up Smile

RE: Book recommendations - Laurie Verge - 07-18-2012 10:07 AM

Sarah Vowell is a trip in her own right! Just sarcastic enough to be funny and not insulting. However, we did not appreciate her review of the tour at Surratt House where she made a slam about the guide inserting social and cultural history of the time period instead of sticking strictly to the Lincoln assassination story.

RE: Book recommendations - LincolnMan - 07-18-2012 10:16 AM

Laurie: its been about a year since i last listened to the audio book. Was her review in the book?

RE: Book recommendations - Laurie Verge - 07-18-2012 04:21 PM

Yes, it was included in her tale of touring the Booth route. Her biggest complaint was about being instructed on Maryland beaten biscuits. These are food items that are a part of our state heritage from colonial days and are still made by several bakeries today. They last forever because there is no leavening agent to cause them to spoil easily. However, they do get hard (think of hardtack crackers) and need to be put under damp cloths to revive them or use them in soups and stews.

The story of making them is unusual too because the dough actually has to be beaten with a hammer on (preferably) an oaken dough board for an extended period of time. The old saying is "half hour for family, but forty-five minutes for company."

Anyhow, our guide was explaining the technique to others in the tour group who were interested - but Sarah was not. Evidently, all she wanted was assassination-related history; and she flat out said that in the book. At Surratt House, we try to educate people on social and cultural history as well as the focal point of the Lincoln assassination. That evidently didn't go over well with Sarah - she would have been better off being on her own, private tour...

RE: Book recommendations - L Verge - 07-18-2012 05:26 PM

This question involves a soon-to-be book on a different facet of the assassination. I have been asked to proofread several chapters, and I have come across one sentence that I don't ever remember seeing in print. I would like to verify it before I question the author and come up looking silly because everyone might already know this fact.

If the preceding made sense to you, here's my question: Has anyone ever read a complete description of Booth's clothing on the night of the assassination - right down to colors and fabric descriptions of all visible items?

RE: Book recommendations - J. Beckert - 07-18-2012 05:47 PM

Joseph Hazelton's account is the only one I've seen that addresses Booth's clothing in any detail . The black suit is a given, but Hazelton goes into only a bit more detail, stating Booth was wearing a blue flannel shirt.

Booth's hat - colorized from an engraving in Frank Leslie's
[Image: images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTSzWtM-4H_5dvdOxZyjLb...S6uJVhozkg]

RE: Book recommendations - L Verge - 07-18-2012 07:00 PM

Thanks, Joe. That is exactly what I was looking for.

And boy do I feel foolish because we have that exact document of Hazelton's account at Surratt House, complete with signature. It was given to us years ago by the late, great collector Donald Dow of Texas. It used to hang in our small library at the Visitors' Center until the library moved to its own building (now the James O. Hall Research Center). We removed the framed piece from display because it was starting to degrade. After visiting the link you posted and seeing the asking price, I have a new-found respect for it! We also need to change our estimated value.

I also noticed a major error in the description listed at the bottom. They state that Hazelton gave this statement on the same day that Robert Todd Lincoln was being buried in a quiet New England cemetery. Arlington National Cemetery is anything but quiet and in New England.

RE: Book recommendations - J. Beckert - 07-18-2012 07:34 PM

After his death, RTL was temporarily laid to rest in a mausoleum in the cemetery that lies at the very gates to his home in Manchester, Vermont. His transfer to Arlington came later. It's a beautiful place to visit - if anyone gets the chance to get up there - don't miss it.

RE: Book recommendations - L Verge - 07-18-2012 07:47 PM

I apologize for the error. I didn't know (or remember) that Robert was first buried in Vermont. I have to finish reading Jason Emerson's book, but I should have known this detail because I have read Goff's earlier book on RTL.

I second that suggestion about visiting Manchester and the RTL estate of Hildene. I was fortunate enough to attend a conference there about a decade ago, and it was wonderful. The house was spectacular, the grounds even more so, and the scenery was splendid. I think I just ran out of adjectives!

RE: Book recommendations - LincolnMan - 07-19-2012 12:02 PM

J Beckert: Thanks for the link to that great account of Booth and the assassination. It's funny, but as much time as we've spent with this stuff-sometimes we forget what we knew! Must be getting old! Is Booth's hat housed somewhere? See! I have forgotten that bit of information. Huh

RE: Book recommendations - J. Beckert - 07-19-2012 12:57 PM

I think the hat has long disappeared, like a lot of the other evidence.

RE: Book recommendations - LincolnMan - 07-19-2012 02:05 PM

Yes- so much has vanished. Forever gone like the missing pages in Booth's diary. Shy

RE: Book recommendations - LincolnMan - 09-11-2012 05:09 PM

[Image: wp000053.jpg]

Uploaded with

Since we we're talking about O'Reilly's book Killing Kennedy, I'd thought I'd post my record album cover. How many remember this record? It came out in October 1962-JFK had just over a year to live. This recording was hilarious! I play it once in awhile and I still crackup. For those too young to know about it-the record was a parody of the Kennedy family-done in good taste. Remember?

RE: Book recommendations - BettyO - 09-11-2012 05:41 PM

OMG!! That's hysterical!! Of course, I was only 9 years old.... I never heard of this!