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I think I might have a I need a book
07-13-2012, 04:17 PM
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RE: I think I might have a I need a book
(07-13-2012 02:13 PM)Rob Wick Wrote:  As it's far easier to come up with a title then it is to write a book, I have been avoiding working on the tome by making up a smash of a title. I thought about Carl Sandburg Vampire Hunter, but then I quit drinking and the thought went away.

Seriously, I'm in the process of putting together a book proposal and I have to come up with a better title than the working one I have now, which is The Poet and the Historians: Carl Sandburg's Struggle to Tell Lincoln's Story (boring!!!). Many books about Sandburg use "The Poet" and something, so I've been looking for something which will encapsulate what I'm trying to get across, which is to fairly consider Sandburg's reputation, one must look at his lifetime of studying Lincoln and not just The Prairie Years and The War Years.

Going through Ida Tarbell's papers, I found what I think might fit the bill. In a letter she wrote to Col. Edward M. House, Tarbell quoted a comment attributed to Lincoln after he issued the Emancipation Proclamation and it immediately jumped out at me.

The title for my book will be Long on a Chase: Carl Sandburg's Pursuit of Abraham Lincoln.

It comes from a statement Lincoln supposedly made to New York Governor Edwin D. Morgan. He said "I do not agree with those who say that slavery is dead. We are like whalers who have been long on a chase — we have at last got the harpoon into the monster, but we must now look how we steer, or, with one 'flop' of his tail, he will yet send us all to eternity." Interestingly, it appeared in Lincoln Talks by Emmanuel Hertz and gets a "D" (meaning it probably wasn't said by Lincoln) in Don Fehrenbacher's Recollected Words of Abraham Lincoln.

So what do you all think? Good title?


This is a tough one. Although many came before Carl Sandburg--Coffin, Holland, Hay & Nicolay, Herndon & Weik, Tarbell, et al, I fell that Sandburg initially put Lincoln into the hands of the people more than any other biographers. Even though his bioragphy contains, perhaps, a little more apocrypha than others, his writing (the poetry of it, e.g.) made Lincoln come alive in the pages of the 6 volumes or even in the one-volume edition.
My only problem with the title you propose is the possibility that Lincoln did not utter those words. But I like the thought embodied in the title because Sandburg's work was a pursuit of Lincoln.
Again, I am very excited about you work!!
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RE: I think I might have a I need a book - Joe Di Cola - 07-13-2012 04:17 PM

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