July Media Roundup

by krm | Friday, July 29, 2016 - 7:00 AM

Compiling this snapshot of JHU Press books in the news this month was similar to the experience of singing “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.” I was thoroughly worn out by the time it was through, but boy was it fun.

Take a look at what our authors have been up to in the month of July!

In addition to his recent interview and illustrated pain scale , Science Friday ran a feature article around Justin Schmidt’s The Sting of the Wild (HC: 9781421419282; $24.95). The book made Nature’s “Cool Green Science” blog’s list of top summer nature reads and Justin was interviewed by BBC Earth , Arizona’s local NPR station and SiriusXM ’s “Tell Me Everything” with John Fugelsang. Other recent coverage for the book includes The Guardian , Atlas Obscura , and NPR " Weekend Edition ."

Righting America at the Creation Museum (HC: 9781421419510; $26.95) coauthors William and Susan Trollinger have been busy. ...Read More

Civil War Unmasked in 'Living Hell'

by krm | Thursday, July 28, 2016 - 7:00 AM

This post is part of our July “Unexpected America” blog series, focused on intriguing or surprising American history research from 1776 to today. ( Photo Credit Nicholas Raymond )

Often I am asked what most surprised me during the researching of Living Hell. My answer is consistent: what I did not expect was the startling candor with which our forebears related their experiences. We often think of the Victorians as close-mouthed, even repressed about many matters, particularly their most intimate physical and emotional experiences. But this really was not the case.

A soldier might write his brother to say that the boys were desperate enough for sex to be out hunting brothels all across town. Or, after having had their fun with a brain- addled young prostitute, they tossed her off a bridge. A hospital inmate might tell a friend almost proudly that he was enduring the mercury treatment for venereal disease. A Union quartermaster in the occupied South could confide to his diary that he had bought a starving mother for a bag of flour or train tickets out of hell for her and her children. And...Read More

The Homestead, Hot Springs, Virginia

by krm | Wednesday, July 27, 2016 - 7:00 AM

George Washington visited Hot Springs, Va. on horseback in 1755 on an inspection tour of forts as protection against Indian attacks. The Homestead spa and resort was founded in 1766, a decade before our country. That makes the hotel 250 years old in 2016. Thomas Jefferson wrote in his Memorandum Book that on August 13, 1818 he ate two meals at The Homestead and took the waters to the tune of $2.12 1/2. William Howard Taft was the keynote speaker there at the annual meeting of the Virginia Bar Association in August 1908. Woodrow Wilson and second wife, Edith, chose The Homestead for their Christmas honeymoon in 1915. Most every U.S. president since has visited the resort, where many indulge in the hotel’s most popular activity, golf. Hands down, The Homestead Hotel in Hot Springs, Virginia is one of the most prestigious locations in the country to hold a conference, treat the family to a vacation, bathe in the Jefferson pools, indulge in a dizzy array of spas, or . . . give a talk. It is located on U.S. 220 five miles south of Warm Springs in Bath County.

Hotel management conducted lively discussions on how to celebrate...Read More

Andrew Jackson as a Military Leader

by krm | Tuesday, July 26, 2016 - 7:00 AM

This post is part of our July “Unexpected America” blog series, focused on intriguing or surprising American history research from 1776 to today. Check back with us all month to see what new scholarship our authors have to share! ( Photo Credit Nicholas Raymond )

When I began work on my book on Andrew Jackson and the Battle of New Orleans, I knew he was a pretty good field commander. After all, he won the Creek War against the southern Indians and the Gulf Coast campaign against the British in the War of 1812. Jackson’s victory in the culminating battles in these campaigns—at Horseshoe Bend in present-day Alabama on March 27-28, 1814, and at New Orleans on January 8, 1815—were both decisive and one-sided.

At the time I attributed Jackson’s success to two factions: his indomitable determination to overcome all obstacles and the iron discipline that he imposed on his men, which made them fear him more than the enemy. Jackson suffered from dysentery throughout the war, and he was racked by pain from a festering gunshot wound sustained in a brawl in Nashville with the Benton brothers...Read More

Privateer Blown Sky High

by krm | Monday, July 25, 2016 - 7:30 AM

This post is part of our July “Unexpected America” blog series, focused on intriguing or surprising American history research from 1776 to today. Check back with us all month to see what new scholarship our authors have to share! ( Photo Credit Nicholas Raymond )

During the War of 1812, American entrepreneurs built, bought and outfitted more than 600 of their own vessels to attack British trade. Motivated by profit rather than patriotism, they carried government commissions that allowed them to capture enemy shipping from New England to New Orleans and the Caribbean, from the English Channel and the North Sea to Africa, South America and even China.

Unlike piracy, privateering was a legalized wartime activity with the potential for enormous profit. By signing on to share their prizes, privateers also agreed to share the risks, including storms, accidents, illness, injury, combat, capture and death. Moderately successful as a privateer, it was the Young Teazer ’s fiery end that earned her a place in privateering history.

In December 1812, a British frigate...Read More