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Posted November 8, 2006
A FASCINATING LOOK INTO THE LIFE AND TIMES OF DOLLEY MADISON
I picked up a copy of A PERFECT UNION: Dolley Madison and the Creation of the American Nation, by Catherine Allgor as research material for a novel set during the War of 1812. I had already read The Velvet Glove: A Life of Dolley Madison, by Noel Bertram Gerson, but I wanted more detail and insight regarding President and Mrs. Madison. I wasn¿t disappointed./// A Perfect Union is packed full of information for a novelist wanting to add verisimilitude to a story. For anyone with more than a casual interest in the War of 1812, it provides fascinating insight into behind-the-scenes Washington City and a struggling new nation. Unlike most accounts, it illuminates the war and the political scene from a feminine viewpoint./// For the most part, the facts presented by Ms. Allgor were consistent with my other sources. I noticed only a few factual glitches. I believe British atrocities were committed on the raid of Hampton village, not the battle of Craney Island a few days earlier. And I understand that the Capitol was still in two parts, separated by a wooden walkway, when the redcoats torched it./// Overall, A Perfect Union is a fascinating look into the life and times of Dolley Madison.
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