Father Abraham: Lincoln and His Sonsby Harold Holzer
Abraham Lincoln was devoted to his countryand to his family. President Lincoln called America a house divided, but he struggled to keep his own home united. It would prove to be an impossible task. Sickness, loss, and family tensions overwhelmed Abraham, Mary, and their four sons. Opening up the Lincoln family album, noted Lincoln scholar Harold Holzer
Abraham Lincoln was devoted to his countryand to his family. President Lincoln called America a house divided, but he struggled to keep his own home united. It would prove to be an impossible task. Sickness, loss, and family tensions overwhelmed Abraham, Mary, and their four sons. Opening up the Lincoln family album, noted Lincoln scholar Harold Holzer highlights the family's heartaches and happiness. Illustrated with archival photographs and backed by extensive primary source material, this compelling NCTE Orbis Pictus Honor Book illuminates the private lives of four generations of a prominent American family.
Trailing the stampede of Lincoln-bicentennial studies, this profile of "the clan that might have become America's royal family but instead became America's cursed family" offers both a wagonload of fascinating period photos and a case study in domestic tragedy and dysfunction. Leading Lincoln scholar Holzer portrays his presidential paterfamilias as an absentee saint—away on business for much of his four sons' formative years but ever loving and gentle with his notably histrionic wife and an indulgent pushover who let his lads run hog wild. Conversely, though devastated by 3-year-old Eddie's death in 1850 and 11-year-old Willie's in 1862, his relations with Robert (the eldest and the only child to live past his teens, presented here as thoroughly unlikable) were distant at best. If the author sometimes hobbles his narrative with fussy details, he also tucks in such intimate touches as samples of homely verse from both parents and children and finishes off with quick looks at all of the direct descendants. A natural companion for Candace Fleming's fineThe Lincolns: A Scrapbook Look at Abraham and Mary(2008). (endnotes, adult-level bibliography) (Biography. 11-14)
Meet the Author
Harold Holzer, who served nine years as cochairman of the U.S. Lincoln Bicentennial Commission, has written, coauthored, or edited thirty-six books, along with chapters in several dozen others and more than 400 articles on Lincoln and the Civil War. His previous books for young readers are Abraham Lincoln the Writer and The President is Shot! Holzer was awarded the National Humanities Medal by President Bush in 2008.
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