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People with only a slight interest in history will enjoy these fascinating, short and easy to understand stories.  Serious history buffs will like these lesser-known episodes, not the stories we’ve heard a million times. For example: try to find anyone who knows about the attempted slave insurrection in Fairfax County, Virginia.

With Mary Lincoln’s spending habits, who knew that Abraham Lincoln actually saved an enormous percentage of his  presidential salary?  A slave honored in Virginia with a monument;  the history of Lee Highway which ‘opened’ with great fanfare in 1923 as a 3,000 mile road from Washington, DC to San Diego; a story about the Little River Turnpike, the second oldest turnpike in America, built partly by slaves and captured Hessian soldiers. 

You’ll read about two Civil War ships that collided in the Potomac River.  Victims included wounded soldiers' wives and one soldier’s six-year-old son.  You’ll read a great account of the massive Civil War corruption. 

You’ll learn about the disastrous condition of the treasury (sound familiar?) during the Revolutionary War.  The government tried everything, including a lottery to get the country afloat in a sea of red ink.  But the most fascinating story may be about the Revolutionary War soldier who faked his own desertion to defect to the enemy with the highly secretive mission of going behind enemy lines to capture and return for trial the worst traitor in American history: Benedict Arnold.  Bet you never heard of this story.

There are many other stories in this eclectic, heavily-researched  manuscript. There’s a story about the Christmas Truce in World War One, about long-forgotten holidays in Virginia,  about the retrocession which sent an area of Washington back to Virginia in 1846, and about the impeachment of a Supreme Court justice (it happened only once).

And more!

 


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