This definitive portrait of one of America's wealthiest, most influential dynasties traces their dynamic and often tragic lives. 'The Guggenheims': Meyer Guggenheim, the penniless immigrant whose genius for business and penchant for taking risks made the family fortune; Solomon Guggenheim, the pioneer art patron who commissioned Frank Lloyd Wright to build the revolutionary piece of modern architecture, The Guggenheim Museum, opening the doors of contemporary art to America; Peggy Guggenheim, self-styled 'first liberated woman' who built a Venetian palace for her art but lost both her daughter and her lover to suicide; Daniel & Harry Guggenheim, whose financial interest in rocket science supported the Apollo moon landing and the growth of America's modern space program; Roger W Straus Jr, grandson of Daniel Guggenheim, who became America's foremost literary publisher, bringing numerous Nobel Prize Winning authors to the world's bookshelves. Updated with the latest from the heirs to the Guggenheim dynasty and illustrated throughout with rare family photos, John Davis has chronicled the saga of one of America's first families of philanthropy.
John McWilliams's 1990 book was the first thorough account of the many attempts to fashion an epic literature (the anxiously anticipated 'American Epic') from a wide range of potentially heroic New World subjects.
In the summer of 1932, at the height of the Depression, some forty-five thousand veterans of World War I descended on Washington, D.C., from all over the country to demand the bonus promised them eight years earlier for their wartime service. President Herbert Hoover, Army Chief of Staff Douglas MacArthur, and others feared the protesters would turn violent after the Senate defeated the "bonus bill" that the House had passed. On July 28, 1932, tanks rolled through the streets as MacArthur's troops evicted the bonus marchers: Newspapers and newsreels showed graphic images of American soldiers driving out their former comrades in arms. Through seminal research, including interviews with the last surviving witnesses, Paul Dickson and Thomas B. Allen tell the full and dramatic story of the Bonus Army and of the many celebrated figures involved in it: Evalyn Walsh McLean, the owner of the hope diamond, sided with the marchers; Roy Wilkins saw the model for racial integration here; J. Edgar Hoover built his reputation against the Bonus Army radicals; a young Gore Vidal witnessed the crisis while John dos Passos, Sherwood Anderson, and Sinclair Lewis wrote about it. Dickson and Allen also recover the voices of ordinary men who dared tilt at powerful injustice, and who ultimately transformed the nation: The march inspired Congress to pass the G. I. Bill of Rights in 1944, one of the most important pieces of social legislation in our history, which in large part created America's middle class. The Bonus Army is an epic story in the saga of our country.
The companion book to the groundbreaking PBS and BBC documentary series celebrating the pioneers and artists of American roots music—blues, gospel, folk, Cajun, Appalachian, Hawaiian, Native American—without which there would be no jazz, rock, country R&B, or hip hop today. Jack White, T. Bone Burnett, and Robert Redford have teamed up to executive produce American Epic, a historical music project exploring the pivotal recording journeys of the early twentieth century, which for the first time captured the breadth of American music and made it available to the world. It was, in a very real way, the first time America truly heard herself. In the 1920s and 1930s, as radio took over the pop music business, record companies were forced to leave their studios in major cities in search of new styles and markets. Ranging the mountains, prairies, rural villages, and urban ghettos of America, they discovered a wealth of unexpected talent—farmers, laborers, and ethnic minorities playing styles that blended the intertwining strands of Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Americas. These recordings form the bedrock for modern music as we know it, but during the Depression many record companies went out of business and more than ninety percent of the fragile 78 rpm discs were destroyed. Fortunately, thanks to the continuing efforts of cultural detectives and record devotees, the stories of America’s earliest musicians can finally be told. Bernard MacMahon and Allison McGourty, who directed and produced the documentary with American musician Duke Erikson, spent years traveling around the US in search of recollections of those musical pioneers. Their fascinating account, written with the assistance of prize-winning author Elijah Wald, continues the journey of the series and features additional stories, never-before-seen photographs, and unearthed artwork. It also contains contributions from many of the musicians who participated including Taj Mahal, Nas, Willie Nelson, and Steve Martin, plus a behind-the-scenes look at the incredible journey across America. American Epic is an extraordinary testament to our country’s musical roots, the transformation of our culture, and the artists who gave us modern popular music.
Billy Gashade is a wandering musician crossing the young United States in the late 1800s, and introducing us to its most colorful characters along the way. Calamity Jane, Billy the Kid, Chief Crazy Horse, Oscar Wilde, and many many more cross paths with Billy in this sweeping epic of American History from Loren D. Estleman. At the Publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management Software (DRM) applied.
"The United States is the only nation in the world in which political leaders, judges and soldiers all swear allegiance not to a king or a people but to a document, the Constitution. The Constitution today, however, is much revered but little read. . Readers of AMERICAN EPIC will never think of the Constitution in quite the same way again. Garrett Epps, a legal scholar who is also a journalist and writer of prize-winning fiction, takes readers on a literary tour of the Constitution, finding in it much that is interesting, puzzling, praiseworthy, and sometimes hilarious. Reading the Constitution like a literary work yields a host of meanings that shed new light on what it means to be an American"--
The Fords: An American Epic is the dramatic story of three generations of Fords and of the dramatic conflict between fathers and sons played out against the backdrop of America's greatest industrial empire. The story begins with Henry I, the mechanical wizard, tinkerer, and mad genius who drove the automobile into the heart of American life and conquered the world with it. But in the end he became an embittered crank who so possessively loved the company he built that when his son, Edsel, tried to change it to suit the times, Henry destroyed him. It was left to Edsel's son, Henry II, to avenge him and save the Ford Motor Company. From the details of Henry I's illicit affair, which produced an illegitimate son, to the life and loves of "Hank the Deuce" and his celebrated feud with Lee Iacocca, this is an engrossing account of a vital chapter in American history. The authors have added a new preface to this now classic work, showing how Henry II's line lost out to the line of his brother William Clay Ford in the quest to control the company in the twentieth century.
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This study undertakes close readings of four different epic novels of the 1970s: James A. Micheners Centennial (1974), Norman Mailers The Executioners Song (1979), Thomas Pynchons Gravitys Rainbow (1973), and Samuel R. Delany Dhalgren (1975). In these, the author examines the possibilities and pitfalls of the genre and its way of grappling in complex ways with the idea and reality of an American empire.
An American Epic of War and Splendor in the Cherokee Nation
Author: John Sedgwick
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
“Riveting...Engrossing...Mr. Sedgwick’s subtitle calls the Cherokee story an ‘American Epic,’ and indeed it is.” —H. W. Brands, The Wall Street Journal An astonishing untold story from America’s past—a sweeping, powerful, and necessary work of history that reads like Gone with the Wind for the Cherokee. Blood Moon is the story of the century-long blood feud between two rival Cherokee chiefs from the early years of the United States through the infamous Trail of Tears and into the Civil War. The two men’s mutual hatred, while little remembered today, shaped the tragic history of the tribe far more than anyone, even the reviled President Andrew Jackson, ever did. Their enmity would lead to war, forced removal from their homeland, and the devastation of a once-proud nation. It begins in the years after America wins its independence, when the Cherokee rule expansive lands of the Southeast that encompass eight present-day states. With its own government, language, newspapers, and religious traditions, it is one of the most culturally and socially advanced Native American tribes in history. But over time this harmony is disrupted by white settlers who grow more invasive in both number and attitude. In the midst of this rising conflict, two rival Cherokee chiefs, different in every conceivable way, emerge to fight for control of their people’s destiny. One of the men, known as The Ridge—short for He Who Walks on Mountaintops—is a fearsome warrior who speaks no English but whose exploits on the battlefield are legendary. The other, John Ross, is descended from Scottish traders and looks like one: a pale, unimposing half-pint who wears modern clothes and speaks not a word of Cherokee. At first, the two men are friends and allies. To protect their sacred landholdings from white encroachment, they negotiate with almost every American president from George Washington through Abraham Lincoln. But as the threat to their land and their people grows more dire, they break with each other on the subject of removal, breeding a hatred that will lead to a bloody civil war within the Cherokee Nation, the tragedy and heartbreak of the Trail of Tears, and finally, the two factions battling each other on opposite sides of the US Civil War. Through the eyes of these two primary characters, John Sedgwick restores the Cherokee to their rightful place in American history in a dramatic saga of land, pride, honor, and loss that informs much of the country’s mythic past today. It is a story populated with heroes and scoundrels of all varieties—missionaries, gold prospectors, linguists, journalists, land thieves, schoolteachers, politicians, and more. And at the center of it all are two proud men, Ross and Ridge, locked in a life-or-death struggle for the survival of their people. This propulsive narrative, fueled by meticulous research in contemporary diaries and journals, newspaper reports, and eyewitness accounts—and Sedgwick’s own extensive travels within Cherokee lands from the Southeast to Oklahoma—brings two towering figures back to life with reverence, texture, and humanity. The result is a richly evocative portrait of the Cherokee that is destined to become the defining book on this extraordinary people.