The Memoirs Of Frederick T. Gates

My intimate, confidential relationships with Mr. John D. Rockefeller in New York City began in September, 1891. Read more »

Are There Too Many New Deal Diaries?

A few years ago Bill Mauldin drew a cartoon to commemorate an unsung hero: a gardener at Hyde Park who had firmly resisted the temptation to write his memoirs of President Roosevelt. Undoubtedly Mauldin’s gardener was indeed a hero to a reading public wearied and bewildered by the apparently endless outpouring of memoirs and diaries about Roosevelt and the New Deal. In the ten years since Roosevelt’s death, the number that have appeared is so large that it bids fair to rival the quantity on Lincoln and his administration. Read more »

When Presidents Tell It Their Way

Only ten of our forty Presidents have written accounts of their time in the White House. Jimmy Carter’s Keeping Faith is the latest addition to that short shelf, and James Buchanan was the somewhat unlikely creator of this rare literary form. But as the welcome new Da Capo Press edition of his autobiography reaffirms, Theodore Roosevelt remains its most vivid and vigorous practitioner. Read more »

A Summer’s Wait

A young poet’s memories of the old rural America in whose fields he worked for two sunny months while awaiting the call to service in the First World War

Mark Van Doren, who died in 1972, was one of America’s most distinguished poets, critics, and educators. He was born on a farm at Hope, Illinois, in 1894, and upon graduation from the University of Illinois in 1914 went to Columbia University (where he later was to teach literature for many years) to pursue graduate study. In the spring of 1917, with America finally involved in the Great War, he returned to his family home in Urbana, Illinois, and registered for the draft.Read more »

Historian And Publisher

One of America's most distinguished publishers writes of his personal and professional friendship with the famed historian, Samuel Eliot Morison.

 

A new annual prize in history has been established by the American Heritage Publishing Company in honor of the distinguished American historian Samuel Eliot Morison, who died last spring. The prize will be $5,000; to be given for the best book on American history by an American author that sustains the tradition that good history is literature as well as high scholarship—a tradition admirably exemplified by the many works of Samuel Eliot Monson. Read more »

Growing Up In Newport

A Brush with the Law & OTHER OFF-SEASON ADVENTURES, or

When Winfield Townley Scott, the American poet, died in 1968, he left among his papers a warm and engaging account of his early boyhood in Newport, Rhode Island. The lavish world of Newport’s summer visitors with their fifty-five-room “cottages” meant little to him as a local boy—only providing background for a small child’s play and wonder. Mr.Read more »

The Good Soldier White

Modern G. I.’s will recognize a fellow spirit in the sergeant who wrote this account of life in General Washington’s army

I enlisted in the regiment of artillery commanded by Col. Richard Gridley, the beginning of May 1775, for 8 months, as a bombardier, in Capt. Samuel Gridley’s company; but had not been very long in that capacity, before the Adjutant came to me and said, I understand that you are a good speller, I told him I could spell most any word. Why cannot you come and be my Assistant said he. … He said he paid five shillings per week, besides his rations, and mine would be the same, which he would pay. …

 
 
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Legend Of The South

A southern woman’s memoir of a by-gone era

There are many ways of looking at the now-vanished plantation society of the pre-Civil War South. One of them is the way of legend—white-pillared plantation, a leisured and courtly life centering in it, charming women and gallant men consciously living up to a tradition which has lingered on as a memory long after the reality has gone.

A small bit of that legend—faithful to the magnolia-and-roses tradition, but embodying an authentic fragment of real human experience—is presented here, in a memoir written years ago by Cornelia Barrett Ligon, who spent her girlhood on Newstead Plantation, near Jackson, Mississippi, and who in 1932, as very aged woman, set down her reminiscences of the old days. From notes she wrote and dictated, her daughter Lucile Ligon Cope of Port Arthur, Texas, has put together the following account of what life on legendary Old South plantation was like, and how the war finally came to the plantation and ended an era.

AMERICAN HERITAGE presents this memoir as an interesting fragment of the legend and the tradition of fabulous Dixie.

 

 
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