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A vivid recount of the little known exploits of 17 courageous Special Operations Executive (SOE) officers in Italy during World War II In this inspiring new study of the SOE and Italian Resistance, 17 extraordinary stories of individual SOE officers illustrate the many and varied tasks of SOE missions throughout the different regions of Italy from 1943-1945. Through their gallantry, ingenuity, and determination, a small handful of SOE missions were able to arm and inspire thousands of Italians to fight the occupying German army after 1943 and in the process give invaluable support to the advancing Allied armies as they pushed north towards Austria.
A first-hand account of the Lusitania's doomed final voyage. On May 7, 1915, the German U-boat U-20 fired a torpedo into the side of the passenger liner R.M.S. Lusitania as it passed the Old Head of Kinsale in Ireland on its way to Liverpool, England. This act of war had a terrible toll of the 1,962 passengers and crew, 1,191 lost their lives, many of them women and children. One of the passengers on the ship was Charles E. Lauriat, Jr., a rare book dealer who traveled regularly to London for business. When the German embassy placed a warning notice in several New York papers stating that any ships of Great Britain and her allies would be considered fair targets, Lauriat, along with most of the other passengers, dismissed the notion that a civilian liner would actually be attacked. Lauriat's memoir of the journey recreates the torpedo attack describing the listing ship as it filled with water and people scrambled for lifeboats, too often finding them inaccessible or unusable and details the rescue that came too late for most of his fellow passengers. Lauriat then points out the many faults of the official inquiry, telling the true story of that tragic day. With a new foreword and photos of the ship, The Lusitania's Last Voyage is a gripping account of one of history's greatest naval disasters. Skyhorse Publishing, along with our Arcade, Good Books, Sports Publishing, and Yucca imprints, is proud to publish a broad range of biographies, autobiographies, and memoirs. Our list includes biographies on well-known historical figures like Benjamin Franklin, Nelson Mandela, and Alexander Graham Bell, as well as villains from history, such as Heinrich Himmler, John Wayne Gacy, and O. J. Simpson. We have also published survivor stories of World War II, memoirs about overcoming adversity, first-hand tales of adventure, and much more. While not every title we publish becomes a New York Times bestseller or a national bestseller, we are committed to books on subjects that are sometimes overlooked and to authors whose work might not otherwise find a home.
This is an important new study examining the military operations of the British Expeditionary Force in 1914-18 through the lens of its communications system. Brian Hall charts how new communications technology such as wireless, telephone and telegraph were used alongside visual signalling, carrier pigeons and runners as the British army struggled to develop a communication system adequate enough to wage modern warfare. He reveals how tenuous communications added to the difficulties of command and control during the war's early years, and examines their role during the major battles of the Somme, Arras, Ypres and Cambrai. It was only in 1918 that the British army would finally develop a flexible and sophisticated communications system capable of effectively coordinating infantry, artillery, tanks and aeroplanes. This is a major contribution to our understanding of British military operations during the First World War, the learning processes of armies and the revolution in military affairs.
Abraham Lincoln's Republican Party was the first party built on opposition to slavery to win on the national stage--but its victory was rooted in the earlier efforts of under-appreciated antislavery third parties. Liberty Power tells the story of how abolitionist activists built the most transformative third-party movement in American history and effectively reshaped political structures in the decades leading up to the Civil War. As Corey M. Brooks explains, abolitionist trailblazers who organized first the Liberty Party and later the more moderate Free Soil Party confronted formidable opposition from a two-party system expressly constructed to suppress disputes over slavery. Identifying the Whigs and Democrats as the mainstays of the southern Slave Power's national supremacy, savvy abolitionists insisted that only a party independent of slaveholder influence could wrest the federal government from its grip. A series of shrewd electoral, lobbying, and legislative tactics enabled these antislavery third parties to wield influence far beyond their numbers. In the process, these parties transformed the national political debate and laid the groundwork for the success of the Republican Party and the end of American slavery.
Guns at the Forks is a special reissue commemorating the 250th anniversary of the French and Indian War. In a spirited, intelligent, and informative history, O'Meara tells the story of five successive forts, particularly Fort Duquesne and Fort Pitt, and the dramatic part they played in the war between 1750 and 1760. He describes Washington's capitulation at Fort Necessity, Braddock's defeat at the Monongahela, and Forbes's successful campaign to retake Fort Duquesne. Although most of the action in the book takes place at the strategically important forks of the Ohio, where present-day Pittsburgh stands, O'Meara's narrative relates the two forts to the larger story of the French and Indian War and elucidates their roles in sparking a global conflict that altered the course of world events and decided the fate of empires.
This magisterial study, ten years in the making by one of the field's most distinguished historians, will be the first to explore the impact fugitive slaves had on the politics of the critical decade leading up to the Civil War. Through the close reading of diverse sources ranging from government documents to personal accounts, Richard J. M. Blackett traces the decisions of slaves to escape, the actions of those who assisted them, the many ways black communities responded to the capture of fugitive slaves, and how local laws either buttressed or undermined enforcement of the federal law. Every effort to enforce the law in northern communities produced levels of subversion that generated national debate so much so that, on the eve of secession, many in the South, looking back on the decade, could argue that the law had been effectively subverted by those individuals and states who assisted fleeing slaves.
A graduate of West Point, General Hugh Lenox Scott (1853-1934) belonged to the same regiment as George Armstrong Custer. As a member of the Seventh Cavalry, Scott actually began his career at the Little Big Horn when in 1877 he helped rebury Custer's fallen soldiers. Yet Scott was no Custer. His lifelong aversion to violence in resolving disputes and abiding respect for American Indians earned him the reputation as one of the most adept peacemakers ever to serve in the U.S. Army. Sign Talker, an annotated edition of Scott's memoirs, gives new insight into this soldier-diplomat's experiences and accomplishments. Scott's original autobiography, first published in 1928, has remained out of print for decades. In that memoir, he recounted the many phases of his distinguished military career, beginning with his education at West Point and ending with World War I, when, as army chief of staff, he gathered the U.S. forces that saw ultimate victory in Europe. Sign Talker reproduces the first - and arguably most compelling - portion of the memoir, including Scott's involvement with Plains Indians and his service at western forts. In his in-depth introduction to this volume, editor R. Eli Paul places Scott's autobiography in a larger historical context. According to Paul, Scott stood apart from his fellow officers because of his enlightened views and forward-looking actions. Through Scott's own words, we learn how he became an expert in Plains Indian Sign Language so that he could communicate directly with Indians and bypass intermediaries. Possessing deep empathy for the plight of Native peoples and concern for the wrongs they had suffered, he played an important role in helping them achieve small, yet significant victories in the aftermath of the brutal Indian wars. As historians continue to debate the details of the Indian wars, and as we critically examine our nation's current foreign policy, the unique legacy of General Scott provides a model of military leadership. Sign Talker restores an undervalued diplomat to well-deserved prominence in the story of U.S.-Indian relations.
Winston Churchill is one of the best-known and most revered figures of our time, the man who led Britain through its 'darkest hour'. The last year alone has seen two feature films of his life. Many books have been published about his life and work, but very few have looked at his life through the prism of the house he occupied for over 40 years. Chartwell is as fundamental to understanding Churchill as Hill Top is to Beatrix Potter. This Elizabethan manor - cared for by the National Trust today - was his inspiration, his refuge and his obsession. He had to rebuild the property almost from scratch after he bought it in 1922, spending money he could ill afford. Later he built a wall around the garden and several buildings by hand. `A day away from Chartwell is a day wasted,' he once said. The book's introduction features a special section telling Churchill's life through ten special and unusual objects at Chartwell. Featuring many rarely seen photographs, one previously unpublished, this beautifully illustrated book has an incisive text by respected biographer Sarah Gristwood. She traces every phase of his life - rebellious child, brave adventurer, political outcast, inspirational leader - always circling back to Chartwell, just as the great man himself did.
In just three months in 1940, Denmark, Norway, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, and France fell to the Nazis. The German occupation of Western Europe had begun-but a brave few rose up in defiance. National resistance has long been celebrated in remembrances of World War II, depicted as making significant contributions to the defeat of Nazi Germany. However, the so-called army of shadows drew heavily on the support of London and Washington, a fact often forgotten in postwar Europe. The Resistance in Western Europe, 1940-1945 is a sweeping analytical history of the underground anti-Nazi forces during World War II. Examining clandestine organizations in Norway, Denmark, the Netherlands, Belgium, France, and Italy, Olivier Wieviorka sheds new light on the factors that shaped the resistance and its place in the grand scheme of Anglo-American military strategy. While national actors played a leading role in fomenting resistance, British and American intelligence services and propaganda as well as financial, material, and logistical support were crucial to its activities and growth. Wieviorka illuminates the policies of governments in exile and resistance actors regarding cooperation with the British and Americans, pointing to the persistence of national self-interest and long-standing historical tensions. Drawing on a wide range of archival sources and bringing together the political, diplomatic, and military dimensions of the conflict, this book is the first account of the resistance on a continental scale and from a trans-European perspective.
From 25th April 1915 to 9th January 1916, troops from Australia, New Zealand, the UK and Turkey engaged in a bitter struggle for the Gallipoli peninsula. The Allied forces wanted to forge a passage through the Dardanelles in order to create a sea route to Russia and capture the Ottoman capital of Constantinople. Despite having more troops and being better supplied, the Allies suffered devastating losses in the face of the brave and resourceful Turks. Gallipoli tells the story of this campaign in a unique and comprehensive manner, through three authors who expertly describe their country's role and the impact the conflict had. For the ANZACs Gallipoli was the birthplace of the ANZAC spirit, for the British it was almost the downfall of Winston Churchill and for the Turks it was a defining moment in their history, becoming the basis of the Turkish War of Independence.
HMS Royal Oak was a Revenge-class battleship of the British Royal Navy, infamously torpedoed at anchor by the German submarine U-47 on 14 October 1939. Royal Oak was anchored at Scapa Flow in Orkney, Scotland when she became the first of the five Royal Navy battleships and battle cruisers sunk in the Second World War. The loss of life was heavy: of Royal Oak's complement of 1,234 men and boys, 833 were killed that night or died later of their wounds. The raid made an immediate celebrity and war hero out of the German U-boat commander, Gunther Prien, who became the first submarine officer to be awarded the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross. To the British, the raid demonstrated that the Germans were capable of bringing the naval war to their home waters, and the shock resulted in rapidly arranged changes to dockland security. Now lying upside-down in 30 m of water with her hull 5 m beneath the surface, Royal Oak is a designated war grave. Includes 103 Photographs
On 28 June 1914 the Austrian Archduke Franz Ferdinand was assassinated in the Balkans. Five fateful weeks later the Great Powers of Europe were at war. Much time and ink has been spent ever since trying to identify the 'guilty' person or state responsible, or alternatively attempting to explain the underlying forces that 'inevitably' led to war in 1914. Unsatisfied with these explanations, Gordon Martel now goes back to the contemporary diplomatic, military, and political records to investigate the twists and turns of the crisis afresh, with the aim of establishing just how the catastrophe really unfurled. What emerges is the story of a terrible, unnecessary tragedy - one that can be understood only by retracing the steps taken by those who went down the road to war. With each passing day, we see how the personalities of leading figures such as Kaiser Wilhelm II, the Emperor Franz Joseph, Tsar Nicholas II, Sir Edward Grey, and Raymond Poincare were central to the unfolding crisis, how their hopes and fears intersected as events unfolded, and how each new decision produced a response that complicated or escalated matters to the point where they became almost impossible to contain. Devoting a chapter to each day of the infamous 'July Crisis', this gripping step by step account of the descent to war makes clear just how little the conflict was in fact premeditated, preordained, or even predictable. Almost every day it seemed possible that the crisis could be settled as so many had been over the previous decade; almost every day there was a new suggestion that gave statesmen hope that war could be avoided without abandoning vital interests. And yet, as the last month of peace ebbed away, the actions and reactions of the Great Powers disastrously escalated the situation. So much so that, by the beginning of August, what might have remained a minor Balkan problem had turned into the cataclysm of the First World War.
In Confederate Political Economy, Michael Bonner suggests that the Confederate nation was an expedient corporatist state -- a society that required all sectors of the economy to work for the national interest, as defined by a partnership of industrial leaders and a dominant government. As Bonner shows, the characteristics of the Confederate States' political economy included modern organisational methods that mirrored the economic landscape of other late nineteenth-century and early-twentieth-century corporatist governments. Southern leaders, Bonner argues, were slave-owning agricultural capitalists who sought a counterrevolution against northern liberal capitalism. During secession and as the war progressed, they built and reinforced Confederate nationalism through specific centralized government policies. Bolstered by the Confederate constitution, these policies evolved into a political culture that allowed for immense executive powers, facilitated an anti-party ideology, and subordinated individual rights. In addition, the South's lack of industrial capacity forced the Confederacy to pursue a curious manufacturing policy that used both private companies and national ownership to produce munitions. This symbiotic relationship was just one component of the Confederacy's expedient corporatist state: other wartime policies like conscription, the domestic passport system, and management of southern railroads also exhibited unmistakable corporatist characteristics. Bonner's probing research and new comparative analysis expand our understanding of the complex organisation and relationships in Confederate political and economic culture during the Civil War.
THE INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER A SUNDAY TIMES, THE TIMES, ECONOMIST, DAILY TELEGRAPH, EVENING STANDARD, OBSERVER BOOK OF THE YEAR 'Undoubtedly the best single-volume life of Churchill ever written' Dominic Sandbrook, Sunday Times A magnificently fresh and unexpected biography of Churchill, by one of Britain's most acclaimed historians Winston Churchill towers over every other figure in twentieth-century British history. By the time of his death at the age of 90 in 1965, many thought him to be the greatest man in the world. There have been over a thousand previous biographies of Churchill. Andrew Roberts now draws on over forty new sources, including the private diaries of King George VI, used in no previous Churchill biography to depict him more intimately and persuasively than any of its predecessors. The book in no way conceals Churchill's faults and it allows the reader to appreciate his virtues and character in full: his titanic capacity for work (and drink), his ability see the big picture, his willingness to take risks and insistence on being where the action was, his good humour even in the most desperate circumstances, the breadth and strength of his friendships and his extraordinary propensity to burst into tears at unexpected moments. Above all, it shows us the wellsprings of his personality - his lifelong desire to please his father (even long after his father's death) but aristocratic disdain for the opinions of almost everyone else, his love of the British Empire, his sense of history and its connection to the present. During the Second World War, Churchill summoned a particular scientist to see him several times for technical advice. 'It was the same whenever we met', wrote the young man, 'I had a feeling of being recharged by a source of living power.' Harry Hopkins, President Roosevelt's emissary, wrote 'Wherever he was, there was a battlefront.' Field Marshal Sir Alan Brooke, Churchill's essential partner in strategy and most severe critic in private, wrote in his diary, 'I thank God I was given such an opportunity of working alongside such a man, and of having my eyes opened to the fact that occasionally such supermen exist on this earth.'
Most histories of Civil War Texas - some starring the fabled Hood's Brigade, Terry's Texas Rangers, or one or another military figure - depict the Lone Star State as having joined the Confederacy as a matter of course and as having later emerged from the war relatively unscathed. Yet as the contributors to this volume amply demonstrate, the often neglected stories of Texas Unionists and dissenters paint a far more complicated picture. Ranging in time from the late 1850s to the end of Reconstruction, Lone Star Unionism, Dissent, and Resistance restores a missing layer of complexity to the history of Civil War Texas. The authors - all noted scholars of Texas and Civil War history - show that slaves, freedmen and freedwomen, Tejanos, German immigrants, and white women all took part in the struggle, even though some never found themselves on a battlefield. Their stories depict the Civil War as a conflict not only between North and South but also between neighbors, friends, and family members. By framing their stories in the analytical context of the ""long Civil War,"" Lone Star Unionism, Dissent, and Resistance reveals how friends and neighbors became enemies and how the resulting violence, often at the hands of secessionists, crossed racial and ethnic lines. The chapters also show how ex-Confederates and their descendants, as well as former slaves, sought to give historical meaning to their experiences and find their place as citizens of the newly re-formed nation. Concluding with an account of the origins of Juneteenth - the nationally celebrated holiday marking June 19, 1865, when emancipation was announced in Texas - Lone Star Unionism, Dissent, and Resistance challenges the collective historical memory of Civil War Texas and its place in both the Confederacy and the United States. It provides material for a fresh narrative, one including people on the margins of history and dispelling the myth of a monolithically Confederate Texas.
Motorists traveling along State Highway 104 north of Tucumcari, New Mexico, may notice a sign indicating the location of Fort Bascom. The post itself is long gone, its adobe walls washed away. In 1863, the United States, fearing a second Confederate invasion of New Mexico Territory from Texas, built Fort Bascom. Until 1874, the troops stationed at this site on the Eroded Plains along the Canadian River defended Hispanic and Anglo-American settlements in eastern New Mexico and far western Texas against Comanches and other Southern Plains Indians. In Fort Bascom, James Bailey Blackshear presents the definitive history of this critical outpost in the American Southwest, along with a detailed view of army life on the late-nineteenth-century western frontier. Located in the middle of what General William T. Sherman called ""an awful country,"" Fort Bascom's hardships went beyond the army's efforts to control the Comanches and Kiowas. Blackshear shows the difficulties of maintaining a post in a harsh environment where scarce water and forage, long supply lines, poorly constructed facilities, and monotonous duty tested soldiers' endurance. Fort Bascom also describes the social aspects of a frontier assignment and the impact of the Comanchero trade on military personnel and objectives, showing just how difficult it was for the army to subdue the Southern Plains Indians. Crucial to this enterprise were logistics, including procurement from civilian contractors of everything from beef to hay. Blackshear examines the strong links between New Mexican Comancheros and Comanches, detailing how the lure of illegal profits drew former military personnel into this black-market economy and revealing the influence of the Comanchero trade on Southwestern history. This first full account of the unique challenges soldiers faced on the Texas frontier during and after the Civil War restores Fort Bascom to its rightful place in the history of the U.S. military and of U.S.-Indian relations in the American Southwest.
"We can no longer see ourselves as minor spectators or weary watchers of history a fter finishing this astonishing work of nonfiction." --Kiese Laymon, author of Heavy In Down Along with That Devil's Bones, journalist Connor Towne O'Neill takes a deep dive into American history, exposing the still-raging battles over monuments dedicated to one of the most notorious Confederate generals, Nathan Bedford Forrest. Through the lens of these conflicts, O'Neill examines the legacy of white supremacy in America, in a sobering and fascinating work sure to resonate with readers of Tony Horwitz, Timothy B. Tyson, and Robin DiAngelo. When O'Neill first moved to Alabama, as a white Northerner, he felt somewhat removed from the racism Confederate monuments represented. Then one day in Selma, he stumbled across a group of citizens protecting a monument to Forrest, the officer who became the first Grand Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan and whom William Tecumseh Sherman referred to as "that devil." O'Neill sets off to visit other disputed memorials to Forrest across the South, talking with men and women who believe they are protecting their heritage, and those who have a different view of the man's poisonous history. O'Neill's reporting and thoughtful, deeply personal analysis make it clear that white supremacy is not a regional affliction but is in fact coded into the DNA of the entire country. Down Along with That Devil's Bones presents an important and eye-opening account of how we got from Appomattox to Charlottesville, and where, if we can truly understand and transcend our past, we could be headed next.
In 1939, the Gestapo created a list of names: the Britons whose removal would be the Nazis' first priority in the event of a successful invasion. Who were they? What had they done to provoke Germany? For the first time, the historian Sybil Oldfield uncovers their stories and reveals why the Nazis feared their influence. Those on the hitlist - more than half of them naturalised refugees - were many of Britain's most gifted and humane inhabitants. Among their numbers we find the writers E. M. Forster and Virginial Woolf, humanitarians and religious leaders, scientists and artists, the social reformers Margery Fry and Eleanor Rathbone MP, the artists Jacob Epstein and Oscar Kokoschka. By examining these targets of Nazi hatred, Oldfield not only sheds light on the Gestapo worldview; she also movingly reveals a network of truly exemplary Britons: mavericks, moral visionaries and unsung heroes.
A conflict that erupted between Roman legions and some Judaeans in late AD 66 had an incalculable impact on Rome's physical appearance and imperial governance; on ancient Jews bereft of their mother-city and temple; and on early Christian fortunes. Historical scholarship and cinema alike tend to see the conflict as the culmination of long Jewish resistance to Roman oppression. In this volume, Steven Mason re-examines the war in all relevant contexts (such as the Parthian dimension, and Judaea's place in Roman Syria) and phases, from the Hasmoneans to the fall of Masada. Mason approaches each topic as a historical investigation, clarifying problems that need to be solved, understanding the available evidence, and considering scenarios that might explain the evidence. The simplest reconstructions make the conflict more humanly intelligible while casting doubt on received knowledge.
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