THE LOST MEMOIR
In 1927, the legendary Lou Gehrig sat down to write the remarkable story of his life and career. He was at his peak, fresh off a record-breaking season with the fabled ‘27 World Series champion Yankees. It was an era unlike any other. Gehrig’s personal remembrances were published that year as popular weekly columns in The Oakland Tribune. Until now, those pages were lost to history.
Lou comes alive in his captivating memoir. It is a heartfelt rags-to-riches tale about a poor kid from New York who grew up to become one of the greatest. He takes us to his childhood home, to Columbia University where he flashed as a prospect, all the way to the dugout at Yankee Stadium where he recounts his first major league hit and bonding with Babe Ruth.
There is a real poignancy to this tale. Built like a heavyweight boxer, “Iron Horse” Lou was one of the most powerful men to play the game. Off the field he was a shy, gentle soul. He would die prematurely from ALS, a degenerative neuromuscular disorder now known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease. Here is Lou back at bat—Hall of Famer, All Star, and MVP. Lou Gehrig is a monument and tribute to a singular life and career.
Field of Corpses
Arthur St. Clair
November 4, 1791, was a black day in American history. General Arthur St. Clair’s army had been ambushed by Native Americans in what is now western Ohio. In just three hours, St. Clair’s force sustained the greatest loss ever inflicted on the United States Army by Native Americans—a total nearly three times larger than what incurred in the more famous Custer fight of 1876. It was the greatest proportional loss by any American army in the nation’s history. By the time this fighting ended, over six hundred corpses littered an area of about three and one half football fields laid end to end. Still more bodies were strewn along the primitive road used by hundreds of survivors as they ran for their lives with Native Americans in hot pursuit. It was a disaster of cataclysmic proportions for George Washington’s first administration, which had been in office for only two years.
FROM THE HALLS OF THE
James L. Freaner is one of the most important unknown Americans in our nation’s history. Freaner gained fame throughout the country during the Mexican War while covering General Winfield Scott’s campaign. As one of America’s first war correspondents, Freaner’s letters appeared in newspapers under the byline “Mustang,” and his reports from the front included information unavailable elsewhere. Among Freaner’s scoops were the publication of complete casualty lists (long before official reports became public), detailed battle descriptions, and observations on postwar Mexico.
Despite his widespread fame as a reporter, Freaner’s greatest contribution to the United States came during a conversation with Nicholas P. Trist, negotiator of the peace treaty with Mexico. After Trist had passed along an outrageous proposal from the Mexican commissioners, he was recalled, but Freaner convinced Trist to ignore the order and begin a new round of negotiations. Trist resumed, concluded the war, and added California, Nevada, Utah, and other territory to a growing country. This acquisition was second in size only to the Louisiana Purchase and was a direct result of James Freaner persuading Trist to brazenly conclude a treaty when he had no authority to do so.
From the Halls of the Montezumas is a complete compilation of Freaner’s Mexican War reporting. Editors Alan D. Gaff and Donald H. Gaff have annotated the text with footnotes identifying people, places, and events, and also have added illustrations of key figures and maps. They supplement Freaner’s dispatches with biographical information that ranges from his early career to his journey to the gold fields of California and his untimely death at the hands of Indians in California in 1852.