Jim Leeke – Matty Boy
Civil War , Youth / August 31, 2015

August 31, 2015 – In our last episode of August, we introduce you to our first History Author Show correspondent: Amanda Read. Amanda Read grew up across the States and overseas as an Army brat before her family settled on Fair Hill Farms in Alabama. She graduated from Troy University Magna Cum Laude in 2013 with a Bachelor of Science in History and a minor in Political Science. She’s done voice-over work on previous shows, performing dramatic readings from war diaries and the letters of First Lady Dolley Madison. Amanda has a love of old fashioned things, from dipping pens to vintage dresses. She even dresses her horse in period tack. She is passionate about two historical figures in particular: Isaac Newton and Harvey Wiley. Keep up with Amanda’s wide range of work at AmandaRead.com, LukeHistorians.com, or on Twitter @SincerelyAmanda. While we’re meeting Amanda, we also enjoy her first interview: A chat with Jim Leeke, author of Matty Boy: A Civil War Novel for Young Readers. Amanda seemed perfect for this conversation. She not only counts both Ulysses S. Grant and Robert E. Lee as ancestors, but she’s the eldest of nine children. We’ll also hear from Jim Leeke again…

Jane Singer – Lincoln’s Secret Spy
American Presidents , Civil War / August 24, 2015

August 24, 2015 – “What is worse? A confederate con man claiming he was Lincoln’s spy throughout the Civil War, or the Union veteran who pursed his claim all the way to the Supreme Court?” That’s the central question of Jane Singer’s book, Lincoln’s Secret Spy: The Civil War Case that Changed the Future of Espionage. In it, she introduces us to William Alvin Lloyd. Con man, bigamist, charlatan, Lloyd hobbled out of the defeated Confederacy and into the capital of the newly re-United States with a claim that made people listen: The government owed him money for serving as Abraham Lincoln’s covert operative. John Wilkes Booth had shot down the Great Emancipator just a month earlier in April 1865, and couldn’t refute the story. So, armed with Lincoln’s signature on a travel pass and a skill for duping people — including no less than Secretary of War Edwin Stanton, who was at the president’s side when he died — Lloyd teamed up with lawyer Enoch Totten, who’d served in the Union Army during the conflict. The story of their conspiracy to defraud the American people is brought to us by my guest, Jane Singer, and her co-author, John Stewart….