Let me direct your attention to two of this year’s books from the University of Tennessee Press, both of which I’ve eagerly awaited for some time.
First up is Lincoln Memorial University and the Shaping of Appalachia by Earl Hess, which will place the early history of LMU within the context of what was happening in Appalachia during the crucial late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries and of the Lincoln apotheosis that peaked around the time of the centennial of his birth.
As regulars of the blog know, LMU is my alma mater, and Dr. Hess is one of the people most responsible for setting me on a path toward a career in history. Most readers know him for his acclaimed Civil War studies.
Another book to anticipate is Andrew Johnson’s Civil War and Reconstruction by Paul Bergeron, who spent more than a decade editing and publishing Johnson’s papers and is probably the country’s foremost authority on him. This book promises a more nuanced and balanced appraisal of Johnson than what many histories provide, and may lead to a thorough reassessment of his place in American politics.