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Award Winners

Penitentiaries, Punishment, and Military Prisons

| Filed under: Award Winners, Civil War Era, Justice Studies, Recent Releases, U.S. History, Understanding Civil War History
Penitentiaries, Punishment, and Military Prisons by Angela M. Zombek. Kent State University Press

Penitentiaries, Punishment, and Military Prisons confronts the enduring claim that Civil War military prisons represented an apocalyptic and ahistorical rupture in America’s otherwise linear and progressive carceral history. Instead, it places the war years in the broader context of imprisonment in 19th-century America and contends that officers in charge of military prisons drew on administrative and punitive practices that existed in antebellum and wartime civilian penitentiaries to manage the war’s crisis of imprisonment. Union and Confederate officials outlined rules for military prisons, instituted punishments, implemented prison labor, and organized prisoners of war, both civilian and military, in much the same way as peacetime penitentiary officials had done, leading journalists to refer to many military prisons as “penitentiaries.”

 


The Insanity Defense and the Mad Murderess of Shaker Heights

| Filed under: Award Winners, History, Recent Releases, Regional Interest, True Crime, True Crime History
The Insanity Defense and the Mad Murderess of Shaker Heights by William L. Tabac. Kent State University Press

They have no witnesses. They have no case. With this blunt observation, Mariann Colby—an attractive, church-going Shaker Heights, Ohio, mother and housewife—bet a defense psychiatrist that she would not be convicted of murder. A lack of witnesses was not the only problem that would confront the State of Ohio in 1966, which would seek to prosecute her for shooting to death Cremer Young Jr., her son’s nine-year-old playmate: Colby had deftly cleaned up after herself by hiding the child’s body miles from her home and concealing the weapon.

 


Discovery and Renewal on Huffman Prairie

| Filed under: Award Winners, History, Nature, Recent Releases, Regional Interest
Discovery and Renewal on Huffman Prairie by David Nolin. Kent State University Press.

In 1903 Orville and Wilbur Wright returned to their hometown of Dayton, Ohio, from North Carolina, where they had piloted their powered flying machine for several short flights. They wanted to continue their research closer to home and chose a flat expanse called Huffman Prairie, eight miles east of Dayton, to continue their experiments. Here, in 1904 and 1905, the brothers refined their machine, creating the world’s first practical powered aircraft.

 


“Our Little Monitor

and | Filed under: Award Winners, Civil War Era, Civil War in the North, Military History, Naval History, Recent Releases, Understanding Civil War History
Our Little Monitor: The Greatest Invention of the Civil War. Holloway and White. Kent State University Press

On March 9, 1862, the USS Monitor and CSS Virginia met in the Battle of Hampton Roads—the first time ironclad vessels would engage each other in combat. For four hours the two ships pummeled one another as thousands of Union and Confederate soldiers and civilians watched from the shorelines. Although the battle ended in a draw, this engagement would change the nature of naval warfare by informing both vessel design and battle tactics. The “wooden walls” of navies around the world suddenly appeared far more vulnerable, and many political and military leaders initiated or accelerated their own ironclad-building programs.

 


Forgotten under a Tropical Sun

| Filed under: Award Winners, Military History, Recent Releases, U.S. History
McCallus cover

Memory has not been kind to the Philippine-American War and the even lesser-known Moro rebellion. Today, few Americans know the details of these conflicts. There are almost no memorials, and the wars remain poorly understood and nearly forgotten.

Forgotten under a Tropical Sun is the first examination of memoirs and autobiographies from officers and enlisted members of the army, navy, and marines during the Spanish, Filipino, and Moro wars that attempts to understand how these struggles are remembered. It is through these stories that the American enterprise in the Philippines is commemorated.

 


Death of an Assassin

| Filed under: Award Winners, Books, Military History, True Crime, True Crime History
Ackerman cover

From the depths of German and American archives comes a story one soldier never wanted told. The first volunteer killed defending Robert E. Lee’s position in battle was really a German assassin. After fleeing to the United States to escape prosecution for murder, the assassin enlisted in a German company of the Pennsylvania Volunteers in the Mexican-American War and died defending Lee’s battery at the Siege of Veracruz in 1847. Lee wrote a letter home, praising this unnamed fallen volunteer defender. Military records identify him, but none of the Americans knew about his past life of crime.

 


Rockne and Jones

| Filed under: Award Winners, Black Squirrel Books, Sports
Rockne and Jones cover

Notre Dame’s rallying cry was once “Win one for the Gipper.” The football series with Army that spawned that memorable slogan has long since faded into history, but every year the Irish continue to face another storied rival to test their mettle. The annual tradition of Notre Dame versus USC lives on. Rockne and Jones tells the story of how the battle with the Trojans began at the height of the turbulent years after WWI that changed the world forever.

 


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