Indiana Biography

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  • Books on this page organized alphabetically by last name of subject (as opposed to by author)


Johnny Appleseed and the American Orchard: A Cultural History

William Kerrigan

Johnny Appleseed and the American Orchard illuminates the meaning of Johnny "Appleseed" Chapman's life and the environmental and cultural significance of the plant he propagated. Creating a startling new portrait of the eccentric apple tree planter, William Kerrigan carefully dissects the oral tradition of the Appleseed myth and draws upon material from archives and local historical societies across New England and the Midwest.

The character of Johnny Appleseed stands apart from other frontier heroes like Davy Crockett and Daniel Boone, who employed violence against Native Americans and nature to remake the West. His apple trees, nonetheless, were a central part of the agro-ecological revolution at the heart of that transformation. Yet men like Chapman, who planted trees from seed rather than grafting, ultimately came under assault from agricultural reformers who promoted commercial fruit stock and were determined to extend national markets into the West. Over the course of his life, John Chapman was transformed from a colporteur of a new ecological world to a curious relic of a pre-market one.

248 pp. / 2012 / ISBN 9781421407296 / $25.00
Order no. 1361


David Baker: A Legacy in Music

Monika Herzig

A Living Jazz Legend, musician and composer David Baker has made a distinctive mark on the world of music in his nearly 60-year career—as player (chiefly on trombone and cello), composer, and educator. In this richly illustrated volume, Monika Herzig explores Baker’s artistic legacy, from his days as a jazz musician in Indianapolis to his long-term gig as Distinguished Professor and Chairman of the Jazz Studies department at Indiana University. Baker’s credits are striking: in the 1960s he was a member of George Russell’s “out there” sextet and orchestra; by the 1980s he was in the jazz educator’s hall of fame. His compositions have been recorded by performers as diverse as Dexter Gordon and Janos Starker, the Beaux Arts Trio, the Composer’s String Quartet and the Czech Philharmonic. Featuring enlightening interviews with Baker and a CD of unreleased recordings and Baker compositions, this book brings a jazz legend into clear view.

cloth / 448 pp. / 2011 / ISBN 978-0-253-35657-4 / $29.95
Order No. 2908


Spokesman For Democracy Claude G. Bowers 1878-1958

Peter J. Sehlinger and Holman Hamilton

Spokesman For Democracy Claude G. Bowers 1878/1958

A man from modest beginnings whose talents, ideals, ambitions, and limitations led him to positions of prestige and influence as a journalist, orator, political advisor, historian, and diplomat.

cloth / 358 pp. / 2000 / ISBN 0-87195-145-2 / $29.95 $17.97
Order No. 2237




Political Warrior: the Life and Times of L. Keith Bulen

Stanley A. Huseland

Political Warrior tells the story of a driven, controversial, and successful Republican leader--L. Keith Bulen--who helped awaken in the 1960s a sleepy Indianapolis, regenerate the GOP, and launch such political careers as Dick Lugar, Mitch Daniels, John Mutz, Bill Ruckelshaus, and Bill Hudnut.  Drawing on 66 interviews with both friends and adversaries, Huseland sprinkles this exhaustive biography with more than 40 sidebar anecdotes that capture the foibles of a political leader obsessing to make a difference.

cloth / 388 pp. / 2006 / ISBN 0-9726273-8-3 / $30.00
Order No. 2646


Homer E. Capehart: A Senator's Life

William Pickett

Homer E. Capehart: A Senator's Life

Homer E. Capehart’s life is a remarkable success story. Lacking any formal education beyond high school, Capehart was a self-made millionaire by the 1930s. Turning to politics, he made a career out of opposition to big government and support for an anti-interventionist foreign policy.

cloth / 243 pp. / 1990 / ISBN 0-87195-054-5 / $19.95
Order No. 2005




Locomotive to Aeromotive: Octave Chanute and the Transportation Revolution

Simine Short

French-born and self-trained civil engineer Octave Chanute designed America's two largest stockyards, created innovative and influential structures such as the Kansas City Bridge over the previously "unbridgeable" Missouri River, and was a passionate aviation pioneer whose collaborative approach to aeronautical engineering problems encouraged other experimenters, including the Wright brothers. Drawing on rich archival material and exclusive family sources, Locomotive to Aeromotive is the first detailed examination of Chanute's life and his immeasurable contributions to engineering and transportation, from the ground transportation revolution of the mid-nineteenth century to the early days of aviation. Aviation researcher and historian Simine Short brings to light in colorful detail many previously overlooked facets of Chanute's professional and personal life.
cloth / 360 pp. / 2011 / ISBN 9780252036316 / $49.95
Order No. 2876


Schuyler Colfax: The Changing Fortunes of a Political Idol

Willard H. Smith

Indiana Historical Collections 33

A Whig editor in South Bend who became a congressman and vice president of the United States.

cloth / 475 pp. / 1952 / ISBN 1-885323-12-3 / $6.50
Order No. 4075


James Dean: Rebel with a Cause

Wes D. Gehring

James Dean: Rebel with a Cause

For too long, Gehring argues, Dean has been totally confused with the troubled teenager he played in movies, most powerfully in the classic Rebel with a Cause (1955). The real Dean was a hardworking actor equipped with a clear agenda for success. The biography examines how Dean consciously posed as an angst-ridden youth. “Indeed,” notes Gehring, “it was easily his greatest and most sustained acting job.”

cloth / 323 pp. / 2005 / ISBN 0-87195-181-9 / $19.95
Order No. 2539



Eugene V. Debs: Citizen and Socialist

Nick Salvatore

In this classic book, Nick Salvatore offers a major reevaluation of Eugene V. Debs, the movements he launched, and his belief in American Socialism as an extension of the nation's democratic traditions.
"This is biography at its best."  --Eric Foner for the History Book Club
"In this stunning book, Salvatore sets Debs firmly within the central traditions of United States political and social history and depicts, as never before, the triumph and tragedy that characterized the socialist leader's personal and public life."  --American Historical Review

paper / 2007 / 480 pp / 978-0252074523 / $28.00
Order no. 1109


Valor: The American Odyssey of Roy Dominguez

Rogelio Dominguez

The son of Hispanic immigrants, Rogelio "Roy" Dominguez grew up in gang-plagued Gary, Indiana. With strong family support, he managed to beat the odds, graduating with distinction from Indiana University, finishing law school after a rough start, and maturing into a successful attorney and officeholder. Yet there was more in store for Roy. Ready to start a family and embark on a career as a deputy prosecutor, he was stricken with Guillain-Barré syndrome. How he coped with and eventually overcame this debilitating affliction is a compelling part of his story. The experience steeled him to meet future crises with wisdom, perspective, and grit. An inspiring true story, Valor is also a significant and original contribution to the social, ethnic, and political history of Indiana.

cloth / 271 pp. / 2012 / ISBN 9780253002327 / $38.00
Order no. 2976


Picturing Frederick Douglass: An Illustrated Biography of the Nineteenth Century's Most Photographed American

John Stauffer, Zoe Trodd, and Celeste Marie-Bernier

Picturing Frederick Douglass is a work that promises to revolutionize our knowledge of race and photography in nineteenth-century America. Teeming with historical detail, it is filled with surprises, chief among them the fact that neither George Custer nor Walt Whitman, and not even Abraham Lincoln, was the most photographed American of that century. In fact, it was Frederick Douglass (1818–1895), the ex-slave turned leading abolitionist, eloquent orator, and seminal writer whose fiery speeches transformed him into one of the most renowned and popular agitators of his age. Now, as a result of the groundbreaking research of John Stauffer, Zoe Trodd, and Celeste-Marie Bernier, Douglass emerges as a leading pioneer in photography, both as a stately subject and as a prescient theorist who believed in the explosive social power of what was then just a nascent art form. The comprehensive introduction by the authors, along with headnotes for each section, an essay by Henry Louis Gates, Jr., and an afterword by Kenneth B. Morris, Jr.―a direct Douglass descendent―provide the definitive examination of Douglass's intellectual, philosophical, and political relationships to aesthetics. Taken together, this landmark work canonizes Frederick Douglass through a form he appreciated the most: photography.

cloth / 320 pp. / 2015 / 9780871404688 / $47.50
Order no. 1623


Jacob Piatt Dunn, Jr.: A Life in History and Politics, 1855-1924

Ray Boomhower

Jacob Piatt Dunn, Jr.: A Life in History and Politics, 1855-1924

Documenting this historian's work during the 1880s for free public libraries, enacting a new city charter, preserving the language of the Miami Indians, and ensuring the purity of the ballot box.

cloth / 135 pp. / 1997 / ISBN 0-87195-119-3 / $24.95 $14.97
Order No. 2251





The Boy Who Invented Television: A Story of Inspiration, Persistence, and Quiet Passion

Paul Schatzkin

While the great minds of science, financed by the biggest companies in the world, wrestled with 19th century answers to a 20th century problem, Philo T. Farnsworth, age 14, dreamed of trapping light in an empty jar and transmitting it, one line at a time, on a magnetically deflected beam of electrons. Philo Farnsworth was a self-educated farm boy from Rigby, Idaho, when he first sketched his idea for electronic television on a blackboard for his high school science teacher. Six years later, while competitors still struggled with mechanical television systems, Farnsworth successfully demonstrated his invention. He was 21. In 1930, Farnsworth was awarded the fundamental patents for modern television. He spent the next decade perfecting his invention, fighting off challenges to his patents by the giant Radio Corporation of America and defending his vision against his own shortsighted investors who did not share his larger dream of scientific independence. The Boy Who Invented Television traces Farnsworth's "guided tour" of discovery, describing the observations he made in the course of developing his initial invention, and revealing how his unique insights brought him to the threshold of what might have been an even greater discovery-clean, safe, and unlimited energy from controlled nuclear fusion.
296 pp. / 2004 / ISBN 9780976200000 / $16.00 
Order no. 1381


Diana of the Dunes: The True Story of Alice Gray

Janet Zenke Edwards

Diana of the Dunes: The True Story of Alice Gray by Janet Zenke Edwards

In the fall of 1915, Alice Gray traded her life in Chicago for a solitary journey in the remote sand hills of northwest Indiana along Lake Michigan. Living in a fisherman's shack, she measured herself against nature rather than society's rigid conventions. Her audacity so bewitched reporters and a curious public that she became a legend in her own time--she became "Diana of the Dunes." Nearly a century later, the story is still a popular folktale, but questions remain. Who was Alice Gray? Why did this Phi Beta Kappa scholar leave Chicago? What happened to her soul mate, Paul Wilson?  In this first-ever book about Diana of the Dunes, the mystery of Alice Gray is revealed by those who knew her and through new research. Excerpts from her dunes diary are published here for the first time since 1918. In these pages, rediscover the legend of Diana of the Dunes...and learn the truth..

paper / 157 pp. / 2010 / ISBN 978-1-59629-977-1 / $19.99
Order No. 961


Gus Grissom: The Lost Astronaut

Ray Boomhower

Gus Grissom: The Lost Astronaut

In this second volume in the Indiana Historical Society Press’s Indiana Biography Series, Hoosier historian and writer Ray E. Boomhower explores Grissom’s life, from his days as a child playing in the forests of nearby Spring Mill State Park to his service as a combat pilot flying missions against Communist opponents in the skies over Korea. He also delves into the process by which NASA selected its original seven Mercury astronauts, the jostling for position to be the first American in space, and Grissom’s near-fatal Liberty Bell 7 flight that haunted his subsequent space career.

cloth / 393 pp. / ISBN 0-87195-176-2 / $19.95
Order No. 2491


Belief in Providence: a Life of Saint Theodora Guerin

Julie Young

Belief in Providence: a Life of Saint Theodora Guerin

A Belief in Providence: A Life of Saint Theodora Guerin, a youth biography, explores the life of the woman who would become Indiana's first saint.

cloth / 198 pp. / 2007 / ISBN 978-0-87195-255-4 / $17.95
Order No. 2640





Benjamin Harrison

Charles W. Calhoun

Benjamin Harrison

"The closer one looks at Benjamin Harrison, the less he seems to fit the stereotype of Gilded Age governance. In an age when many in public life enshrined selfishness and espoused laissez-faire, Harrison believed that government had a responsibility to act for the public good. A devout Presbyterian, he held a deep conviction that both men and nations are judged by their deeds. The national government, he believed, had an obligation to pursue policies to promote economic growth and equity. In an era when most chief executives deferred to Capitol Hill, Harrison was an engaged legislative president, working closely with Congress to fashion and enact a host of landmark laws. Similarly, he gave close personal attention to foreign affairs. He expanded trade, revitalized the navy, guided the country through a series of crises, and won new respect for America from foreign powers, great and small. The voters denied him reelection, but Harrison nonetheless left to his successors a glimpse of the great potential of presidential energy."

-Charles W. Calhoun

cloth / 206 pp. / 2005 / ISBN 0-8050-6952-6 / $20.00
Order No. 2626


Mr. Jefferson's Hammer: William Henry Harrison and the Origins of American Indian Policy

Robert M. Owens

Mr. Jefferson's Hammer

Owens traces Harrison's political career as secretary of the Northwest Territory, territorial delegate to Congress, and governor of Indiana Territory, as well as his role in military and Indian affairs. Thomas Jefferson, who was president during the first decade of the nineteenth century, found in Harrison the ideal agent to carry out his administration's ruthless campaign to extinguish Indian land titles.

paper / 344 pp. / 2007 / ISBN 9780806141985 / $20.11
Order No. 775




Fifty Years with Father Hesburgh: On and Off the Record

Robert Schmuhl

For over half a century, Robert Schmuhl interviewed and wrote about the Reverend Theodore M. Hesburgh, C.S.C., who served as the president of the University of Notre Dame from 1952 until 1987. Beginning as an undergraduate student during the 1960s, when he covered Hesburgh and Notre Dame for the Associated Press, to 2014 when he conducted his last visit with the frail ninety-seven-year-old priest, Schmuhl maintained a unique relationship with Father Hesburgh. Over time, Hesburgh’s meetings with Schmuhl evolved into a friendship, which is documented in this personal and warmhearted portrait of the man who was for decades considered the most influential priest in America.

cloth / 158 pp. / 2016 / 9780268100896 / $28.00
Order no. 1643


Tony Hinkle: Coach for All Seasons

 Howard Caldwell

Tony HinkleTony Hinkle was the man who shaped Butler University's athletic tradition. He served the institution for nearly half a century as a teacher, coach, and athletic administrator. A Hoosier legend, Hinkle worked from 1934 to 1970 as Butler's head coach of basketball, baseball, and football. But it was for basketball that he gained the most fame, creating the Hinkle System -- a disciplined, high motion offense -- which countless other coaches have emulated. Hinkle's 560 career wins rank him among the NCAA's all-time winningest basketball coaches and his 41 years of coaching service rank sixth on the NCAA's all-time list behind legendary greats such as Phog Allen of Kansas, Ed Diddle of Western Kentucky, and Ray Meyer of DePaul. Based on numerous interviews with Hinkle and his players and associates, Tony Hinkle: Coach for All Seasons is an absorbing account of the life of a remarkable figure in the world of sport.

paper/ 206 pp. / 2011 / ISBN 9780253223333 / $21.95
Order No. 2836


The Hudnut Years in Indianapolis, 1976-1991

William H. Hudnut, III

The Hudnut Years in Indianapolis 1976-1991

During Bill Hudnut’s 16-year tenure as mayor of Indianapolis, the city was transformed from India-No-Place to what has been called the Miracle of the Rust Belt—and much of the credit for this renaissance belongs to Bill Hudnut. Here he reflects on the trials, tribulations, and many successes of his stint as mayor, and invites supporters and critics alike to comment on the Hudnut years. The result is an insider’s look at the politics, personalities, and problems of a major urban center.

cloth / 296 pp. 1995 / ISBN 0-253-32829-2 / $24.95
Order No. 2164


Slander and Sweet Judgment: The Memoir of an Indiana Congressman

Andy Jacobs, Jr.

Slander and Sweet Judgment: The Memoir of an Indiana Congressman

Andy Jacobs, Jr. was in Congress during the 1960s and was known as the "honest Congressman." His outspoken defense of good legislation and his ability to get things done, as well as his strong condemnation of several President's tendencies to get the United States into wasting warfare, make this book a real read. Jacobs has continued to be a leader in the state of Indiana and his humorous and insightful stories on the art of politics have made him well known and this book very interesting.

cloth / 448 pp. / 2000 / ISBN 1-57860-086-3 / $29.95
Order No. 3124



The People's Choice: Congressman Jim Jontz of Indiana

Ray E. Boomhower

The People's Choice: Congressman Jim Jontz of Indiana is the first-ever biography of Jontz. The book examines his remarkable long-shot political career and lifetime involvement in local, state, and national environmental issues. As a liberal Democrat (he preferred the terms progressive or populist) usually running in conservative districts, Jontz had political pundits predicting his defeat in every election only to see him celebrating another victory with his happy supporters, always clad in a scruffy plaid jacket with a hood from high school that he wore for good luck.

cloth / 259 pp. / 2012 / ISBN 9780871952981 / $24.95
Order no. 2960


Finding Granddad's War

 Jeffery Badger

To discover Leo Kavanaugh, the grandfather he never knew, Jeff Badger, armed with only a handful of photographs that his deceased grandfather brought home from WII, set off to find his grandfather's war buddies.

He found and interviewed 32 elderly Army-engineer veterans from his granddad's unit, including his grandfather's four best buddies. Their firsthand accounts created an intimate and honest portrait of their war: the work of an engineering maintenance company working behind the lines to repair equipment for the infantry, retrieving damaged equipment from the front, avoiding German snipers, building bridges in Germany under enemy fire, coping with the death of a best friend. One Jewish GI said the hardest part of the war was the anti-Semitism - not from the Germans, but from his fellow GI "buddies". The author then tracked down the Jewish GI's main antagonist to get his side of the story.

paper / 342 pp. / 2008 / ISBN 9781593313210 / $19.95
Order No. 2857


Eli Lilly: A Life, 1885-1977

James H. Madison

Eli Lilly: A Life, 1885-1977

A man whose philanthropic gifts endowed a cultural legacy for Indiana. A business leader and citizen of Indianapolis and Indiana.

cloth / 342 pp. / 1989 / ISBN 0-87195-047-2 / $32.50
Order No. 2003

paper / 342 pp. / $19.95
Order No. 2597




Abe Lincoln: The Boy Who Loved Books

In a tiny log cabin a boy listened with delight to the storytelling of his ma and pa. He traced letters in sand, snow, and dust. He borrowed books and walked miles to bring them back. When he grew up, he became the sixteenth president of the United States. His name was Abraham Lincoln.

paper / 40 pp. / 2006 / 9781416912682 / $9.00
Order no. 1645 


Lincoln: A Photobiography

Russell Freedman

This Newbery Medal-winning biography of our Civil War president is warm, appealing, and illustrated with dozens of carefully chosen photographs and prints. Russell Freedman begins with a lively account of Abraham Lincoln's boyhood, his career as a country lawyer, and his courtship and marriage to Mary Todd. Then the author focuses on the presidential years (1861 to 1865), skillfully explaining the many complex issues Lincoln grappled with as he led a deeply divided nation through the Civil War. The book's final chapter is a moving account of that tragic evening in Ford's Theatre on April 14, 1865. Concludes with a sampling of Lincoln writings and a detailed list of Lincoln historical sites.

cloth ($20.00)/Order no. 2735

paper ($9.95)/Order no. 2738

"There I Grew Up;" Remembering Abraham Lincoln's Youth

Willia E. Bartelt

"There I Gew Up;" Remembering Abraham Lincoln's Youth"There I Grew Up": Remembering Abraham Lincoln's Indiana Youth reveals, through the words of those who knew him, Abraham Lincoln's humor, compassion, oratorical skills, and thirst for knowledge, and it provides an overview of Lincoln's Indiana experiences, his family, the community where the Lincolns settled, and southern Indiana during the years 1816 to 1830.

cloth / 256 pp. / 2008 / ISBN 978-0-87195-263-9 / $27.95
Order No. 2699



House of Abraham: Lincoln and the Todds, A Family Divided by War

Stephen Berry

House of Abraham: Lincoln and the Todds, A Family Divided by War by Stephen Berry

For all the talk of the Civil War's pitting brother against brother, no book has told fully the story of one family ravaged by that conflict. And no family better illustrates the personal toll the war took than Lincoln's own. Mary Todd Lincoln was one of fourteen siblings who were split between the Confederacy and the Union. Three of her brothers fought, and two died, for the South. Several Todds--including Mary herself--bedeviled Lincoln's administration with their scandalous behavior. Their struggles haunted the president and moved him to avoid tactics or rhetoric that would dehumanize or scapegoat the Confederates. By drawing on his own familial experience, Lincoln was able to articulate a humanistic, even charitable view of the enemy that seems surpassingly wise in our time, let alone his.

In House of Abraham, the award-winning historian Stephen Berry fills a gap in Civil War history, showing how the war changed one family and how that family changed the course of the war.

paper / 255 pp. / 2009 / ISBN 978-0-547-08569-2 / $15.95
Order No. 980

Lincoln the Lawyer

Brian Dirck

Lincoln the LawyerDespite historians' focus on the man as president and politician, Abraham Lincoln lived most of his adult life as a practicing lawyer. It was as a lawyer that he fed his family, made his reputation, bonded with Illinois, and began his political career. Lawyering was also how Lincoln learned to become an expert mediator between angry antagonists, as he applied his knowledge of the law and of human nature to settle one dispute after another. Frontier lawyers worked hard to establish respect for the law and encourage people to resolve their differences without intimidation or violence. These were the very skills Lincoln used so deftly to hold a crumbling nation together during his presidency.

cloth / 244 pp. / 2007 / ISBN 978-0252-03181-6 / $29.95 $17.97
Order No. 2705

Abraham Lincoln: Portrayed in the Collections of the Indiana Historical Society

Harold Holzer

 Abraham Lincoln: Portrayed in the Collections of the Indiana Historical Society

In 2003 the Indiana Historical Society, with a grant from the Lilly Endowment Inc., acquired some eight hundred items from the Jack L. Smith Graphics Collection, the entire Daniel R. Weinberg Lincoln Conspirators Collection, and the one-of-a-kind original collodion wet-plate negative of Alexander Gardner's iconic photograph of Lincoln taken only days before the 1863 Gettysburg Address. These collections were added to the some three hundred major pieces of Lincolniana, including a handwritten page from the future president's childhood sum book, which the Society already owned.
The Smith Collection includes contemporary and later images of Lincoln with his family, generals, and cabinet members. Also included are political cartoons, illustrated sheet music, and book and newspaper illustrations of the period. The Weinberg Collection consists of photographs, manuscripts, books, pamphlets, and newspapers relating to the trial and execution or imprisonment of the Lincoln assassination conspirators.

cloth / 263 pp. / 2006 / ISBN 978-0-87195-201-1 / $49.95
Order No. 2637

Abe Lincoln Grows Up

Carl Sandburg

Abe Lincoln Grows Up by Carl Sandburg

A beautifully told story of young Abraham Lincoln's coming-of-age.
Drawn from the early chapters of Carl Sandburg's Pulitzer Prize-winning biography, Abraham Lincoln: The Prairie Years, this is the story of Abraham Lincoln's childhood. Growing up poor on the family farm, Abe did chores, helped his father cut down trees, and expertly skinned animals and cured hides. As a young man, he became an avid reader. When he witnessed a slave auction while on a flatboat trip down the Mississippi, he was forever changed--and so was the future of America. This is the remarkable story of Lincoln's youth, early America, and the pioneer life that shaped one of our country's greatest presidents.

paper / 222 pp. / 1926 / ISBN 978-0-15-602615-4 / $6.00
Order No. 954  Temporarily Out of Stock


Abraham Lincoln: The Prairie Years and The War Years

Carl Sandburg

Abraham Lincoln: The Prairie Years and The War Years by Carl Sandburg

Originally published in six volumes, Sandburg’s Abraham Lincoln was called “the greatest historical biography of our generation.” Sandburg distilled this work into one volume that became the definitive life of Lincoln.

paper / 762 pp. / 1954 / ISBN 0-15-602752-3 / $26.00
Order No. 965


Lincoln's Melancholy: How Depression Challenged a President and Fueled His Greatness

Joshua Wolf Shenk

Lincoln's Melancholy: How Depression Challenged a President and Fueled His Greatness by Joshua Wolf Shenk

In this astonishing and illuminating book, Joshua Wolf Shenk reveals the deep melancholy that pervaded Abraham Lincoln's life and its influence on his mature character. Mired in personal suffering as a young man, Lincoln forged a hard path toward mental health. His coping strategies and depressive insight ultimately helped the sixteenth president find the strength that he, and America, needed to overcome the nation's greatest turmoil. Drawing on seven years of research, Shenk offers a nuanced, revelatory perspective on Lincoln and his legacy.

paper / 350 pp. / 2005 / ISBN 978-3-618-77344-2 / $14.95
Order No. 982

Lincoln's Youth: Indiana Years, 1816-1830

Louis A. Warren

Lincoln's Youth: Indiana Years, 1816-1830

Lincoln's Indiana years are highly formative, occupying the long interval between early childhood and young manhood.

cloth / 320 pp. / 1959, reprinted 2002 / ISBN 0-87195-062-6 / $24.95
Order No. 2408

paper / 320 pp. / 1959, reprinted 2002 / ISBN 0-87195-063-4 / $16.95
Order No. 2407


The Life of Lincoln: Video & Interactive Group Learning Tools

The Life of Lincoln: Video & Interactive Group Learning Tools

Focuses on Abraham Lincoln’s life from his early days to his assassination and its aftermath. Activities include interpreting primary sources such as Lincoln photographs and political cartoons, analyzing Lincoln speeches, studying the Civil War, and other research activities. 3-disk set includes 50 minute video, interactive DVD, and 79 page downloadable teachers guide.

DVD / 2005/$16.95
Order No. 2548



Shade of the Raintree: The Life and Death of Ross Lockridge, Jr.

Larry Lockridge

Raintree County, the first novel by Ross Lockridge, Jr., was the publishing event of 1948. Excerpted in Life magazine, it was a Book-of-the-Month Club Main Selection, won MGM's Novel Award and a movie deal, and stood at the top of the nation's bestseller lists. Unfortunately, Lockridge's first novel was also his last. Two months after its publication the 33-year-old author from Bloomington, Indiana, took his own life. His son Larry was five years old at the time. Shade of the Raintree is Larry’s search for an understanding of his father's baffling act. In this powerfully narrated biography, Larry Lockridge uncovers a man of great vitality, humor, love, and visionary ambition, but also of deep vulnerability. The author manages to combine a son's emotional investments with a sleuth's dispassionate inquiry. The result is an exhilarating, revelatory narrative of an American writer's life. With a new preface by the author, this 2014 paperback edition marks 100 years since the birth of Ross Lockridge, Jr.

2014 / 544 pp / 9780253012982 / $25.00
Order No. 1497


Richard D. Lugar: Statesman of the Senate

John T. Shaw

Two-time chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Richard G. Lugar has been one of the most widely respected foreign policy experts in Congress for over three decades. In this illuminating profile, John T. Shaw examines Lugar’s approach to lawmaking and diplomacy for what it reveals about the workings of the Senate and changes in that institution. Drawing on interviews with Lugar and other leading figures in foreign policy, Shaw chronicles Lugar's historic work on nuclear proliferation, arms control, energy, and global food issues, highlighting the senator’s ability to influence American foreign policy in consequential ways. The book presents Lugar’s career as an example of the role Congress can play in the shaping of foreign policy in an era of a strong executive branch. It demonstrates the importance of statesmanship in contemporary American political life while acknowledging the limitations of this approach to governance.

cloth / 280 pp. / 2012 / ISBN 9780253007117 / $28.00
Order no. 2974


Maclure of New Harmony

Leonard Warren

Maclure of New Harmony

Maclure of New Harmony follows the twists and turns of William Maclure's intriguing life. A native Scotsman, Maclure (1763–1840) became a merchant, made a fortune, and retired in his early thirties. Then his life became interesting. Fascinated by the study of geology, Maclure did fieldwork throughout Europe before traveling to the United States, where he completed the first geological survey of his adopted nation and published a detailed, color geological map—one reason he is known as the Father of American Geology.

cloth / 343 pp. / 2009 / ISBN 978-0-35326-9 / $27.95
Order No. 2756



Paul V. McNutt and the Age of FDR

Dean Kotlowski

In this major biography of an important politician and statesman, Dean Kotlowski presents the life of Paul V. McNutt, a great understudied figure in the era of FDR. McNutt was governor of Indiana, high commissioner to the Philippines (while serving he helped 1,300 Jews flee Nazi Germany for Manila), head of the WWII Federal Security Agency, and would-be presidential candidate. Paul V. McNutt and the Age of FDR explores McNutt’s life, his era, and his relationship with Franklin Roosevelt. It sheds light on the expansion of executive power at the state level during the Great Depression, the theory and practice of liberalism as federal administrators understood it in the 1930s and 1940s, the mobilization of the American home front during World War II, and the internal dynamics of the Roosevelt and Truman administrations. McNutt’s life underscores the challenges and changes Americans faced during an age of economic depression, global conflict, and decolonialization.

cloth / 600 pp. / 2015 / 9780253014689 / $45.00
Order no. 1638


Steve McQueen: The Great Escape

Wes D. Gehring

Steve McQueen: The Great Escape by Wes D. Gehring

Nationally known film historian Wes D. Gehring explores how McQueen rose from his days as a troubled youth into one of Hollywood's top box-office stars of the 1960s and 1970s, and how he attempted to ease the lives of other troubled youth.

cloth / 272 pp. / 2009 / ISBN 978-0-87195-279-0 / $19.95
Order No. 923



Mellencamp: American Troubadour

David Masciotra

Throughout his prolific career, John Mellencamp has performed more than twenty Top 40 hits, has been nominated for thirteen Grammy Awards, and has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Hits like "Jack and Diane," "Small Town," and "Cherry Bomb" are iconic American songs that have played an important role in defining midwestern music and developing the rock genre. Despite his critical and commercial success, however, the rough guy from a small town writing songs about everything he "learned about living" is often omitted from the ranks of America's songwriting elite. his thoughtful analysis highlights four decades of the artist's music, which has consistently elevated the dignity of everyday people and honored the quiet heroism of raising families and working hard. This first serious biography of the legendary musician will charm fans and music enthusiasts who are interested in the development of roots rock and Americana music.

cloth / 2015 / 288 pp / 9780813147338 / $35.00
Order No. 1553


The Queen of American Agriculture: A Biography of Virginia Claypool Meredith

Fred Whitford

Virginia Claypool Meredith's role in directly managing the affairs of a large and prosperous farm in east-central Indiana opened doors that were often closed to women in late-nineteenth century America. Her status allowed her to campaign for the education of women in general and rural women in particular. While striving to change society's expectations for women, she also gave voice to the important role of women in the home. A lifetime of dedication made Virginia Meredith the most remarkable woman in Indiana and the Queen of American Agriculture. Meredith was also an integral part of the history of Purdue University. She was the first woman appointed to serve on the university's board of trustees, had a residence hall named in her honor, and worked with her adopted daughter, Mary L. Matthews, in creating the School of Home Economics, the predecessor of today's College of Consumer and Family Sciences. Virginia Claypool Meredith was a woman well ahead of her times and left a legacy for the women of Indiana and the nation.

434 pp. / 2008 / ISBN 9781557535122 / $39.95
Order no. 1209


Surviving Hell: The Journey of a WWII POW in the Pacific, 1942-1945

Lt. Col. William D. Miner

Surviving Hell is a harrowing account of Lieutenant Colonel William Miner, taken prisoner for 39 months after his unit surrendered to the Japanese on the island of Cebu, Philippines, during World War II. Despite losing every friend in his unit and suffering from torture and deprivation that would warp men's souls, Bill Minor professed, "I am lucky. People fell beside me and people were blown apart beside me. Anywhere I went as a prisoner, I tried to be aware of the situation and use it the best I could to survive." This fascinating and arresting true story features excerpts from Bill Minor's personal prison diary, which he kept despite the accompanying risk of torture or even death, along with photos and post-war recollections.

paper / 292 pp. / 2010 / ISBN 9781596527683 / $19.95
Order No. 2862


Sherman Minton

Linda C. Gugin and James St. Clair

Sherman Minton

Authors Gugin and St. Clair explore the forces and events that shaped Minton's political style and judicial character. Chief among the influences on Minton were his southern Indiana roots, his childhood adversity, his attraction to populism and its foremost proponent, William Jennings Bryan, and his involvement in the partisan politics of Indiana. Out of this mixture was born a political philosophy that was neither liberal nor conservative, but pragmatic. As both New Deal senator and Cold War justice Minton acted in harmony with his long-held views of democracy. From an early age Minton longed to be in public service. The road to this goal, however, as the authors chronicle, was marked with detours and bumps. But Minton, drawing upon the strength acquired during the difficulties of his youth, was doggedly determined. His fascinating journey, therefore, stands as an inspirational testimony to will and perseverance. Minton's life, too, is testimony to the value of wit and humor.

cloth / 370 pp. / 1997 / ISBN 0-87195-116-9 / $29.95
Order No. 2216


Meredith Nicholson: A Writing Life

Ralph D. Gray

 Meredith Nicholson: A Writing Life

The first biography on writer Meredith Nicholson (1866–1947), an important figure in Indiana's "Golden Age" of literature, which extended roughly from 1880 to 1920. He was one of the "Big Four" writers—with James Whitcomb Riley, George Ade, and Booth Tarkington. Nicholson authored twenty-eight books.

cloth / 282 pp. / 2007 / ISBN-978-0-87195-257-8 / $19.95
Order No. 2659



A Meredith Nicholson Reader

Ralph D. Gray

 A Meredith Nicholson Reader

This is an introduction to the writings of one of the so-called Big Four in Indiana's Golden Age of Literature.  Meredith Nicholson, however, is the least known of that quartet, which includes James Whitcomb Riley, Booth Tarkington, and George S. Ade.  Nicholson (1866-1947) was a talented, versatile, and remarkably prolific writer.  This reader is designed to restore writings by Nicholson to bookshelves in homes, schools, and public libraries, and revive memories of the man himself in the people of the state and nation that he loved so deeply.

paper / 354 pp. / 2007 / ISBN 978-1-4343-2151-0 / $21.99
Order No. 2676 


Legacy of a Governor: The Life of Indiana's Frank O'Bannon

Andrew E. Stoner, Foreword by Judy O'Bannon

Legacy of a Governor: The Life of Indiana's Frank O'Bannon

"I reasoned if a book was to be written about Frank, it must be researched by someone who understands the complexities of policies and sees government service as a unique calling for public service. Frank's story needed to be recounted by a person who shared Frank's commitment to servant leadership in today's world. Andrew Stoner is that writer. He felt comfortable and confident that he knew and understood Frank O'Bannon, the public and private person. He was trained and experienced in his research and his writing. The greatest strength Stoner brought to the book's creation was his ability to connect with people in the private interviews he had with family, friends and others involved over the years with Frank. His writing brought back so much that had gotten pushed aside in my mind by more current and immediate pressures. Legacy of a Governor captured quotes and revealed events and people I had never known well."

-Judy O'Bannon

paper / 445 pp. / 2006 / ISBN 1-60008-017-0 / $19.95
Order No. 2616

cloth / 445 pp. / 2006 / ISBN 1-60008-012-X / $24.95
Order No. 2617


Bill Peet: An Autobiography

Bill Peet

"Fans who grew up with any of Peet's more than 30 books--Pamela the Camel; Zella, Zack and Zodiac; Chester the Worldly Pig among them--or with any of the Disney movies he worked on--such as Cinderella, Dumbo, Pinocchio, 101 Dalmatians--will welcome this inside look at the creative process. Peet wryly tells the story of his life, from his boyhood in Indianapolis to his years working at the Disney studios. He started as an "in-betweener," who had the "tedious, painstaking job of adding hundreds of drawings in between hundreds of other drawings to move Donald or Mickey from here to there." The job lasted until the day a stack of Donald Duck drawings caused Peet to run from the office, shouting "NO MORE DUCKS!!! NO MORE LOUSY DUCKS!" Promoted to the story department, he was often the imaginative force behind ideas for which story editors claimed credit in front of Walt Disney; his work at the studio lasted 27 years, during which time his children's book career took off. Readers will come away with a Peet's-eye view of the Depression, and also of the drudgery and politicking of office life--and he completely demystifies the glamour side of working in Hollywood. The illustrations--samples from his Disney sketches and pictures of him involved in nearly every facet of human experience--offer a humorous guide to adult life that readers of all ages will surely respond to. Toward the end, Peet spells out for readers what he believes has been the course of his life, and these pages are a little too baldly introspective compared to what has come before. Nevertheless, he offers an ebullient invitation to survey his life, a dip into an inkpot of entertaining facts. And the format could inspire a whole new kind of autobiography--since an illustrator "thinks" visually, using pictures to tell his life story seems positively inspired."  -Publisher's Weekly

paper / 192 pp. / 1994 / 9780395689820 / $18.50
Order no. 1625


The Midas of the Wabash: A Biography of John Purdue

Robert C. Kriebel

A biography of noted businessman John Purdue (1802-1876), whose donations of time and money led to the founding of Indiana's land grant university, Purdue University, in 1869. Purdue also contributed to economically-important bridge, railroad, and cemetery construction, the existence of the Lafayette Savings Bank and the Battle Ground Collegiate Institute, cattle farming, Lafayette's public school system, and countless other worthy enterprises. To date, there has been no published full-length study of Mr. Purdue's life and work beyond casual street talk that portrayed Purdue as a difficult individual with whom to work. This biography incorporates research efforts by previous writers with facts gleaned from newspaper coverage, official documents, and a few rare samples of Mr. Purdue's letters. In this way, a complete picture of the man and myth is generated.

paper / 182pp. / 2012 / ISBN 9781557532879 / $14.95
Order No. 2952


The Soldier's Friend: A Life of Ernie Pyle

Ray E. Boomhower

To the millions of Americans on the home front during World War II, Ernie Pyle’s column in newspapers across the country offered a foxhole view of the struggle as he reported on the life and death of the average soldier. When he died, Pyle’s popularity and readership was worldwide, with his column appearing in 400 daily and 300 weekly newspapers.

cloth / $17.95
Order No. 2624


Ernie Pyle's War: A Documentary on Ernie Pyle World War II Correspondent

Produced by Todd Gould, WFYI Productions, and the Indiana Historical Society

Ernie Pyle’s War traces the life and works of one of the most popular American writers of the 20th century. This documentary features rare, historic film and photographs, as well as revealing interviews with historians, veterans and others who knew and served with Pyle including Walter Cronkite, Andy Rooney and Charles Osgood.

DVD / 30 minutes / 2012 / $19.95
Order No. 1521




The Brilliant Bandit of the Wabash: The Life of the Notorious Outlaw Frank Rande

Mark Dugan

The Brilliant Bandit of the WabashThis fast-paced biography tells the violent story of a man who had delusional dreams of becoming a celebrated desperado along the lines of Jesse James or his hero, Sam Hildebrand, yet he was ultimately forgotten by history. In the latter part of the 1870s, Charles Scott, alias Frank Rande, made headlines across Illinois, Iowa, Indiana, and Missouri for his murderous crime spree and publicity-seeking bravado. But, unlike the dime novel heros he idolized, Rande did not die in a blaze of gunsmoke; rather, he was captured, tried for murder, sentenced to life in prison, and found hanged in a lonely prison cell in Joliet Penitentiary. Dugan and Vasconcelles delved deep into old newspaper archives, state prison records, and other archival material to recreate Rande's brief, brutal career, chasing his faint trail through nearly four decades, multiple aliases, and several states. Rounding out this raw tale of a most heinous criminal, The Brilliant Bandit of the Wabash features dozens of compelling historical images, including Rande's self-commissioned publicity photos and macabre excerpts of his original poetry that had been published in newspapers of the day. This engaging volume is sure to fascinate fans of outlaws and the Old West, as well as those interested in learning more about this previously untold chapter in Midwestern history.

cloth / 219 pp. / 2010 / ISBN 978-0-8758042-4-8 / $22.95
Order No. 2689


Just Call Me Orville

Robert W. Topping

Based on extensive interviews and archival research, this book traces the career of Orville Redenbacher, the “popcorn king,” from his agricultural studies at Purdue University to his emergence as an American advertising icon. Born in Brazil, Indiana, in 1907, Orville began his lifelong obsession with the development of new strains of seed at Purdue, where he earned a degree in agronomy while also playing in the All-American Marching Band. After experimenting with thousands of varieties, Orville and his partner Charlie Bowman launched Orville Redenbacher’s Gourmet Popping Corn in 1970. Through a combination of shrewd marketing and a notably superior product, the partners controlled a third of the market for popping corn by 1976, when their Chester Hybrids business was sold to Hunt Wesson Foods. While the company gradually became absorbed into the food giant ConAgra, Orville Redenbacher prospered as a larger-than-life brand spokesperson and a symbol of wholesomeness and fun until his death in 1995.

paper / 182 pp. / 2011 / ISBN 9781557535955/ $16.95
Order No. 2950


At Home With Ernie Pyle

Owen V. Johnson, Editor

As anyone who has read his legendary WWII reporting knows, Ernie Pyle had an uncanny ability to connect with his readers, seeking out stories about the common people with whom he felt a special bond. A master of word painting, Pyle honed the skills that would win him a 1944 Pulitzer Prize for his battlefront reporting by traveling across America, writing columns about the people and places he encountered. At Home with Ernie Pyle celebrates Pyle’s Indiana roots, gathering for the first time his writings about the state and its people. These stories preserve a vivid cultural memory of his time. In them, we discover the Ernie Pyle who was able to find a piece of home wherever he wandered. By focusing on his family and the lives of people in and from the Hoosier state, Pyle was able to create a multifaceted picture of the state as it slowly transformed from a mostly rural, agrarian society to a modern, industrial one. Here is the record of a special time and place created by a master craftsman, whose work remains vividly alive three quarters of a century later.

cloth / 424 pp. / 2016 / 9780253019059 / $30.00
Order no. 1585


James Whitcomb Riley: A Life

Elizabeth J. Van Allen

James Whitcomb Riley:  A Life

An investigation of the overwhelming popularity of the poet at the turn of the century and his importance as a cultural figure and definer of his times.

cloth / 352 pp. / 1999 / ISBN 0-253-33591-4 / $29.95
Order No. 2230





Spacewalker: My Journey in Space and Faith as NASA’s Record-Setting Frequent Flyer

Jerry L. Ross and John Norberg

The majority of the book is an insider’s account of the US Space Shuttle program, including the unforgettable experience of launch, the delights of weightless living, and the challenges of constructing the International Space Station. Ross is a uniquely qualified narrator. During seven spaceflights, he spent 1,393 hours in space, including 58 hours and 18 minutes on nine space walks. Life on the ground is also described, including the devastating experiences of the Challenger and Columbia disasters.

For readers who have followed the space program from Mercury through the International Space Station and wonder what comes next, this book provides fascination; for young people interested in space exploration and reaching for their dreams, whatever they might be, this book provides inspiration. Full of stories of spaceflight that few humans have ever experienced, told with humor and honesty, Spacewalker presents a unique perspective on the hard work, determination, and faith necessary to travel beyond this world.

320 pp. / 2013 / ISBN 9781557536310 / $29.95
Order no. 1370


Fighting for Equality: A Life of May Wright Sewall

Ray E. Boomhower

A biography aimed at young readers, Fighting for Equality showcases Sewall's important contributions to the history of Indianapolis, Indiana, the United States, and the world. A woman who had the "organizing touch," Sewall helped to establish such Indianapolis institutions as the Girls' Classical School, the Indianapolis Woman's Club, the Contemporary Club, the Art Association of Indianapolis (today known as the Indianapolis Museum of Art), and the Indianapolis Propylaeum.

cloth / 160 pp. / 2007 / ISBN 978-0-87195-253-0 / $17.95
Order No. 2675



John Small of Vincennes: Gunsmith on the Western Frontier

Jim Dresslar and Jeff Jaeger

The aim of this book is to make known the life and work of a master craftsman - a master artist - John Small of  Vincennes, Indiana. This book represents the product of a labor of love by three individuals over a thirty-year period.

cloth / 120 pp. / 2012 / ISBN 0965103927 / $49.95
Order No. 2945



House of the Singing Woods: The Life and Work of T.C. Steele

Rachel Berenson Perry

First published in 1966, and now available for Indiana's 2016 bicentennial, this account of the life and work of T.C. Steele, one of Indiana's most renowned artists, includes a new essay on the life of his second wife, Selma Neubacher Steele by Hoosier art authority Rachel Bereson Perry. This revised edition of what has become a classic of the painter's life and career includes approximately seventy-five Steele paintings from the Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites, Indiana Museum of Art, Indiana University Art Museum, and private collections. The book also includes original text by Selma Steele ("The House of the Singing Winds"), Theordore L. Steele, the painter's grandson ("The Life"), and former director of the John Herron Art Museum, Wilbur Peat ("The Work").

cloth / 236 pp. / 2016 / 9780871953988 / $39.95
Order no. 1587



Donald T. Critchlow


Studebaker automobiles are now history, but the company, which produced distinguished cars that still enjoy a loyal following, left a mark on community, employees, and the corporate consciousness.

cloth / 228 pp. / 1997 / ISBN 0-253-33065-3 / $39.95
Order No. 2188





Thomas Taggart: Public Servant, Political Boss, 1856-1929


James Philip Fadely

Thomas Taggart: Public Servant, Political Boss 1856-1929

Biography of one of Indiana's legendary political figures and most successful early entrepreneurs who came from a humble immigrant background to become one of the state's wealthiest men.

cloth / 267 pp. / 1997 / ISBN 0-87195-115-0 / $27.95
Order No. 2208





Major: A Black Athlete, a White Era, and the Fight to Be the World's Fastest Human Being

Todd Balf

MajorMajor is the gripping story of a superstar nobody saw coming--a classic underdog, aided by an unlikely crew:  a disgraced fight promoter, a broken ex-racer, and a poor upstate girl from New York who wanted to be a queen. It is also the account of a fierce rivalry that would become an archetypal tale of white versus black in the 20th century.  Most of all, it is the tale of our nation's first black sports celebrity-- a man who transcended the handicaps of race at the turn of the century to reach the stratosphere of fame.


cloth / 306 pp. / 2008 / ISBN 978-0-307-23658-6 / $24.00
Order No. 2684 - out of stock
paper / 320 pp. / 2009 / ISBN 978-0307236593 / $14.00
Order No. 788


Colonel Dick Thompson: The Persistent Whig

Charles Roll

Indiana Historical Collections 30

Served as a legislator from Lawrence County, in Congress with Abraham Lincoln, and was Secretary of the Navy in the cabinet of President Rutherford B. Hayes.

cloth / 315 pp. / 1948 / ISBN 1-885323-11-5 / $10.00
Order No. 4011


And So It Goes: Kurt Vonnegut: A Life

Charles J. Shields

While millions know Vonnegut as a counterculture guru, antiwar activist, and satirist of American culture, few outside his closest friends and family knew the full arc of his extraordinary life. And So It Goes changes that, painting the portrait of a man who made friends easily but always felt lonely, sold millions of books but never felt appreciated, and described himself as a humanist but fought with humanity at large. As a former public relations man, Vonnegut crafted his image carefully―the avuncular, curly-haired humorist―though he admitted, "I myself am a work of fiction." The extremely wide and overwhelmingly positive review coverage for And So It Goes has been nothing less than extraordinary and confirm it as the definitive biography of Kurt Vonnegut.

paper /  515 pp. / 2012 / 9781250012180 / $17.99
Order no. 1581

Kurt Vonnegut: Letters

Introduction by Dan Wakefield

This extraordinary collection of personal correspondence has all the hallmarks of Kurt Vonnegut’s fiction. Written over a sixty-year period, these letters, the vast majority of them never before published, are funny, moving, and full of the same uncanny wisdom that has endeared his work to readers worldwide. Vonnegut’s unmediated observations on science, art, and commerce prove to be just as inventive as any found in his novels—from a crackpot scheme for manufacturing “atomic” bow ties to a tongue-in-cheek proposal that publishers be allowed to trade authors like baseball players. (“Knopf, for example, might give John Updike’s contract to Simon and Schuster, and receive Joan Didion’s contract in return.”) Taken together, these letters add considerable depth to our understanding of this one-of-a-kind literary icon, in both his public and private lives. Each letter brims with the mordant humor and openhearted humanism upon which he built his legend. And virtually every page contains a quotable nugget that will make its way into the permanent Vonnegut lexicon.

paper /  480 pp. / 2014 / 9780385343763 / $20.00
Order no. 1579

We Never Danced Cheek to Cheek: The Young Kurt Vonnegut in Indianapolis and Beyond

Majie Alford Failey

We Never Danced Cheek to CheekKurt Vonnegut’s hometown of Indianapolis affected his life and writing in significant ways, from settings in books to viewpoints and speech patterns. Certainly his attitude towards his hometown and state evolved. Vonnegut went through phases of appreciation for his home and high school in nostalgic moments to distrust and distaste for everything Hoosier at moments when he felt his writing had been rejected.

Hawthorne’s new release We Never Danced Cheek to Cheek: The Young Kurt Vonnegut in Indianapolis and Beyond by Majie Failey is a journey through the life of this member of the Class of 1940—with all of its carefree existence and its abrupt graduation into war. This book by one of Kurt’s lifelong, closest friends digs deeply into intimate moments, days, and years of the famous writer’s youth. Here are stories and photos never before seen from scrapbooks, issues of the Shortridge Echo where Kurt was an editor, childhood art and writing pieces, journals from his Owls Club road trips to the far west and Florida, and insights into his family. And beyond high school, this is the story of the consistent, kind concern of this Pulitzer-Prize winning author for his old friends, the support he gave as the Class of ’40 all grew older, and bittersweet moments as he himself confided his concerns over career and aging to his friends.

Paper / 160 pp. / 2010 / ISBN 978-0-9841456-8-3 / $18.00

Order No. 2877


On Her Own Ground: The Life and Times of Madam C.J. Walker

A'Lelia Bundles

On Her Own Ground is the first full-scale, definitive biography of Madam C. J. Walker—the legendary African American entrepreneur and philanthropist—by her great-great-granddaughter, A'Lelia Bundles. On Her Own Ground is not only the first comprehensive biography of one of recent history's most amazing entrepreneurs and philanthropists, it is about a woman who is truly an African American icon. Drawn from more than two decades of exhaustive research, the book is enriched by the author's exclusive access to personal letters, records and never-before-seen photographs from the family collection. Bundles also showcases Walker's complex relationship with her daughter, A'Lelia Walker, a celebrated hostess of the Harlem Renaissance and renowned friend to both Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston. In chapters such as “Freedom Baby,” “Motherless Child,” “Bold Moves” and “Black Metropolis,” Bundles traces her ancestor's improbable rise to the top of an international hair care empire that would be run by four generations of Walker women until its sale in 1985. Along the way, On Her Own Ground reveals surprising insights, tells fascinating stories and dispels many misconceptions.

paper / 416 pp. / 2001 / 9780743431729 / $17.99
Order no. 1584


The Sword and the Pen: A Life of Lew Wallace

Ray E. Boomhower

The Sword and the Pen: A Life of Lew Wallace

The ups and downs of Lew Wallace’s amazing days are told in this new biography for young readers. Written by award-winning Hoosier historian and author Ray E. Boomhower, The Sword and the Pen: A Life of Lew Wallace includes numerous photographs and illustrations of Wallace and the people he met and events he participated in during his lifetime.

The son of an Indiana governor, Wallace became passionate about books and combat. He tried to win lasting fame though service for the Union cause on the battlefield during the Civil War, but instead won honor and glory through a quieter pastime: writing. His novel Ben Hur: A Tale of the Christ became one of the country’s best loved books and was made into two successful Hollywood films.

At various times in his life, Wallace also was a lawyer, an Indiana state senator, vice president of the court-martial that tried the conspirators behind the assassination of President Lincoln, governor of New Mexico Territory during the days of outlaw Billy the Kid, and a diplomat who represented the United States in Turkey.

Wallace dreamed always of glory and lived a life full of adventures, triumphs, and tragedies. He remains one of the most colorful and important figures in the Hoosier State's history.

cloth / 176 pp. / 2005 / ISBN 0-87195-185-1 / $15.95
Order No. 2573


View from the State House: Recollections and Reflections, 1961-1965

Matthew E. Welsh

Indiana Historical Collections 54

Democrat Governor Welsh relates how he campaigned and was elected (with a separately elected Republican lieutenant governor). A valuable book for students of Indiana government and for anyone who is thinking about going into politics or government service.

cloth / 290 pp. / 1981 / ISBN 1-885323-55-7 / $24.95
Order No. 4091

paper / 290 pp. / reprint 1992 (1981) / ISBN 1-885323-32-8 / $16.95
Order No. 4092


Herman B Wells: The Promise of the American University

James H. Capshew

Energetic, shrewd, and charming, Herman B. Wells was the driving force behind the transformation of Indiana University—which became a model for American public higher education in the 20th century. A person of unusual sensitivity and a skilled and empathetic communicator, his character and vision shaped the structure, ethos, and spirit of the institution in countless ways. Wells articulated a persuasive vision of the place of the university in the modern world. Under his leadership, Indiana University would grow in size and stature, establishing strong connections to the state, the nation, and the world. His dedication to the arts, to academic freedom, and to international education remained hallmarks of his 63-year tenure as President and University Chancellor. Wells lavished particular attention on the flagship campus at Bloomington, expanding its footprint tenfold in size and maintaining its woodland landscape as new buildings and facilities were constructed. Gracefully aging in place, he became a beloved paterfamilias to the IU clan. Wells built an institution, and, in the process, became one himself.

cloth / 488 pp. / 2012 / ISBN 9780253357205 / $35.00
Order No. 2932

Being Lucky: Reminiscences and Reflections

Herman B Wells

In this absorbing autobiography, Herman B Wells, the legendary former president of Indiana University, recalls his small-town boyhood, the strong influence of his parents, his pioneering work with Indiana banks during the Great Depression, and his connection with IU, which began as a student when the still provincial school had fewer than 3,000 students. At the end of his 25-year tenure as president, IU was a university with an international reputation and a student body that would soon exceed 30,000. Both lighthearted and serious, Wells's reflections describe in welcome detail how he approached the job, his observations on administration, his thoughts on academic freedom and tenure, his approach to student and alumni relations, and his views on the role of the university as a cultural center. Being Lucky is a nourishing brew of the memories, advice, wit, and wisdom of a remarkable man.

paper / 493 pp. / 2012 / ISBN 9780253006134 / $25.00
Order no. 2973


The Quiet Hero: The Life of Ryan White

Nelson Price

In 1985 the eyes of the world turned to the Hoosier State and the attempt by Ryan White, a thirteen-year-old Kokomo, Indiana, teenager, to do what seemed to be a simple task—join his fellow classmates at Western Middle School in Russiaville, the school to which his Kokomo neighborhood was assigned.
Ryan White, however, had been diagnosed with AIDS from contaminated blood-based products used to treat his hemophilia. His wish to return to school was met with close to hysteria by members of the school board, parents, and teachers alike.
White won the right to return to school, but with concessions. At school, White became the target of slurs and lies, and his locker was vandalized. Although the White family received support from citizens and celebrities around the world, the situation grew so bad in Kokomo that they moved to Cicero, Indiana—a community that greeted them with open arms.

2015 / 151 pp / 9780871953070 / $17.95
Order No. 1515


Wendell Willkie: Hoosier Internationalist

James H. Madison

Indiana's Wendell Willkie burst upon the national political scene in 1940 when, apparently out of nowhere, he won the Republican nomination for the presidency and ran against Franklin Roosevelt. After his defeat, he traveled widely and returned to write ÂOne World, which had a tremendous impact on the then-isolationist United States. "There was about him," the ÂNew York Times editorialized, "a warm and winning sincerity... a natural straightforwardness which left untouched no one who knew him." These essays by a distinguished group of historians recognize one of the state's most famous native sons and reassess his impact on history one hundred years after his birth.

1992 / 184 pp / 9780253336194 / $28.95
Order No. 1501


Robert Wise: Shadowlands

Wes D. Gehring

Wes D. Gehring explores Wise’s life from his days in the Hoosier State to the beginning of his movie career at RKO studios working as the editor of Orson Welles’s classic movie Citizen Kane. Wise is best known for producing and directing two of the most memorable movie musicals in cinema history, West Side Story (co-director Jerome Robbins) and The Sound of Music, for which he won four Academy Awards—two Best Picture and Best Director Oscars. But, as Gehring notes, other than Howard Hawks, Wise was arguably Hollywood’s most versatile director of various celebrated genre films. For example, his roots in horror go back to a tutelage under the great producer Val Lewton, with Wise directing Boris Karloff’s chilling The Body Snatcher (1945) for Lewton. Years late Wise brilliantly adapted a Shirley Jackson novel as a homage to Lewton, The Haunting (1963). No less a horror aficionado than Stephen King later gave both Jackson’s novel (originally entitled The Haunting of Hill House) and the film his highest praise in his nonfiction study of horror, Danse Macabre

cloth / 322 pp. / 2012 / ISBN 9780871952967 / $24.95
Order No. 2938

Hardwood Glory: A Life of John Wooden

Barbara Olenyik Morrow

Foreword by UCLA Basketball Coach Steve Alford

John Wooden helped define college basketball in the twentieth century and became an icon of American sports. His name is forever identified with the University of California, Los Angeles, where in the 1960s and 1970s he built a basketball dynasty and coached Bruin teams to unprecedented success: ten national championships in twelve years, seven national titles in a row, four perfect seasons, and an eighty-eight-game winning streak all NCAA men's records that remain unrivaled. In this tenth volume of the Indiana Historical Society Press's celebrated Youth Biography Series, Barbara Olenyik Morrow traces the path of Wooden s career. Full of archival photos, this biography also shows how Wooden s story is inseparable from major events and social currents in the twentieth century, from the Great Depression to civil-rights struggles to campus unrest during the Vietnam War.

cloth / 256 pp / 2014 / 978-0871953612 / $17.95
Order No. 1520

Biographies Featuring More Than One Person

The Dean's Bible: Five Purdue Women and their Quest for Equality

Angie Klink

Like pearls threaded one-by-one to form a necklace, five women successively nurtured students on the Purdue University campus in America’s heartland during the 1930s to 1990s. Individually, each became a legendary dean of women or dean of students. Collectively, they wove a sisterhood of mutual support in their common—sometimes thwarted—pursuit of shared human rights and equality for all.

While focused on changing attitudes on one college campus, The Deans’ Bible sheds light on cultural change in America as a whole, exploring how each of the deans participated nationally in the quest for equality. The story rolls through the “picture-perfect,” suppressive 1950s; explores the awakening 1960s of women’s liberation; describes the challenging 1980s, with AIDS and alcohol epidemics; and sails into the twenty-first century as a United States Coast Guard cutter is named after Dorothy Stratton and commissioned by First Lady Michelle Obama.

As each woman succeeded the other, forming a five-dean friendship, they knitted their bond with a secret symbol—a Bible. Originally possessed by Purdue’s first part-time Dean of Women Carolyn Shoemaker, the Bible was handed down from dean to dean with favorite passages marked. The lowercase word “bible” is often used in connection with reference works or “guidebooks.” The Deans’ Bible is just that, brimming with stories of courageous women who led by example and lived their convictions.

 504 pp. / 2014 / ISBN 9781557536761 / $29.95
Order no. 1373

Divided Paths, Common Ground

Angie Klink

In the early 1900s, Mary Matthews and Lella Gaddis forged trails for women at Purdue University and throughout Indiana. Mary was the first dean of the School of Home Economics. Lella was Indiana's first state leader of Home Demonstration. In 1914, Mary hired Lella to organize Purdue's new Home Economics Extension Service. According to those who knew them, Lella was a "sparkler" who traveled the state instructing rural women about nutrition, hygiene, safe water, childcare, and more. "Reserved" Mary established Purdue's School of Home Economics, created Indiana's first nursery school, and authored a popular textbook. Both women used their natural talents and connections to achieve their goals in spite of a male-dominated society. As a land grant institution, Purdue University has always been very connected to the American countryside. Based on extensive oral history and archival research, this book sheds new light on the important role female staff and faculty played in improving the quality of life for rural women during the first half of the twentieth century. It is also a fascinating story, engagingly told, of two very different personalities united in a common goal.

paper / 249 pp. / 2011 / ISBN 9781557535917 / $16.95
Order No. 2948

Heartland Serial Killers

Richard Lindberg

Lindberg, an accomplished local historian and true crime writer, presents a fascinating story of two contemporaneous serial killers, both weaving marriage and murder in and around Chicago during the 1890s and 1900s. Johann Hoch was a debonair bigamist and wife killer who boasted of having perfected a “scientific technique” to romance and seduction. Belle Gunness was a nesting “Black Widow” whose sprawling farm in Northwest Indiana was a fatal lure for lonely bachelors seeking the comforts of middle-age security by answering matrimonial advertisements placed by Gunness.
Notorious in his own day, Hoch had faded into the dark background of Chicago crime history. But, in Heartland Serial Killers, Lindberg brings back vividly the horrors of one of Chicago’s first celebrity criminals and uncovers new evidence of a close connection between Hoch and H.H. Holmes, the “Devil in the White City.” Unlike Hoch, Belle Gunness, likely the most prolific and infamous female serial killer of the 20th century, has remained fascinating to the public. Here, Lindberg presents the most comprehensive and compelling study of the Gunness case to date, including new information regarding ongoing DNA testing of remains found at the site of Gunness’s farm in LaPorte, Indiana, which may serve to resolve once and for all the mystery surrounding Gunness’s death.

cloth / 274 pp. / 2011 / ISBN 9780875804361 / $28.95
Order No. 2868

Indiana's 200: The People Who Shaped the Hoosier State

Linda C. Gugin and James E. St. Clair (editors)

This volume recognizes the people who made enduring contributions to the state of Indiana in its 200-year history. Written by historians, scholars, biographers, and independent researchers, the biographical essays will enhance the public s knowledge and appreciation of those who made a difference in the lives of Hoosiers, the country, and even the world. While the essays contain standard biographical information, emphasis is placed on what these people accomplished and the resulting impact of their lives on the state and elsewhere.

Subjects profiled in the book include individuals from all fields of endeavor: law, politics, art, music, entertainment, literature, sports, education, business/industry, religion, science/invention/technology, as well as the notorious.

cloth / 436 pp. / 2015 / 9780871953872 / $39.95
Order no. 1519

Indiana Legends: Famous Hoosiers from Johnny Appleseed to David Letterman

Nelson Price

Indiana Legends: Famous Hoosiers from Johnny Appleseed to David Letterman by Nelson Price

This 4th edition of Indiana Legends features more than 160 famous Hoosiers, with new material and updated profiles. Look for Peyton Manning, Indianapolis Colts quarterback; Mother Theodore Guerin, recently made a saint by the Catholic Church; Reggie Miller, former Indianapolis Pacers star; Jeff Gordon, Nascar champ; Florence Henderson, TV actress; Nancy Noel, artist; Jim Davis, the creator of Garfield; David Wolf, astronaut; and John Mellencamp, musician, among the stars from all fields in this book.

paper / 336 pp. / 2005 / ISBN 1-57860-186-X / $24.99
Order No. 2538


Forgotten Hoosiers: Profiles from Indiana's Hidden History

Fred D. Cavinder

Forgotten Hoosiers: Profiles from Indiana's Hidden History by Fred D. Cavinder

Vowing to overcome the sin of seriousness, Indiana-born humorist Don Herold lived up to his promise. Gifted with a droll sense of humor and a vivid imagination, he was one of the most widely read, if least remembered, Hoosiers. In Forgotten Hoosiers, journalist Fred D. Cavinder presents a collection of biographical sketches charting the lives of noteworthy Hoosiers who have been overlooked, as well as acclaimed figures whose Hoosier origins have been obscured. From Harland David Sanders, the pioneering Kentucky colonel who developed the world-famous chicken franchise, to Samuel G. Woodfill, whom many have called the greatest hero of World War I, Hoosiers - both known and unknown - have continued to make their marks across the country and the world.

paper / 188 pp. / 2009 / ISBN 978-1-59629-746-3 / $19.99
Order No. 960

Gentlemen from Indiana: National Party Candidates,1836-1940

Ralph D. Gray, ed.

Indiana Historical Collections 50

Essays deal with twelve men who ran either for president or vice president of the United States; five were successful in their quests.
William Henry Harrison, George W. Julian, Schuyler Colfax, William H. English, Thomas A. Hendricks, Benjamin Harrison, Charles Warren Fairbanks, John W. Kern, Thomas R. Marshall, J. Frank Hanly, Eugene V. Debs, Wendell Willkie.

cloth / 338 pp. / 1977 / ISBN 1-885323-28-X / $11.00
Order No. 4023

paper 338 pp. 1977 / ISBN 1-885323-29-8 / Close out $3.95
Order No. 4024 

Related issues of The Indiana Historian

paper / ISSN 1071-3301 / $1.00 (1-19 copies); $.30 (20 or more copies)

Gentlemen from Indiana--The Vice Presidents


Gentlemen from Indiana--The Vice Presidents

Introduces Indiana's five vice presidents and describes a "swing state."

12 pp. / 1992
Order No. 7013


Riley on Riley


Riley on Riley

The Hoosier Poet and a superstar of his time!

16 pp. / 1992

Order No. 7031