Mary Lincoln's Insanity Case by Jason Emerson

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Without being tendentious, Mr. Emerson pulls no punches, happily free to do so away from the strictures of academic political correctness and false orthodoxies, as well as distorting ideological hindsight.
-Washington Times

Synopsis

In 1875 Mary Lincoln, the widow of a revered president, was committed to an insane asylum by her son, Robert. The trial that preceded her internment was a subject of keen national interest. In this volume, noted Lincoln scholar Jason Emerson provides a documentary history of Mary Lincoln's mental illness and insanity case, evenhandedly presenting every relevant primary source on the subject to enable a clearer view of the facts. Beginning with documents from the immediate aftermath of her husband's assassination and ending with reminiscences by friends and family in the mid-twentieth century, Mary Lincoln's Insanity Case: A Documentary History compiles more than one hundred letters, dozens of newspaper articles, editorials, and legal documents, and the daily patient progress reports from Bellevue Place Sanitarium during Mary Lincoln's incarceration. Including many materials that have never been previously published, Emerson also collects multiple reminiscences, interviews, and diaries of people who knew Mary Lincoln or were involved in the case, including the first-hand recollection of one of the jurors in the 1875 insanity trial. _x000B__x000B_Suggesting neither accusation nor exoneration of the embattled First Lady, Mary Lincoln's Insanity Case: A Documentary History gives scholars and history enthusiasts incomparable access to the documents and information crucial to understanding this vexing chapter in American history.
 

About Jason Emerson

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Jason Emerson is an independent historian who lives in Fredericksburg, Virginia. He has worked as a U.S. National Park Service historical interpreter at the Lincoln Home National Historic Site, Gettysburg National Military Park, and the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial, and also as a professional journalist and freelance writer. His articles have appeared in "American Heritage, American History, "and" Civil War Times "magazines," Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society, Lincoln Herald, Lincoln Forum Bulletin "and online at the History News Network (hnn.us). He currently is preparing a biography of Robert T. Lincoln, to be published by Southern Illinois University Press in 2009.
 
Published August 27, 2012 by University of Illinois Press. 266 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, War, Professional & Technical, Law & Philosophy. Non-fiction
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Washington Times

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Reviewed by Martin Rubin on Sep 22 2015

Without being tendentious, Mr. Emerson pulls no punches, happily free to do so away from the strictures of academic political correctness and false orthodoxies, as well as distorting ideological hindsight.

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