Tuesday, May 19, 2009


Monday, May 18, Broadmoor Library hosted the History Page Turners Book Club, facilitated by Dr. Cheryl White. This month's tome, Mrs. Lincoln had been touted as a better & new look at the subject by author, Catherine Clinton. Dr. white explained that Clinton had more resources to draw upon than did her predecessor, Ms. Baker(?) 30 yrs. before; that there's a new trove of letters from Mrs. L's asylum yrs. and much more research re the American Civil War. The author believes that Mrs. L's life was defined by the death of her husband; however Dr. White disagrees and pointed to the many traumas this woman suffered and to the fact that she was from a prominent Kentucky family so the war had to have torn apart her family ties. Ms. Clinton does put to rest the notion that Mrs. L. was a Confederate sympathizer & a racist, by citing her as an active Abolitionist influenced by Rev. Sumner, and that her closest friend was Elizabeth Kecklie(?), a black woman from Kentucky. I look forward to reading Baker's book re Mrs. Lincoln and finding one re Eliz. Kecklie..another interesting 19th century woman.

It was a delight to have Dr. White share her scholarship and insights about 19th c.women, Mrs. Lincoln in particular; also to have physicians in the group share their insights as to whether Mrs. L. was bipolar.

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