Publisher: W W Norton & Co. Inc.
Release Date: 1972
Book Description: Walter Lord—author of such best-sellers as A Night to Remember and A Day of Infamy—brings to life the remarkable events of what we now call The War of 1812—including the burning of Washington and the attack on Baltimore's Fort McHenry that inspired the Francis Scott Key to write what would become our national anthem. Lord gives readers a dramatic account of how a new sense of national identity emerged from the smoky haze of what Francis Scott Key so lyrically called "the dawn's early light."
WC's Review: Award winning Walter Lord, author of "A Night to Remember" and other historic masterpieces, writes of the "climatic shaping of 'the land of the free' during the hazardous events of 1814 in Washington, Baltimore, and London." James Monroe, as Secretary of War, is both foolish and magnificent, Dolley Madison, wife of President James Madison, who actually fought in the war, has the presence of mind to rescue the portrait of George Washington before abandoning the White House, the numerous British generals, who show a degree of compassion in battling Washington, DC, while giving no quarter in their intended destruction of Baltimore, and Francis Scott Key, not only known for his writing of our national anthem, shows resolve in floating down the Patapsco to offer a truce.
America's second war of independence, is detailed in the minds and thoughts of those who were there. When reading great historic description, one cannot help but wonder whether the United States today would engage in such determination to preserve our freedoms from tyranny.
About the Author: Walter Lord (1917–2002) was an acclaimed and bestselling author of literary nonfiction best known for his gripping and meticulously researched accounts of watershed historical events. Born in Baltimore, Lord went to work for the Office of Strategic Services during World War II. After the war’s end, Lord joined a New York advertising firm, and began writing nonfiction in his spare time. His first book was The Fremantle Diary (1954), a volume of Civil War diaries that became a surprising success. But it was Lord’s next book, A Night to Remember(1955), that made him famous. The bestseller caused a new flurry of interest in the Titanic and inspired the 1958 film of the same name. Lord went on to use the book’s interview-heavy format as a template for most of his following works, which included detailed reconstructions of the Pearl Harbor attack in Day of Infamy (1957), the battle of Midway in Incredible Victory (1967), and the integration of the University of Mississippi in The Past That Would Not Die (1965). In all, he published a dozen books.