Thursday, July 10, 2014

Behind The Scenes In The Lincoln White House, Elizabeth Keckley

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Synopsis: Part slave narrative, part memoir, and part sentimental fiction Behind the Scenes depicts Elizabeth Keckley's years as a slave and subsequent four years in Abraham Lincoln's White House during the Civil War. Through the eyes of this black woman, we see a wide range of historical figures and events of the antebellum South, the Washington of the Civil War years, and the final stages of the war.

Thoughts: I have heard much about the friendship between Mary Todd Lincoln and Elizabeth Keckley, but this was the first time I'd read/listened to a first person account. Mrs. Keckley describes her life as a slave, how she achieved her freedom,moved North, and came to be among the politicians in D.C. as the Civil War began, raged on, and ended. The friendship with Mrs. Lincoln continued after she left the White House and suffered financial troubles. This is one of the few books about Mrs. Lincoln which doesn't dwell on her mental health issues, which was refreshing

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