Lies Across America: What American Historic Sites Get Wrong
From the author of the national bestseller Lies My Teacher Told Me, the second myth-busting history book which focuses on the inaccuracies, myths, and lies that can be found at national landmarks and historical sites all across America.
In Lies Across America, James W. Loewen continues his mission, begun in the award-winning Lies My Teacher Told Me, of overturning the myths and misinformation that too often pass for American history. This is a one-of-a-kind examination of sites all over the country where history is literally written on the landscape, including historical markers, monuments, historic houses, forts, and ships. With entries drawn from each of the fifty states, Loewen reveals that:
Lies Across America is a reality check for anyone who has ever sought to learn about America through the nation’s public sites and markers. Entertaining and enlightening, it is destined to change the way American readers see their country.
What people are saying - Write a review
Lies Across America: What Our Historic Sites Get WrongUser Review - Not Available - Book Verdict
A Confederate war memorial in Helena, MT? America's most toppled monument? These are only a couple of the things Loewen discovers during his travels around this highly monumented country. This book ... Read full review
But but but the all serve make some interesting points but there are some areas where he is so radical and subjective his work is a tour propaganda. But if his chapter on confederate general Nathan Bedford Forrest is a case in point. But calling him one of the most vicious to racists in history is really over the top. No one can question the fact that but Nathan Bedford Forrest was an accomplished killer it was said of him that he had 39 forces shot from under him and killed 4080 soldiers, he said he was one of course ahead.
Unlike the author the was born in in the 19th century and desperate poverty in the backwoods of Tennessee with all the violence is and racial and cultural atmosphere of that existed at that time. When he was only a young man his uncle and father were attacked and he defended them in a deadly shootout. He also was shot by one of his own officers but when he upbraided the officer and then and self defense killed him with a knife.
Let's take a couple cases in point first of all Nathan Bedford Forrest had 45 slaves in his personal retinue working teamsters. When it was obvious the war was going to be lost he gave them all papers but of manumission, when asked by a reporter about them he also said of them better confederates never lived."
As for his defeats he had almost none, General Sherman, General Robert E Lee, general PT Beauregard among many others called him the greatest military mind of the war. This is quite a compliment given that Sherman actually have a bounty of $100,000 on his head during the war.
I might add the author is not a historian is a sociologist with little knowledge of the cultural conditions of the 19th century.
As for his vicious racism Nathan Bedford Forreste gave a speech in 1875 convention and BBQ was held by the Independent Order of Pole-Bearers Association at the fairgrounds of Memphis, five miles east of the city. An invitation to speak was conveyed to General Nathan Bedford Forrest, one of the city's most prominent citizens, and one of the foremost cavalry commanders in the late War Between the States. This was the first invitation granted to a white man to speak at this gathering. The invitation's purpose, one of the leaders said, was to extend peace, joy, and union, and following a brief welcoming address a Miss Lou Lewis, daughter of an officer of the Pole-Bearers, brought forward flowers and assurances that she conveyed them as a token of good will. After Miss Lewis handed him the flowers, General Forrest responded with a short speech that, in the contemporary pages of the Memphis Appeal, evinces Forrest's racial open-mindedness that seemed to have been growing in him.
“Ladies and Gentlemen I accept the flowers as a memento of reconciliation between the white and colored races of the southern states. I accept it more particularly as it comes from a colored lady, for if there is any one on God's earth who loves the ladies I believe it is myself. ( Immense applause and laughter.) I came here with the jeers of some white people, who think that I am doing wrong. I believe I can exert some influence, and do much to assist the people in strengthening fraternal relations, and shall do all in my power to elevate every man to depress none. (Applause.) I want to elevate you to take positions in law offices, in stores, on farms, and wherever you are capable of going. I have not said anything about politics today. I don't propose to say anything about politics. You have a right to elect whom you please; vote for the man you think best, and I think, when that is done, you and I are freemen. Do as you consider right and honest in electing men for office. I did not come here to make you a long speech, although invited to do so by you. I am not much of a speaker, and my business prevented me from preparing myself. I came to meet you as friends, and welcome you to the white people. I want you to come nearer to us. When I can serve you I will do so. We have but one flag, one country; let us stand together. We may differ in color
Some Functions of Public History
The Sociology of Historic Sites
Historic Sites Are Always a Tale of Two Eras
Hieratic Scale in Historic Monuments
The Tallest Mountain The Silliest Naming
King Kamehameha I The Roman
The Flat Earth Myth on the West Coast
If Russia Can Do It Why Cant We?
Confining Helen Keller Under House Arrest
Famous Everywhere but at Home
Remember Fort Pillow
Forrest Rested Here
A Confederatekkk Shrine Encounters Turbulence
The Missing Town of Rosewood
The Beech Island Agricultural Club Was Hardly What the Marker Implies
Exploiting vs Exterminating the Natives
China Beach Leaves Out the Bad Parts
Killing a Man Is Not News
Dont Discover Til You See the Eyes of the Whites
No Communists Here
Using Nationalism to Redefine a Troublesome Statue
What We Know and What We Dont Know About Rock Art
Dont Criticize Big Brother
Circle the Wagons Boys Its Tourist Season
Bad Things Happen in the Passive Voice
Calling Native Americans Bad Names
No Confederate Dead? No Problem Invent Them
A Woman Shoulda Done It
Tall Tales in the West
Licking the Corporate Hand That Feeds You
The Footloose Statue
The Oklahoma State History Museum Confederate Room Tells No History
Which Came First Wilderness or Civilization?
No Lesbians on the Landscape
American Indians Only Roved for About a Hundred Years
The Devil Is Winning Six to One
Serving the Cause of Humanity
Red Men Only No Indians Allowed
Domesticating Mark Twain
Not the First Auto
Americas Most Toppled Monument
Coming into Indiana Minus a Body Part
The Invisible Empire Remains Invisible
Putting the He in Hero
Abraham Lincolns Birthplace Cabin Built Thirty Years after His Death
Honoring a Segregationist
Who Menaced Whom?
No Nation Rose So White and Fair None Fell So Free of Crime
The Only Honest Sundown Town in the United States
It Never Got Off the Ground
The Real War Will Never Get into the War Museums
This Building Used to Be a Hardware Store
Men Make History Women Make Wives
Suppressing a Slave Revolt for the Second Time
Mystifying the Colfax Riot and Lying About Reconstruction
The White League Begins to Take a Beating
The Toppled Darky
Let Us Now Praise Famous Thieves
A Black College Celebrates White Racists
To the Loyal Slaves
Who Burned Columbia?
The Last Major Confederate Offensive of the Civil War
The Invisible Slave Trade
The Clash of the Martyrs
One of the Great Female Spies of All Times
Slavery and Redemption
The Liberation of Richmond
Abraham Lincoln Walks Through Richmond
Getting Even the Numbers Wrong
A Sign of Good Breeding
Is California West of the Alleghenies?
Juxtaposing Quotations to Misrepresent a Founding Father
No History to Tell
The Reverse Underground Railroad
Telling Amusing Incidents for the Tourists
George Washingtons Desperate Prayer
Youre Here to See the House
South Carolina Defines the Civil War in 1965
Remember the Splendid Little War Forget the Tawdry Larger Wars
Celebrating Illegal Submarine Warfare
The Pilgrims and Religious Freedom
Making Native Americans Look Stupid
Which George Washington?
John Browns Plaque Puts Blacks at the Bottom
The Union League Club Traitors to Their Own Cause
Selective Memory at uss Intrepid
Omitting the Towns Continuing Claim to Fame
The Problem of the Common
Shards of Minstrelsy on a FarNorth Campus
Local History Wars
Effective Political Leader
Settlement Means Fewer People
Fighting Over the Good Indian
At Last An Accurate Marker
Getting into a Dialogue with the Landscape
APPENDICES a Selecting the Sites
b Ten Questions to Ask at a Historic Site
Twenty Candidates for Toppling