Book Overviews

2015 Soldiers, Saints and Sinners: Stories of Long Ago

Soldiers, Saints and Sinners: Stories of Long Ago, illustrated by Allison East, is a series of short stories about West Tennessee history, stretching from the pioneer days to more recent times.

The characters in these stories range from Civil War soldiers — and a sniper, “Confederate Long Rifle;” to Lucy Holcombe, the “Sweetheart of the Confederacy;” to a con artist posing as a Baptist preacher, “The Holy Cheat;” to Roscoe Turner, amazing aviator and his pet lion Gilmore, “The Lion Who Flew.”

Imagine Jack Hinson, whose sons were beheaded by Union soldiers, living in a cave over the river, taking aim with his long rifle to kill 36 Union officers. Think about Roscoe Turner who loved his lion so much that when Gilmore grew too big to fly and had to go to a lion farm, Roscoe paid for his upkeep for years. And when he went back to visit the grown lion, he remembered Roscoe and laid his paw on his old friend’s hand.

All the women who fell for “The Holy Cheat’s” handsome face, golden locks and mellifluous voice had plenty to say about the con man from England.

Historic figures include doctors, entrepreneurs, pilots, game wardens, football coaches and musicians.

These true characters laughed, cried, went to war or into business and shaped the history of West Tennessee, and in some instances, the nation and the world.

Take a journey through time in the pages of Soldiers, Saints and Sinners: Stories of Long Ago. You’ll come away with something new to think about, and perhaps you’ll reach the last page saying, “Well, I never knew that!”

2012 Autumn Memories: Recollections of Fall Days Afield.

Paintings by Ralph J. McDonald. Stories by Harbert Alexander.

Autumn Memories is a fitting tribute to fall hunting seasons down South and the perfect showcase for many of wildlife artist Ralph J. McDonald’s finest paintings.

These timeless images of mallards dropping into flooded timber, bob white quail flushing in front of pointers, and mourning doves zipping over sunflower fields enjoy a homecoming amid stories that deepen the art lovers’ appreciation of golden days afield.

Set mostly in the Mid-South, the 25 stories and paintings that combine to form this extraordinary collection of Autumn Memories are filled with the sights and sounds that stir the hunters heart each fall: the game, the landscape, the dogs, the guns, and the friends who share in these outdoor experiences and in the process make them more rewarding.

Though nostalgic, every vignette and image brims with the kind of hope that is renewed each morning in a duck blind and each afternoon in a dove field.

A Collectible available at Burke’s Books on amazon.com for $75 or by contacting the author.

Hardcover: 135 pages
Publisher: Countryside Studio, Inc.; 1 edition (2012)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0988320800
ISBN-13: 978-0988320802
Product Dimensions: 12 x 10 x 1 inches
Shipping Weight: 3 pounds

2004 Old Trails and Tales of Tennessee

Old Trails and Tales of Tennessee takes you on adventures to Randolph, a city that no longer exists. Saddle up with David Crockett as he leaves Tennessee for Texas.

Meet German prisoners of war who were brought to Tennessee to work in the cotton fields.  They didn’t like the heat, humidity and mosquitoes, but they were well fed and enjoyed their years here so much that some came back to Memphis after the war.

Discover the wonders of the world through the life and writings of Richard Halliburton, born in Brownsville, Tennessee in 1900. In 1919, he ran away to work as an ordinary seaman on a freighter bound for England. Graduating from Princeton in 1921, he spent two years traveling the world, crossing the Alps, the Pyrenees and then traveling into Gibraltar, Egypt, India, Tibet into Siam, China, Siberia and Japan. His first book, “The Royal Road to Romance” sold 100,000 copies in the first few months at $5 a copy. Years of adventures later, he and his crew disappeared at sea on a Chinese junk, the Sea Dragon, in 1939.

Whatever happened to Randolph, Tennessee? Once a center of commerce, ideally situated on the Mississippi River and close to the Hatchie River, Randolph shipped more cotton than Memphis and was a steamboat depot. And in 20 years, it faded.

Isham Walker of Spring Creek wanted to create a flying machine called the “Giant Trout,” but Congress and other investors refused to participate, and it was never built.

All of these characters and more shaped our lives not only in West Tennessee, but nationwide and sometimes, worldwide!

Hardcover
Publisher: H. Alexander (2004)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0975373706  ISBN-13: 978-0975373705

2002 Tales of Madison: Historical Sketches on Jackson & Madison County, Tennessee.

Tales of Madison: Historical Sketches on Jackson & Madison County, Tennessee. 2002.

Historical sketches by historian Harbert Alexander tell the story of Jackson, Tennessee and surrounding Madison County. Covers well known figures like Casey Jones along with lesser known inventors, facts about area Native Americans, and Civil War mysteries. Illustrated by Richard Brown.

Hardcover: 224 pages
Publisher: Hillsboro Pr; y First edition edition (October 7, 2002)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1577362659
ISBN-13: 978-1577362654