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Unsolved Mysteries of American History: An Eye-Opening Journey through 500 Years of Discoveries, Disappearances, and Baffling Events Kindle Edition

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Length: 225 pages

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

In a collection of 30 articles, Unsolved Mysteries of American History takes some of the most notable quandaries of the American past and tries to offer some solid answers, or at least alternate explanations. Paul Aron takes on the serious ("Why did Truman drop the bomb?") as well as the frivolous ("Did Babe Ruth call his shot?"). The book is written to entertain, but Aron provides a bibliography for further reading at the end of each essay, and steers readers to heavier tomes if they wish to dig deeper into the various subjects.

From Library Journal

Aron, a reporter for the Virginia Gazette, presents here his findings on significant "mysteries" of America's past. He briefly examines 30 controversial questions in chronological order, ranging from "When did the first people arrive in America?" to "What did Reagan know about Iran-contra?" Though he does not claim to provide definitive answers, he offers evidence for both sides of every issue. Each chapter ends with a bibliography. Perhaps the most interesting question tackled is "How did Davy Crockett die?"; Aron strongly suggests that Crockett surrendered at the Alamo rather than fighting to his death there. The author's simple, straightforward style is suitable for junior-high level and above. This volume is comparable to Richard Shenkman's Legends, Lies, and Cherished Myths of American History (Morrow, 1988). Recommended for public libraries.?Norman Malwitz, Queens Borough P.L., Great Neck, N.Y.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Product Details

  • File Size: 4941 KB
  • Print Length: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley (October 6, 1998)
  • Publication Date: September 22, 1997
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0028N5WD2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #606,449 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Paul Aron is Director of Publications at The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. Previously he was a reporter for The Virginia Gazette, executive editor at Simon and Schuster, and editor at Doubleday.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Yolanda S. Bean VINE VOICE on June 28, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Aron has selected thirty of America's historical mysteries, ranging from the discovery of America to the 1980s. It's an interesting collection that covers the controversy that sometimes caused an event to be considered a "mystery" and in a brief summary, Aron covers both sides or multiple theories, depending on the topic. Each essay first presents the topic, and then offers the solutions and in many cases, an opinion on which solution is the most likely scenario for solving the mystery. Because each essay is quite brief, this is more of an introduction to each topic, with nothing really in-depth offered. What is especially helpful, though, is that each essay ends with a suggested reading list, making it easy to continue onward in your research if a particular topic captures your fancy. It is definitely an interesting collection, and one that is particularly well-suited to picking it up for a few minutes at a time over a period of time, rather than curling up and reading the entire thing in one sitting.
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 7, 1999
Format: Paperback
Does not try to force pet answers to vast historial questions, but gives the readers a good foundation for thought and further study. As a high school history teacher I would want my students to step into something like this; rather than the water down junk in most texts.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Anne M. Hunter VINE VOICE on June 5, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this as a gift for my elderly history-buff father, thinking that it might be light and short enough for him to read and enjoy. The moment I opened it to check if it would indeed be an appropriate gift I was enthralled, and I ordered up the author's second volume before I was half done. It's a very easy read, with seven-page sections devoted to each "mystery" (really just an historical event of some controversy), followed by references to indicate the orientation of the author. As a former history major, the sections reminded me of what it was like to 'do' history: weighing different accounts, interpretations, and evidence to try to figure out what one thinks actually happened and why. I even read the section on "Pickett's Charge", where I have a marked aversion to the battles of the Civil War. It only took a day to read the book. I'd recommend it to anyone who is interested in knowing how various key events like Pearl Harbor have been understood. The annotated references alone are useful. What one should get from the book is some understanding of how we can never truly know the past with great certainty.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By cooperandre on January 28, 2008
Format: Paperback
Impartial presentation of unsolved mysteries of American history, the author gives all comparative points of view as well as utmost current revisionist views of unsolved history. I especially enjoyed the fact that at the end of each subject the author gives you a list of additional research for each subject, as this book contains 30 subjects and lightly give the reader a brief scenario of each topic, not nearly as in-depth as some may like but enough to provoke further research. The author has done a very fine job of compiling the facts of each event and presenting them with in the timeline of history.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 13, 1999
Format: Hardcover
This book gives all of its readers a very interesting and in depth veiw of the major events that have shaped America's History. even if you dont know abot all of the events that are included within its pages, it is stil very intriuging. I would say that if if American History floats your boat give this book a read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Ann E. Nichols on May 6, 2015
Format: Hardcover
These are the 30 mysteries covered in <i>Unsolved Mysteries of American History</i>:

First emigration to America
Leif Ericsson discovery
Anasazi cities abandoned
Where Columbus first landed
Conquering the Aztecs
Lost colony of Roanoke
Pocahontas and John Smith
Salem witch hunts
Daniel Boone a traitor?
Benedict Arnold
Sally Hemmmings and Thomas Jefferson
Meriwether Lewis -- suicide or murder?
Andrew Jackson's wife a bigamist?
Davy Crockett's death
Pickett's charge at Gettysburg
Wounded Knee
Destruction of the <i>Maine</i>
Sacco and Vanzetti -- guilty or not?
the Lindbergh Baby
Babe Ruth calling his World-Series-winning home run
Amelia Earhart
Pearl Harbor
the atomic bombing of Hiroshima
the Rosenbergs -- guilty or not?
Kennedy assassination
the Gulf of Tonkin battle
Malcom X assassination
the Kent State killings
Nixon and Watergate
Reagan and Iran-Contra

Each chapter has an illustration (a reproduction of a document, drawings, or photo), and a bibliography. It's sourly amusing to note that political tactics haven't changed much: Thomas Jefferson and Tom Paine are trying to pull down the government in one political cartoon. (I'm not sure which one is drawn as Satan.) Andrew Jackson is depicted as a king in another. (I don't remember learning that his enemies saw Jackson as mixed white and African-American when I was in school.)

As for the chapter on the assasination of President Kennedy, it's a pity this book was written before those interesting documentaries showing computer models of the shootings aired on TV. Still, conspiracy theorists will not enjoy the author's conclusions.

I recommend this book to history and mystery lovers.
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