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Book Title: The Sangamon (Prairie State Books)|
The author of the book: Edgar Lee Masters
ISBN 13: 9780252060380
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 446 KB
Edition: University of Illinois Press
Date of issue: October 1st 1988
Read full description of the books The Sangamon (Prairie State Books):I'm not usually one to write a review but I felt this book was special enough that it could use some attention. A word of warning: my four star rating is based on nostalgia. This may not be the most entertaining book for someone who hasn't spent a lot of time in central Illinois.
I have a general distaste for what I see when I walk outside my front door every morning, which is other houses and buildings. So naturally I spend my days off exploring the Sangamon as well as other bodies of waters and forests. If anyone questions the beauty of Midwestern scenery visit Allerton park in the spring, yellow as far as the eye can see. Or on the drive to Fox Ridge imagine what the endless fields would have looked like 200 years ago. Edgar Lee Masters talks primarily about a section of the Sangamon I am mostly unfamiliar with. I've been to the area and as an Illinois right of passage seen the Lincoln sights, but I did not linger. This book makes me want to linger. I want to walk the river, visit the old towns, enter the graveyards and see what names I recognize. I want to see what has changed because even as Masters was writing this things were changing. Is the old church still there? Do people still know who Vachel Lindsay is? Do people even care about Anne Rutledge anymore?
Edgar Lee Masters is a defender of the Midwest. He sees the beauty that is hidden in plain sight. He knows the importance of local lore and legend and he knows how important the people are. I did not recognize most of the names in this book but by the end each one seemed just as important to me as they did to Masters. These are the people who helped Lincoln when he got stuck on the Sangamon, carried him to Springfield and then to the White House. It's possible that there would be no Lincoln as we know him without these people.
"The Sangamon" is no "Spoon River." The appeal of this book may not spread too far outside central Illinois. However, if you have any Midwest Illinois pride this book goes well on the shelf next to your Carl Sandburg poems, Devil in the White City book, and your Come On Feel the Illinoise LP.
Read information about the authorEdgar Lee Masters (Garnett, Kansas, August 23, 1868 - Melrose Park, Pennsylvania, March 5, 1950) was an American poet, biographer, and dramatist. He is the author of Spoon River Anthology, The New Star Chamber and Other Essays, Songs and Satires, The Great Valley, The Serpent in the Wilderness An Obscure Tale, The Spleen, Mark Twain: A Portrait, Lincoln: The Man, and Illinois Poems. In all, Masters published twelve plays, twenty-one books of poetry, six novels and six biographies, including those of Abraham Lincoln, Mark Twain, Vachel Lindsay, and Walt Whitman.
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