Biographies of Mary Todd Lincoln

Read all about the tumultuous life of Mary Todd Lincoln, wife of Abraham Lincoln, in these biographies at the Library.

Mrs. Lincoln: A Life
By Catherine Clinton
In this biography, Catherine Clinton draws on important new research to illuminate the remarkable life of Mary Lincoln. Mary Lincoln's story is inextricably tied with the story of America and with her husband's presidency, yet her life is an extraordinary chronicle on its own.

The Lincolns: Portrait of a Marriage
By Daniel Mark Epstein
This fascinating work on the Lincoln marriage by a noted historical biographer sheds new light on both the personal and political lives of one of American history's most important couples.

The Madness of Mary Lincoln
By Jason Emerson
In 2005, historian Jason Emerson discovered a steamer trunk formerly owned by Robert Todd Lincoln's lawyer and stowed in an attic for forty years. The trunk contained a rare find: twenty-five letters pertaining to Mary Todd Lincoln's life and insanity case, letters assumed long destroyed by the Lincoln family. The Madness of Mary Lincoln is the first examination of Mary Lincoln's mental illness based on the lost letters, and the first new interpretation of the insanity case in twenty years.

Mrs. Lincoln and Mrs. Keckly book jacket

Mrs. Lincoln and Mrs. Keckly: The Remarkable Story of the Friendship Between a First Lady and a Former Slave  
By Jennifer Fleischner
A vibrant social history set against the backdrop of the Antebellum south and the Civil War that recreates the lives and friendship of two exceptional women: First Lady Mary Todd Lincoln and her dressmaker, Elizabeth Keckly.

House of Abraham: Lincoln and the Todds, a Family Divided by War
By Stephen Berry
Award-winning historian Berry charts the devastating effects of the Civil War on Mary Todd Lincoln's family, and the surprising impact this struggle had on the president.

The Trials of Mrs. Lincoln: The Harrowing Never-Before-Told Story of Mary Todd Lincoln's Last and Finest Years
By Samuel A. Schreiner, Jr.
This account of Mary Todd Lincoln’s final years, based on documentary evidence, attempts to restore the reputation of one of the most maligned women in American political history.

Mary Todd Lincoln: A Biography 
By Jean H. Baker
This biography of Mary Todd Lincoln beautifully conveys her tumultuous life and times. A privileged daughter of the proud clan that founded Lexington, Kentucky, Mary fell into a stormy romance with the raw Illinois attorney Abraham Lincoln. For twenty-five years the Lincolns forged opposing temperaments into a tolerant, loving marriage. Even as the nation suffered secession and civil war, Mary experienced the tragedies of losing three of her four children and then her husband. An insanity trial orchestrated by her surviving son led to her confinement in an asylum.

Book descriptions provided by BookLetters.

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