Pulitzer Prize-Winner Speaks About Book on Civil War at Westport Library

The book is a griping drama about a mission that changed the course of history.


Few Americans know the true story of the militant idealists who invaded Virginia before the Civil War. Who exactly was John Brown, and what exactly happened at Harpers Ferry? Author, journalist, and Pulitzer Prize-winner Tony Horowitz will speak about his book Midnight Rising: John Brown and the Raid That Sparked the Civil War on Thursday, October 18, at 7:30 pm in the Westport Library’s McManus Room. Books will be available for purchase and signing at the event, which is free and open to the public.

The book is a griping drama about a mission that changed the course of history. Late on the night of October 16, 1859, John Brown launched a surprise raid on the slave-holding South. Leading a biracial band of militant idealists, he seized the massive armory at Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, freeing and arming slaves, acts which ultimately ruptured the union between the North and the South.

"A hard-driving narrative of one of America’s most troubling figures…Horwitz describes the disaster in riveting terms…It’s impossible to read this fine book without thinking about modern-day Browns," said The New York Times Book Review. 

Midnight Rising was named a New York Times Notable Book for 2011, a Library Journal Top Ten Best Books of 2011, and a Boston Globe Best Nonfiction Book of 2011. 

Horwitz also wrote A Voyage Long and StrangeBlue LatitudesConfederates in the Attic, andBaghdad Without a Map. The Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist has worked for The Wall Street Journal and The New Yorker. He lives in Martha's Vineyard with his wife, Geraldine Brooks, and their two sons.


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