Mr. Gatling's Terrible Marvel: The Gun That Changed Everything and the Misunderstood Genius Who Invented It

Mr. Gatling's Terrible Marvel: The Gun That Changed Everything and the Misunderstood Genius Who Invented It

by Julia Keller


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A provocative look at the life and times of the man who created the original weapon of mass destruction

Drawing on her investigative and literary talents, Julia Keller offers a riveting account of the invention of the world's first working machine gun. Through her portrait of its misunderstood creator, Richard Jordan Gatling-who naively hoped that the overwhelming effectiveness of a multiple-firing weapon would save lives by decreasing the size of armies and reducing the number of soldiers needed to fight-Keller draws profound parallels to the scientists who would unleash America's atomic arsenal half a century later. The Gatling gun, in its combination of ingenuity, idealism, and destructive power, perfectly exemplifies the paradox of America's rise in the nineteenth century to a world superpower.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780143115649
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 05/26/2009
Pages: 320
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.80(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Julia Keller is a Pulitzer Prize–winning write, educator, and former journalist. Schools she has taught at include Princeton University, the University of Notre Dame, and the University of Chicago. She has served four times as a juror for the Pulitzer Prizes, and won a Pulitzer Prize of her own in 2004 for her work with the Chicago Tribune. She is the author of the nonfiction book Mr. Gatling’s Terrible Marvel and several works of fiction.

Table of Contents

Introduction 1

Chapter 1 Cold Beauty 17

Chapter 2 A World of Mornings 53

Chapter 3 Land Of The Second Chance 89

Chapter 4 "Drunkards, Dandies & Loafers" 113

Chapter 5 The Spaces Between the Bullets 141

Chapter 6 "A Little Gatling Music" 173

Chapter 7 "The World's Great Storm" 207

Chapter 8 Warriors And Sages 225

Acknowledgments 245

Notes 247

Bibliography 271

Index 285

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From the Publisher

"This book is a carnival...bursting with colorful characters, uncanny connections, and contagious enthusiasm." —-Debby Applegate, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Most Famous Man in America

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