The Devil In The White City

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The Devil In The White City by Erik Larson Summary

The Chicago World's Fair of 1893 and its amazing 'White City' was one of the wonders of the world. This is the incredible story of its realization, and of the two men whose fates it linked: one was an architect, the other a serial killer. The architect was Daniel H. Burnham, the driving force behind the White City, the massive, visionary landscape of white buildings set in a wonderland of canals and gardens. The killer was H. H. Holmes, a handsome doctor with striking blue eyes. He used the attraction of the great fair - and his own devilish charms - to lure scores of young women to their deaths. While Burnham overcame politics, infighting, personality clashes and Chicago's infamous weather to transform the swamps of Jackson Park into the greatest show on Earth, Holmes built his own edifice just west of the fairground. He called it the World's Fair Hotel. In reality it was a torture palace, a gas chamber, a crematorium. These two disparate but driven men together with a remarkable supporting cast of colourful characters, including as Buffalo Bill, George Ferris, Thomas Edison and some of the 27 million others who converged on the dazzling spectacle of the White City, are brought to life in this mesmerizing, murderous tale of the legendary Fair that transformed America and set it on course for the twentieth century.

The Devil in the White City

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The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson Summary

An account of the Chicago World's Fair of 1893 relates the stories of two men who shaped the history of the event--architect Daniel H. Burnham, who coordinated its construction, and serial killer Herman Mudgett.

Summary of the Devil in the White City

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Summary of the Devil in the White City by Abookaday Summary

Warning This is an independent addition to The Devil in the White City, meant to enhance your experience of the original book. If you have not yet bought the original copy, make sure to purchase it before buying this unofficial summary from aBookaDay. The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America by Erik Larson, published in 2002, is an historical work centered on the Chicago World's Fair of 1893. More specifically, the focus of the author centers on two men and their accomplishments during this pivotal moment in the history of America's new modern era. The first is the chief architect of the fair, Daniel Burnham, whose vision shaped the fair, and by extension, the architectural aesthetic of modern cities more broadly speaking for the generations that followed. His story is one of the power of creation fueled by persistence in the face of obstacles. The second focus of the book is America's first known serial killer, Dr. H. H. Holmes, whose acts of evil during the time of the World's Fair would manifest a destructive power that lived in the shadows of metropolitan anonymity. This review offers a detailed summary of the main themes raised in this historical work. In general the summary follows the structure of the book, which is largely presented in chronological order, alternating between the main historical figures central to the story. However, parts of the summary are presented in an order that deviates slightly from that of the book in order to preserve the continuity and readability of the facts presented. The summary is followed by an analysis. Larson is both an accomplished journalist and historical novelist. He has written four New York Times bestselling books. He has written for The Wall Street Journal and Time Magazine as a staff journalist. He has been a contributing author to The Atlantic, Harper's, and The New Yorker. His academic background includes a bachelors in Russian history, language and culture from the University of Pennsylvania, and a Masters in journalism from Columbia University. Available on PC, Mac, smart phone, tablet or Kindle device. (c) 2015 All Rights Reserved

H. H. Holmes

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H. H. Holmes by Adam Selzer Summary

America's first and most notorious serial killer and his diabolical killing spree during the 1893 World's Fair in Chicago, now updated with a new afterword discussing Holmes' exhumation on American Ripper. H. H. Holmes: The True History of the White City Devil is the first truly comprehensive book examining the life and career of a murderer who has become one of America’s great supervillains. It reveals not only the true story but how the legend evolved, taking advantage of hundreds of primary sources that have never been examined before, including legal documents, letters, articles, and records that have been buried in archives for more than a century. Though Holmes has become just as famous now as he was in 1895, a deep analysis of contemporary materials makes very clear how much of the story as we know came from reporters who were nowhere near the action, a dangerously unqualified new police chief, and, not least, lies invented by Holmes himself. Selzer has unearthed tons of stunning new data about Holmes, weaving together turn-of-the-century America, the killer’s background, and the wild cast of characters who circulated in and about the famous “castle” building. This book will be the first truly accurate account of what really happened in Holmes’s castle of horror, and now includes an afterword detailing the author's participation in Holmes' exhumation on the TV series, American Ripper. Exhaustively researched and painstakingly brought to life, H. H. Holmes will be an invaluable companion to the upcoming Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio movie about Holmes’s murder spree based on Erik Larson’s The Devil in the White City.

Summary and Analysis of The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair That Changed America

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Summary and Analysis of The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair That Changed America by Worth Books Summary

So much to read, so little time? This brief overview of The Devil in the White City tells you what you need to know—before or after you read Erik Larsons book. Crafted and edited with care, Worth Books set the standard for quality and give you the tools you need to be a well-informed reader. This short summary and analysis of The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson includes: Historical context Chapter-by-chapter summaries Detailed timeline of key events Important quotes Fascinating trivia Glossary of terms Supporting material to enhance your understanding of the original work About The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson: The Devil in the White City is the electrifying true story of the 1893 World’s Fair in Chicago—and the serial killer who used it as his hunting ground. Meticulously researched and brimming with fascinating historical details, Larson’s bestselling book is a powerful amalgam of historical narrative and a true crime thriller. The summary and analysis in this ebook are intended to complement your reading experience and bring you closer to a great work of nonfiction.

The Devil in the White City Study Guide

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The Devil in the White City Study Guide by Pembroke Notes Summary

How to Use This Book This book is to be used along with the best-selling book, The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson for anyone who loves history, especially when it is taught in such an engaging and unique way. For Students: The study questions are in order and follow Erik Larson's narrative. Answer the questions as you read the book. The answers at the end of the guide are directed by page numbers. You will enjoy the text more if you wait to answer the questions after you read a chapter completely through first. For Teachers: For Homeschools: In The Devil in the White City, author Erik Larson uses extensive research to recreate the lives of two real men and to reinvent Chicago during the World's Columbian Exposition. In the process, he creates two separate, yet connected plotlines and attempts to fill in some of the gaps left by history. Use your own unique teaching style to supplement Pembroke Notes. With the directives toward increased rigor, I have added a Writing Workshop section to the end of my guide to help with your writing assignments. Your high school students will love this easy guide to help understand this important time in history.

Off the Beaten Page

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Off the Beaten Page by Terri Peterson Smith Summary

Blending literature and travel, this book offers a look at 15 U.S. destinations featured in the works of famous writers. Designed as a guide to help avid bibliophiles experience, in person, the places they've only read about, award-winning journalist Terri Peterson Smith takes readers on lively tours that include a Mark Twain inspired steamboat cruise on the Mississippi, a "Devil in the White City" view of Chicago in the Gilded Age, a voyage through the footsteps of the immigrants and iconoclasts of San Francisco, and a look at low country Charleston's rich literary tradition. With advice on planning stress-free group travel and lit trip tips for novices, this resource also features "beyond the book" experiences, such as Broadway shows, Segway tours, and kayaking, making it a one-of-a-kind reference for anyone who wants to extend the experience of a great read.

Dead Wake

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Dead Wake by Erik Larson Summary

WINNER OF THE 2015 GOODREADS CHOICE AWARDS ‘BEST HISTORY AND BIOGRAPHY’ From the #1 New York Times bestselling author and master of narrative non-fiction comes the enthralling story of the sinking of the Lusitania, published to coincide with the 100th anniversary of the disaster On May 1 1915, a luxury ocean liner as richly appointed as an English country house sailed out of New York, bound for Liverpool, carrying a record number of children and infants. The passengers were anxious. Germany had declared the seas around Britain to be a war zone, and for months, its U-boats had brought terror to the North Atlantic. But the Lusitania was one of the era's great transatlantic 'Greyhounds' and her captain, William Thomas Turner, placed tremendous faith in the gentlemanly strictures of warfare that for a century had kept civilian ships safe from attack. He knew, moreover, that his ship — the fastest then in service — could outrun any threat. Germany, however, was determined to change the rules of the game, and Walther Schwieger, the captain of Unterseeboot-20, was happy to oblige. Meanwhile, an ultra-secret British intelligence unit tracked Schwieger's U-boat, but told no one. As U-20 and the Lusitania made their way toward Liverpool, an array of forces both grand and achingly small — hubris, a chance fog, a closely guarded secret, and more — all converged to produce one of the great disasters of history. It is a story that many of us think we know but don't, and Erik Larson tells it thrillingly, switching between hunter and hunted while painting a larger portrait of America at the height of the Progressive Era. Full of glamour, mystery, and real-life suspense, Dead Wake brings to life a cast of evocative characters, from famed Boston bookseller Charles Lauriat to pioneering female architect Theodate Pope Riddle to President Wilson, a man lost to grief, dreading the widening war but also captivated by the prospect of new love. Gripping and important, Dead Wake captures the sheer drama and emotional power of a disaster that helped place America on the road to war. PRAISE FOR ERIK LARSON ‘Larson is one of the modern masters of popular narrative nonfiction … a resourceful reporter and a subtle stylist who understands the tricky art of Edward Scissorhands-ing narrative strands into a pleasing story … An entertaining book about a great subject, and it will do much to make this seismic event resonate for new generations of readers.’ The New York Tmes ‘[Larson is] a superb storyteller and a relentless research hound’ Time

The Devil in the White City

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The Devil in the White City by Bestsellers - Books USA Press Summary

The Chicago World Fair was the greatest fair in American history. This is the story of the men and women whose lives it irrevocably changed and of two men in particular: an architect and a serial killer. The architect is Daniel Burnham, a man of great integrity and depth. It was his vision of the fair that attracted the best minds and talents of the day. The killer is Henry H. Holmes. Intelligent as well as handsome and charming, Holmes opened a boarding house which he advertised as 'The World's Fair Hotel' Here in the neighbourhood where he was once looked up to by all, he seduced, tortured and murdered young women, incinerating them in the furnace he had built in the basement of his hotel. Salting the narrative are the sad, charming, and funny stories of a supporting cast of other real-life characters including Buffalo Bill, Scott Joplin, Theodore Dreiser and George Ferris, the Pittsburg steel tycoon whose mammoth wheel becomes America's answer to the Eiffel Tower. The interweaving and the juxtaposition of the two men's different 'missions' - one good and one evil - provides the core to a non-fiction suspense drama of the highest order.

The Great Exhibitor

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The Great Exhibitor by Elizabeth Bonython,Anthony Burton Summary

One of the eminent figures of the Victorian era, Henry Cole (1808-1882) was a visionary whose pioneering ideas helped create the magnificent London museum that is now called the Victoria and Albert. With Prince Albert (consort of Queen Victoria), "Old King Cole" also helped to make London's Great Exhibition of 1851 a rousing triumph. Yet Cole's important contributions to cultural history have largely been forgotten. The Great Exhibitor is the first full-length biography of this museum pioneer who also played a pivotal role in establishing the English postal system, in expanding the railway, and in art and science education. This detailed portrait captures the personality of a man who in his own time aroused both admiration and antipathy, and restores to his proper place in history a larger-than-life Victorian phenomenon.

Study Guide

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Study Guide by Supersummary Summary

SuperSummary, a modern alternative to SparkNotes and CliffsNotes, offers high-quality study guides for challenging works of literature. This 76-page guide for "The Devil in the White City" by Erik Larson includes detailed chapter summaries and analysis covering 53 chapters, as well as several more in-depth sections of expert-written literary analysis. Featured content includes commentary on major characters, 25 important quotes, essay topics, and key themes like Psychopathy and "Alienism" and Journalism and Detective Work.

In the Garden of Beasts

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In the Garden of Beasts by Erik Larson Summary

Erik Larson, New York Times bestselling author of Devil in the White City, delivers a remarkable story set during Hitler’s rise to power. The time is 1933, the place, Berlin, when William E. Dodd becomes America’s first ambassador to Hitler’s Nazi Germany in a year that proved to be a turning point in history. A mild-mannered professor from Chicago, Dodd brings along his wife, son, and flamboyant daughter, Martha. At first Martha is entranced by the parties and pomp, and the handsome young men of the Third Reich with their infectious enthusiasm for restoring Germany to a position of world prominence. Enamored of the “New Germany,” she has one affair after another, including with the suprisingly honorable first chief of the Gestapo, Rudolf Diels. But as evidence of Jewish persecution mounts, confirmed by chilling first-person testimony, her father telegraphs his concerns to a largely indifferent State Department back home. Dodd watches with alarm as Jews are attacked, the press is censored, and drafts of frightening new laws begin to circulate. As that first year unfolds and the shadows deepen, the Dodds experience days full of excitement, intrigue, romance—and ultimately, horror, when a climactic spasm of violence and murder reveals Hitler’s true character and ruthless ambition. Suffused with the tense atmosphere of the period, and with unforgettable portraits of the bizarre Göring and the expectedly charming--yet wholly sinister--Goebbels, In the Garden of Beasts lends a stunning, eyewitness perspective on events as they unfold in real time, revealing an era of surprising nuance and complexity. The result is a dazzling, addictively readable work that speaks volumes about why the world did not recognize the grave threat posed by Hitler until Berlin, and Europe, were awash in blood and terror.

Detective in the White City

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Detective in the White City by JD Crighton Summary

The remarkable biography of the uncompromising and relentless detective who investigated one of America's first serial killers, the man known as the 'Devil in the White City,' H. H. Holmes, and others like him. This extraordinary historical biography provides a chronological account of Frank Geyer’s life and features murder cases that made national headlines and the history of one of America's largest police departments, complete with 95 rare illustrations and photos! “History like never before!” Who was the world’s famous detective who outsmarted criminals from the Gilded Age and whose wife and daughter never died in a fire, like scholars claimed? Featuring: Geyer's incredible investigation of H. H. Holmes, death of Benjamin Pitezel, the horrific discovery of the missing Pitezel children, Holmes' trial, and a 'Devil in Him' chapter Mary Hannah Tabbs and the gruesome torso murder Modern Borgia killer, Sarah Jane Whiteling, the first woman hung in Philadelphia White Chapel Row Mrs. Annie Gaskin and the killer cat Top secret search in Rio de Janeiro Fake highwaymen murder for insurance, and plot to kill Detective Geyer Law enforcement and Philadelphia history Reuben Geyer in the Civil War, President Franklin Pierce, and Franks' hometown Truth about Geyer's wife and daughter with Sources, List of Illustrations and Credits, Bibliography, Notes, and Index 95 rare historical illustrations and photos, restored

The Devil in the White City: by Erik Larson | Summary & Analysis

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The Devil in the White City: by Erik Larson | Summary & Analysis by Instaread Summary

The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson | Summary & Analysis Preview: The Devil in the White City is a book by Erik Larson that takes a close look at The World’s Columbian Exposition, the world’s fair that Chicago hosted in 1893, held in celebration of the 400th anniversary of Columbus’ discovery of America. The fair was tainted by deaths, a serial killer, and an assassination. The lead architect, Daniel Burnham, and the serial killer, Henry Howard Holmes, play pivotal roles in the events that unfolded before, during, and after the fair. In the late nineteenth century, Chicago was a raw city, growing fast, but it was horribly polluted. Fourteen million animals went to their deaths each year in the stockyards. Garbage and manure piled up and typhus, cholera, and other diseases raged. Train and carriage accidents killed several people daily. Fires were even more deadly. The city tallied 800 murders in just the first half of one year… PLEASE NOTE: This is a summary and analysis of the book and NOT the original book. Inside this Instaread Summary & Analysis of The Devil in the White City • Summary of book • Introduction to the Important People in the book • Analysis of the Themes and Author’s Style

Thunderstruck

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Thunderstruck by Erik Larson Summary

In 1910, Edwardian England was scandalized by a murder. It seems mild-mannered American Hawley Crippen had killed his wife, buried her remains in the cellar of their North London home and then gone on the run with his young mistress, his secretary Ethel Le Neve. A Scotland Yard inspector, already famous for his part in the Ripper investigation, discovered the murder and launched an international hunt for Crippen that climaxed in a trans-Atlantic chase between two ocean liners. The chase itself was novel, but what captured the imagination was the role played by a new and little understood technology: the wireless. Thanks to its inventor Marconi's obsessive fight to perfect his machine, the world was able to learn of events occurring in the middle of the Atlantic as they unfolded - something previously unthinkable. Commentators of the time all agreed that if not for Marconi, Crippen would have escaped. But Marconi had struggled to gain acceptance for his invention (some viewed it as a supernatural device, while distrust of foreigners remained prevalent in England and America). It was the Crippen case that helped convince the world of the potential of Marconi's miracle technology, so accelerating the revolution that eventually produced the modern means of communication we take for granted today. With its cast of captivating characters, Thunderstruck is Erik Larson doing what he does brilliantly well: bringing together seemingly disparate yet inextricably linked lives to paint a fascinating and exciting portrait of an extraordinary age of cultural, social and technological change while evoking the darker side of human nature.

The Splendid and the Vile

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The Splendid and the Vile by Erik Larson Summary

The #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Devil in the White City and Dead Wake delivers a fresh and compelling portrait of Winston Churchill and London during the Blitz NAMED ONE OF THE MOST ANTICIPATED BOOKS OF 2020 BY The Washington Post • HuffPost • The Seattle Times • Lit Hub • The Week • PopSugar On Winston Churchill’s first day as prime minister, Adolf Hitler invaded Holland and Belgium. Poland and Czechoslovakia had already fallen, and the Dunkirk evacuation was just two weeks away. For the next twelve months, Hitler would wage a relentless bombing campaign, killing 45,000 Britons. It was up to Churchill to hold his country together and persuade President Franklin Roosevelt that Britain was a worthy ally—and willing to fight to the end. In The Splendid and the Vile, Erik Larson shows, in cinematic detail, how Churchill taught the British people “the art of being fearless.” It is a story of political brinkmanship, but it’s also an intimate domestic drama, set against the backdrop of Churchill’s prime-ministerial country home, Chequers; his wartime retreat, Ditchley, where he and his entourage go when the moon is brightest and the bombing threat is highest; and of course 10 Downing Street in London. Drawing on diaries, original archival documents, and once-secret intelligence reports—some released only recently—Larson provides a new lens on London’s darkest year through the day-to-day experience of Churchill and his family: his wife, Clementine; their youngest daughter, Mary, who chafes against her parents’ wartime protectiveness; their son, Randolph, and his beautiful, unhappy wife, Pamela; Pamela’s illicit lover, a dashing American emissary; and the advisers in Churchill’s “Secret Circle,” to whom he turns in the hardest moments. The Splendid and the Vile takes readers out of today’s political dysfunction and back to a time of true leadership, when, in the face of unrelenting horror, Churchill’s eloquence, courage, and perseverance bound a country, and a family, together.

The Chicago World's Fair of 1893

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The Chicago World's Fair of 1893 by Stanley Appelbaum Summary

128 rare, vintage photographs: 200 buildings — 79 of foreign governments, 38 of U.S. states — the original ferris wheel, first midway, Edison's kinetoscope, much more. 128 black-and-white photographs. Captions. Map. Index.

In the Garden of Beasts

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In the Garden of Beasts by Erik Larson Summary

Berlin,1933. William E. Dodd, a mild-mannered academic from Chicago, has to his own and everyone else's surprise, become America's first ambassador to Hitler's Germany, in a year that proves to be a turning point in history. Dodd and his family, notably his vivacious daughter, Martha, observe at first-hand the many changes - some subtle, some disturbing, and some horrifically violent - that signal Hitler's consolidation of power. Dodd has little choice but to associate with key figures in the Nazi party, his increasingly concerned cables make little impact on an indifferent U.S. State Department, while Martha is drawn to the Nazis and their vision of a 'New Germany' and has a succession of affairs with senior party players, including first chief of the Gestapo, Rudolf Diels. But as the year darkens, Dodd and his daughter find their lives transformed and any last illusion they might have about Hitler are shattered by the violence of the 'Night of the Long Knives' in the summer of 1934 that established him as supreme dictator. Suffused with the tense atmosphere of the times, and with brilliant portraits of Hitler, Goebbels, Goering and Himmler amongst others, Erik Larson's new book sheds unique light on events as they unfold, resulting in an unforgettable, addictively readable work of narrative history.