Delivered Under Fire: Absalom Markland and Freedom’s Mail
Wednesday, April 12 | 4:30pm | Auditorium
Candice Shy Hooper Historian and Author
Boca Grande’s own award-winning military historian, Candice Shy Hooper, returns to the Community Center to tell the tale of a forgotten Civil War hero. Her latest book, Delivered Under Fire: Absalom Markland and Freedom’s Mail, reveals the story of the courageous, innovative, self-made man who invented the United States military mail service during that war. From Fort Donelson in 1862 to City Point in 1865, Markland traveled with Ulysses Grant’s armies, assuring the swiftest possible delivery of mail, sometimes even as bullets whizzed overhead. It was an enormous undertaking, essential to morale on the frontlines and on the home front. He visited regularly with Lincoln and aided Sherman’s March to the Sea. As Grant’s responsibilities grew to embrace the entire U.S. Army, so did Markland’s. Then, when Grant became President, he called on Markland again, to help him in the fight against the Ku Klux Klan — a story told here for the first time.
About the Speaker
Born on Guam to a U. S. Navy Hospital Corpsman and his intrepid Hoosier wife, Candice Shy Hooper attended more than half a dozen schools before her high school graduation. The one constant in her nomadic life were libraries from Saipan to Norfolk, Virginia, that her parents made the family’s first stop in every household move.
With an undergraduate degree in journalism from the University of Illinois and a law degree from Georgetown University, it was only after a career on Capitol Hill as aide to the late Congressman Charlie Wilson (“Charlie Wilson’s War”) and as a lobbyist with her husband that she “discovered” her true intellectual passion. Returning to school in 2006, she earned an MA in history, with a concentration in military history, from George Washington University.
Hooper’s work has appeared in the New York Times, The Journal of Military History, The Michigan War Studies Review, and District Lines (an anthology published by the renowned independent bookstore Politics & Prose). She has spoken at the Society for Military History annual conference, Film & History annual conference, and the Southern Historical Association, and she has lectured at the U. S. Naval Academy and George Washington University.
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