Looking for book about American historical disasters.
January 20, 2014 8:39 AM   Subscribe

This is driving me crazy...it was a very readable book that described several (eleven?) American historical disasters, including I think the S.S. Sultana tragedy. (Or, some other steamship fire.)

It was a great book (I like history that is readable and not too academic), and now I can't find it anywhere! Googling the Sultana incident doesn't help, and Amazon doesn't turn up anything that looks familiar. Thanks for your help, hivemind.
posted by Melismata to Media & Arts (10 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Was it Lost to Time: Unforgettable Stories That History Forgot by Martin Sandler?
posted by stampsgal at 8:51 AM on January 20, 2014

Argh, I wish I could see the table of contents of that book stampsgal. I have a feeling that the book I want had the number in the title, e.g., "eleven (or six, or thirteen...) disasters that (time forgot, or changed the world, or something)".

But I'm going to buy it anyway because it looks good, so I guess I'll find out one way or the other!
posted by Melismata at 8:58 AM on January 20, 2014

Do you recall when you read it? That'll help.
posted by asperity at 9:27 AM on January 20, 2014

It was in the past 8 years, bought it new at the store (and kicking myself for getting rid of it, I want it back).
posted by Melismata at 9:29 AM on January 20, 2014

TOC for Lost to Time:
One - Ziryab
The Slave Who Changed Society (Ninth Century)

Two - Cahokia
The Forgotten Rome of the Americas (Twelfth Century)

Three - Gil Eanes
Conquering the Point of No Return (1434)

Four - Joseph Warren
Architect of a Revolution (1741-75)

Five - Outdoing Revere
History's Forgotten Riders (1777)

Six - Elisha Kent Kane
America's Greatest Hero (1847-57)

Seven - The Sultana
Death on the Great River (1865)

Eight - America's First Subway
Secrets under Broadway (1870)

Nine - Peshtigo
Great Fire in the Forest (1871)

Ten - Gustave Whitehead
The First to Fly? (1901)

Eleven - Exercise Tiger
A Rehearsal for D-Day (1944)
Looks like it's not all disaster stories, though Sandler has written some disaster-centric books, mostly for middle grades. (Dude's prolific!) Most of the other "American disasters" books I've found are more encyclopedic, with the numbers in the title being more like 100 than 11.
posted by asperity at 9:52 AM on January 20, 2014

Oh, thank you asperity! Y'know, I think that this book may be it, but I'll wait to mark it as best answer just in case other titles come in.
posted by Melismata at 9:58 AM on January 20, 2014

There's also Oregon Disasters: True Stories of Tragedy and Survival, by Rachel Dresbeck, 2006.
posted by stebulus at 10:03 AM on January 20, 2014

Hm. Actually that Oregon book seems to be one of a series: Washington, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Texas, Pennsylvania.
posted by stebulus at 10:10 AM on January 20, 2014 [1 favorite]

*looking up other stories, noting that there are eleven chapters* Yeah, I'm pretty sure this is it. Thank you all!
posted by Melismata at 11:08 AM on January 20, 2014

The Library of Congress has a lovely subject heading that covers this topic:

Disasters -- United States -- History -- Anecdotes

Some good titles here:
posted by woodman at 11:42 AM on January 20, 2014 [2 favorites]

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