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Stephen Berry is the Amanda and Greg Gregory Professor of the Civil War Era at the University of Georgia. He is the author or editor of several books, including Weirding the War: Stories from the Civil War's Ragged Edges (Georgia). Angela Esco Elder is the Virginia Center for Civil War Studies Postdoctoral Fellow at Virginia Tech. Her research interests focus on the antebellum and Civil War era, with an emphasis on gender, emotion, family, and trauma in the American South.
Here is an engrossing story of the Civil War, of Abraham Lincoln's shattered family, of two people falling in love, of soldiers and brothers dying nobly on the wrong side of history. The full Dawson-Todd correspondence comprises more than three hundred letters. It has been edited for this volume [Practical Strangers] to focus tightly on their courtship. The complete, annotated text of all the letters, with additional supporting material, will be made available online.--Bob Edmonds "McCormick Messnger " Practical Strangers is a remarkable compilation of letters from 1861 and 1862 that present a nearly complete record of Elodie Todd--the sister-in-law of Abraham Lincoln--and Nathaniel Dawson's courtship via mail, as well as of their commitment to the confederacy during the Civil War. . . . This volume is edited to focus on the courtship, with the entire correspondence available online. What do the rest of [the] letters reveal of the couple? Wanting to know more is a testament to the power of these documents--Dawson and Todd's burgeoning romance ignites curiosity.--Meredith Grahl Counts "ForeWord Reviews "