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Oldest living Confederate widow tells all
Allan Gurganus
Adult Fiction GURGANU

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In 1966, as a conscientious objector faced with possible charges of draft evasion during the Vietnam War, Allan Gurganus found himself on a four-year tour as a message decoder on an aircraft carrier. While at sea, Gurganus, who had studied to be a painter, developed the idea for his first successful novel, Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All (1989) after reading an article that described how Confederate veterans were granted pensions in the 1880s, making them prime marital candidates for much younger women. The novel features Lucy Marsden, a feisty ninety-nine-year-old North Carolina widow, and spans the 1850s to the 1980s. Gurganus's subsequent books include Blessed Assurance: A Moral Tale (1989), The Practical Heart (1993), and Plays Well With Others (1997). He has written a number of short stories that have appeared in periodicals such as Granta, The New York Times, The New Yorker, Harper's, and Paris Review, and in books such as The Faber Book of Short Gay Fiction (1991). Eleven of his short stories are collected in The White People (1991). Gurganus was born in Rocky Mount, North Carolina, in 1947 and graduated from Sarah Lawrence College (B.A., 1972) and the University of Iowa Writers' Workshop (M.F.A., 1974). He has taught fiction writing at University of Iowa, Stanford University, Duke University, Sarah Lawrence College and the University of Iowa Writers' Workshop, and has had his paintings displayed in many private and public collections. (Bowker Author Biography) Allan Gurganus lives in a small town in North Carolina. The title novella of this book won the National Magazine Prize, & his other honors include the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, the Southern Book Prize, & the Sue Kaufman Prize from the American Academy of Arts & Letters. (Publisher Provided)

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main characters Lucille "Lucy" Marsden
Female
Age: 99
Widow
Married her husband, a Civil War veteran, at the age of 15 and he was 50; her husband was permanently traumatized by the events he witnessed; reminisced about the conflict and collected weapons to memorialize it; her mother-in-law's plantation was burned to the ground by Sherman's men; her midwife to her nine children was a slave abducted from Africa.



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