Compiled from a regular feature of American Heritage magazine, the short essays in this book offer first-person reminiscences of encounters with famous figures in politics, entertainment, and sports. Most stories are from ordinary people, but a few were written by journalists and authors. B&w historical photos accompany each story. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Ninety-five everyday Americans share their unique, firsthand accounts of close encounters with greatness in this moving collection of essays, illustrated with historic photographs. A 12-year-old boxer steps into the ring with a young Cassius Clay; six Vietnam soldiers assist in two amazing births; the Soviets attempt to recruit a young boy as a spy through an ad in a Dennis the Menace comic book; historian Stephen Ambrose accompanies a tipsy Joe McCarthy on a raid of the local library, hunting down Marxist propaganda. In this unforgettable collection of the very best of the long-running "My Brush with History" column from American Heritage magazine, the past comes to life from a plain and wonderfully honest perspective: the words of common Americans as they recount singular, magical moments that have stayed with them for the rest of their lives. These stories of ordinary folks caught up in extraordinary circumstances range in subject from Hollywood to the military to world history, politics and popular culture. They are simple, poignant and unforgettable.