Keynote Speaker: James L. Swanson


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FRIDAY, OCTOBER 6th | 7 PM | Bethel United Methodist Church

James L. Swanson is an American author and historian known for his New York Times best-seller Manhunt: The 12-Day Chase for Lincoln's Killer (2007), for which he earned an Edgar Award. 

-- “James Swanson has written a terrific narrative . . . a triumphant book.” (Doris Kearns Goodwin)

-- “Brilliant! Absolutely haunting. . . . This historical book is almost impossible to put down.” (Patricia Cornwell)

-- “A gripping page-turner . . . Riveting . . . Booth comes across as viscerally real.” (Entertainment Weekly (Grade: A))

-- “Told expertly . . . Swanson’s moment by moment account of the 12-day chase is compulsively readable.” (Wall Street Journal)

-- “Extraordinary . . . Brilliant . . . As gripping as any tightly scripted crime drama” (Boston Globe)

-- “An action-adventure . . . infuse[d] with high drama. . . . A multifaceted chronicle.” (New York Times)

-- “Vividly readable example of the you-are-there genre . . . managed with ‘CSI’ immediacy.” (Washington Post)

Swanson graduated from the University of Chicago with a degree in history and received his J.D. from the UCLA Law School. He has held a number of government and think-tank posts in Washington, D.C., including at the United States Department of Justice. He serves on the advisory council of the only Ford’s Theatre Society and is a member of the Lincoln Bicentennial Commission.

His other books include: Lincoln's Assassins: Their Trial and Execution (2006) (co-authored), Chasing Lincoln's Killer: The Search for John Wilkes Booth (2009), Bloody Times: the Funeral for Abraham Lincoln and the Manhunt for Jefferson Davis (2010), Bloody Crimes: The Chase for Jefferson Davis and the Death Pageant for Lincoln's Corpse (2010), “The President Has Been Shot!": The Assassination of John F. Kennedy (2013), and End of Days: The Assassination of John F. Kennedy (2013).  His next book is Chasing King’s Killer: The Hunt for Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Assassin (2018).