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Karen Abbott's history of four Civil War women who spied or lied
Karen Abbott's history of four Civil War women who spied or lied

The story of Civil War spy Elizabeth Van Lew almost defies belief. A wealthy society woman living in Richmond, Va., during the Civil War, Van Lew engaged in extensive undercover work for the Union — right under the noses of the Confederacy. Not only did she hide Northern soldiers in a secret room on the top floor of her mansion but she also passed messages to Union prisoners by using a hidden compartment in a chafing dish, employed a special cipher to send messages to agents in Washington, D.C., about Confederate troop movements and wore disguises to accomplish her espionage work. In "Liar, Temptress, Soldier, Spy", Karen Abbott captures the spy-novel quality of Van...

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