Book Review: The Good the Bad and the Mad: Weird People in American History by E. Randall Floyd, Harbor House, Augusta, GA, 1999.
This is an interesting read, although the title in 2014 is objectionable, it would have been a cute title in 1999. People are sensitive about the word “mad” or weird which is in the subtitle. That said, this book presents many interesting stories. The author dwells considerable on spiritual and religious issues which don’t appeal much, but even so the book is interesting. It has voo-doo, murderers, Native Americans, Civil War heroes and goats, rich tycoons who were greedy, poor street people who were not, scantily clothed dancers, people flying the wrong way, preachers. In the pages of this book is a story that would appeal to everyone, but not every story has universal appeal.
I have used chapters from the book to highlight some of the people who interested me. These include Sarah Winchester from san Jose, James McGready form San Francisco, Civil War generals Stonewall Jackson, George Armstrong Custer and Gideon Pillow, Harry Houdini, presidential assassin Charles Guiteau, Jane Addams founder of social work and Wovoka, Native American Prophet.