Just when we might think nothing new can be written about Lincoln comes Wheeler's eye-opening, highly original, and altogether captivating take on the Lincoln legacy: Old Abe as the first master of new technology.
The Civil War was the first "modern war." Abraham Lincoln became president of a divided nation during a period of both technological and social revolution. Among the many modern marvels was the telegraph, which Lincoln used to stay connected to the forces in the field in almost real time. No leader in history had ever possessed such a powerful tool. As a result Lincoln had to learn for himself how to use the power of electronic messages. Without precedent to guide him, Lincoln developed his own model of electronic communications -- an approach that echoes today in our use of email.