John Cribb

John Cribb, shown Feb. 2, at Pell City Library, has now written two novels covering the life of Abraham Lincoln, ‘Old Abe,’ and ‘The Rail Splitter.’

Before ‘Old Abe’ was old, he was a young man building on the virtues that would one day position him as the 16th president of the United States. And although he had less than a single year total of formal schooling, the success of Abraham Lincoln’s life presents us still with a consummate model for personal and public service and behavior, according to author John Cribb.

Few are the Lincoln scholars who are as studied and familiar with Lincoln’s life and work as is Cribb. Fewer still are the nuanced and researched fictionalized works about the self-taught man who would write some of America’s preeminent works of history — the Gettysburg Address and Emancipation Proclamation among those — but Cribb has done this. First, in his book, “Old Abe,” published in 2020 and detailing Lincoln’s presidency, and now in “The Rail Splitter” (Republic Book Publishers), giving us the life of Lincoln through his early years to the cusp of his presidential nomination.

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