Historian Candice Millard has written four books, but her account of the assassination of President James Garfield, published in 2011, remains my favorite. Titled “Destiny of the Republic: A Story of Fury, Medicine, and the Assassination of a President,” it is the kind of narrative story that involves the reader in action. Millard, who makes his home in Kansas City, was a former editor and writer for National Geographic magazine.
It was on July 2, 1881, that US President James Garfield, after four months in office, was shot twice by an assassin at the passenger terminal of the Baltimore and Potomac Railroad in Washington DC, and that was shot in the arm. a back shot would be fatal. Garfield’s wound was not fatal as the doctors began to probe inside with unsanitized fingers and instruments, introducing injuries that eventually killed him.