Lincoln’s Flying Spies: Thaddeus Lowe and the Civil War Balloon Corps

For two years duriing the Civil War, a corps of balloonists led by Thaddeus Lowe spied on the Confederate Army. Lincoln’s Flying Spies tells the exciting story of Lowe’s efforts to organize the balloon corps and provide valuable intelligence to the Union Army. Using Civil War photographs and primary sources, Jarrow reveals the dangers, personality clashes, and other challenges faced by the nation’s first air force.

This book will be enjoyed especially by those students who like to study the Civil War and its generals, the beginning of aviation, or balloons. I found it fascinating to learn about how the balloons were used, which Generals felt they were useful, the relationships and/or personality clashes of the leaders, and see pictures of many Civil War battlefields. The time line in the back of the book was especially helpful.

Review by Leanna Griffiths, Crestview Elem. School Media Center
Rating: 4.5 Stars
Interest Level: Grades 4-Adult

Lincoln’s Flying Spies: Thaddeus Lowe and the Civil War Balloon Corps
Written by Gail Jarrow
Boyds Mill Press
112 p.
Release Date: Oct. 1, 2010
ISBN: 9781590787199

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1 thought on “Lincoln’s Flying Spies: Thaddeus Lowe and the Civil War Balloon Corps”

  1. In historical fiction novel – The true adventures of Homer P. Figg – he goes into the battle trying to find his brother in one of these balloons… I begged the 5th grade teachers to read this book to their classes, since the Civil war is part of the core, one teacher has so far and now the students are asking for more info about the hot air balloons… if you don’t have this book you should try to get one to go along with your non-ficiton book… it won a couple of awards last year and is really a good read.

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