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Category Archives: Book 1 – Invasion!

Deleted Scene – Invasion! – Mirror dueling with Gunpowder


 I have a fully functioning flintlock pistol. Sometimes, when I need a break, I’ll charge it with black powder, tamp it with a bit of tissue paper, and shoot it against the brick wall in my office: big bang, big flash, lots of smoke. Huzzah! The bit of tissue, however, has a tendency to catch […]

Invasion! – Contents

. . Book One of The Forgotten Adventures of Dolley Madison Prolog The Awakening Brigands Fort Lafayette Journey Home * Road to War * Hampton * Blue Lightning * British Attack * Delay * Washington Burns * Finger of God * Mansion Visit * Commandress In Chief * Banished to Baltimore * — Appendices to […]

Chapter 0

  Prolog 20 May 1768 – Dolley Payne is born to Quakers John Payne and Mary Coles Payne in New Garden, North Carolina. 1769 – Payne family returns to their native Virginia. 19 April 1775 – The battles of Lexington and Concord start the Revolutionary War. 4 July 1776 – The Declaration of Independence is […]

Chapter 1

The Awakening March 1794, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania “Aaron, would you teach me to duel?” “Not wouldst thou teach me to duel? Did you lose your Quaker manner of speech when the wind took your Quaker bonnet?” He leaned toward her from the saddle, his expression one of mock surprise. “And, Madam, art thou wearing . . […]

Chapter 2

Brigands 29 April 1810, Forbe’s Road west of Greensburg, Pennsylvania The ornate carriage clattered down the forest road, pulled by four black horses, driven by a gray-haired fat man whistling in the cool morning air. Trailing the coach by thirty feet were three mounted soldiers, one of them an officer. Bert stood in the shadows. […]

Chapter 3

Fort Lafayette 30 April 1810, Fort Lafayette, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania The ceiling slowly became visible in the faint gray light seeping through the curtain, and Sukey continued to snore softly, as she had minutes after joining Dolley in the bed. How can she sleep after what happened yesterday? Dolley eased from the bed, careful not to […]

Chapter 4

Journey Home – Excerpt 5 July 1810, Fort Lafayette, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania They departed Fort Lafayette an hour after sunrise. The fort’s men and ladies, and much of Pittsburgh, were there to see them off. Sukey was disappointed that Joe had not been part of the escort, but the honor had gone to a different company […]

Chapter 5

  Road to War – Excerpt   5 November 1810, Presidential Mansion, Washington City James studied Monroe’s latest report: yet another American ship stopped by Great Britain, twenty sailors removed against their will and forced to serve in the Royal Navy because their names ‘sounded English’. What an outrage! “Mr. President?” French John stood in […]

Chapter 6

  Hampton – Excerpt 27 June 1813, Hampton, Virginia Dolley sat beside the driver of the presidential carriage, surveying the devastation before her: the town of Hampton, ancient and beautiful, was aflame and, apparently, deserted. Jemmy had been stricken with a near-fatal bout of malaria the first week of June, and Dolley spent two exhaustive […]

Chapter 7

Blue Lightning – Excerpt   1 August 1813, Moore’s Tavern, Baltimore-Washington Turnpike, Maryland Dolley and Sukey sat in the tavern’s great room, sipping wine, talking in soft voices, studying a large map of Maryland they’d unrolled on the table, held open with cups and saucers. “The British will come again,” Dolley said. “Colonel Scott was […]