By Hampton Sides
Edgar Award Nominee
One of the easiest Books of the 12 months: O, The Oprah Magazine, Time, The Washington Post, The Christian technology Monitor, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, San Francisco Chronicle
From the acclaimed bestselling writer of Ghost Soldiers and Blood and Thunder, a taut, extreme narrative concerning the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., and the most important manhunt in American historical past.
On April 23, 1967, Prisoner #416J, an inmate on the infamous Missouri kingdom detention center, escaped in a breadbox. Fashioning himself Eric Galt, this nondescript thief and con man—whose genuine identify was once James Earl Ray—drifted in the course of the South, into Mexico, after which la, the place he used to be galvanized through George Wallace’s racist presidential crusade.
On February 1, 1968, Memphis rubbish males have been beaten to dying of their hydraulic truck, frightening the solely African American team to head on strike. Hoping to resuscitate his faltering campaign, King joined the sanitation staff’ reason, yet their march down Beale highway, the old road of the blues, grew to become violent. Humiliated, King fatefully vowed to come back to Memphis in April.
With relentless storytelling force, aspects follows Galt and King as they crisscross the rustic, one stalking the opposite, till the crushing second on the Lorraine inn while the drifter catches up along with his prey. opposed to the backdrop of the ensuing national riots and the pathos of King’s funeral, aspects supplies us a riveting cross-cut narrative of the assassin’s flight and the sixty-five-day seek that led investigators to Canada, Portugal, and England—a significant manhunt paradoxically led through Hoover’s FBI.
Magnificent in scope, drawing on a wealth of formerly unpublished fabric, this nonfiction mystery illuminates one of many darkest hours in American life—an instance of the way background is so usually a question of the petty bringing down the good.
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Additional resources for Hellhound on His Trail: The Stalking of Martin Luther King, Jr. and the International Hunt for His Assassin
He was introverted, distracted, perpetually tired. He rarely tipped50 and never laughed. He was paranoid of the cops, always looking over his shoulder. S. Army. He made trips into the hills52 from time to time, apparently to buy marijuana. For someone who hung out in grimy whorehouses, he was a surprisingly meticulous dresser and a person of tidy habits. m. at the same place, the Discotheque Cafe, where he always ordered the same thing--a hamburger and a Pepsi. Galt was keen on learning Spanish and toted an English-Spanish phrase book nearly everywhere he went.
He'd scrimped and schemed in the shadows of a deliberate and tenacious obscurity. He'd perfected a kind of anti-identity, so that no one would notice him when he was there--or miss him when he was gone. That night, 416-J called his brother18 and arranged a rendezvous spot. 19 Feeling what must have been some mixture of anxiety and delight, he rolled past the Jeff City prison complex. How many jittery nights had he lain awake in his prison cell, listening to the whistle of locomotives running over these same tracks that now gave him flight?
Most prison officials didn't know his name and could barely recall his face--to them he was just another inmate with a number. " He was intelligent enough, with an IQ of 106, slightly above average. But the psychiatrist noted that the prisoner suffered from "undue anxiety" and "obsessive compulsive concerns" about his physical health. He was a thoroughgoing hypochondriac, always complaining of maladies and poring over medical books. He imagined he had heart palpitations and suffered from some strange malformation of his cranium.