Dorothy Fremont Grant contributes Volume 20 to Kenedy's American Background series of books intended for junior high school readers with an engrossing, well-paced story of a Confederate woman spy who gave her life for the southern cause. Rose O'Neal Greenhow was a friend of the ""greats"" and ""near greats"" in pre-Civil War Washington -- James and Dolly Madison, John C. Calhoun, Lincoln, Douglas and James Buchanan for whom she acted as unofficial White House hostess. Her sympathies lay with the South, and she willingly accepted an assignment after war was declared to become a secret agent in Washington for Jefferson Davis. Young readers accustomed to today's ""cloak and dagger"" stories on TV will hardly be kept in great suspense by this story of fairly obvious and most lady-like spying. But they will find recreated for them a picture of the nation's capitol when ""geese waddled up and down the avenues; pigs wallowed in the mud of the side streets; cows ambled at will in the roadways; and the Washington monument only 174 feet high stood against the landscape, a sawed off stub."" Hose's eventual capture; her imprisonment with her youngest daughter; her release from prison; her journey to England to plead for funds for the South and her death on the voyage home rounds out an interesting story particularly timely now when interest in Civil War history is predictably high.