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Home:  >Browse Listings   >Authors   >Wells, Lawrence

Lawrence Wells

Lawrence Wells' first novel, Rommel and the Rebel, chronicles a fictional trip made by German tank commander Erwin Rommel to the Civil War battlefields of Nathan Bedford Forrest. Wells got the idea for the book by reading a press account of a visit five unnamed German military men made to Mississippi in the late 1930s. Wells found many similarities between the tactics of the two, and even though the historical evidence suggests that Rommel was not one of the five men who visited, the characters and plot for Rommel and the Rebel fell into place. (In fact, Wells later had the opportunity to interview Rommel's son, who explicitly denied that the Desert Fox came to America in the 1930s.)

Wells has written one more novel since then, Let the Band Play Dixie. It fictionalizes an 1896 meeting between Confederate General James Longstreet and black activist W.E.B. DuBois.

Wells is married to Dean Faulkner WellsWilliam Faulkner's niece — and together they run the Yoknapatawpha Press, which is based in Oxford, Mississippi.

(Article first posted October 1998)

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Yoknapatawpha Press
The Yoknapatawpha Press web site features information about books available for purchase from the publisher and subscription information about the Faulkner Newsletter, which is also published by the press.


  • Rommel and the Rebel. Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1986. Rpt. by Yoknapatawpha Press, 1992.
  • Let the Band Play Dixie. Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1987. Rpt. by Yoknapatawpha Press, 1989.

  • (Edited by Lawrence Wells.) Football Powers of the South. Oxford, Mississippi: Sports Yearbook, 1983.


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