By Thomas Fleming

ISBN-10: 1612307426

ISBN-13: 9781612307428

Why is the parable of 1776?

To nation it in its baldest phrases: This was once the single time in American existence while idealism was once actually in flower. Made attainable by means of the purest type of patriotism, led by way of a soldier whom every body loved - George Washington - who, in flip, used to be guided through a caucus of political geniuses in Philadelphia - the Continental Congress - reliable farmers raced from their plows to hurl themselves into clash with British mercenaries. by no means have such a lot of nice males, magnetic leaders, sprung from nowhere to lead a humans infused with a stunning enthusiasm for liberty.

In this e-book, long island instances bestselling historian Thomas Fleming explodes this fable by means of analyzing the entire dimensions of that yr - quite the least recognized points of the typical, fallible humanity of the lads and girls of the Revolution.

The 12 months 1776 ended with either the americans and the British stripped in their illusions. each side have been pressured to desert the parable in their invincibility and to...

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Example text

Arnold had retired to American army headquarters at Cambridge and persuaded the leaders there to let him and 1,100 picked troops make their mad, heroic march up the Kennebec. Montgomery’s plan of attack was as simple as it was daring. Quebec was divided into an Upper and a Lower Town. The Upper Town was practically impregnable, its lofty walls surrounded by snowdrifts six to eight feet deep. The Lower Town, fronting on the Saint Lawrence River, was far more vulnerable. The walls were incomplete and poorly fortified.

They collided with Dearborn and his lost company, still fumbling through the streets of the Lower Town. The British hailed him, and asked who he was. “A friend,” he said. ” they asked. “A friend to liberty,” Dearborn replied. “God damn you,” replied the questioner, and leaped out to fire at Dearborn. ” The veteran of Bunker Hill discovered that not one gun in ten in his company would fire. It soon became obvious that he was surrounded and outnumbered six to one. There was no choice but to surrender.

America was a rich country in 1776. But none of the men at Quebec - Americans of such widely different colonies as Connecticut, New York, Pennsylvania, and Virginia - was fighting to overthrow the existing class structure, the goal of most modern revolutionaries. In the diaries and letters of the men who made the assault on Canada, there is not a single word about changing the social status quo. This should disturb the Marxist assumption that class consciousness is a prerequisite for revolutionary action.

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1776 by Thomas Fleming


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