U.s. History - Colonial Period
The Wordy Shipmates
The Wordy Shipmates
Paperback      ISBN: 1594484007
In this New York Times bestseller, the author of Lafayette in the Somewhat United States brings the Puritan] era wickedly to life (Washington Post).

To this day, America views itself as a Puritan nation, but Sarah Vowell investigates what that means-and what it should mean. What she discovers is something far different from what their uptight shoebuckles- and-corn reputation might suggest-a highly literate, deeply principled, and surprisingly feisty people, whose story is filled with pamphlet feuds, witty courtroom dramas, and bloody vengeance.

Vowell takes us from the modern-day reenactment of an Indian massacre to the Mohegan Sun casino, from old-timey Puritan poetry, where righteousness is rhymed with wilderness, to a Mayflower-themed waterslide. Throughout, The Wordy Shipmates is rich in historical fact, humorous insight, and social commentary by one of America's most celebrated voices.
The Witches: Suspicion, Betrayal, and Hysteria in 1692 Salem
The Witches
Suspicion, Betrayal, and Hysteria in 1692 Salem
Paperback      ISBN: 031620059x
The Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Cleopatra, the #1 national bestseller, unpacks the mystery of the Salem Witch Trials.

It began in 1692, over an exceptionally raw Massachusetts winter, when a minister's daughter began to scream and convulse. It ended less than a year later, but not before 19 men and women had been hanged and an elderly man crushed to death.

The panic spread quickly, involving the most educated men and prominent politicians in the colony. Neighbors accused neighbors, parents and children each other. Aside from suffrage, the Salem Witch Trials represent the only moment when women played the central role in American history. In curious ways, the trials would shape the future republic.

As psychologically thrilling as it is historically seminal, The Witches is Stacy Schiff's account of this fantastical story -- the first great American mystery unveiled fully for the first time by one of our most acclaimed historians.
The Name of War: King Philip's War and the Origins of American Identity
The Name of War
King Philip's War and the Origins of American Identity
Paperback      ISBN: 0375702628
Winner of the Bancroft Prize

King Philip's War, the excruciating racial war--colonists against Indians--that erupted in New England in 1675, was, in proportion to population, the bloodiest in American history. Some even argued that the massacres and outrages on both sides were too horrific to deserve the name of a war.
The war's brutality compelled the colonists to defend themselves against accusations that they had become savages. But Jill Lepore makes clear that it was after the war--and because of it--that the boundaries between cultures, hitherto blurred, turned into rigid ones. King Philip's War became one of the most written-about wars in our history, and Lepore argues that the words strengthened and hardened feelings that, in turn, strengthened and hardened the enmity between Indians and Anglos.
Telling the story of what may have been the bitterest of American conflicts, and its reverberations over the centuries, Lepore has enabled us to see how the ways in which we remember past events are as important in their effect on our history as were the events themselves.

Winner of the the 1998 Ralph Waldo Emerson Award of the Phi Beta Kappa Society
Demons
Demons
Paperback      ISBN: 0679734511

Inspired by the true story of a political murder that horried Russians in 1869, Fyodor Dostoevsky conceived of Demons as a " novel-pamphlet" in which he would say everything about the plague of materialist ideology that he saw infecting his native land. What emerged was a prophetic and ferociously funny masterpiece of ideology and murder in pre-revolutionary Russia.

The Forgotten History of America: Little-Known Conflicts of Lasting Importance from the Earliest Colonists to the Eve of the Revolution
The Forgotten History of America
Little-Known Conflicts of Lasting Importance from the Earliest Colonists to the Eve of the Revolution
Hardcover      ISBN: 0785836543
From the founding of the first permanent European settlement in North America (1565) to the bloody chaos of the British frontier in Pontiac's War (1763), the vividly written narrative of The Forgotten History of America spans the two centuries of American history before the Revolutionary War.

Today, Americans think of 1776 as the beginning of an era. A nation was born, commencing a story that continues to this day with our own lives. But the War of Independence also marked the end of another era--one in which many nations, Native American and European, had struggled for control of a vast and formidable wilderness. That saga--though separated from us now by a gulf of time that makes it strange, and even alien--was the history out of which our own emerged.

This book returns to the time before our nation was formed, when the clash between America's first peoples and the newcomers from Europe was still new. Focusing on events that are all but forgotten today, author Cormac O'Brien's masterful storytelling reveals how actors as diverse as Spanish conquistadores, Puritan ministers, Amerindian sachems, mercenary soldiers, and ordinary farmers traded and clashed across a landscape of constant, often violent, change. He tells how these dramatic moments helped to shape the very world around us.

These lesser-known conflicts of the pre-Revolutionary past unveil a world of heroism, brutality, and tenacity. Brought brilliantly to life through O'Brien's expressive narrative and more than 100 archival images, The Forgotten History of America shows us how deep the roots of our own time truly run.
The Witches: Salem, 1692
The Witches
Salem, 1692
Hardcover      ISBN: 0316200603

The Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Cleopatra, the #1 national bestseller, unpacks the mystery of the Salem Witch Trials.

It began in 1692, over an exceptionally raw Massachusetts winter, when a minister's daughter began to scream and convulse. It ended less than a year later, but not before 19 men and women had been hanged and an elderly man crushed to death.

The panic spread quickly, involving the most educated men and prominent politicians in the colony. Neighbors accused neighbors, parents and children each other. Aside from suffrage, the Salem Witch Trials represent the only moment when women played the central role in American history. In curious ways, the trials would shape the future republic.

As psychologically thrilling as it is historically seminal, THE WITCHES is Stacy Schiff's account of this fantastical story -- the first great American mystery unveiled fully for the first time by one of our most acclaimed historians.

Benjamin Franklin
Benjamin Franklin
Hardcover      ISBN: 0300095325

Benjamin Franklin is perhaps the most remarkable figure in American history: the greatest statesman of his age, he played a pivotal role in the formation of the American republic. He was also a pioneering scientist, a best-selling author, the country's first postmaster general, a printer, a bon vivant, a diplomat, a ladies' man, and a moralist - and the most prominent celebrity of the 18th century.

Mayflower: A Story of Courage, Community, and War
Mayflower
A Story of Courage, Community, and War
Paperback      ISBN: 0143111973
Vivid and remarkably fresh...Philbrick has recast the Pilgrims for the ages.--The New York Times Book Review

Finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in History
New York Times Book Review Top Ten books of the Year

With a new preface marking the 400th anniversary of the landing of the Mayflower.

How did America begin? That simple question launches the acclaimed author of In the Hurricane's Eye and Valiant Ambition on an extraordinary journey to understand the truth behind our most sacred national myth: the voyage of the Mayflower and the settlement of Plymouth Colony. As Philbrick reveals in this electrifying history of the Pilgrims, the story of Plymouth Colony was a fifty-five year epic that began in peril and ended in war. New England erupted into a bloody conflict that nearly wiped out the English colonists and natives alike. These events shaped the existing communites and the country that would grow from them.
Lafayette in the Somewhat United States
Lafayette in the Somewhat United States
Paperback      ISBN: 0399573100


From the bestselling author of Assassination Vacation and The Partly Cloudy Patriot, an insightful and unconventional account of George Washington's trusted officer and friend, that swashbuckling teenage French aristocrat the Marquis de Lafayette.

Chronicling General Lafayette's years in Washington's army, Vowell reflects on the ideals of the American Revolution versus the reality of the Revolutionary War. Riding shotgun with Lafayette, Vowell swerves from the high-minded debates of Independence Hall to the frozen wasteland of Valley Forge, from bloody battlefields to the Palace of Versailles, bumping into John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, Lord Cornwallis, Benjamin Franklin, Marie Antoinette and various kings, Quakers and redcoats along the way.

Drawn to the patriots' war out of a lust for glory, Enlightenment ideas and the traditional French hatred for the British, young Lafayette crossed the Atlantic expecting to join forces with an undivided people, encountering instead fault lines between the Continental Congress and the Continental Army, rebel and loyalist inhabitants, and a conspiracy to fire George Washington, the one man holding together the rickety, seemingly doomed patriot cause.

While Vowell's yarn is full of the bickering and infighting that marks the American past--and present--her telling of the Revolution is just as much a story of friendship: between Washington and Lafayette, between the Americans and their French allies and, most of all between Lafayette and the American people. Coinciding with one of the most contentious presidential elections in American history, Vowell lingers over the elderly Lafayette's sentimental return tour of America in 1824, when three fourths of the population of New York City turned out to welcome him ashore. As a Frenchman and the last surviving general of the Continental Army, Lafayette belonged to neither North nor South, to no political party or faction. He was a walking, talking reminder of the sacrifices and bravery of the revolutionary generation and what the founders hoped this country could be. His return was not just a reunion with his beloved Americans it was a reunion for Americans with their own astonishing, singular past.

Vowell's narrative look at our somewhat united states is humorous, irreverent and wholly original.

Black Flags, Blue Waters: The Epic History of America's Most Notorious Pirates
Black Flags, Blue Waters
The Epic History of America's Most Notorious Pirates
Paperback      ISBN: 1631496220

Set against the backdrop of the Age of Exploration, Black Flags, Blue Waters reveals the surprising history of American piracy's "Golden Age" - spanning the late 1600s through the early 1700s - when lawless pirates plied the coastal waters of North America and beyond. "Deftly blending scholarship and drama" (Richard Zacks), best-selling author Eric Jay Dolin illustrates how American colonists at first supported these outrageous pirates in an early display of solidarity against the Crown, and then violently opposed them. Through engrossing episodes of roguish glamour and extreme brutality, Dolin depicts the star pirates of this period, among them the towering Blackbeard, the ill-fated Captain Kidd, and sadistic Edward Low, who delighted in torturing his prey. Upending popular misconceptions and cartoonish stereotypes, Black Flags, Blue Waters is a "tour de force history" (Michael Pierce, Midwestern Rewind) of the seafaring outlaws whose raids reflect the precarious nature of American colonial life.