United States History, General
Featured Items
The Oxford Companion to American Military History
The Oxford Companion to American Military History
Hardcover      ISBN: 0195071980

With more than 1,100 entries written by some 500 distinguished contributors, The Oxford Companion to American Military History is "the most comprehensive treatment of American military history ever compiled" (Parameters: U.S. Army War College Quarterly) and an "easy-to-browse, well-organized work" (The Washington Post).

Here is a gold mine of information on American military history, exploring battles and soldiers, ships and weapons, services and doctrines--as well as the social and cultural impact of the U.S. military at home and around the world.
The Oxford Companion to American Military History boasts over 1,100 entries written by some 500 distinguished contributors. Readers will find Stephen E. Ambrose writing on the D-Day landing, James M. McPherson on the battle of Antietam, John Keegan on the changing experience of combat, Jean Bethke Elshtain on Jane Addams, Mark A. Noll on religion and war, and Robert M. Utley on Sitting Bull. Ranging from brief factual pieces to extensive essays, the entries examine every major war from the Revolution to the Persian Gulf; important battles from Bunker Hill, to the Alamo, Gettysburg, Little Bighorn, Normandy, and Khe Sanh; and military leaders from Washington to Grant, Lee, Eisenhower, MacArthur, Westmoreland, and Schwarzkopf. Moreover, the Companion goes well beyond the usual "drum and trumpet" coverage to examine a wide range of subjects you might not expect to find. There are entries on relevant acts of Congress and on diplomatic policies such as the Monroe Doctrine and the Marshall Plan; on peace and antiwar movements; on war in film, literature, music, and photography; and on war viewed through the disciplinary lenses of anthropology, economics, gender studies, and psychology. The result is the widest ranging account compiled in one volume of war, peace, and the U.S. military.
With over a thousand authoritative and vividly written entries, maps of several major wars, extensive cross-referencing, lists of further readings, and an index, this volume is the first place to turn for information on our nation's military history.
Passionate Sage: The Character and Legacy of John Adams
Passionate Sage
The Character and Legacy of John Adams
Paperback      ISBN: 0393311333

A fresh look at this astute, likably quirky statesman, by the author of the Pulitzer Award-winning Founding Brothers and the National Book Award winning American Sphinx.

"The most lovable and most laughable, the warmest and possibly the wisest of the founding fathers, John Adams knew himself as few men do and preserved his knowledge in a voluminous correspondence that still vibrates. Ellis has used it with great skill and perception not only to bring us the man, warts and all, but more importantly to reveal his extraordinary insights into the problems confronting the founders that resonate today in the republic they created." --Edmund S. Morgan, Sterling Professor of History Emeritus, Yale University

The Shaker Experience in America: A History of the United Society of Believers
The Shaker Experience in America
A History of the United Society of Believers
Paperback      ISBN: 0300059337

The Shakers, once a radical religious sect whose members were despised and harassed by their fellow Americans, have in recent years become celebrated--and sentimentalized--for their communal way of life, the simplicity of their worship, their belief in celibacy, pacifism, and equality of the sexes, and not least, their superb furniture and handicrafts. This monumental book is the first general history of the Shakers from their origins in eighteenth-century England to the present day.

Drawing on written and oral testimony by Shakers over the past two centuries, Stephen J. Stein offers a full and often revisionist account of the movement: their charismatic leaders, the early years in revolutionary New York and New England, the expansion into the West, the maturation and growth of the sect before the Civil War, the decline in their fortunes after the war, the painful adjustments to society Shakers had to make during the first half of the twentieth century, the renaissance of interest after 1950, and the "forbidden topic" within contemporary Shakerism--the conflict between the two remaining villages at Canterbury, New Hampshire, and Sabbathday Lake, Maine. Stein provides many new interpretations of the Shaker experience. He reassesses the role of founder Ann Lee, emphasizes the impact of the western Shaker settlements on the course of the society's history, and describes the variety of cultural enterprises that have obscured the religious and historical dimensions of the Shakers. Throughout Stein places the Shaker experience within the wider context of American life and shows how the movement has evolved to deal with changing times. Shattering the romantic myth that has been perpetuated about the quaint and peaceful Shakers, Stein portrays a group that is factious, practical, and fully human.

John Quincy Adams: A Public Life, a Private Life
John Quincy Adams
A Public Life, a Private Life
Paperback      ISBN: 0674479408

John Quincy Adams was raised, educated, and groomed to be President, following in the footsteps of his father, John. At fourteen he was secretary to the Minister to Russia and, later, was himself Minister to the Netherlands and Prussia. He was U.S. Senator, Secretary of State, and then President for one ill-fated term. His private life showed a parallel descent. He was a poet, writer, critic, and Professor of Oratory at Harvard. He married a talented and engaging Southerner, but two of his three sons were disappointments. This polymath and troubled man, caught up in both a democratic age not to his understanding and the furies of passion, was an American lion in winter.

The Gathering of Zion
The Gathering of Zion
Paperback      ISBN: 0803292139

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Wallace Stegner tells about a thousand-mile migration marked by hardship and sudden death-but unique in American history for its purpose, discipline, and solidarity. Other Bison Books by Wallace Stegner include Mormon Country, Recapitulation, Second Growth, and Women on the Wall.

The Victors: Eisenhower and His Boys: The Men of World War II
The Victors: Eisenhower and His Boys
The Men of World War II
Paperback      ISBN: 0684856298

From America's preeminent military historian, Stephen E. Ambrose, comes the definitive telling of the war in Europe, from D-Day, June 6, 1944, to the end, eleven months later, on May 7, 1945.

This authoritative narrative account is drawn by the author himself from his five acclaimed books about that conflict, most particularly from the definitive and comprehensive D-Day and Citizen Soldiers, about which the great Civil War historian James McPherson wrote, "If there is a better book about the experience of GIs who fought in Europe during World War II, I have not read it. Citizen Soldiers captures the fear and exhilaration of combat, the hunger and cold and filth of the foxholes, the small intense world of the individual rifleman as well as the big picture of the European theater in a manner that grips the reader and will not let him go. No one who has not been there can understand what combat is like but Stephen Ambrose brings us closer to an understanding than any other historian has done."

The Victors also includes stories of individual battles, raids, acts of courage and suffering from Pegasus Bridge, an account of the first engagement of D-Day, when a detachment of British airborne troops stormed the German defense forces and paved the way for the Allied invasion; and from Band of Brothers, an account of an American rifle company from the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment who fought, died, and conquered, from Utah Beach through the Bulge and on to Hitter's Eagle's Nest in Germany.

Stephen Ambrose is also the author of Eisenhower, the greatest work on Dwight Eisenhower, and one of the editors of the Supreme Allied Commander's papers. He describes the momentous decisions about how and where the war was fought, and about the strategies and conduct of the generals and officers who led the invasion and the bloody drive across Europe to Berlin.

But, as always with Stephen E. Ambrose, it is the ranks, the ordinary boys and men, who command his attention and his awe. The Victors tells their stories, how citizens became soldiers in the best army in the world. Ambrose draws on thousands of interviews and oral histories from government and private archives, from the high command--Eisenhower, Bradley, Patton--on down through officers and enlisted men, to re-create the last year of the Second World War when the Allied soldiers pushed the Germans out of France, chased them across Germany, and destroyed the Nazi regime.
Naval History of World War I
Naval History of World War I
Paperback      ISBN: 1557503524

There have been a number of studies published on the activities of British and German navies during World War I, but little on naval action in other arenas. This book offers for the first time a balanced history of the naval war as a whole, viewed from the perspective of all participants in all major theaters. The author's earlier examination The Naval War in the Mediterranean, 1914-1918, centered on submarine activities and allied efforts to counteract this new menace. With this welcome sequel he again takes the reader beyond those World War I operations staged on the North Sea. Halpern's clear and authoritative voice lends a cohesiveness to this encompassing view of the Italians and Austrians in the Adriatic; the Russians, Germans, and Turks in the Baltic and Black Seas; and French and British in the Mediterranean.

Important riverine engagements--notably on the Danube--also are included, along with major colonial campaigns such as Mesopotamia and the Dardanelles. The role of neutral sea powers, such as the Swedes in the Baltic and the Dutch in the East Indies, is examined from the perspective of how their neutrality affected naval activity. Also discussed is the part played by the U.S. Navy and the often overlooked, but far from negligible, role of the Japanese navy. The latter is viewed in the context of the opening months of the war and in the Mediterranean during the height of the submarine crisis of 1917.

A Midwife's Tale: The Life of Martha Ballard, Based on Her Diary, 1785-1812
A Midwife's Tale
The Life of Martha Ballard, Based on Her Diary, 1785-1812
Paperback      ISBN: 0679733760

WINNER OF THE PULITZER PRIZE

Drawing on the diaries of one woman in eighteenth-century Maine, this intimate history illuminates the medical practices, household economies, religious rivalries, and sexual mores of the New England frontier.

Between 1785 and 1812 a midwife and healer named Martha Ballard kept a diary that recorded her arduous work (in 27 years she attended 816 births) as well as her domestic life in Hallowell, Maine. On the basis of that diary, Laurel Thatcher Ulrich gives us an intimate and densely imagined portrait, not only of the industrious and reticent Martha Ballard but of her society. At once lively and impeccably scholarly, A Midwife's Tale is a triumph of history on a human scale.
Death of the Dream: Farmhouses in the Heartland
Death of the Dream
Farmhouses in the Heartland
Paperback      ISBN: 189043423x

The Industrialization of the American economy between 1862 and 1893 provided pioneer farm families with the means to realize their dreams on the Midwestern prairie. Now the last of their original farmhouses are disappearing. "There was no way to save them, " writes author William Gabler, "but their great homeliness and variety could be recorded in photographs."

The Zinn Reader: Writings on Disobedience and Democracy
The Zinn Reader
Writings on Disobedience and Democracy
Paperback      ISBN: 1888363541

No other radical historian has reached so many hearts and minds as Howard Zinn. It is rare that a historian of the Left has managed to retain as much credibility while refusing to let his academic mantle change his beautiful writing style from being anything but direct, forthright, and accessible. Whether his subject is war, race, politics, economic justice, or history itself, each of his works serves as a reminder that to embrace one's subjectivity can mean embracing one's humanity, that heart and mind can speak with one voice. Here, in six sections, is the historian's own choice of his shorter essays on some of the most critical problems facing America throughout its history, and today.