Demonstrating that the decisive "Seven Years' War" changed the balance of power between the British and French in North America, the author argues that this conflict destroyed the delicate balance of power that gave Native people a voice in the affairs of the continent while creating an "American generation."
"Exceptionally rich perspective on one of the most accomplished, complex, and unpredictable Americans of his own time or any other." --The Washington Post Book World
From the most respected chronicler of the early days of the Republic--and winner of both the Pulitzer and Bancroft prizes--comes a landmark work that rescues Benjamin Franklin from a mythology that has blinded generations of Americans to the man he really was and makes sense of aspects of his life and career that would have otherwise remained mysterious. In place of the genial polymath, self-improver, and quintessential American, Gordon S. Wood reveals a figure much more ambiguous and complex--and much more interesting. Charting the passage of Franklin's life and reputation from relative popular indifference (his death, while the occasion for mass mourning in France, was widely ignored in America) to posthumous glory, The Americanization of Benjamin Franklin sheds invaluable light on the emergence of our country's idea of itself.
All school children know the story of the fatal duel between Hamilton and Burr - but do they really? In this remarkable retelling, Thomas Fleming takes the reader into the post-revolutionary world of 1804, a chaotic and fragile time in the young country as well as a time of tremendous global instability. The success of the French Revolution and the proclamation of Napoleon as First Consul for Life had enormous impact on men like Hamilton and Burr, feeding their own political fantasies at a time of perceived Federal government weakness and corrosion. Their hunger for fame spawned antagonisms that wreaked havoc on themselves and their families and threatened to destabilize the fragile young American republic. From that poisonous brew came the tangle of regret and anger and ambition that drove the two to their murderous confrontation in Weehawken, New Jersey. Readers will find this is popular narrative history at its most authoritative, and authoritative history at its most readable.
For a quarter of a century between 1763 and 1788, Americans intensely debated the nature of government and the need to protect individual liberties. The debate climaxed in the arguments over the ratification of the Constitution. Through a selection of essential documents from 1787 and 1788, this new edition gives readers the flavor and immediacy of the great debate in all its fire, brilliance, and political intensity. Organized by topic, this is a convenient reference and teaching tool. This updated edition contains an entirely new section on the debate over class structure, property rights, and the economy under the proposed Constitution-an ideal introduction to a debate meaningful today.
Published anonymously in 1776, the year of the American Declaration of Independence, Paine's Common Sense became an immediate best-seller, with fifty-six editions printed in that year alone. It was this pamphlet, more than any other factor, which helped to spark off the movement that established the independence of the United States. From his experience of revolutionary politics, Paine drew those principles of fundamental human rights which, he felt, must stand no matter what excesses are committed to obtain them, and which he later formulated in his Rights of Man.For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
In this landmark work of history and winner of the Pulitzer Prize, Joseph J. Ellis explores how a group of greatly gifted but deeply flawed individuals--Hamilton, Burr, Jefferson, Franklin, Washington, Adams, and Madison--confronted the overwhelming challenges before them to set the course for our nation.The United States was more a fragile hope than a reality in 1790. During the decade that followed, the Founding Fathers--re-examined here as Founding Brothers--combined the ideals of the Declaration of Independence with the content of the Constitution to create the practical workings of our government. Through an analysis of six fascinating episodes--Hamilton and Burr's deadly duel, Washington's precedent-setting Farewell Address, Adams' administration and political partnership with his wife, the debate about where to place the capital, Franklin's attempt to force Congress to confront the issue of slavery and Madison's attempts to block him, and Jefferson and Adams' famous correspondence--Founding Brothers brings to life the vital issues and personalities from the most important decade in our nation's history.
Chronicles retired general George Washington's adventurous 680-mile trek down the Potomac River, a journey during which he endeavored to prevent disunion, collected key frontier data, and inspired engineering achievements.