Washington's Crossing

Washington's CrossingExcellent, engaging, interesting, and inspiring.A few non exhaustive notes Washington A people unused to restraint must be led they will not be drove Private Joseph Plumb Martin woke to the sight of 5 warships anchored in the East River near New York that were ready for battle He remembered, It was on a Sabbath morning, the day in which the British were always employed about their deviltry if possible Washington wept when he realized the disaster that befell his 2,800 troops after he assented to the wishes of Gen Nathaniel Greene to try to hold Fort Lee, in spite of his better judgment Panics, in some cases, have their uses In tough times, people begin to think anew Paine s An American Crisis captured the difficulty of the time and the resolve of the Americans America s great revival did not follow the battles of Trenton and Princeton it preceded them and made those events possible, if not inevitable The revival arose from many people, esp the ordinary people in the valley of the Delaware R Dr Benjamin Rush thought that it was a national habit of the American people not to deal with a difficult problem until it was nearly impossible Our republics cannot exist long in prosperity We require adversity, and appear to possess most of the republican spirit when most depressed o For example, when Congress was forced to move from Philadelphia to Balti in humble circumstances, Samuel Adams noted that the circumstances improved the virtue of Congress and that Congress was able to accomplish in 3 weeks than they had done in 6 months in Phil.a During the winter campaigns of 1776 1777, there are many accounts of blood tinged snow from the unshod or little shod feet of the American troops While the Americans had plenty of firearms, artillery, and ammunition, blankets and shoes were always in short supply during that difficult winter During the battle of Trenton, James Monroe took over the head of a corps from an injured Capt William Washington In the melee, he was hit by a musket ball that severed an artery and he bled dangerously Fortunately, a local New Jersey doctor who had joined Monroe s Company as a volunteer the night before, saved his life by clamping the artery just in time to keep him from bleeding to death Inhabitants, including at least one woman, shot from their homes in the battle of Trenton One of the woman s shots hit and mortally wounded a Hessian captain After the Battle of Trenton, Washington ordered his men to treat the Hessians with humanity A voluntary private drive was organized to help gather clothing and especially shoes for the Continental Army as an emergency measure General Thomas Mifflin, who pledged his life and fortune to the American cause, persuaded his men to stay on in the cause of liberty for 6 weeks and for 10 just before and in the nick of time their time of service was expiring Most of them agreed to stay Washington repeated this plea for troops to stay an extra month by appealing to their service to the cause of liberty and to their country, and to their sense of honor Washington also addressed their material needs by authorizing 10 hard coin for those who agreed Nearly all who were fit for duty 200 agreed to stay on and serve They knew the cost, and it was later determined that nearly half would be killed in the fighting or dead of disease soon after A true sacrifice Washington and his officers were keenly aware that the war was also a contest for popular opinion While the esteem of others was somewhat important to some of the leaders, what was important was their belief that they would win only if they deserved to win Even in the most urgent times of the war, these men were concerned about the ethical questions in the Revolution The American troops had a sense of their own strength, a confidence in one another, and a feeling that Providence was with them on the night of the Battle of Trenton The weather proved to be a blessing from Providence many times during the War One instance included the cold temps that came so quickly the night after the Battle of Trenton As the Army proceeded to Princeton that night, the roads, which had been slushy and muddy the day before, froze within about 2 hours to provide for easier travel for the American troops Some of the differences between Washington and the British generals include o Washington listened to his fellow officers and encouraged them to share their views freely o He listened than he spoke.o Later on, he worked skillfully at the construction of consensus, as in a council.o These skills resulted in a community of open discourse and a spirit of mutual forbearance.o This also led to growing respect for Washington Historian Gruuber sp concluded that Trenton and Princeton were supremely important to destroy the illusion of British invincibility, making patriots of potential Loyalists, and spoiling the Howe brothers hopes to a quick end to the War and the start to a lasting reunion with the Crown Americans became highly motivated by the cruel experience of oppression Another strength was their religion their faith sustained them in adversity Another plus was that the free male population in America was among the most literate in the world Also, the American economy generated higher income per capita than most European nations Americans were also accustomed to govern themselves by 1776, they had done so for 6 generations In spite of the many failures, success came together in the winter of 1776 Why A big reason was that the civil and military leaders were accountable to a free people through their representatives Thus, military leaders spent much time to communicate with the people and their leaders The victories at Trenton and Princeton added legitimacy and stability to the American Cause when most needed and helped the fragile invention that was America, grow into an American tradition A new way of war fighting was developed in America that reflected the nature of the citizenry Free Americans in 1776 were a restless, striving, entrepreneurial people who routinely assumed risk for the sake of profit They were a practical people who judged actions by results Thus, they saw war differently than Europeans They knew that wars may have to be fought from time to time to accomplish a particular purpose or goal They fought not for the sake of fighting, but for the sake of winning While war has been a continual part of America s experience at least one war fought each generation , Americans always saw war as an interruption in their lives and something that they wanted to get done quickly in order to return to the ordinary business of life Some of the war fighting differences were boldness and opportunism, initiative and tempo, speed and concentration, and intelligence These differences came together in the winter battles of 1776 1777 and would define a new way of war that would continue to our time During the winter campaigns of 1776 77, neither Washington nor his leaders denied quarter to the enemy, in spite of the fact that quarter was denied to many Americans by the British and Hessians Note that 23% of the Hessians who fought in the War decided to remain in America after it ended Thus, the Americans chose a policy of humanity that aligned the conduct of the War with the values of the Revolution They set the standard high Too many scholars in the late 20th century tried to make the American past into a record of crime and folly Too many writers have told us that we are captors of our darker selves and helpless victims of our history It isn t so, and never was The story of Washington s Crossing tells us that Americans were and are capable of acting in a higher spirit. I ve been reading a lot of American Revolutionary history lately, and even so, David Hackett Fischer s 2003 volume Washington s Crossing, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for history, stands out as excellent Much like David McCullough s fantastic 1776, Washington s Crossing focuses in on a narrow portion of the Revolutionary War and brings it to vivid life.Washington s Crossing is devoted to an in depth look at the New Jersey campaign of the winter of 1776 1777 However, Fischer doesn t just dump you into the icy Delaware River without some background He starts off by examining each of the three armies involved, the American, British, and Hessian, looking at where they came from, how they viewed the Revolution, how they operated, and what their goals were This section is extremely interesting, and did a lot to enhance my understandings of all sides.The challenges Washington faced with Continental troops from all over the colonies and militia only vaguely under his command, the plans of British commanders Admiral and General Howe to pacify the countryside and aide the surely numerous Loyalists in keeping the colonies under the King, and the economic and historical reasons Hessians became excellent mercenaries, and all of this was illuminating Finally, Fischer gives an overview of the disastrous routing of the Continental Army during the New York campaign, which lead to the dire straights the Cause found itself in by November 1776.Once he turns to the New Jersey campaign, Fischer breaks the action down into four main parts the Battle of Trenton, the Battle of Assunpink Creek, the Battle of Princeton, and the Forage Wars The Battle of Trenton, of course, is where the title of the book and the famous painting comes from, and was the initial shock that stunned the British and Hessians Fischer does a great job of setting the scene for just how big a gamble this was for Washington He also dispels the common myth about the Hessians being drunk on Christmas, as instead explaining how their openness to attack was a combination of fatigue from being on watch for days on end for militia who had been harassing them and an assumption that no one could be crazy enough to attack in the intense blizzard that, in fact, served the American purpose excellently by covering their approach.My favorite part of the book, in fact, may be the part detailing the Battle of Assunpink Creek also known as the Second Battle of Trenton I hadn t even heard of this battle before It was the British counterstrike after their loss at Trenton, and the Americans were forced into defending the indefensible city they had just taken from the Hessians days before Through a combination of bravery from the men, ingenious generalship from Washington, and a willingness to fight the way that worked, instead of the way the British expected them to, the Americans not only won the battle, they were able to slip away from under the British s very noses in the middle of the night and make their way to Princeton, surprising the British once again with the American ability to show up where they weren t expected.What followed was the Battle of Princeton, where the Americans ran into reinforcements headed to Trenton and defeated the British in a pitched battle on open field a first In less than two weeks, the Americans had run up several victories against the British, and rallied a Cause they seemed nearly dead only a month before But they weren t done yet The rest of the winter was consumed by the Forage War, in which the Americans mostly militia harassed the British in their winter quarters and while they attempted to supply their army from the countryside By the spring of 1777, the British had gone from assuming the war was nearly over to, among some major leaders and many of the men, believing it could not be won.Fischer covers all the bases in Washington s Crossing He explains the motivations of the people and forces involved, he compellingly describes the battles with a novelist s flair, and he clearly lays out the effect the events of this book had on the Revolution as it continued He really leaves no angle unexplored in this thorough effort, and is entertaining all the while.One detail that aided the book greatly was the care given to the visual aspect of history Maps of all the major encounters are plentiful, as are portraits of the major players, and they all appear in the text when the person is introduced, and not sequestered in a glossy break in the narrative midway though the pages of the book This may not seem a big deal, but so many histories and biographies manage to mess it up that it s refreshing when it s handled well as it is in Washington s Crossing.Finally, a comparison, since I mentioned it at the beginning, to David McCullough s 1776 There is certainly overlap between the two books 1776 mainly covers between the Siege of Boston and the Battle of Princeton It does so quite well, and is fantastic at covering the American side of the story Washington s Crossing covers from the Battle of Long Island to the Forage Wars, and gives attention to the British and Hessian side of the story than does 1776 Both are excellent and I recommend them to any fan of American history If I had to pick one, it would probably be Washington s Crossing, by the narrowest of margins.British General Lord Cornwallis, known to Americans as the loser at Yorktown in 1781, was also involved in the New Jersey campaign, and told Washington after Yorktown, When the illustrious part that your Excellency has borne in this long and arduous contest becomes a matter of history, fame will gather your brightest laurels rather from the banks of the Delaware than from those of the Chesapeake Cornwallis was right as important as the later battles of the war were, Washington saved the Revolution with the Continental victories in the New Jersey campaign Washington s Crossing will show you why.I highly recommend David Hackett Fischer s Washington s Crossing to any fan of American or military history Fishcer s work is compelling, thorough, well researched, and most of all enjoyable History fans will not be disappointed. Washington s Crossing is a real page turner It is well researched and filled with detail yet never becomes tedious An added bonus is the historiography at the end showing all the ways the same events have been interpreted over the years by historians and artists of different nations For someone who is weary of constant references to American exceptionalism by the clearly unexceptional, Fischer s genuine depiction of American revolutionary leaders who deserve the accolade is wonderfully refreshing Standing out above the rest was George Washington Fischer depicts the American victories at Trenton and Princeton as a turning point in the war The British had driven the Continental army out of New York They along with their Hessian mercenaries occupied New Jersey in a display of overwhelming strength Loyalists were emboldened and as the revolutionaries became disheartened, capitulation seemed possible Instead the loyalists soon lost faith Washington s quick precision strikes at Trenton and Princeton showed the Americans could fight and the British could lose Cornwallis was forced to retreat settling into enclaves near New York as local militias supported by the Continental Army operated with guerilla tactics While thoroughly professional, the British and Hessians were limited in imagination and flexibility due to their strict hierarchy Their arrogance caused them to underestimate the fighting ability of their opposition making them vulnerable Their troops were constantly harassed outside their bases and became dispirited as the death toll mounted Support for the war in England suffered as its costs rose and the prospect of quick victory faded General Howe exaggerated his wins and minimized his losses in his reports to Parliament However, his requests for thousands of additional troops made many back in England realize they were not getting the straight story All of these things make one instantly think of the Viet Nam War George Washington demonstrated remarkable leadership He had the capacity to grow into the job and to learn from experience His presence and his calmness under pressure enabled him to lead by example His openness, the ability to draw out, to absorb new ideas and reach consensus made him highly effective His brilliance was in his ability to recognize and adopt the best available ideas regardless of their origin He was always mindful of public opinion This coupled with his deep morality led him to minimize casualties and treat prisoners and loyalists humanely drawing a sharp distinction with the British and Hessians Their widespread plundering turned the local population against them.Washington adopted a mobile, flexible military strategy that looks thoroughly modern He had a great sense of timing, of maintaining the initiative and keeping his opponents off balance His tactic of concentrating his army on isolated elements of enemy positions was effective and well executed Before the idea had a name he was clearly proficient in the use of force multipliers In this time when so many heroes seem tainted, here we have this highly credible account of the exploits of an American who deserves the title and our respect George Washington was truly an exceptional leader and Fischer gives us an exceptionally vivid account This is historical writing at its very best. Almost everyone knows the famous painting of General Washington standing heroically in a shallow boat, surrounded by soldiers in a variety of garb including James Madison holding an American flag, crossing the ice choked Delaware river The painting, done by a German artist 75 years after the fact, is a pretty romanticized depiction of the event But there s no debating the significance of what happened on that Christmas Day 1776 This book, which won the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for History, is a remarkable record of the events leading up to the crossing, the truth about the crossing itself, the rout of the Hessians in Trenton that followed, and the aftermath in the war for independence He describes in great detail the British invasion of New York some months after the Declaration of Independence, and the dismal state of the American effort at that point The impact of British and Hessian atrocities helped motivate the sluggish colonists but Washington s character and leadership shine most brightly I was newly fascinated by the vivid but very readable description of what Fischer believes to be the turning of the tide that led to American independence. This book is so far, my personal favorite I wasn t 10 pages into it when I realized I was really going to enjoy this book David Fischer won the Pulitzer prize for History for it, and I can see why The story unraveled like no other I have ever come across Just like other reviewers have said, it should be required reading for anyone who is interested in learning about one of if not thee most important moment in American history.This is a wonderful story There is suspense, drama, impossible odds, and an underdog who is triumphant in the end as our hero And it was all true What else can you ask for A rare and impressive example of a modern academic doing military history, and doing it well.Yet clearly part of the reason Fischer wrote this book was to provide a kind of on the ground justification for his earlier work of social and cultural history, Albion s Seed, where he discovered four major folkways in America which he thought descended from four separate waves of migration Sure enough, he finds similar divisions here, such as that between the ordered liberty of the New England regiments and the levelling liberty of the Pennsylvania Associators Whats surprising perhaps is how convincingly he makes his case, describing how the Pennsylvanians, for example, elected their own officers and forbid sartorial displays of differing rank He further extends his social analysis to those on the British side like the fiercely independent Highland Foot regiments one of whom fought a bloody battle in its own right to keep its kilts and tartans back in Scotland and the infamous Hessians, who were sent over to the US as part of the Handelsoldieten solider trade in what some at the time called the deal of the century for the Landgrave of Hesse Cassel, who received millions in gold for his troubles.Fischer also demonstrates the world historical consequences of these social and military confrontations along the Delaware river in late 1776 and early 1777 The defeat of the Hessians at the first battle of Trenton caused Europe, inspired especially by an anonymous pamphleteer who was probably Ben Franklin, to react against the mercenary trade and helped end it on the continent On the other hand, Washington is portrayed as one of the first to understand how to create a new American order out of distinctive and differing visions of liberty, namely, through negotiation and tolerance His command foreshadowed later government recognition of differences and compromise, yet kept the army united enough to achieve victory.Overall though, the book is mainly a well wrought military history, describing the lay of the land and dispositions of regiments and how they clashed in battle I haven t read anything like it in awhile, but I m certainly glad I read this one. David Hackett Fischer has produced a highly readable and fact filled account of the important battles of the Revolutionary War following the Declaration of Independence This conflict required a young, self made country to draw soldiers from among its colonies to go against the strongest army of the time without the knowledge of how or when the outcome would play out I think the heart of the American War of independence was the people of all classes who joined regiments and went to war under sometimes terrible physical conditions, for pay, food and clothing which was meager when available, which was not often The glue which held this together was the aristocratic George Washington, whose prior military experience several decades earlier in the French and Indian War was far from stellar How all of this came together and led to ultimate victory is the driving force of the historical study of this war This story begins in the summer of 1776, after the new American commander, Washington, had driven the British from Boston The Colonists were able to use the terrain around that city to make it unbearable for the occupying British to remain there New York was a different story General Howe landed a powerful army of British regulars and German Hessians on Staten Island Washington s strategy quickly changed from stopping the invasion to moving his gradually disintegrating army from one disastrous defensive position to another Fischer provides clear maps showing the defeats and retreats from Long Island to Harlem Heights to Fort Washington by Washington s army after being tactically outmaneuvered by the British Navy and Army Washington s only successes during these months consisted of brilliantly executed and lucky withdrawals of his forces while on the verge of being enveloped by the enemy on several occasions After his retreat across New Jersey to Trenton, and then across the Delaware River to Pennsylvania, Washington was able to stop running, but most of his army was killed, captured or had deserted by then The remnants were due to end their enlistments at the end of the year It was entirely possible, by the winter of 1776, that the Revolution would run out of steam Washington made a daring plan to turn his fortunes around He crossed the Delaware River during the evening of Christmas to attack the Hessian regiment which had taken up winter quarters in Trenton He put his 2,400 men in boats and crossed the river at night in a strong ice and snow storm Fischer s descriptions and maps show how the Americans were able to maneuver into position to defeat a force of professional soldiers Not content to withdraw with his prisoners back to Pennsylvania and sit out the winter, Washington kept his forces in Trenton to face the British relief army of General Cornwallis at Trenton The Americans skillfully withdrew back along the route the British marched from Princeton, and fought successfully against the British there Unlike the two next disastrous winters when the American Army would almost starve and freeze to death in encampments, the 1776 77 winter would be spent by the Americans in New Jersey, carrying on a forage war of attacks which effectively kept the British main forces tied up in New York City until the following spring.Fischer writes a history which describes one of the great military reversals of all time The casual reader can find a wealth of interesting information in an enjoyable read, while the historian and scholar will be impressed by the depth of research used in writing the book Fischer always, though, is focused on the General who was able to keep his army going under all challenges, and the people who he led The American Army at this time could contain a collection of types such as Virginia gentlemen, New England seamen, Scot immigrants, western frontiersmen, Pennsylvania and New Jersey farmers Some were attired in their civilian clothing as part of militia regiments some wore the uniforms of state regiments Some were black it is interesting that the novelty of a racially integrated army starting in 1948 was actually preceded by the Revolutionary War I didn t make up the preceding description of American types fighting with Washington The list is actually from Fischer s critique of the iconic painting of Washington s Crossing the Delaware by Emanuel Leutze This American treasure in the Metropolitan Museum of Art was actually painted to inspire the 1848 European revolutionary movements by the artist, who had returned to Germany from America It is interesting that the original 1850 painting remained in Germany and was destroyed by the bombing of Bremen in World War II the famous painting in the Met is an exact Leutze copy of the original dated 1851 Fischer ends his book with an examination of the historiography of the contribution Washington made to the Revolution through his victories at Trenton I and II and Princeton I enjoyed reading his descriptions of the differing historical interpretations of these events by the Romantic Historians, Whigs, Nationalists, Debunkers, Multiculturalists and others This section is a mini education on historical method Fischer s position on the subject is that you can assign any motives you want to Washington and the Patriots, but the only fair conclusion of the cause they fought for is that they were trying to build a country according to the highest principles Two discoveries concerning the human condition were being put to the test here, not in academia but in a war for survival The first was the principle that a society could be organized on the basis of liberty and freedom, and it could actually work The other concerned the capacity of humans for order and discipline These Enlightenment altruisms, not necessarily compatible with each other, were at work in 1776, when Washington had to lead an army of individualists who came from different colonies representing different sectional interests, many of whom joined up to preserve the idea of American independence from vasalege to the Mother Country Nevertheless, these individualists needed to be trained to subvert their will and talents to the service of others, and to accept the military system of punishment and reward used to drill soldiers A last note on the importance of Leutz s painting Fischer is aware of the debunkers who have trashed this painting because it contains numerous historical inaccuracies Even the American flag dominating the center of the painting is incorrect, since it was not adopted until the following year Fischer, however, chose to use the painting on his book cover because it is the greatest visual symbol of the spirit of the times Leutz correctly portrays a boatload of soldiers facing great odds The atmosphere of high drama and feelings of desperation portrayed here were no doubt clearly felt by the small force who just faced five months of disastrous defeats and now were operating with a sense of urgency to attempt one , high risk try to save a movement that they had devoted their lives to America s greatest generation It could very well be that. Simply browsing the title, table of contents, and some reviews potential readers may fall into the trap of thinking that this book is too similar to David McCullough s 1776 to justify reading it However, this assumption isn t correct While both stories follow Washington s army through the fall of New York and conclude with the battles of Trenton and Princeton, Fischer s focus is different than McCullough s McCullough s main focus was on Washington s army throughout the entire year of 1776 starting with a detailed description of the Boston siege Fischer only in minor detail discusses the very end of the siege of Boston in setting the stage for the showdown in New York Fischer focuses on the dark days of November December 1776 precluding Trenton Princeton and what Washington did to revitalize his fleeting army and keep the American cause alive Following through on this focus, Fischer can be guilty at times of hero worship regarding Washington It almost seems that Fischer chooses to throw light on the flaws of the British to smooth out Washington s wrinkles Fischer begins with a somewhat thorough overview of the key characters who would play major parts in the campaign of 1776 the Americans, the British, and the Hessians Fischer is less descriptive of the Battle for New York than McCullough The heart of the story lies in the account of the activities that took place in New Jersey immediately preceding Washington s Christmas Day attack and its aftermath Instead of focusing solely on Washington and his army, Fischer chooses to focus on British loss of control of New Jersey as the true reason for Washington s triumph Fischer focuses on the rupture, insubordination, and sheer misjudgment of the British and Hessian chains of command and how events ruined William Howe s plans for the pacification of New Jersey Howe s plans for peace instead ended in violence In the aftermath of his fumbling loss of New York, Washington quickly learned from his mistakes was able to utilize intelligence to his advantage, monitoring the enemy while buying time, strengthening, reforming his army, and consolidating his command When he saw opportunities present themselves he acted by first doing what he could to disrupt the enemy and put them on edge before his official attack While recounting the facts of Washington s crossing and the events that followed, Fischer in his unique way is quick to debunk many myths and legends that surround the events For instance, factual accounts prove that the Hessians were not drunk and engaged in their holiday festivities that night but had actually been quite alert all day and engaged in their regular guard duties However, these soldiers were completely fatigued, warn out from the raids and uprisings that had kept them vigilant night and day for several weeks in December The reason they were surprised is because of their own misjudgment had let their guard down thinking it impossible that the Americans would attack in a blinding snow storm The book can be a bit of a slog at times Fischer wrote this book as part of an Oxford Press series that he coedited with James McPherson entitled Pivotal Moments in American History Maybe being part of a series that seems to have been written for those less familiar with history might explain why this books seemed to me as quite pedestrian It seems as though that was Fischer s goal This clearly isn t his best work, but I would still recommend giving it a look There is some good information especially on the events that occurred in New Jersey during the British occupation of the colony such as the New Jersey risings which I have not read about elsewhere For that I give it three stars. Less than two weeks ago I read David McCullough s 1776, a history of the first year of the Continental Army under George Washington, its mixed success in Boston and disaster in New York City and culminating after a night crossing of the Delaware River in their victory in the Battle of Trenton It was an engaging, well told story of such suffering and such blunders I left that book amazed the American Revolution, the army and cause survived to triumph This book covers much of the same territory, with a particular focus on the crossing of the Delaware on Christmas of 1776, the ensuing Battle of Trenton and the Battle of Princeton less than a week later The Editor s Note claims that No single day in history was decisive for the creation of the United States than Christmas 1776 On that night a ragged army of 2,400 colonials crossed the ice choked Delaware River from Pennsylvania to New York in the teeth of a nor easter that lashed their boats and bodies with sleet and snow Given the overlap in material I thought this book was likely to suffer in comparison That 1776 would likely make the stronger impression having been read first McCullough is arguably the engaging, concise writer but not only did Fischer have a different read, emphasis and details, but in the end Washington s Crossing is the stronger, scholarly book, packed with notes, maps and illustrations Although you d have to enjoy not just history but military history Fischer paints the crucial battles in a much detailed way than McCullough did, not simply in terms of grand strategy but the personal tragedies and individual casualties And if McCullough s book arguably throws George Washington in sharper relief, Fischer is superb in depicting the various armies, their soldiers and officers Fischer tells you of their training, their discipline, even about their drum calls The British commanders, the brothers General and Admiral Howe, come across in a complex, human way the same is true of the Hessians and their officers For one, Fischer explained that even in contemporary times, a British officer could say there was no British army only a collection of tribes which is why the British army could never bring off a coup You understand what that meant when Fischer details the very different customs and cultures of various regiments the Scottish Highlanders going into battle in their kilts and determined not to let down their kin and clan fighting beside them The Americans were varied as well I had known blacks had served in the Revolutionary War I hadn t known that in at least one Massachusetts regiment they served in integrated units and that there were black officers, one of whom rose to the rank of colonel The various folk ways of the different American regions, and the need to wield them together into a unified force that didn t conflict with the revolutionary ideals were a big part of the story I really liked 1776, and I d recommend both books really And probably 1776 with the sweeping, less detailed overview is the one to read first But if I were forced to choose only one book to read or keep on the bookshelf, it would be Washington s Crossing. I d certainly be interested in reading of Fischer in the future. Six Months After The Declaration Of Independence, The American Revolution Was All But Lost A Powerful British Force Had Routed The Americans At New York, Occupied Three Colonies, And Advanced Within Sight Of PhiladelphiaYet, As David Hackett Fischer Recounts In This Riveting History, George Washington And Many Other Americans Refused To Let The Revolution Die On Christmas Night, As A Howling Nor Easter Struck The Delaware Valley, He Led His Men Across The River And Attacked The Exhausted Hessian Garrison At Trenton, Killing Or Capturing Nearly A Thousand Men A Second Battle Of Trenton Followed Within Days The Americans Held Off A Counterattack By Lord Cornwallis S Best Troops, Then Were Almost Trapped By The British Force Under Cover Of Night, Washington S Men Stole Behind The Enemy And Struck Them Again, Defeating A Brigade At Princeton The British Were Badly Shaken In Twelve Weeks Of Winter Fighting, Their Army Suffered Severe Damage, Their Hold On New Jersey Was Broken, And Their Strategy Was RuinedFischer S Richly Textured Narrative Reveals The Crucial Role Of Contingency In These Events We See How The Campaign Unfolded In A Sequence Of Difficult Choices By Many Actors, From Generals To Civilians, On Both Sides While British And German Forces Remained Rigid And Hierarchical, Americans Evolved An Open And Flexible System That Was Fundamental To Their Success The Startling Success Of Washington And His Compatriots Not Only Saved The Faltering American Revolution, But Helped To Give It New Meaning

David Hackett Fischer is University Professor and Earl Warren Professor of History at Brandeis University His major works have tackled everything from large macroeconomic and cultural trends Albion s Seed, The Great Wave to narrative histories of significant events Paul Revere s Ride, Washington s Crossing to explorations of historiography Historians Fallacies, in which he coined the term H

[Read] ➱ Washington's Crossing By David Hackett Fischer – Ultimatetrout.info
  • Hardcover
  • 564 pages
  • Washington's Crossing
  • David Hackett Fischer
  • English
  • 09 June 2018
  • 0000195170342

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