The colonial and revolutionary era, beginnings to 1783.
The Reader's Companion to American HistoryThe Reader's Companion to American History offers a fresh, absorbing portrait of the United States from the origins of its native peoples to the nation's complex identity in the 1990s. Covering political, economic, cultural, and social history, and combining hundreds of short descriptive entries with longer evaluative articles, the encyclopedia is informative, engaging, and a pleasure to read. The Reader's Companion is sponsored by the Society of American Historians, an organization dedicated to promoting literary excellence in the writing of biography and history. Under the editorship of the eminent historians John A. Garraty and Eric Foner, a large and distinguished group of scholars, biographers, and journalists -- nearly four hundred contemporary authorities -- illuminate the critical events, issues, and individuals that have shaped our past. More than a reference book to be consulted simply for the dates or details of an event, the Companion offers a history of ideas. It distinguishes itself from conventional encylcopedias by featuring several hundred thematic articles. A chronological account of immigration, for example, is complemented by a conceptual article on ethnicity. Similarly, the Bull Moose party and the Know-Nothings, examined in individual entries, are also placed within a larger context in an article on third parties in American politics. And readers consulting entries on specific religious groups, leaders, and movements will be led to an article offering an overview of religion in America. Linking discrete facts, dates, and events through its interpretive essays, the Reader's Companion presents the overarching themes and ideas that have animated our historicallandscape. Over the past twenty years, the study of history has undergone a metamorphosis. Political history, once the primary avenue for exploring the past, has given way to the "new social history." Focus has shifted from key events and leaders to everyday life in America, including the history of the family, women and the work force, race relations, and community life. The Reader's Companion to American History reflects this broader vision of our past. Interweaving traditional political and economic topics with the spectrum of America's social and cultural legacies -- everything from marriage to medicine, crime to baseball, fashion to literature -- the Companion is certain to engage the curiosity, interests, and passions of every reader.
The American Political Party System by Michael C. LeMayWhat historical factors transformed American politics into the institution we know today? This in-depth look at America's party system traces its efficacy, sustainability, and popularity through six influential presidencies spanning 1790 to the present day. * Theorizes how the presidencies of Jefferson, Jackson, Lincoln, McKinley, FDR, and Ronald Reagan marked the beginning of a new political party system at the time and considers how Obama's election might signal the latest transformation * Contains essays that explain how political beliefs affect party identification, examine each party's platform on national security issues, and identify the effects the Trump campaign has on the Republican Party * Features 15 primary documents including excerpts from the Federalist Papers and relevant sections of the U.S. Constitution * Includes maps, bar and line graphs, and pie charts to illustrate key elements of the party system
The Founding Fathers Reconsidered by R. B. BernsteinHere is a concise, scholarly, yet accessible overview of the brilliant, flawed, and quarrelsome group of lawyers, politicians, merchants, military men, and clergy known as "the Founding Fathers" - who got as close to the ideal of the Platonic "philosopher-kings" as American or world historyhas ever seen. In The Founding Fathers Reconsidered, R. B. Bernstein reveals Washington, Franklin, Jefferson, Adams, Hamilton, and the other founders not as shining demigods but as imperfect human beings - people much like us - who nevertheless achieved political greatness. They emerge here as men who sought totranscend their intellectual world even as they were bound by its limits, men who strove to lead the new nation even as they had to defer to the great body of the people and learn with them the possibilities and limitations of politics. Bernstein deftly traces the dynamic forces that molded thesemen and their contemporaries as British colonists in North America and as intellectual citizens of the Atlantic civilization's Age of Enlightenment. He analyzes the American Revolution, the framing and adoption of state and federal constitutions, and the key concepts and problems--among themindependence, federalism, equality, slavery, and the separation of church and state--that both shaped and circumscribed the founders' achievements as the United States sought its place in the world. Finally, he charts the shifting reputations of the founders, both as a group and as individuals, andexamining the specific uses to which interpreters of the Constitution have put the Founding Fathers, along with the problems besetting this "jurisprudence of original intent." A masterly blend of old and new scholarship, brimming with apt description and insightful analysis, this book offers a persuasive account of how the Founding Fathers were formed, what they did, and how generations of Americans have viewed them.
The Indian World of George Washington by Colin G. CallowayGeorge Washington's place in the foundations of the Republic remains unrivalled. His life story--from his beginnings as a surveyor and farmer, to colonial soldier in the Virginia Regiment, leader of the Patriot cause, commander of the Continental Army, and finally first president of the United States--reflects the narrative of the nation he guided into existence. There is, rightfully, no more chronicled figure. Yet American history has largely forgotten what Washington himself knew clearly: that the new Republic's fate depended less on grand rhetoric of independence and self-governance and more on land--Indian land. Colin G. Calloway's biography of the greatest founding father reveals in full the relationship between Washington and the Native leaders he dealt with intimately across the decades: Shingas, Tanaghrisson, Guyasuta, Attakullakulla, Bloody Fellow, Joseph Brant, Cornplanter, Red Jacket, and Little Turtle, among many others. Using the prism of Washington's life to bring focus to these figures and the tribes they represented--the Iroquois Confederacy, Lenape, Miami, Creek, Delaware--Calloway reveals how central their role truly was in Washington's, and therefore the nation's, foundational narrative. Calloway gives the First Americans their due, revealing the full extent and complexity of the relationships between the man who rose to become the nation's most powerful figure and those whose power and dominion declined in almost equal degree during his lifetime. His book invites us to look at America's origins in a new light. The Indian World of George Washington is a brilliant portrait of both the most revered man in American history and those whose story during the tumultuous century in which the country was formed has, until now, been only partially told.
Lincoln, the Rise of the Republicans, and the Coming of the Civil War by Kerry WaltersThis succinct and readable account of the heated debate over the expansion of slavery provides readers with a thorough understanding of how the Civil War was precipitated. * Supplies a concise, blow-by-blow account of the famous debates between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas in 1858 * Documents the first two Republican campaigns for the presidency, John C. Fremont in 1856 and Abraham Lincoln in 1860 * Explores the points of disagreement between the North and South over slavery expansion * Includes an appendix of documents and political speeches from the period, including excerpts from the Lincoln-Douglas debates