Thanks to Steph for letting me borrow David McCullough’s 1776. This book was published about a year and a half ago and it chronicles the Continental Army’s trek from Boston down to Trenton throughout the year.
What I found to be most intriguing about the book was the way it used real accounts to describe both Washington’s army and the British army. Also, the sheer size and skill of the British army (plus their ability to hire Hessian soldiers to do their dirty work) should have made them the winners of this “war” by a long shot. Yet, the Continental Army – in the face of poor supplies, captured heroes, and hundreds of deserters – managed to win the war.
The book doesn’t go into how we won the war, since it continued on for a few years, but the tactic (if you can call it that) of running away is heavily covered. Also, I was glad to see that a true representation of George Washington was included. For those of you that don’t know, this guy was about as pompous and arrogant as they come (one of the reasons why I’m a fan).
I suggest this book for any history buff or anyone who wants a real account of the not-so-glamorous Revolutionary War. Also, if you’re interested in the military and its interaction with the federal government, one could successfully argue that this book chronicles the very beginning of that relationship as Washington was in constant contact with the Second Continental Congress. You may also enjoy reading how Washington pretty much self-regulated his actions (and the actions of his officers) and how he thought it of utmost importance to be sure that the Congress gave their approval to his actions.
Since the summer is upon us, this might be a good beach or backyard read. Feel free to leave comments if you decide to read the book!