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Book Title: Washington's Crossing|
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Reader ratings: 6.1
The author of the book: David Hackett Fischer
Edition: Oxford University Press, USA
Date of issue: February 1st 2006
ISBN 13: 9780195181593
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 497 KB
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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 Philadelphia.
Yet, 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 ruined.
Fischer'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.
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Read information about the authorDavid 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 Historian's fallacy).
He is best known for his major study, Albion's Seed, which argued that core aspects of American culture stem from several different British folkways and regional cultures, and the Pulitzer Prize-winning Washington's Crossing (Pivotal Moments in American History), a narrative of George Washington's leadership of the Continental Army during the winter of 1776-1777 during the American Revolutionary War.
He is currently at work on a biography of Samuel de Champlain, a French explorer and founder of Quebec City.
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