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The War of Independence   By: (1842-1901)

Book cover

First Page:

Number 62

( Double Number )

RIVERSIDE LITERATURE SERIES

THE WAR OF INDEPENDENCE BY JOHN FISKE

WITH MAPS, INDEX AND A BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH

HOUGHTON MIFFLIN COMPANY BOSTON, NEW YORK, AND CHICAGO

The Riverside Press Cambridge

Price, paper 30 cents; linen, 40 cents

The Riverside Literature Series

THE WAR OF INDEPENDENCE

BY JOHN FISKE

WITH MAPS, INDEX, AND A BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH

[Decoration]

HOUGHTON MIFFLIN COMPANY

Boston: 4 Park Street; New York: 85 Fifth Avenue Chicago: 378 388 Wabash Avenue

The Riverside Press, Cambridge

COPYRIGHT, 1889 BY JOHN FISKE

COPYRIGHT, 1894 BY HOUGHTON, MIFFLIN & CO.

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

PREFACE.

This little book does not contain the substance of the lectures on the American Revolution which I have delivered in so many parts of the United States since 1883. Those lectures, when completed and published, will make quite a detailed narrative; this book is but a sketch. It is hoped that it may prove useful to the higher classes in schools, as well as to teachers. When I was a boy I should have been glad to get hold of a brief account of the War for Independence that would have suggested answers to some of the questions that used to vex me. Was the conduct of the British government, in driving the Americans into rebellion, merely wanton aggression, or was it not rather a bungling attempt to solve a political problem which really needed to be solved? Why were New Jersey and the Hudson river so important? Why did the British armies make South Carolina their chief objective point after New York? Or how did Cornwallis happen to be at Yorktown when Washington made such a long leap and pounced upon him there? And so on. Such questions the old fashioned text books not only did not try to answer, they did not even recognize their existence. As to the large histories, they of course include so many details that it requires maturity of judgment to discriminate between the facts that are cardinal and those that are merely incidental. When I give lectures to schoolboys and schoolgirls, I observe that a reference to causes and effects always seems to heighten the interest of the story. I therefore offer them this little book, not as a rival but as an aid to the ordinary text book. I am aware that a narrative so condensed must necessarily suffer from the omission of many picturesque and striking details. The world is so made that one often has to lose a little in one direction in order to gain something in another. This book is an experiment. If it seems to answer its purpose, I may follow it with others, treating other portions of American history in similar fashion.

CAMBRIDGE, February 11, 1889 .

CONTENTS.

CHAP. PAGE

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH OF JOHN FISKE vii

I. INTRODUCTION 1

II. THE COLONIES IN 1750 4

III. THE FRENCH WARS, AND THE FIRST PLAN OF UNION 26

IV. THE STAMP ACT, AND THE REVENUE LAWS 39

V. THE CRISIS 78

VI. THE STRUGGLE FOR THE CENTRE 104

VII. THE FRENCH ALLIANCE 144

VIII. BIRTH OF THE NATION 182

COLLATERAL READING 195

INDEX 197

LIST OF MAPS.

Facing page

INVASION OF CANADA 92

WASHINGTON'S CAMPAIGNS IN NEW JERSEY AND PENNSYLVANIA 120

BURGOYNE'S CAMPAIGN 130

THE SOUTHERN CAMPAIGN 172

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