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The Winning of the West, Volume 1 From the Alleghanies to the Mississippi, 1769-1776   By: (1858-1919)

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1769 1776


This book is dedicated, with his permission to FRANCIS PARKMAN

To whom Americans who feel a pride in the pioneer history of their country are so greatly indebted

"O strange New World that yit wast never young, Whose youth from thee by gripin' need was wrung, Brown foundlin' o' the woods, whose baby bed Was prowled roun' by the Injun's cracklin' tread, And who grew'st strong thru shifts an' wants an' pains, Nursed by stern men with empires in their brains, Who saw in vision their young Ishmel strain With each hard hand a vassal ocean's mane; Thou skilled by Freedom and by gret events To pitch new states ez Old World men pitch tents. Thou taught by fate to know Jehovah's plan, Thet man's devices can't unmake a man.

Oh, my friends, thank your God, if you have one, that he 'Twixt the Old World and you set the gulf of a sea, Be strong backed, brown handed, upright as your pines, By the scale of a hemisphere shape your designs." LOWELL.


Much of the material on which this work is based is to be found in the archives of the American Government, which date back to 1774, when the first Continental Congress assembled. The earliest sets have been published complete up to 1777, under the title of "American Archives," and will be hereafter designated by this name. These early volumes contain an immense amount of material, because in them are to be found memoranda of private individuals and many of the public papers of the various colonial and State governments, as well as those of the Confederation. The documents from 1789 on no longer containing any papers of the separate States have also been gathered and printed under the heading of "American State Papers"; by which term they will be hereafter referred to.

The mass of public papers coming in between these two series, and covering the period extending from 1776 to 1789, have never been published, and in great part have either never been examined or else have been examined in the most cursory manner. The original documents are all in the Department of State at Washington, and for convenience will be referred to as "State Department MSS." They are bound in two or three hundred large volumes; exactly how many I cannot say, because, though they are numbered, yet several of the numbers themselves contain from two or three to ten or fifteen volumes apiece. The volumes to which reference will most often be made are the following:

No. 15. Letters of Huntington.

No. 16. Letters of the Presidents of Congress.

No. 18. Letter Book B.

No. 20. Vol. 1. Reports of Committees on State Papers.

No. 27. Reports of Committees on the War Office. 1776 to 1778.

No. 30. Reports of Committees.

No. 32. Reports of Committees of the States and of the Week.

No. 41. Vol. 3. Memorials E. F. G. 1776 1788.

No. 41. Vol. 5. Memorials K. L. 1777 1789.

No. 50. Letters and Papers of Oliver Pollock. 1777 1792.

No. 51. Vol. 2 Intercepted Letters. 1779 1782.

No. 56. Indian Affairs.

No. 71. Vol. 1. Virginia State Papers.

No. 73. Georgia State Papers.

No. 81. Vol. 2. Reports of Secretary John Jay.

No. 120. Vol. 2. American Letters.

No. 124. Vol. 3. Reports of Jay.

No. 125. Negotiation Book.

No. 136. Vol. 1. Reports of Board of Treasury.

No. 136. Vol. 2. Reports of Board of Treasury.

No. 147. Vol. 2. Reports of Board of War.

No. 147. Vol. 5. Reports of Board of War.

No. 147. Vol. 6. Reports of Board of War.

No. 148. Vol. 1. Letters from Board of War.

No. 149. Vol. 1. Letters and Reports from B. Lincoln, Secretary at War.

No. 149. Vol. 2. Letters and Reports from B. Lincoln, Secretary at War... Continue reading book >>

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