By Thomas Fleming
Why is the parable of 1776?
To nation it in its baldest phrases: This used to be the single time in American existence while idealism used to be actually in flower. Made attainable by way of the purest kind of patriotism, led by means of a soldier whom each person cherished - George Washington - who, in flip, was once guided by means of a caucus of political geniuses in Philadelphia - the Continental Congress - reliable farmers raced from their plows to hurl themselves into clash with British mercenaries. by no means have such a lot of nice males, magnetic leaders, sprung from nowhere to steer a humans infused with a gorgeous enthusiasm for liberty.
In this ebook, ny instances bestselling historian Thomas Fleming explodes this fantasy by way of interpreting the entire dimensions of that 12 months - really the least identified features of the typical, fallible humanity of the lads and ladies of the Revolution.
The yr 1776 ended with either the americans and the British stripped in their illusions. each side have been pressured to desert the parable in their invincibility and to...
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One gun went off with a belch of fire. A hurricane of grapeshot whistled over Arnold’s head. The gun had been aimed too high. Snow had wet the powder of the other gun, and it sputtered and did not go off. The cannon were reinforced by at least thirty men armed with muskets, and they fired a fusillade of their own. Arnold pitched forward into the snow, writhing in agony. A bullet had ricocheted off one of the stone houses and ripped into the calf of his leg. Chaplain Samuel Spring rushed to his side and pulled him to his feet.
We had not gone twenty yards in my hobbling gait, before I was thrown out,” Henry said. ” Nineteen-year-old Simon Fobes of Massachusetts saw his sergeant shot down beside him. “I am a dead man,” he choked. ” Suddenly the fire from Quebec’s walls slackened. Panic was mounting inside the city as officers and men rushed in all directions to repel the apparently four-pronged American attack. By now, Montgomery and about a third of his men had reached their jumping-off point, the Potash or Pres de Ville section of the Lower Town.
His sergeant major was supposed to get word to him. But the man claimed that the extremely high tide had made it impossible for him to cross the shifting ice of the frozen river. Dearborn’s men were sleeping in three different houses, one a mile away from his own quarters, and it took him an hour to pull them out of bed and get them ready to march. m. before he got them across the river and began slogging through the snowdrifts. “We marched - or rather ran as fast as we could,” he later recalled.