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|Format: DRM Protected ePub|
Publication Date: 2012
Finalist for the Pulitzer Prize
A compelling, fresh account of the first great transit of people from Britain, Europe, and Africa to British North America, their involvements with each other, and their struggles with the indigenous peoples of the eastern seaboard.
The immigrants were a mixed multitude. They came from England, the Netherlands, the German and Italian states, France, Africa, Sweden, and Finland, and they moved to the western hemisphere for different reasons, from different social backgrounds and cultures. They represented a spectrum of religious attachments. In the early years, their stories are not mainly of triumph but of confusion, failure, violence, and the loss of civility as they sought to normalize situations and recapture lost worlds. It was a thoroughly brutal encounternot only between the Europeans and native peoples and between Europeans and Africans, but among Europeans themselves, as they sought to control and prosper in the new configurations of life that were emerging around them.
"Magisterial . . . Popular histories often gentrify these early events, but Bailyns gripping, detailed, often squirm-inducing account makes it abundantly clear how ungenteel they actually were."
"This weighty book distills a lifetime of learning of one of our most authoritative historians of colonial America. . . . A history of the colonies built up of brilliant portraits of the people who interacted in these strange and fearsome lands. . . . This is not your school-book colonial history. . . . Penetrating and stylish . . . An extraordinary work of profound seriousness, characteristic of its author."
Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"Drawing on decades of sound, dynamic research, the author has provided scholars and general readers alike with an insightful and engaging account of Colonial America that signals a reset on Colonial studies, the culmination of his work. An important book. . . . Superbly told."
Brian Odom, Library Journal (starred review)
"In Bailyns perceptive and erudite hands, the original British, Dutch, and Swedish ventures assume as wild and variegated guises as did the forceful individuals who embarked on them."
Gilbert Taylor, Booklist
"Bailyn spares no gory detail, but he treats his subjects with sympathy."
The New Yorker