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"For everyone who loves Nantucket Island this is the indispensable book. " -Russell Baker Nantucket is a tiny island with a huge history. In his first book of history, Away Off Shore, New York Times-bestselling author Nathaniel Philbrick reveals the people and the stories behind what was once the whaling capital of the world. Beyond its charm, quaint local traditions, and whaling yarns, Philbrick explores the origins of Nantucket in this comprehensive history. From the English settlers who thought they were purchasing a "Native American ghost town" but actually found a fully realized society, through the rise and fall of the then thriving whaling industry, the story of Nantucket is a truly unique chapter of American history. .
Nathaniel Philbrick, the bestselling author of In the Heart of the Sea--soon to be a major motion picture--and author of the forthcoming Valiant Ambition (May 2016), brings his prodigious talents to the story of the Boston battle that ignited the American Revolution.Boston in 1775 is an island city occupied by British troops after a series of incendiary incidents by patriots who range from sober citizens to thuggish vigilantes. After the Boston Tea Party, British and American soldiers and Massachusetts residents have warily maneuvered around each other until April 19, when violence finally erupts at Lexington and Concord. In June, however, with the city cut off from supplies by a British blockade and Patriot militia poised in siege, skirmishes give way to outright war in the Battle of Bunker Hill. It would be the bloodiest battle of the Revolution to come, and the point of no return for the rebellious colonists.Philbrick brings a fresh perspective to every aspect of the story. He finds new characters, and new facets to familiar ones. The real work of choreographing rebellion falls to a thirty-three year old physician named Joseph Warren who emerges as the on-the-ground leader of the Patriot cause and is fated to die at Bunker Hill. Others in the cast include Paul Revere, Warren's fiancé the poet Mercy Scollay, a newly recruited George Washington, the reluctant British combatant General Thomas Gage and his more bellicose successor William Howe, who leads the three charges at Bunker Hill and presides over the claustrophobic cauldron of a city under siege as both sides play a nervy game of brinkmanship for control.With passion and insight, Philbrick reconstructs the revolutionary landscape--geographic and ideological--in a mesmerizing narrative of the robust, messy, blisteringly real origins of America.From the Trade Paperback edition.
What lights the spark that ignites a revolution? Lost in the story of America's path to independence is the tumultuous nature of that nation's origins: the interplay of ideologies and personalities that provoked a group of merchants, farmers, artisans, and sailors to take up arms in pursuit of liberty . . . A city of 15,000 inhabitants packed onto a land-connected island a little over one square mile, Boston in 1775 was also - following a series of incendiary incidents by patriotic citizens and trouble-seeking vigilantes - a city occupied by the British. In the year following the infamous Tea Party an uneasy peace had reigned, but on 19th April 1775, violence erupted, with skirmishes at Lexington and Concord. Two months later, with the city cut off by British forces, these clashes reached a bloody climax in an encounter that would mark the point of no return for the rebellious colonists: the Battle of Bunker Hill. With a keen sense of the unexplored side of mythic events, Nathaniel Philbrick shines fresh light on this momentous story, revealing new key players and finding unknown sides to familiar ones. The real work of choreographing the rebellion fell to physician Joseph Warren (fated to die at Bunker Hill) while others include Warren's fiancee - the poet Mercy Scollay, Paul Revere and a notable new recruit to the Revolutionary cause, an elegant Virginian called George Washington. On the British side, reluctant combatant General Thomas Gage was succeeded by the bellicose William Howe who would lead three charges at Bunker Hill and preside over the claustrophobic cauldron of a city under siege. Written with passion, insight, even-handedness and the eloquence of a born storyteller, Bunker Hill brings to life the robust, chaotic and blisteringly real origins of America.
Nathaniel Philbrick, the bestselling author of In the Heart of the Sea and Mayflower, brings his prodigious talents to the story of the Boston battle that ignited the American Revolution. Boston in 1775 is an island city occupied by British troops after a series of incendiary incidents by patriots who range from sober citizens to thuggish vigilantes. After the Boston Tea Party, British and American soldiers and Massachusetts residents have warily maneuvered around each other until April 19, when violence finally erupts at Lexington and Concord In June, however, with the city cut off from supplies by a British blockade and Patriot militia poised in siege, skirmishes give way to outright war in the Battle of Bunker Hill. It would be the bloodiest battle of the Revolution to come, and the point of no return for the rebellious colonists. Philbrick brings a fresh perspective to every aspect of the story. He finds new characters, and new facets to familiar ones. The real work of choreographing rebellion falls to a thirty-three year old physician named Joseph Warren who emerges as the on-the-ground leader of the Patriot cause and is fated to die at Bunker Hill. Others in the cast include Paul Revere, Warren's fiancé the poet Mercy Scollay, a newly recruited George Washington, the reluctant British combatant General Thomas Gage and his more bellicose successor William Howe, who leads the three charges at Bunker Hill and presides over the claustrophobic cauldron of a city under siege as both sides play a nervy game of brinkmanship for control. With passion and insight, Philbrick reconstructs the revolutionary landscape--geographic and ideological--in a mesmerizing narrative of the robust, messy, blisteringly real origins of America.
The real story of the First Thanksgiving from the New York Times bestselling author Nathaniel Philbrick One of America's most acclaimed historians takes on the nation's First Thanksgiving, telling us the true story behind the tale we think we know so well. In this selection from the New York Times bestseller Mayflower Nathaniel Philbrick recounts in riveting detail the truth about relations between Plymouth Colony and the British crown and between the colonists and Native American tribes, shining a light on the courage, communities, and conflicts that shaped one of our country's most celebrated national holidays.
From the author of the forthcoming book, Valiant Ambition, the riveting and critically acclaimed bestseller, soon to be a major motion picture starring Chris Hemsworth, directed by Ron Howard, premiering on December 11, 2015Chris Hemsworth, Cillian Murphy, Ben Whishaw, and Brendan Gleeson will star in a new film based on this National Book Award-winning account of the true events behind Moby Dick.In 1820, the whaleship Essex was rammed and sunk by an angry sperm whale, leaving the desperate crew to drift for more than ninety days in three tiny boats. Nathaniel Philbrick uses little-known documents and vivid details about the Nantucket whaling tradition to reveal the chilling facts of this infamous maritime disaster. In the Heart of the Sea--and now, its epic adaptation for the screen--will forever place the Essex tragedy in the American historical canon.From the Trade Paperback edition.al canon.
"With its huge, scarred head halfway out of the water and its tail beating the ocean into a white-water wake more than forty feet across, the whale approached the ship at twice its original speed--at least six knots. With a tremendous cracking and splintering of oak, it struck the ship just beneath the anchor secured at the cat-head on the port bow..."<P><P> In the Heart of the Sea brings to new life the incredible story of the wreck of the whaleship Essex--an event as mythic in its own century as the Titanic disaster in ours, and the inspiration for the climax of Moby-Dick. In a harrowing page-turner, Nathaniel Philbrick restores this epic story to its rightful place in American history.<P> In 1820, the 240-ton Essex set sail from Nantucket on a routine voyage for whales. Fifteen months later, in the farthest reaches of the South Pacific, it was repeatedly rammed and sunk by an eighty-ton bull sperm whale. Its twenty-man crew, fearing cannibals on the islands to the west, made for the 3,000-mile-distant coast of South America in three tiny boats. During ninety days at sea under horrendous conditions, the survivors clung to life as one by one, they succumbed to hunger, thirst, disease, and fear.<P> In the Heart of the Sea tells perhaps the greatest sea story ever. Philbrick interweaves his account of this extraordinary ordeal of ordinary men with a wealth of whale lore and with a brilliantly detailed portrait of the lost, unique community of Nantucket whalers. Impeccably researched and beautifully told, the book delivers the ultimate portrait of man against nature, drawing on a remarkable range of archival and modern sources, including a long-lost account by the ship's cabin boy. At once a literary companion and a page-turner that speaks to the same issues of class, race, and man's relationship to nature that permeate the works of Melville, In the Heart of the Sea will endure as a vital work of American history.<P> Winner of the National Book Award
On November 20, 1820, the whaleship Essex was rammed and sunk by an angry whale. Within minutes, the twenty-one-man crew, including the fourteen-year-old cabin boy Thomas Nickerson, found themselves stranded in three leaky boats in the middle of the Pacific Ocean with barely any supplies and little hope. Three months later, two of the boats were rescued 4,500 miles away, off the coast of South America. Of the twenty-one castaways, only eight survived, including young Thomas.
'The whites want war and we will give it to them. ' Sitting Bull * This is the archetypal story of the American West. Whether it is cast as a tale of unmatched bravery in the face of impossible odds or of insane arrogance receiving its rightful comeuppance, Custer's Last Stand continues to captivate the imagination. * Nathaniel Philbrick brilliantly reconstructs the build-up to the Battle of the Little Big Horn through to the final eruption of violence. Two legendary figures dominate the events: George Armstrong Custer and Sitting Bull. No longer the fresh-faced 'Boy-General' of the Civil War, Custer was now mired in financial, professional and political problems. A clear and just cause had been replaced by ambiguity and frustration - by ill-fated efforts at peace treaties, treachery and compromises on both sides. * Forced to take to the plains to feed themselves, and increasingly outraged by the government's policies towards them, the Sioux and Cheyenne became infused with a new sense of collective identity and purpose. Between six and eight thousand people came together in the largest ever gathering of Native Americans. If the government should be foolish enough to pursue them, they would stand and fight. Sitting Bull was in his mid-forties, His charisma and political savvy had enabled him to emerge as their leader. A vision he received during a Sun Dance - of soldiers falling from the sky - was widely understood to presage a great victory. * Nathaniel Philbrick brings vividly to life all those involved - from the Oglala Sioux warrior Crazy Horse and Major Marcus Reno who led the first attack, to Libby Custer waiting with the other army wives at Fort Lincoln. He evokes too the history, geography and haunting beauty of the Great Plains and provides the finest account to date of what happened there - and why - at the end of June 1876.
Nathaniel sketches the two larger-than-life antagonists: Sitting Bull, whose charisma and political savvy earned him the position of leader of the Plains Indians, and George Armstrong Custer, one of the Union's greatest cavalry officers.
The gripping first-hand narrative of the whaling ship disaster that inspired Melville's Moby-Dick and informed Nathaniel Philbrick's monumental history, In the Heart of the Sea. In 1820, the Nantucket whaleship Essex was rammed by an angry sperm whale thousands of miles from home in the South Pacific. The Essex sank, leaving twenty crew members drifting in three small open boats for ninety days. Through drastic measures, eight men survived to reveal this astonishing tale. The Narrative of the Wreck of the Whaleship Essex, by Owen Chase, has long been the essential account of the Essex's doomed voyage. But in 1980, a new account of the disaster was discovered, penned late in life by Thomas Nickerson, who had been the fifteen-year-old cabin boy of the ship. This discovery has vastly expanded and clarified the history of an event as grandiose in its time as the Titanic. This edition presents Nickerson's never-before-published chronicle alongside Chase's version. Also included are the most important other contemporary accounts of the incident, Melville's notes in his copy of the Chase narrative, and journal entries by Emerson and Thoreau. .
From the perilous ocean crossing to the shared bounty of the first Thanksgiving, the Pilgrim settlement of New England has become enshrined as our most sacred national myth. Yet, as bestselling author Nathaniel Philbrick reveals in his spellbinding new book, the true story of the Pilgrims is much more than the well-known tale of piety and sacrifice; it is a fifty-five-year epic that is at once tragic, heroic, exhilarating, and profound.The Mayflower's religious refugees arrived in Plymouth Harbor during a period of crisis for Native Americans as disease spread by European fishermen devastated their populations. Initially the two groups--the Wampanoags, under the charismatic and calculating chief Massasoit, and the Pilgrims, whose pugnacious military officer Miles Standish was barely five feet tall--maintained a fragile working relationship. But within decades, New England would erupt into King Philip's War, a savagely bloody conflict that nearly wiped out English colonists and natives alike and forever altered the face of the fledgling colonies and the country that would grow from them.With towering figures like William Bradford and the distinctly American hero Benjamin Church at the center of his narrative, Philbrick has fashioned a fresh and compelling portrait of the dawn of American history--a history dominated right from the start by issues of race, violence, and religion.From the Hardcover edition.
Bestselling author Nathaniel Philbrick reveals the darker side of the Pilgrim fathers' settlement in the New World, which ultimately erupted in bloody battle some fifty years after they first landed on American soil. Behind the quaint and pious version of the Mayflower story usually taught in American primary schools is a tumultuous and largely untold tale of violence, subterfuge and epic drama. For amidst the friendships and co-operation that sprang up between the settlers and indigenous people, whose timely assistance on more than one occasion rescued the Pilgrims from otherwise certain death, a dark conflict was brewing. It erupted in King Philip's war, a terribly bloody conflict which decimated the English population and all but obliterated the Wampanoag. Following the Pilgrims from their perilous journey from England on a battered, leaky ship, through their first bitter North American winter (during which half of them died), to their equally bitter battle against the native Wampanoag tribe, Philbrick paints a vivid and panoramic picture of conflict and colonialism, co-operation and betrayal. In so doing he brings to life a cast of compelling, even heroic, characters, and sets the scene for the development of the American nation.
Adapted from the New York Times bestseller Mayflower! After a dangerous journey across the Atlantic, the Mayflower?s passengers were saved from certain destruction with the help of the Natives of the Plymouth region. For fifty years a fragile peace was maintained as Pilgrims and Native Americans learned to work together. But when that trust was broken by the next generation of leaders, a conflict erupted that nearly wiped out Pilgrims and Natives alike. Adapted from the New York Times bestseller Mayflower specifically for younger readers, this edition includes additional maps, artwork, and archival photos.
How did America begin? The story of the Pilgrims is a 55-year epic that is at once tragic and heroic.
Adapted from the New York Times bestseller Mayflower! After a dangerous journey across the Atlantic, the Mayflower?s passengers were saved from certain destruction with the help of the Natives of the Plymouth region. For fifty years a fragile peace was maintained as Pilgrims and Native Americans learned to work together. But when that trust was broken by the next generation of leaders, a conflict erupted that nearly wiped out Pilgrims and Natives alike. Adapted from the New York Times bestseller Mayflower specifically for younger readers, this edition includes additional maps, artwork, and archival photos. .
One of the finest nineteenth-century first-person narratives of a sea voyage in existence, and a principle source for Sea of Glory, The Private Journal of William Reynolds brings to life the boisterous world traversed by the six vessels that comprised America's first ocean-going voyage of discovery, the U. S. Exploring Expedition of 1838-1842. With great eloquence and verve Midshipman William Reynolds describes the harrowing 87,000-mile, four-year circuit of the globe, and relates the story of how the abusive commander of the Ex. Ex. , Lieutenant Charles Wilkes, gradually lost the support of his crew. With a seaman's understanding and an artist's appreciation for the wild beauty that surrounds him, the Journal is a tour de force combining meticulous observations with a young man's sense of wonder and, on occasion, terror as he is tossed about by the tremendous seas. .
Based on his New York Times best-seller "In the Heart of the Sea", Nathaniel Philbrick recreates the amazing events of the ill-fated Essex through the sailors' own first-hand accounts, photos, maps, and artwork, and tells the tale of one of the great true-life adventure stories.
America?s first frontier was not the West; it was the sea?and no one writes more eloquently about that watery wilderness than Nathaniel Philbrick. In his bestselling In the Heart of the Sea Philbrick probed the nightmarish dangers of the vast Pacific. Now, in an epic sea adventure, he writes about one of the most ambitious voyages of discovery the Western world has ever seen?the U.S. Exploring Expedition of 1838? 1842. On a scale that dwarfed the journey of Lewis and Clark, six magnificent sailing vessels and a crew of hundreds set out to map the entire Pacific Ocean?and ended up naming the newly discovered continent of Antarctica, collecting what would become the basis of the Smithsonian Institution, and much more.
This ebook contains a limited number of illustrations. Due to the level of detail, maps are best viewed on a tablet. The dramatic story of the largest voyage of discovery in the history of the world, this is a astounding tale of courage, arrogance and adventure on the high seas. Headed by the controversial Lieutenant Charles Wilkes, and consisting of six sailing vessels and 346 men, the 'Ex. Ex. ' (the United States Exploring Expedition of 1838-42) represented the largest voyage of discovery in the history of the world. Four years later, after losing two ships and seventy-one men, the expedition had logged 87,000 miles, surveyed 280 Pacific islands, and created 180 charts - some of which were still being used as late as World War II. The Expedition's scientists collected 4,000 zoological specimens, including 2,000 new species, and thousands of ethnographic artifacts that would become the basis of the Smithsonian Institution. The Expedition also mapped 800 miles of coastline in the Pacific Northwest, providing the federal government with the information it needed to stake its claim on the Oregon Territory. The Expedition's crowning achievement was the discovery of a new southern continent that Wilkes would name Antarctica. The Expedition ended in a dramatic series of court martials, with Wilkes and his crew levelling accusations of misconduct against each other. Nathaniel Philbrick's skilful retelling of this forgotten, yet astounding, episode in the history of sea faring is a fantastic adventure and a masterful work of historical reconstruction.
Details four-year U.S. expedition to explore the South Pacific, Oregon and Washington coasts and much more.
From the New York Times bestselling author of In The Heart of the Sea and Mayflower comes a surprising account of the middle years of the American Revolution, and the tragic relationship between George Washington and Benedict Arnold. In September 1776, the vulnerable Continental Army under an unsure George Washington (who had never commanded a large force in battle) evacuates New York after a devastating defeat by the British Army. Three weeks later, near the Canadian border, one of his favorite generals, Benedict Arnold, miraculously succeeds in postponing the British naval advance down Lake Champlain that might have ended the war. Four years later, as the book ends, Washington has vanquished his demons and Arnold has fled to the enemy after a foiled attempt to surrender the American fortress at West Point to the British. After four years of war, America is forced to realize that the real threat to its liberties might not come from without but from within. Valiant Ambition is a complex, controversial, and dramatic portrait of a people in crisis and the war that gave birth to a nation. The focus is on loyalty and personal integrity, evoking a Shakespearean tragedy that unfolds in the key relationship of Washington and Arnold, who is an impulsive but sympathetic hero whose misfortunes at the hands of self-serving politicians fatally destroy his faith in the legitimacy of the rebellion. As a country wary of tyrants suddenly must figure out how it should be led, Washington's unmatched ability to rise above the petty politics of his time enables him to win the war that really matters.From the Hardcover edition.
The New York Times bestselling author of seagoing epics now celebrates an American classic. Moby-Dick is perhaps the greatest of the Great American Novels, yet its length and esoteric subject matter create an aura of difficulty that too often keeps readers at bay. Fortunately, one unabashed fan wants passionately to give Melville's masterpiece the broad contemporary audience it deserves. In his National Book Award- winning bestseller, In the Heart of the Sea, Nathaniel Philbrick captivatingly unpacked the story of the wreck of the whaleship Essex, the real-life incident that inspired Melville to write Moby- Dick. Now, he sets his sights on the fiction itself, offering a cabin master's tour of a spellbinding novel rich with adventure and history. Philbrick skillfully navigates Melville's world and illuminates the book's humor and unforgettable characters-finding the thread that binds Ishmael and Ahab to our own time and, indeed, to all times. A perfect match between author and subject, Why Read Moby-Dick? gives us a renewed appreciation of both Melville and the proud seaman's town of Nantucket that Philbrick himself calls home. Like Alain de Botton's How Proust Can Change Your Life, this remarkable little book will start conversations, inspire arguments, and, best of all, bring a new wave of readers to a classic tale waiting to be discovered anew. .