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Early Republic

This Glorious Struggle
George Washington's Revolutionary War Letters edited by Edward G. Lengel

George Washington wrote an astonishing number of letters, both personal and professional. The majority—about 140,000 documents—are from his years as commander in chief during the Revolutionary War, from 1775 to 1783. This Glorious Struggle presents a selection of Washington’s most important and... More

Henry Hulton and the American Revolution
An Outsider's Inside View Neil Longley York

Henry Hulton was an Englishman who moved to Boston in 1767 as a member of the new American Board of Customs Commissioners. The board was supposed to curtail smuggling and bring greater efficiency to the administration of empire. It failed, and Hulton fled Massachusetts in 1776, joining an exodus of... More

The Papers of George Washington
Revolutionary War Series, vol. 1915 January – 7 April 1779 George Washington. Edited by Philander D. Chase and William M. Ferraro

Volume 19 of the Revolutionary War Series documents Washington’s activities during the winter and early spring of 1779, when the bulk of his army was encamped at Middlebrook, New Jersey, strategically situated where the Watchung Mountains rise from the coastal plain in the middle of the state.... More

The Selected Papers of John Jay
1760–1779 John Jay. Edited by Elizabeth M. Nuxoll. Introduction by Jack N. Rakove

Few leaders of the new American nation had more influence than John Jay (1745–1829), or could match his contributions in all three branches of government, at both state and national levels. A leading representative of New York in the Continental Congress, Jay became one of the American... More

Accommodating Revolutions
Virginia's Northern Neck in an Era of Transformations, 1760-1810 Albert H. Tillson, Jr.

Accommodating Revolutions addresses a controversy of long standing among historians of eighteenth-century America and Virginia—the extent to which internal conflict and/or consensus characterized the society of the Revolutionary era. In particular, it emphasizes the complex and often self-... More

Mongrel Nation
The America Begotten by Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings Clarence E. Walker

The debate over the affair between Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings rarely rises above the question of "Did they or didn’t they?" But lost in the argument over the existence of such a relationship are equally urgent questions about a history that is more complex, both sexually and culturally,... More

Revolutionary Negotiations
Indians, Empires, and Diplomats in the Founding of America Leonard J. Sadosky

Revolutionary Negotiations examines early American diplomatic negotiations with both the European powers and the various American Indian nations from the 1740s through the 1820s. Sadosky interweaves previously distinct settings for American diplomacy—courts and council fires—into one singular,... More

Empires of the Imagination
Transatlantic Histories of the Louisiana Purchase Peter J. Kastor and Francois Weil, eds.

Empires of the Imagination takes the Louisiana Purchase as a point of departure for a compelling new discussion of the interaction between France and the United States. In addition to offering the first substantive synthesis of this transatlantic relationship, the essays collected here offer new... More

Rome Reborn on Western Shores
Historical Imagination and the Creation of the American Republic Eran Shalev

Rome Reborn on Western Shores examines the literature of the Revolutionary era to explore the ways in which American patriots employed the classics and to assess antiquity's importance to the early political culture of the United States. Where other writers have concentrated on political theory and... More

The Papers of James Madison
1817-1820 James Madison. Edited by David B. Mattern, J. C. A. Stagg, Mary Parke Johnson, and Anne Mandeville Colony

The Papers of James Madison project, housed at the University of Virginia, was established in 1956 to publish annotated volumes of the correspondence and writings of James Madison, the Virginia statesman most often remembered for his public service as "Father of the Constitution" and as fourth... More

The Papers of George Washington
1 January-30 April 1794 George Washington. Edited by Christine Sternberg Patrick

Volume 15 documents the period from 1 January through 30 April 1794, a time when Washington continued to focus his efforts as president on preventing the United States from becoming entangled in the continuing war between France and Great Britain. Of particular concern was French and British... More

Reinterpreting New England Indians and the Colonial Experience
Colin G. Calloway and Neal Salisbury

For the indigenous peoples of New England--the Abenaki, Mohegan, Mohican, Narragansett, Nipmuc, Passamaquoddy, Penobscot, Pequot, Schaghticoke, Wampanoag, and other tribal nations--the colonial period has not yet ended. In light of the contemporary struggles of Native peoples to defend their... More

Distant Revolutions
1848 and the Challenge to American Exceptionalism Timothy Mason Roberts

Distant Revolutions: 1848 and the Challenge to American Exceptionalism is a study of American politics, culture, and foreign relations in the mid-nineteenth century, illuminated through the reactions of Americans to the European revolutions of 1848. Flush from the recent American military victory... More

Criminal Injustice
Slaves and Free Blacks in Georgia's Criminal Justice System Glenn McNair

Criminal Injustice: Slaves and Free Blacks in Georgia’s Criminal Justice System is the most comprehensive study of the criminal justice system of a slave state to date. McNair traces the evolution of Georgia’s legal culture by examining its use of slave codes and slave patrols, as well as... More

A "Topping People"
The Rise and Decline of Virginia's Old Political Elite, 1680-1790 Emory G. Evans

A "Topping People" is the first comprehensive study of the political, economic, and social elite of colonial Virginia. Evans studies twenty-one leading families from their rise to power in the late 1600s to their downfall over one hundred years later. These families represented the upper echelons... More

Scientific Jefferson
Revealed Martin Clagett

Well known as a politician and architect, Thomas Jefferson also made important contributions to science. He was elected the third president not only of the United States but also of that most august of scientific clubs, the American Philosophical Society, following in the footsteps of Benjamin... More

Industrious in Their Stations
Young People at Work in Urban America, 1720-1810 Sharon B. Sundue

Industrious in Their Stations is the first comparative study of child labor in eighteenth-century America. Focusing on Philadelphia, Boston, and Charleston, Sundue examines the work experiences of children and analyzes regional differences in child labor according to gender, race, and class. During... More

"What Shall We Do with the Negro?"
Lincoln, White Racism, and Civil War America Paul D. Escott

Throughout the Civil War, newspaper headlines and stories repeatedly asked some variation of the question posed by the New York Times in 1862, "What shall we do with the negro?" The future status of African Americans was a pressing issue for those in both the North and in the South. Consulting a... More

250 Years in Fauquier County
A Virginia Story Kathi A. Brown, Walter Nicklin, and John Toler

Beginning with the early interactions between Native Americans and European explorers and settlers, this history traces three and a half centuries of change in Fauquier County, Virginia. Commissioned by the Fauquier Historical Society to commemorate the county’s 250th anniversary, this engrossing... More

Virginia's Civil War
Peter Wallenstein and Bertram Wyatt-Brown, eds.

The twenty essays collected here explore the Virginia story throughout the Civil War era. Some contributors examine Robert E. Lee and the issues confronting his men, such as soldier morale and religious conversion. Others emphasize the wartime home front--in some cases reexamining its connection... More

Crucible of the Civil War
Virginia from Secession to Commemoration Edward L. Ayers, Gary W. Gallagher, and Andrew J. Torget, eds.

Crucible of the Civil War offers an illuminating portrait of the state’s wartime economic, political, and social institutions. Weighing in on contentious issues within established scholarship while also breaking ground in areas long neglected by scholars, the contributors examine such concerns as... More

Red Gentlemen and White Savages
Indians, Federalists, and the Search for Order on the American Frontier David Andrew Nichols

Red Gentlemen and White Savages argues that after the devastation of the American Revolutionary War, the main concern of Federalist and Indian leaders was not the transfer of land, but the restoration of social order on the frontier. Nichols focuses on the "middle ground" of Indian treaty... More

The Papers of George Washington
1 September-31 December 1793 George Washington. Edited by David R. Hoth

During the last four months of 1793, the period documented by volume 14 of the Presidential Series, George Washington and his administration remained chiefly involved with maintaining the neutrality of the United States. The activities of French privateers in American waters required the... More

The Papers of James Madison
8 February-24 October 1813 James Madison

The Papers of James Madison project, housed at the University of Virginia, was established in 1956 to publish annotated volumes of the correspondence and writings of James Madison, the Virginia statesman most often remembered for his public service as "Father of the Constitution" and as fourth... More

The Founders on the Founders
Word Portraits from the American Revolutionary Era Edited by John P. Kaminski

"I never indeed thought him an honest, frank-dealing man, but considered him as a crooked gun, or other perverted machine, whose aim or stroke you could never be sure of."—Thomas Jefferson on Aaron Burr"[A]lways an honest Man, often a wise one, but sometimes, and in some things, absolutely out of... More