This blog describes some ideas that seem to be different from the current train of political thought. I will try to bring up somewhat unique and innovative ideas regarding political systems and policies in the US. I hope those who comment also bring in such ideas.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Book Review: 1776

I just finished 1776 by David McCullough. It is very fascinating to read about this pivital year in United States History. The bravery, pluck, and perseverance of Washington and the Continental Army is truly inspiring. Their initial success at Boston was washed out by a disasterous New York campaign in which they exposed themselves to the British fleet, and were lucky to escape.

The losses led to a large number of desertions, and the near distruction of the army. However, after retreating across New Jersey, they end the year in splendid fashion with a gruelling but successful crossing of the Delaware in a blizzard, then winning the battle of Trenton. Their only losses of life were two people who froze to death on the march. Truly amazing.

It is commonly taught that the German soldiers stationed in Trenton were drunk, and thus the Continental Army had an easy time. However, McCullough points out that this was probably not the case, as the soldiers were quite disciplined, and he quotes historical records saying that they were not drunk. This makes their overwhelming victory even more impressive.

I recommend the book. For me, it is a well-told account of an amazing and world-changing twelve months.

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