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America's Hidden History by Kenneth C. Davis
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America's Hidden History (2008)

by Kenneth C. Davis

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Kenneth C. Davis is one of several authors I have read in the last 10 years or so who delve into the personalities, power struggles, motivations, and … er… hidden history of the United States. These authors, including but not limited to Nathan Philbrick, Joseph Ellis, and David McCullough, do us a great service in alerting us to the richness and complexity of history in general and American History in particular. Their writings highlight the abysmally sterile and meager pieces of American History doled out in schools across the country.

I have been a student of history ever since I was in high school and felt, at the time, that I received a pretty good education in and understanding of How The United States Came To Be.

Columbus, Roanoake, Pilgrims and Puritans, George Washington, July 4, 1776, Lexington and Concord, Valley Forge, Jefferson, Adams, Benjamin Franklin, The Declaration of Independence, The Constitution, Paul Revere, ‘Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death’, manifest destiny against the Native Americans, and etc.

That is probably about 1/10th of 1% of what really happened in the 18th century in North America, and it now infuriates me that I’m only finding out more of what really happened. I’ve now read about the Dutch settlements in the Northeast, the political maneuvering between the Dutch and the English, the French influence in the Northeast, and many of the people slighted by History without whom we would have never created the first republic voted into existence by the people of the colonies (admittedly white male landowners). I’ve also read more about the strengths, foibles, weaknesses, stubbornness, and brilliance of the men and women who contributed to what has become the United States of America.

America’s Hidden History details the stories of the first real ‘pilgrims’, who were wine-making French Heugenots, Queen Isabella and how pigs influenced the spread of disease to Native Americans, the bloody relationship between Puritans and Native Americans, Benedict Arnold as war hero prior to becoming the Worst Traitor in American History, George Washington as war criminal who signed a confession and started a war, and more.

The writing is interesting, detailed, and cohesive. Each subject has a timeline, the history, and a conclusion. I recommend this book to any student of American History. ( )
  karenmarie | Nov 4, 2016 |
I found myself telling my friends and family members tidbits from this book. Very interesting read, & well-written. I wasn't surprised to learn that George Washington wasn't quite the perfect human being he's been held out to be. Interesting supplement to traditional historical studies. ( )
  joyceclark | Mar 15, 2016 |
An interesting book and well worth the read, but although I am interested in history, especially what doesn't make it into history books, or is barely glossed over, this didn't quite measure up. Worth a read though. ( )
  autumnturner76 | Sep 22, 2014 |
Admittedly, none of the tales are groundbreaking. Nonetheless, the author did an outstanding job of seamlessly transitioning from the earliest colonial period through the Revolutionary War and formation of the constitution. This is a highly informative and insightful book that is very user friendly, hence will have appeal both to the novice and history buff. I highly recommend this work. ( )
  la2bkk | May 29, 2014 |
An interesting book and well worth the read, but although I am interested in history, especially what doesn't make it into history books, or is barely glossed over, this didn't quite measure up. Worth a read though. ( )
  AutumnTurner | Dec 29, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 18 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Kenneth C. Davisprimary authorall editionscalculated
Freed, SamNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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In grateful memory of my father, Richard McShane Davis, for those childhood camping trips to Lake Champlain, Valley Forge, and Gettysburg that sparked my abiding passion for history.
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If you are of a certain age, the name Flip Wilson may mean something to you.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0061118184, Hardcover)

Kenneth C. Davis, author of the phenomenal New York Times bestseller Don't Know Much About History, presents a collection of extraordinary stories, each detailing an overlooked episode that shaped the nation's destiny and character. Davis's dramatic narratives set the record straight, busting myths and bringing to light little-known but fascinating facts from a time when the nation's fate hung in the balance.

Spanning a period from the Spanish arrival in America to George Washington's inauguration in 1789, America's Hidden History is an iconoclastic look at America's past, connecting some of the dots between history and today's headlines, and proving why Davis is truly America's teacher.

Find out:

Which Pilgrims arrived in Florida fifty years before the Mayflower sailed. What Supreme Court Justice went to prison. What traitor is honored with a statue for his bravery. Which fighting woman in colonial New England scalped her Indian captors.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:07:04 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

An iconoclastic look at America's past: overlooked episodes that shaped the nation's destiny and character. Spanning a period from the Spanish arrival in America to George Washington's inauguration in 1789, these narratives bring to light little-known but fascinating, myth-busting facts. Read the story of the first real Pilgrims in America, who were wine-making French Huguenots, not dour English Separatists; the coming-of-age story of Queen Isabella, who suggested that Columbus take pigs on his voyage, which may have spread disease to many Native Americans; the long, bloody relationship between the Pilgrims and Indians, running counter to the idyllic scene of the Thanksgiving feast; the little-known story of George Washington as a headstrong young soldier who committed a war crime, signed a confession, and started a war. Full of color, intrigue, and human interest, this book connects some of the dots between history and today's headlines.--From publisher description.… (more)

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