Revolutionary Founders: Rebels, Radicals, and Reformers in the Making of the Nation

Revolutionary Founders: Rebels, Radicals, and Reformers in the Making of the Nation

by Alfred F. Young
     
 

In twenty-two original essays, leading historians reveal the radical impulses at the founding of the American Republic. Here is a fresh new reading of the American Revolution that gives voice and recognition to a generation of radical thinkers and doers whose revolutionary ideals outstripped those of the Founding Fathers.

While the Founding Fathers advocated a break

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Overview

In twenty-two original essays, leading historians reveal the radical impulses at the founding of the American Republic. Here is a fresh new reading of the American Revolution that gives voice and recognition to a generation of radical thinkers and doers whose revolutionary ideals outstripped those of the Founding Fathers.

While the Founding Fathers advocated a break from Britain and espoused ideals of republican government, none proposed significant changes to the fabric of colonial society. As privileged and propertied white males, they did not seek a revolution in the modern sense; instead, they tried to maintain the underlying social structure and political system that enabled men of wealth to rule. They firmly opposed social equality and feared popular democracy as a form of “levelling.”

Yet during this “revolutionary” period some people did believe that “liberty” meant “liberty for all” and that “equality” should be applied to political, economic, and religious spheres. Here are the stories of individuals and groups who exemplified the radical ideals of the American Revolution more in keeping with our own values today. This volume helps us to understand the social conflicts unleashed by the struggle for independence, the Revolution’s achievements, and the unfinished agenda it left for future generations to confront.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780307271105
Publisher:
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date:
04/19/2011
Pages:
464
Sales rank:
1,438,960
Product dimensions:
6.44(w) x 9.58(h) x 1.40(d)

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations
 
Introduction
Alfred F. Young, Ray Raphael, and Gary B. Nash: “To Begin the World Over Again”

Part I: Revolutions
 
One
Alfred F. Young: Ebenezer Mackintosh: Boston’s Captain General of the Liberty Tree
 
Two
Ray Raphael: Blacksmith Timothy Bigelow and the Massachusetts Revolution of 1774
 
Three
T. H. Breen: Samuel Thompson’s War: The Career of an American Insurgent
 
Four
Gary B. Nash: Philadelphia’s Radical Caucus That Propelled Pennsylvania to Independence and Democracy
 
Five
Jill Lepore: A World of Paine
 
Six
David Waldstreicher: Phillis Wheatley: The Poet Who Challenged the American Revolutionaries
 
Part II:  Wars
 
Seven
Philip Mead: “Adventures, Dangers and Sufferings”: The Betrayals of Private Joseph Plumb Martin, Continental Soldier
 
Eight
Michael A. McDonnell: “The Spirit of Levelling”: James Cleveland, Edward Wright, and the Militiamen’s Struggle for Equality in Revolutionary Virginia
 
Nine
Cassandra Pybus: Mary Perth, Harry Washington, and Moses Wilkinson: Black Methodists Who Escaped from Slavery and Founded a Nation
 
Ten
Jon Butler: James Ireland, John Leland, John “Swearing Jack” Waller, and the Baptist Campaign for Religious Freedom in Revolutionary Virginia
 
Eleven
Colin G. Calloway: Declaring Independence and Rebuilding a Nation: Dragging Canoe and the Chickamauga Revolution
 
Twelve
James Kirby Martin: Forgotten Heroes of the Revolution: Han Yerry and Tyona Doxtader of the Oneida Indian Nation
 
Part III: The Promise of the Revolution
 
Thirteen
Gregory Nobles: “Satan, Smith, Shattuck, and Shays”: The People’s Leaders in the Massachusetts Regulation of 1786
 
Fourteen
Terry Bouton: William Findley, David Bradford, and the Pennsylvania Regulation of 1794
 
Fifteen
Wythe Holt: The New Jerusalem: Herman Husband’s Egalitarian Alternative to the United States Constitution
 
Sixteen
Woody Holton: The Battle Against Patriarchy That Abigail Adams Won
 
Seventeen
Sheila Skemp: America’s Mary Wollstonecraft: Judith Sargent Murray’s Case for the Equal Rights of Women
 
Eighteen
Richard S. Newman: Prince Hall, Richard Allen, and Daniel Coker: Revolutionary Black Founders, Revolutionary Black Communities
 
Nineteen
Melvin Patrick Ely: Richard and Judith Randolph, St. George Tucker, George Wythe, Syphax Brown, and Hercules White: Racial Equality and the Snares of Prejudice
 
Twenty
Seth Cotlar: “Every Man Should Have Property”: Robert Coram and the American Revolution’s Legacy of Economic Populism
 
Twenty-one
Jeffrey L. Pasley: Thomas Greenleaf: Printers and the Struggle for Democratic Politics and Freedom of the Press
 
Twenty-two
Alan Taylor: The Plough-Jogger: Jedediah Peck and the Democratic Revolution
 
Afterword
Eric Foner
 
 
Acknowledgments
Notes
List of Contributors
Index

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