Uncle Sam in Barbary: A Diplomatic History

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Editorial Reviews

Foreign Affairs
From the 1770s until 1815, the young American republic confronted the Barbary states, which were acting on the principle that warfare existed and ships would be seized in the absence of a treaty that entailed paying tribute. With independence, the Americans lost the treaty protection, backed up by naval power, that they had enjoyed as British subjects. What to do? Seek the support of Britain or some other European power? Line up a coalition of lesser maritime powers to confront the Barbary menace? Create a navy that could protect U.S. shipping? Or negotiate treaties with the Barbary states, paying tribute and ransoming prisoners? From the 1770s until 1815, all of the above were tried. Parker provides an overview of U.S. relations with the Barbary states, concentrating on the most important-Algiers-and giving lesser attention to Tunis and Tripoli. (Relations with Morocco, with which the United States signed a treaty of friendship by 1786, were smoother.) Having once served as U.S. ambassador to Algeria and Morocco, Parker brings a good understanding of Maghreb history and culture and painstakingly reconstructs the activities and personalities of the earliest U.S. diplomats. Uncle Sam in Barbary is also copiously illustrated, offering a baker's dozen of well-chosen appended documents. Those who point to U.S. activities in this period as a guide for contemporary events would do well to consult Parker's nuanced account.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780813026961
  • Publisher: University Press of Florida
  • Publication date: 4/28/2004
  • Series: Adst-Dacor Diplomats and Diplomacy Series
  • Edition description: First
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations ix
Foreword: The ADST-DACOR Diplomats and Diplomacy Series xi
Preface xiii
Map xix
Chronology xxi
List of Abbreviations xxix
1. Algiers 1
2. The Deys 24
3. First Steps 33
4. The Crisis Begins 43
5. Things Get Worse: The Mathurins, John Paul Jones, Barclay, Humphreys, and the Portuguese Truce 66
6. Negotiations at Last 87
7. Money Problems 103
8. Tripoli, Tunis, and Morocco 131
9. Relevance 158
Postscript: Return of the Natives 173
Appendixes
1. The Procession of the Tribute 183
2. Algerian Coinage 197
3. Hasan Dey's Accession and Related Incidents 201
4. The American Prisoners and Their Ships 208
5. The De Castries Letter 217
6. The Sailors' Petition 220
7. Jefferson to Congress, December 30, 1790 223
8. The Portuguese Truce 225
9. Hasan Dey of Algiers to George III, March 27, 1794 231
10. The Dey's Wish List 233
11. List of Naval Stores Requested by Algiers 236
12. Cathcart's Tunisian Truce 238
13. Thomas Jefferson to Hamuda Bey of Tunis, June 8, 1806 239
Notes 243
Bibliography 263
Documentary Sources 271
Index 273
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