Voyagers to the West: A Passage in the Peopling of America on the Eve of the Revolution / Edition 1

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Winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the Saloutos Prize of the Immigration History Society

Bailyn's Pulitzer Prize-winning book uses an emigration roster that lists every person officially known to have left Britain for America from December 1773 to March 1776 to reconstruct the lives and motives of those who emigrated to the New World.

"Voyagers to the West is a superb book...It should be equally admired by and equally attractive to the general reader as to the professional historian."--R.C. Simmons, Journal of American Studies

The author reconstructs the lives of those who emigrated to the New World and transforms our understanding of early American history. Pulitzer prize winner.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"These two volumes [The Peopling Of British North America: An Introduction And Voyagers To The West] bring to a triumphant culmination not only a distinguished career but some of the best work of an entire generation of American historians .... He wants to come closer than any predecessor to a comprehensive account of immigration to British North America — the origins, the motives, the experience — and these volumes persuade me that he has succeeded....Bailyn has inaugurated one of the most important historical works of the last thirty years."

— David Levin, The Nation

"A grandly conceived attempt to employ the newest techniques of historical research (notably computerized demographic analysis) to achieve an old purpose: the recovery of a people's mentality from beneath the layers of myth and received opinion that have obscured it....[Votagers To The West] is conceived on an epic scale and executed with heroic determination."

— Andrew Delbanco, New Republic

"Voyagers To The West is a superb book.... Bailyn joins the imagination and organizing skills of a master scholar to powerful stylistic gifts....It should be equally admired by and equally as attractive to the general reader as to the professional historian."

— R. C. Simmons, Journal of American Studies

"[Bailyn's] concern — his passion — is to make the emigrants and their experiences live once more.... His fusions — of the general and the particular, of the abstract and the concrete, of thought and feeling — are the ideal of modern historical writing."

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Bailyn's superbly documented history advances our knowledge of the migration of English and Scottish laborers and farmers from their native soil to wilderness colonial America. Researching this study for 10 years, Bailyn, a Pulitzer and Bancroft prize-winner for Ideological Origins of the American Revolution, with this new book is now well advanced into his Peopling of America series. This indefatigable historian is the first to achieve a full-scale follow-through on a remarkable London Register naming every person known to have left Britain for North America between December 1773 and March 1776. From town records, letters and contemporary newspapers, Bailyn describes dangerous ship-passages and arrivals of thousands of Scots, Yorkshiremen and Londoners in Nova Scotia, Carolina, Georgia, Florida and even the Gulf-Delta area. Focusing on rich British-Scots entrepreneurs, he describes one of the great land-grabs of historyand more than incidentally shows why the ``indentured servant'' aspect of this feverish migration petered out, to be replaced by black slavery. Illustrations not seen by PW. October 31
Library Journal
The ``key'' to this work is Bailyn's identification of dual migration and settlement patternsone for families and another for single men and indentured servants. Relying on a British emigration register, 1773-76, and myriad ``ancillary sources,'' Bailyn's is a masterful treatment of the ``human meaning'' of the transatlantic migration. By turns, he employs descriptive exposition, quantification, structural analysis, narrative accounts of many individuals and families, and graphic representations including a novel portfolio of ``portraits and scenes'' of runaway servants, based on newspaper accounts. Part of a multivolume study that began with The Peopling of British North America: an introduction LJ 8/86, this is very highly recommended for most libraries. Roy H. Tryon, Delaware State Archives, Dover
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780394757780
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 4/28/1988
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 720
  • Sales rank: 691,384
  • Product dimensions: 6.18 (w) x 9.28 (h) x 1.42 (d)

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