What Ifs? of American History: Eminent Historians Imagine What Might Have Been

What Ifs? of American History: Eminent Historians Imagine What Might Have Been

by Robert Cowley (Editor)

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781101948392
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 12/02/2016
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 662,754
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 8.60(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Robert Cowley is the founding editor of MHQ: The Quarterly Journal of Military History, which was nominated for a National Magazine Award for General Excellence. Cowley has held several senior positions in book and magazine publishing.

Table of Contents

List of Maps and Illustrationsxi
Introductionxiii
Might the Mayflower Not Have Sailed?1
William Pitt the Elder and the Avoidance of the American Revolution17
What the Fog Wrought: The Revolution's Dunkirk, August 29, 177643
"His Accidency" John Tyler55
Lew Wallace and the Ghosts of the Shunpike67
If the Lost Order Hadn't Been Lost: Robert E. Lee Humbles the Union, 186287
The Northwest Conspiracy103
Beyond the Wildest Dreams of John Wilkes Booth127
The Revolution of 1877147
The Whale Against the Wolf: The Anglo-American War of 1896163
No Pearl Harbor?: FDR Delays the War179
If Eisenhower Had Gone to Berlin189
Joe McCarthy's Secret Life205
If the U-2 Hadn't Flown225
The Cuban Missile Crisis: Second Holocaust251
JFK Lives273
What If Watergate Were Still Just an Upscale Address?285

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What Ifs? of American History: Eminent Historians Imagine What Might Have Been 2.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
ABVR on LibraryThing 5 months ago
Professional historians (of which I'm one), will start telling stories about the past at the drop of a hat. That tendency is on full display in the "What If?" series, where essay after essay spends 80-90% of its length on what *actually* happened, leaving the counter-factual scenario as a brief afterthought. This third volume in the series is no exception: Roughly 2/3 of the essays are more about what was than what might have been. The real events are often excitingly told (David McCullough in fine form, narrating Washington's desperate nighttime escape after the Battle of Long Island), little known (guerrilla warfare after Appomatox), or unexpectedly significant (the debate over VP John Tyler's right to ascend to the presidency after William Henry Harrison died in office). Fans of alternate history may, however, find themselves wishing that the authors had saved it for a book of straight historical essays, and gotten on with the good bits. I'm with them.The two best pieces in the book are (no surprise) written from viewpoints within their counter-factual worlds: One on the Anglo-American War of 1895 and one on the nuclear war that resulted from the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962. They're well worth the time of even a casual alternate history fan . . . or anyone interested in war and diplomacy in the 20th century.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago