Lions of the West

Lions of the West

Heroes and Villains of the Westward Expansion

eBook - 2012
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"From Thomas Jefferson's birth in 1743 to the California Gold Rush in 1849, America's westward expansion comes to life in the hands of a writer fascinated by the way individual lives link up, illuminate one another, and collectively impact history. Jefferson, a naturalist and visionary, dreamed that the United States would stretch across the North American continent, from ocean to ocean. The account of how that dream became reality unfolds in the stories of Jefferson and nine other Americans whose adventurous spirits and lust for land pushed the westward boundaries: Andrew Jackson, John Johnny Appleseed Chapman, David Crockett, Sam Houston, James K. Polk, Winfield Scott, Kit Carson, Nicholas Trist, and John Quincy Adams. Their stories-and those of the nameless thousands who risked their lives to settle on the frontier, displacing thou- sands of Native Americans-form an extraordinary chapter in American history that led directly to the cataclysm of the Civil War. Filled with illustrations, portraits, maps, battle plans, notes, and time lines, Lions of the West is a richly authoritative biography of America-its ideals, its promise, its romance, and its destiny."-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: Chapel Hill, North Carolina :, Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill,, 2012
ISBN: 9781616201791
Characteristics: 1 online resource (528 pages)
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chcarafa May 31, 2012

I would be hardpressed to name a history that I have read as equanimous as this one. For an author to have some obvious opinions on the individuals he covers and yet to give so many viewpoints on them is refreshing to say the least. Morgan doesn't pull any punches. He merely lets the complexity of the amazing people, good and bad, speak for itself. The West is vast and varied as were the people who settled it. Morgan's thesis is very sound and although he makes an excellent case for it, he does not beat a dead horse.
The format of the book, multiple mini-biographies, makes it a quick read. You can't wait to get to the next person! Truly a must read for those that want a nice overview of "how the west was won." No doubt a good springboard to more detailed, singular biographies as well.

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