Independence Lost: Lives on the Edge of the American Revolution

Random House Publishing Group, 7 . 2015 . - 464 .
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A rising-star historian offers a significant new global perspective on the Revolutionary War with the story of the conflict as seen through the eyes of the outsiders of colonial society

Winner of the Journal of the American Revolution Book of the Year Award Winner of the Society of the Cincinnati in the State of New Jersey History Prize Finalist for the George Washington Book Prize


Over the last decade, award-winning historian Kathleen DuVal has revitalized the study of early Americas marginalized voices. Now, in Independence Lost, she recounts an untold story as rich and significant as that of the Founding Fathers: the history of the Revolutionary Era as experienced by slaves, American Indians, women, and British loyalists living on Floridas Gulf Coast.

While citizens of the thirteen rebelling colonies came to blows with the British Empire over tariffs and parliamentary representation, the situation on the rest of the continent was even more fraught. In the Gulf of Mexico, Spanish forces clashed with Britains strained army to carve up the Gulf Coast, as both sides competed for allegiances with the powerful Chickasaw, Choctaw, and Creek nations who inhabited the region. Meanwhile, African American slaves had little control over their own lives, but some individuals found opportunities to expand their freedoms during the war.

Independence Lost reveals that individual motives counted as much as the ideals of liberty and freedom the Founders espoused: Independence had a personal as well as national meaning, and the choices made by people living outside the colonies were of critical importance to the wars outcome. DuVal introduces us to the Mobile slave Petit Jean, who organized militias to fight the British at sea; the Chickasaw diplomat Payamataha, who worked to keep his people out of war; New Orleans merchant Oliver Pollock and his wife, Margaret OBrien Pollock, who risked their own wealth to organize funds and garner Spanish support for the American Revolution; the half-Scottish-Creek leader Alexander McGillivray, who fought to protect indigenous interests from European imperial encroachment; the Cajun refugee Amand Broussard, who spent a lifetime in conflict with the British; and Scottish loyalists James and Isabella Bruce, whose work on behalf of the British Empire placed them in grave danger. Their lives illuminate the fateful events that took place along the Gulf of Mexico and, in the process, changed the history of North America itself.

Adding new depth and moral complexity, Kathleen DuVal reinvigorates the story of the American Revolution. Independence Lost is a bold work that fully establishes the reputation of a historian who is already regarded as one of her generations best.

Praise for Independence Lost

[An] astonishing story . . . Independence Lost will knock your socks off. To read [this book] is to see that the task of recovering the entire American Revolution has barely begun.The New York Times Book Review

A richly documented and compelling account.The Wall Street Journal

A remarkable, necessaryand entirely newbook about the American Revolution.The Daily Beast

A completely new take on the American Revolution, rife with pathos, double-dealing, and intrigue.Elizabeth A. Fenn, Pulitzer Prizewinning author of Encounters at the Heart of the World


From the Hardcover edition.
 

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LibraryThing Review

  - Shrike58 - LibraryThing

When you cut to the chase this book is mostly a history of the American Revolution in the South as an imperial war between Britain & Spain and how local communities decided what sides they were on; in ...

Independence Lost: Lives on the Edge of the American Revolution

  - Publishers Weekly

Focusing on the frontier struggle in the Gulf of Mexico region, DuVal (The Native Ground), a historian at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, illustrates how multipronged the American ...






Cover
The Gulf Coast
Payamataha
Alexander McGillivray
Oliver Pollock and Margaret OBrien
James Bruce and Isabella Chrystie
Petit Jean
Amand Broussard
To Fight for Spain?
Inspiring Loyalty
A Wartime Borderland
The Spanish Siege of Pensacola
Nations Colonies Towns and States
Independence Gained or Lost?
Confederacies
Acknowledgments

Independence in Creek and Chickasaw Countries
To Fight for Britain?

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 (2015)

Kathleen DuVal teaches Early American history and American Indian history at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her previous books include The Native Ground: Indians and Colonists in the Heart of the Continent, winner of the J. G. Ragsdale Book Award from the Arkansas Historical Association. She is also co-editor of Interpreting a Continent: Voices from Colonial America.


From the Hardcover edition.