Unshackling America
Unshackling America challenges the persistent fallacy that Americans fought two separate wars of independence. Williard Sterne Randall documents an unremitting fifty-year-long struggle for economic independence from Britain overlapping two armed conflicts linked by an unacknowledged global struggle. Throughout this perilous period, the struggle was all about free trade.Neither Jefferson nor any other Founding Father could divine that the Revolutionary Period of 1763 to 1783 had concluded only one part, the first phase of their ordeal. The Treaty of Paris of 1783 at the end of the Revolutionary War halted overt combat but had achieved only partial political autonomy from Britain. By not guaranteeing American economic independence and agency, Britain continued to deny American sovereignty.Randall details the fifty years and persistent attempts by the British to control American trade waters, but he also shows how, despite the outrageous restrictions, the United States asserted the doctrine of neutral rights and developed the world’s second largest merchant fleet as it absorbed the French Caribbean trade. American ships carrying trade increased five-fold between 1790 and 1800, its tonnage nearly doubling again between 1800 and 1812, ultimately making the United States the world’s largest independent maritime power.

Unshackling America Details

TitleUnshackling America
Author
ReleaseJun 27th, 2017
PublisherSt. Martin's Press
ISBN-139781250111838
Rating
GenreHistory, North American Hi..., American History, Nonfiction, War, Military History, American Revolution

Unshackling America Review

  • Jerome
    January 1, 1970
    A well-written, dense and informative history of the war.Randall spends a lot of time on US-British relations after the Revolution, and describes how the War of 1812 was the culmination of years and years of trade disputes between the two nations. Randall provides a lot of detail on these earlier flare-ups, and they do slow down the narrative a bit. He then describes how things escalated to a war neither country prepared for or could afford to prosecute for very long.The book seems a just a bit A well-written, dense and informative history of the war.Randall spends a lot of time on US-British relations after the Revolution, and describes how the War of 1812 was the culmination of years and years of trade disputes between the two nations. Randall provides a lot of detail on these earlier flare-ups, and they do slow down the narrative a bit. He then describes how things escalated to a war neither country prepared for or could afford to prosecute for very long.The book seems a just a bit overstuffed at times, the narrative jumps around a bit and a lot of the material has been covered elsewhere. Still, a well-researched work that does a great job putting everything into context.
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  • Dean
    January 1, 1970
    Always love American History books that fill in some gaps. Seems like the War of 1812 deserves more than a line or two in most American History books I have read. Most of the time the line or two that is in there is about how Andrew Jackson won the battle of New Orleans that took place after the peace was signed and built his national reputation that was a contributing factor to his eventual election as President. This book fills the gap on this chapter of American History. A war fought over fre Always love American History books that fill in some gaps. Seems like the War of 1812 deserves more than a line or two in most American History books I have read. Most of the time the line or two that is in there is about how Andrew Jackson won the battle of New Orleans that took place after the peace was signed and built his national reputation that was a contributing factor to his eventual election as President. This book fills the gap on this chapter of American History. A war fought over free trade and against the mercantilism practices of the British!
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  • Redgriffin
    January 1, 1970
    This is the first book of the newer view of the War of 1812 in which the war for American Independence really lasted from 1775-1814. The seconf half of the war in 1812 was caused by the unwillingness of the British Government to 1. live up to it's agreements made after the Revolution.2. The intrasigents of the Federalist and the Democratic Republicans to come up with and agree upon a strategy to solve the problems that were caused by the forming of a new nation and a dealing with the Natives so This is the first book of the newer view of the War of 1812 in which the war for American Independence really lasted from 1775-1814. The seconf half of the war in 1812 was caused by the unwillingness of the British Government to 1. live up to it's agreements made after the Revolution.2. The intrasigents of the Federalist and the Democratic Republicans to come up with and agree upon a strategy to solve the problems that were caused by the forming of a new nation and a dealing with the Natives so that they and the white settlers could coexist.And 3. The inability by both sides to undo the laws that had been put into place in that caused the American Revolution. So the nation went into the Quasi war with France still with an inability to trade with England at a time when England really need grain from the US to feed it's artmies over seas.This is a good book but it only gets 4 starts because Mr Randall seem to just leave a problem to move to the next to leave the reader hanging. I do recomend it and think that in time it may become one of the major texts of the era.
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  • David
    January 1, 1970
    2.5 Stars This was a very uneven book that sucked me in with an interesting title and thesis. The problem: no execution. Looking at the War of 1812 as a continuation of the Revolutionary War is an interesting interpretation that I think is gaining ground among historians. Instead of tackling that, this book gives a very straight forward history of about 1760 on through the War of 1812. He also will focus on some obscure or minor topics, such as a long digression on an Irish rebellion in 1798 to 2.5 Stars This was a very uneven book that sucked me in with an interesting title and thesis. The problem: no execution. Looking at the War of 1812 as a continuation of the Revolutionary War is an interesting interpretation that I think is gaining ground among historians. Instead of tackling that, this book gives a very straight forward history of about 1760 on through the War of 1812. He also will focus on some obscure or minor topics, such as a long digression on an Irish rebellion in 1798 to explain why so many Irish emigrated to America. But then other topics, such as the Battle of New Orleans, get short shrift. Still, it had potential.
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  • Fred Svoboda
    January 1, 1970
    Nice book is particularly good at tracing the origins of the war and its outcomes, with both a political and (best) economic point of view. The only real negative is the coverage of the many invasions and counter-invasions of Canada which were quite important to the course of the war but something of a muddle to read about. (In fairness, they also were a muddle in real time.) Thus the best sections of the book for an interested amateur reader are its excellent opening 1/3 and the last chapters e Nice book is particularly good at tracing the origins of the war and its outcomes, with both a political and (best) economic point of view. The only real negative is the coverage of the many invasions and counter-invasions of Canada which were quite important to the course of the war but something of a muddle to read about. (In fairness, they also were a muddle in real time.) Thus the best sections of the book for an interested amateur reader are its excellent opening 1/3 and the last chapters explaining how the war reshaped American (and Canadian) identity.
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  • Lehtomaki
    January 1, 1970
    Nonfiction
  • Donald Herrick
    January 1, 1970
    Great detail of every event.I wish I could remember it all. I do have lasting new ideas. It fills in the details in our history.
  • Steve
    January 1, 1970
    An interesting perspective of the War of 1812 and how we still fought Great Britain to gain our independence from them.
  • Deane Aikins
    January 1, 1970
    Authoritative and sobering. Outstanding
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