2009: 124. 1776

“On the afternoon of Thursday, October 26, 1775, His Royal Majesty George III, King of England, rode in royal splendor from St. James’s Palace to the Palace of Westminster, there to address the opening of Parliament on the increasingly distressing issue of war in America.”

1776, David McCullough

      This is sort of unusual for me, because I actually started “reading” this book on tape.  Jon had downloaded it a while ago, and during a brief flirtation with jogging, I thought, why not? I’ve read lots of other McCulloughs, and moreover, he reads it, and I’ve been hooked on his voice since Ken Burns’ Civil War.  So although I am usually too impatient for books on tape (or ipod)  since I read faster than they do, I started to listen.  

      And I was hooked.  Seriously, I couldn’t get enough - the only thing that stopped me was that I was (true story) getting nervous about the American troops, and how badly they were getting smoked in New York (after kicking ass in Boston) - despite being well aware that we won the Revolutionary War.  I usually don’t go for description of battle type books - I’m not so interested in the details of military history (as a recent visit to the NHS at Bull Run reinforced), but I was totally fascinated by the way McCullough explained the details of the battle and how the Americans used their strategy to win in Boston - and how the red coats did the same in New York. I got so into it that when I was visiting the Thomas Stone NHS,* and saw the book for sale in actual paper copy, I had to buy it, and finish it ASAP.  

      So, a great read.  I wasn’t expecting to like it - I didn’t think I was that interested in the Revolution; I thought I knew the story of 1776.  And I was totally wrong - now I’d like to read McCullough’s 1777!  In fact, my only complaint was the things he didn’t cover - I’d have like to have read his take on the Declaration, and the ins and outs of how that got written and signed, and, of course, I’d have liked to read his version of the rest of the war.  What happened after the lows of New York, and Washington crossing the Delaware such that we won the war?  

*Home of the fourth most famous signer of the Declaration of Independence from Maryland! The 345th most popular National Park!!

Date/Place Completed:  November 2009; D.C.

Categories: Non-Fiction; U.S. President Project 

© Carrie Dunsmore 2017