A people numerous and armed

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a people numerous and armed

A People Numerous and Armed: Reflections on the Military Struggle for American Independence by John W. Shy

Insightful series of essays about the Revolution, perhaps centering on the interaction of society and the military at war. An example, covered in several essays from differing perspectives, is the effect of militia (both Patriot and Loyal). Given its often ineffectiveness in a traditional line of battle (note Washingtons feelings about the militia), the Patriot militia became a local police and enforcement force (call it a constabulary), supplied a draft for the conventional forces, almost always turned out when asked in short-term relatively local emergencies (think Bennington or, more informally, Kings Mountain), and, while not generally able to stand up to British (or Hessian) regulars in force entering the neighborhood, re-established Patriot control when the British moved on. Charles Lee advocated (and demonstrated in his slow march across New Jersey) something that seems to me akin to our Vietnam era strategic hamlet strategy, using the regular army to establish control, arm, organize and nurture the local militia, and then move on to a new area once the militia was capable of maintaining control. The British tried a similar strategy through the last half of the war, but encountered generally insurmountable issues with 1) being in most areas a small minority of the population; 2) finding that ethnic groups professing loyalty were often mutually antagonistic (think Scots and Germans in the Carolinas) and were more enthusiastic about killing one another than killing Patriots; and 3) British attempts at fomenting slave insurrections and Indian uprisings offended many of their potential supporters.
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A People Numerous and Armed Reflections on the Military Struggle for American Independence Ann Arbor

“A People Numerous & Armed” is a collection of twelve essays written by John Shy in the late s and s when he was an up-and-coming historian at the .
John W. Shy

A people numerous and armed: reflections on the military struggle for American independence

Fascinating collection of essays about the Revolutionary War that were all written during or just after the Vietnam War. Thus the questions are very interesting. Could the British have won American Great book that delves into various aspects of the military struggle for American Independence. I heartily recommend it for anyone interested in American History, and on the nature of the American insurgency itself. John W.


A series of essays about the social, political, and intellectual dimensions of the Revolutionary War. Convert currency. - Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving….

Americans like to think of themselves as a peaceful and peace-loving people, and in remembering their own revolutionary past, American historians have long tended to focus on colonial origins and Constitutional aftermath, neglecting the fact that the American Revolution was a long, hard war. In this book, John Shy shifts the focus to the Revolutionary War and explores the ways in which the experience of that war was entangled with both the causes and the consequences of the Revolution itself. This is not a traditional military chronicle of battles and campaigns, but a series of essays that recapture the social, political, and even intellectual dimensions of the military effort that had created an American nation by Shy has produced one of the most thoughtful and perceptive discussions of the war to date. More than any other historian of the Revolution, he has caused us to reconsider the war as a deeper social and political process. Authors Instructors Media Booksellers Librarians.

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