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About this Book

A Guide to the Battles of the American Revolution is the first comprehensive account of nearly every engagement of the Revolution, a war that began with a brief skirmish at Lexington Green on April 19, 1775, and concluded beyond the Appalachian Mountains in April 1783--nearly two years after the siege of Yorktown in 1781. In between were six long years of bitter fighting on land and at sea. The wide variety of combats blanketed the North American continent from Canada to the Southern colonies, from the winding coastal lowlands to beyond the Appalachian Mountains, from the North Atlantic to the Caribbean, and from the British Isles to the Gulf Coast.

From the Authors' Preface:

"Outstanding books have been written about many of the major battles of the war. A Guide to the Battles of the American Revolution is not intended to supersede a single one of them. Our book is not the last word or definitive treatment of any action, nor did we intend it to be. To our knowledge no single readily available source has pulled the threads of this vast war together by offering detailed accounts (and in most instances a map or two) of nearly every engagement. We believe this method of presentation offers a ready reference guide to the war’s conflicts, reinforces the size and global scope of the Revolution, and identifies a wide variety of areas ripe for further study. To produce this study we relied upon quality secondary scholarship, reinforced with light archival and firsthand research.

A Guide to the Battles of the American Revolution presents the war’s conflicts in what we believe is a unique way. Each entry offers a wide and rich—but consistent—template of information to make it easy for readers to find exactly what they are seeking. For example, each entry begins with introductory details including the date of the event(s), the theater and location, campaign with which it is associated, the ranks and commanders, opposing forces, terrain, weather, and time of day. The body of each entry offers both a Colonial and British perspective of the unfolding military situation, a detailed and unbiased account of the fighting that transpired, a discussion of numbers and losses, an assessment of the consequences of the battle, and what (if anything) remains to be seen where the fighting occurred. Each entry concludes with suggestions for further reading, though we have deliberately limited these suggestions to readily available accounts (as opposed to sending readers to manuscript collections). Many entries are supported and enriched by original maps.

Presented in this way, we believe each entry stands entirely on its own and can be read and appreciated accordingly. Prefacing the main entries is additional information and insights about the respective armies, organizations, and personnel. Familiarity with this material will help readers more fully appreciate the individual entries that follow.

This methodology requires some narrative redundancy, which we have endeavored to minimize as much as possible. We are also aware that many sources conflict—especially regarding numbers and losses. Unlike the Civil War or World War II, records for the American Revolution are scant by comparison. We have tried to follow generally accepted intrepretions of events. On occasion we note when and how the sources conflict on important issues."

Fresh, scholarly, informative, and entertaining, A Guide to the Battles of the American Revolution will be welcomed by historians and general enthusiasts everywhere.