Morning of Fire: John Kendrick's Daring American Odyssey in the Pacific (Google eBook)

Front Cover
Harper Collins, Nov 2, 2010 - History - 464 pages
15 Reviews

Four years after the Revolutionary War, America's independence was still in doubt. To survive, the new nation needed money and a vital surge in trade. In the back rooms of Boston, a daring plan was launched by a group of merchants and ship owners: to send two ships on a desperate mission around Cape Horn and into the Pacific Ocean. They wanted to establish new trade with China, settle an outpost on territory claimed by the Spanish, and find the legendary Northwest Passage—the fabled waterway linking the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. The adventure would bring the world to the brink of war.

The man chosen to lead the expedition was John Kendrick—a master navigator and a charismatic captain of privateers during the Revolution. On the far side of the world, Kendrick would have to rely on his bravery, his charm, and most of all his remarkable resolve to navigate unknown waters, negotiate with cutthroat imperialists from England and Spain, and form alliances with natives hit hard by early encounters with Europeans.

Seventeen years before Lewis and Clark reached the Pacific coast, Kendrick established the first American outpost on what would become Vancouver Island. He then traveled into the cauldron of an intertribal war in the Hawaiian Islands before moving into the far ports of Macao, China, and Kushimoto, Japan, where he narrowly escaped capture by a troop of samurai. Throughout the seven-year journey, Kendrick faced a subordinate officer who wanted to usurp his command, Spanish officials who wanted him captured, and a rival British captain who wanted him dead.

Morning of Fire follows Kendrick through each perilous turn of his adventures aboard the Lady Washington and the Columbia Rediviva. This meticulously researched story uncovers the full scope of a landmark American voyage that came at the volatile close of the eighteenth century, a time when superpowers Spain and Britain clashed over territory and the fledgling United States stood caught in the middle. As Scott Ridley relates Kendrick's fateful struggle to plant the seed of an "empire of liberty" in the Pacific, he shapes a bold and exciting chronicle of a momentous odyssey. Morning of Fire is popular history at its best.

  

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Review: Morning of Fire: John Kendrick's Daring American Odyssey in the Pacific

User Review  - Doug Canfield - Goodreads

I see some reviewers have read other histories covering this story that they liked better, but not having that obstacle to overcome myself, I thoroughly enjoyed "Morning of Fire". The drama ... Read full review

Review: Morning of Fire: John Kendrick's Daring American Odyssey in the Pacific

User Review  - Keith - Goodreads

Four years after the revolutionary war and seventeen years before Lewis and Clark completed their famous expedition west, John Kendrick, an experienced revolutionary privateer and trusted sailing ... Read full review

Contents

Prologue Morning of Fire
1
Portrait of Joseph Barrell
2
Part I
9
Columbia Rediviva
19
Map of the Northwest Passage
40
Portrait of José Monino y Redondo Count of Floridablanca
43
Sketch of Night Dance by Pacific women
56
Portrait of Estevan José Martinez Fernández y Martinez de la Sierra
67
Columbias Homecoming
199
An American Presence
217
LongAwaited Return
239
Edge ofEmpire
251
A Soft War
253
Survival and Seduction
280
A Rising Tide
300
Possession
317

Sketch of Martinezs Princesa
71
Infinite Wilderness
73
Engraving of Yuquot village
80
Drawing of Mowachaht chief Maquinna
92
A view of Friendly Cove and the Spanish fort
117
The storming of the Bastille
136
Odyssey
155
Volatile Paradise
157
House of Cards
179
Last Season
334
The Fires Reach
345
Epilogue Legacy for a New Nation
362
Acknowledgments
371
A Note on the Sources
375
Notes
377
Bibliography
427
Index
445
Copyright

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About the author (2010)

Descended from a long line of New England sailors and shipbuilders, Scott Ridley has written for the New Republic, The Nation, Newsday, the Denver Post, and other publications. He lives with his family in East Harwich, Massachusetts.

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