Choosing Sides: Loyalists in Revolutionary America

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Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Jun 7, 2013 - History - 236 pages
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Though scores of texts, films and stories have been told about the American Revolution from the perspectives of our Founding Fathers and their followers, comparatively little is known about those colonists who resisted the revolutionary movement, and tried desperately to preserve their nation’s ties to the British Empire. Choosing Sides: Loyalists in Revolutionary America shows us that America’s original colonies were not nearly as united behind the concept of forming free, independent states as our society’s collective memory would have us believe. There were, in fact, numerous colonists, slaves, and Native Americans who counted themselves among the Loyalists: those who never wanted to sever ties with the English crown and who viewed revolution as an unnatural and unlawful mistake. Too often overlooked, these men and women made valid and valuable arguments against the formation of the United States—both weighing the costs of revolution and the perilousness of existing without the Empire’s command— arguments that even hundreds of years into America’s existence were echoed and championed both within and beyond our borders.
Colonists from commoners to clergymen had nuanced and complex reasons for wanting to remain under British control, and an awareness of these reasons and their origins paints a more historically accurate portrait of the American populous around the time of our country’s founding. This volume not only showcases Dr. Chopra’s comprehensive analysis of Loyalism and its arguments, but includes letters, legislation and even poems written by Loyalists during and after the Revolutionary War. Choosing Sides lays a detailed foundation of facts for its readers and provides them entry points to the debate surrounding the genesis of the United States. It is both a primary source and a touchstone for original interpretations and discussions.

 

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Contents

Introduction
1
Chapter 1 Loyalist Predicament
65
Chapter 2 Early Loyalist Voices
75
Chapter 3 Plans for Union
93
Chapter 4 Loyalist Resilience
109
Chapter 5 Loyalist Military Involvement
123
Chapter 6 Loyalist Women
141
Chapter 7 Slaves
165
Chapter 8 Indian Allies
177
Chapter 9 Loyalist Losses
197
Chapter 10 Loyalist Exiles
211
Index
229
About the Author
243
Copyright

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About the author (2013)

Dr. Ruma Chopra is an associate professor of history at San Jose State University.

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