Washington's General: Nathanael Greene and the Triumph of the American Revolution

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Macmillan, Jan 10, 2005 - Biography & Autobiography - 355 pages
The overlooked Quaker from Rhode Island who won the Revolutionary War's crucial southern campaign and helped to set up the final victory of American independence at Yorktown

Nathanael Greene is a revolutionary hero who has been lost to history. Although places named in his honor dot city and country, few people know his quintessentially American story as a self-made, self-educated military genius who renounced his Quaker upbringing-horrifying his large family-to take up arms against the British. Untrained in military matters when he joined the Rhode Island militia in 1774, he quickly rose to become Washington's right-hand man and heir apparent. After many daring exploits during the war's first four years (and brilliant service as the army's quartermaster), he was chosen in 1780 by Washington to replace the routed Horatio Gates in South Carolina.

Greene's southern campaign, which combined the forces of regular troops with bands of irregulars, broke all the rules of eighteenth-century warfare and foreshadowed the guerrilla wars of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. His opponent in the south, Lord Cornwallis, wrote, "Greene is as dangerous as Washington. I never feel secure when I am encamped in his neighborhood. He is vigilant, enterprising, and full of resources." Greene's ingenious tactics sapped the British of their strength and resolve even as they "won" nearly every battle. Terry Golway argues that Greene's appointment as commander of the American Southern Army was the war's decisive moment, and this bold new book returns Greene to his proper place in the Revolutionary era's pantheon.


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WASHINGTON'S GENERAL: Nathanael Greene and the Triumph of the American Revolution

User Review  - Kirkus

New York Observer columnist and editor Golway (For the Cause of Liberty, 2000, etc.) rescues a Revolutionary War hero from oblivion, and deservedly so.Nathanael Greene was a Rhode Islander who ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - AngieN - LibraryThing

Not many people know much about Nathanael Greene, but if you've read much on George Washington, then you know that General Greene was one of Washington's most trusted men and a key to victory in the ... Read full review


The Quaker General
A Downright Democracy
The Making of a Rebel
An Uncommon Degree of Zeal
The Dark Part of Night
Victory or Death
The Cries of the People
Low Intrigue
It Wounds My Feelings
O This War
The Prospect Is Dismal
Forging a Nation
Unfinished Business

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About the author (2005)

Terry Golway, columnist and city editor of The New York Observer, is a frequent contributor to American Heritage, The Boston Globe, and The New York Times. His previous books include So That Others Might Live, The Irish in America, For the Cause of Liberty, and Irish Rebel. He lives in Maplewood, New Jersey.

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