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May 2018
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Aerden [userpic]
Rough Crossing

Books: Simon Schama, the author of History of Britain, has written a book called Rough Crossing. It is about the American Revolutionary War as seen from the point of view of the slaves. I want to read this, because it is a part of American history that I was never taught and it is also interesting to see the British side of things.

I never knew, for example, that the loyalists living in the colonies were given passage to Nova Scotia. I had always thought they just felt loyal to the King of England, but when things didn't go their way, I thought they had just accepted things the way they were and resumed their lives as normal, just as we do in any election when it doesn't go the way we want it. It never occurred to me that they would actually have left.

Schama is a frequent narrator of documentaries on The History Chennel. I didn't realize he was an author, so that's another reason why I look forward to reading this book. He has a fantastic speaking voice--I'm almost considering it for Paul's voice model.

Current Mood: geekygeeky

You might want to look at Schama's two powerhouse history books - The Embarrassment of Riches and Citizens (about the French Revolution) which made his name as an academic historian before he became a medi personality :-)

And yes, life was pretty thin for the Tories (as the supporters of the British were called). I believe there were episodes of tarring and feathering and farms being burnt. But many did stay and assimilate.

I was startled to learn of them moving to Nova Scotia. Really, it should have been obvious to me that loyal and active supporters of King George would have felt the desire or need to leave a country that they felt was no longer theirs. I'm glad others did decide to stay, though. I gather, from the lecture, that the ones who went to Nova Scotia lived a pretty hard life, and I do know that many of the men who sat in the Continental Congress suffered great privations during the war, no matter which side they were on.

I will certainly look for Schama's other books. Thanks for letting me know about them!


Some Loyalists went to Novia Scotia; others went to Ontario and to Quebec.

And then some of them returned to the US, and some Us citizens whose loyalty wasn't questioned went to Canada. And after that generation, things get kind of confused. For example, I've read that in some English-speaking parts of Quebec, the Fourth of July was celebrated -- by Canadian citizens.