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The Fathers of the Constitution; a chronicle of the establishment of the Union (English Edition) Formato Kindle
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The story starts with the treaty after the war for independence and ends with the eventual constitution that we know of today.
As fascinating as the story was, I would have liked to have a bit more information, especially on the Bill of Rights, but that's not to say this is a bad read. It isn't.
The book is wonderfully well written, and happily for the modern reader the language, even though over 90 years prior, still works well. There is something of a book review even in the titles of the eight chapters in that they explain an approach to the telling of this history both in the expected chronology as well as critical phases: I "The Treaty of Peace, II "Trade and Industry", III The Confederation", IV "The Northwest Ordinance", V "Darkness Before Dawn", VI "The Federal Convention", VII "Finishing the Work" and VIII " The Union Established".
The book covers a broad swath in only 110 pages, but is in no way "light" or superficial, and remember it is one of 13 volumes in a set. There is a lot to be learned, relearned, or seen from the expert perspective of Farrand about the factors that created the Convention. "One third of the population remained loyal to the Crown." "About twenty percent of the population, or some six-hundred thousand were negro slaves." With the exception of Massachusetts, the new state constitutions were never submitted to the people for approval." [!] "...some of the most important features of the Articles of Confederation are to be found, sometimes word for word, in [Benjamin] Franklin's draft." "...Prince Henry of Prussia was approached by prominent people [including Nathaniel Gorham of MA] in this country to see if he could be induced to accept the headship of the states, that is, to become the king of the United States." All of the above are random examples of my own highlights from the book.
With this short read you will come away with a very insightful understanding of the events and people that created the Constitution. Happily, Farrand has no ax to grind vis-a-vie juxtaposition of modern politics or religion on 18th century motivations, so the book need not be a punching bag for the contemporary political right, or left.
The e-book does not include the Table of Contents feature in the kindle GoTo menu - publication pre dated that capability. The e-book version does not respond to the up or down swipe to move through chapters. The dictionary function does work as expected and the book does have page numbers (essential pointers for all but e-book readers). There is a seemingly out-of-place "Notes on the Portraits of Members of the Federal Convention Who Signed" - yet there are no portraits: removed apparently (?) from the e-book version. The Northwest Ordinance of 1787, The Articles of Confederation, and the Declaration of Independence are included in the back (unexpectedly?) Included last in the Appendix - the Constitution, though without the amendments - even the Bill of Rights (oddly?). There are no notes to citations. The e-book publication quality is minimalist, not unusual for free books, but even so, suffers from lack of any reasonable navigation capability, ★★★☆☆, adequate though spartan.
The book has history in perspective. As America declared their independence and successfully gained it from Great Britain, international respect, trade policies, territory and such did not come automatically after that struggle. The men who were so instrumental at gaining the freedom of the colonies did not rest lightly on their laurels. Their greater job was making sure that the sacrifices made were not squandered.
This book has the backstories of the decisions and policies made by a newborn country. And all the stories are incredibly riveting.
The voices heard in this book are of that time so you 'listen' to the thoughts of these men in that context of time and history. This is not through the prism of modern 21st Century mores and sensibilities. This is not a PC book. This is real history.
Because of that, I find it truer in tone and richer in understanding as to why things and decisions were done and made.
America did not have everything 'fall into its lap' to have what it has today. Even the colonists not continuing the divisions among them ( as loyalists to Great Britain did stay behind and continued with their lives when they opted not to move to Canadian territories) came into question when treaties were worked on and ratified. (It would be wise to keep in mind how this would mirror the divisions Pres. Lincoln had to overcome when the War between the States concluded.)
Each and every gain in prominence and power was worked for by the men who enshrined the beliefs of a nation into a document.
If you want a truer depiction of how the United States of America became the country it is today, this book should be a must read for you.