- 6,49 €
“Davis’s accounts of small fights won by hot blood and cold steel are thrilling.”—The Wall Street Journal
From master historian William C. Davis, the definitive story of the Battle of New Orleans, the fight that decided the ultimate fate not only of the War of 1812 but the future course of the fledgling American republic.
It was a battle that could not be won. Outnumbered farmers, merchants, backwoodsmen, smugglers, slaves, and Choctaw Indians, many of them unarmed, were up against the cream of the British army, professional soldiers who had defeated the great Napoleon and set Washington, D.C., ablaze. At stake was nothing less than the future of the vast American heartland, from the Gulf Coast to the Great Lakes, as the ragtag American forces fought to hold New Orleans, the gateway of the Mississippi River and an inland empire.
Tipping the balance of power in the New World, this single battle irrevocably shifted the young republic's political and cultural center of gravity and kept the British from ever regaining dominance in North America. In this gripping, comprehensive study of the Battle of New Orleans, William C. Davis examines the key players and strategy of King George's Red Coats and Andrew Jackson's makeshift "army." A master historian, he expertly weaves together narratives of personal motivation and geopolitical implications that make this battle one of the most impactful ever fought on American soil.
Davis, a retired Virginia Tech history professor, delivers a prodigious deep dive into Andrew Jackson's strategy and tactics of the final battle of the War of 1812. In Davis's telling, this fight for a major American city catapulted Jackson, a "bully" and war hero "who preached democracy but showed the instincts of a dictator," into the White House. The slowness of early-19th-century communications meant that when Jackson planned his assault on British forces creeping toward New Orleans, a gateway for exploration and commerce in the West that several nations coveted, the U.S. and Great Britain had already negotiated an end to the War of 1812. Though not a professional soldier, Jackson displayed military skills when it counted: in one pivotal confrontation with the British, he ably split his forces to attack the redcoats from the rear at night. The most riveting scenes Davis describes focus on the aspects of warfare that have changed little over the centuries: the degradations of bivouacking and dying. There's a wealth of detail here, but not much context about the larger geopolitical situation; readers will need knowledge of the period to keep up. Early American history enthusiasts, though, will want to take a look.