The First Way of War: American War Making on the Frontier, by John Grenier

By John Grenier

Well-written, completely researched, and persuasively argued, this paintings isn't approximately who all started what first--leave that to childrens within the sandbox--, fairly it addresses the roots of the yank form of battle. no matter what practices a few of the Indian international locations had in waging warfare weren't as vital because the cultural and old luggage carried by means of Europeans to the recent international and their hotel to these practices out of frustration at their lack of ability to compare Indian agility or ability within the wilds of North the USA.

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For example, in 1655, 700 Richahecrian Indians established a community near present-day Richmond. In response, the House of Burgesses authorized Colonel Edward Hill to lead 100 militia and friendly “neighboring Indians” to “remove” the Richahecrians. Hill’s party murdered five chiefs who had come to parley under a flag of truce. In the action’s one large skirmish, the Richahecrians routed the poorly trained Virginia militia and killed most of its Indian auxiliaries. Yet the Richahecrians then unexpectedly abandoned their settlement and ended the war.

13 He abandoned that course, however, when he realized it had done little to turn Englishmen into effective woodland warriors. Smith then turned to what he and his men knew best. Noting that “if they assaulted us, their Towns they cannot defend,” Smith engaged the Powhatans in a “feedfight,” or the destruction of Powhatan fields and villages. 14 The English were dependent on the Indians for food, and if any group were to starve in Virginia because soldiers had destroyed crops and fields, it would be the settlers.

In fact, colonial era Americans, in response to the varied ways that Indians waged war, created a military tradition that resembled in detail the “savage” campaigns that Jefferson decried. ” She writes that between the narrow path of virtue, piety, and mercy that Americans traveled were the ways of war of the “cruel” Spaniards and the “savage” Indians. See Lepore, The Name of War: King Philip’s War and the Origins of American Identity (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1998), xiv. 10 Rather than narrate the course of the colonial wars so well described by historians, this chapter addresses how the first way of war shaped the early American culture of war making.

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