Responding to reports of gold discoveries on the Fraser River, thousands of prospectors from California and other points on the Pacific coast crossed the 49th parallel to British territory in 1858. Most returned to San Francisco and Puget Sound later in the same year, blaming their failure to find wealth in the river canyons on uncooperative Hudson´s Bay Company officials and the English government. Viewing events from the perspective of California, historians have generally considered the gold rush a failure. In reality, the Fraser River experience was a sustained success, continuing beyond 1858 and embracing the vast interior of British Columbia, and becoming one of the major developments in Pacific Northwest history. Although it was an artificial line bisecting forest, mountain, and prairie, the 49th parallel separated distinct regions of law and custom, explaining why many Americans were unable to comprehend the true nature of their adventures in British North America. The book is published by Washington State University Press. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Richard Peterson. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/acx0/089328/bk_acx0_089328_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
Chicago: Metropolis of the Mid-Continent provides a comprehensive portrayal of the growth and development of Chicago from the mudhole of the prairie to today´s world-class city. This completely revised fourth edition skillfully weaves together the geography, history, economy, and culture of the city and its suburbs with a special emphasis on the role of the many ethnic and racial groups that comprise the ´´real Chicago´´ of its neighborhoods. Cutler demonstrates how the geography of ´´Chicagoland´´ and the influx of a diverse population spurred transportation, industrial technology, the economy, and sporadic planning to foster rapid urban growth, which brought both great progress and severe problems. Through insightful analysis, Cutler also traces the demographic and societal changes to Chicago, critically examining such problems as the environment, education, racial tension, crime, welfare, housing, employment, and transportation. Illinois State Historical Society Award for Superior Achievement. The book is published by Southern Illinois University Press. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Steve Ember. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/acx0/082447/bk_acx0_082447_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
Cities rather than individual pioneers have been the driving force in the settlement and economic development of the western half of North America. Throughout the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries, western urban centers served as starting points for conquest and settlement. As these frontier cities matured into metropolitan centers, they grew from imitators of eastern culture and outposts of eastern capital into independent sources of economic, cultural, and intellectual change. From the Gulf of Alaska to the Mississippi River and from the binational metropolis of San Diego-Tijuana to the Prairie Province capitals of Canada, Carl Abbott explores the complex urban history of western Canada and the United States. The evolution of western cities from stations for exploration and military occupation to contemporary entry points for migration and components of a global economy reminds us that it is cities that won the West. And today, as cultural change increasingly moves from west to east, Abbott argues that the urban West represents a new center from which emerging patterns of behavior and changing customs will help to shape North America in the 21st century. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Rhett Samuel Price. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/acx0/077703/bk_acx0_077703_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
James MacGregor Burns’s stunning trilogy of American history, spanning the birth of the Constitution to the final days of the Cold War. In these three volumes, Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award-winner James MacGregor Burns chronicles with depth and narrative panache the most significant cultural, economic, and political events of American history. In The Vineyard of Liberty, he combines the color and texture of early American life with meticulous scholarship. Focusing on the tensions leading up to the Civil War, Burns brilliantly shows how Americans became divided over the meaning of Liberty. In The Workshop of Democracy, Burns explores more than a half-century of dramatic growth and transformation of the American landscape, through the addition of dozens of new states, the shattering tragedy of the First World War, the explosion of industry, and, in the end, the emergence of the United States as a new global power. And in The Crosswinds of Freedom, Burns offers an articulate and incisive examination of the US during its rise to become the world’s sole superpower - through the Great Depression, the Second World War, the Cold War, and the rapid pace of technological change that gave rise to the ´´American Century.” 1. Language: English. Narrator: Mark Ashby. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/adbl/017311/bk_adbl_017311_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
Throughout his long and influential career, Michael Fellman has explored the tragic side of American history. Best known for his path-breaking work on the American Civil War and for an interdisciplinary methodology that utilizes social psychology, cultural anthropology, and comparative history, Fellman has delved into issues of domination, exploitation, political violence, racism, terrorism, and the experiences of war. Incorporating essays written over the past thirty years - two of them previously unpublished, and the others not widely available - Views from the Dark Side of American History reveals some of the major personal and scholarly concerns of his career and illuminates his approach to history, research, applied theory, and analysis. Each essay includes a thought-provoking preface and afterword that situate it in its time and explore its intellectual and political contexts. Fellman also grapples with the personal elements of developing as a historian - the people with whom he argued or agreed with, the settings in which he gave or published the papers, and the subjective as well as historical issues that he addressed. The collection encourages history students, historians, and general readers of history to think through the layers of their historical engagement and to connect their personal experiences and social commitments to their explorations. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Bill Fisher. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/acx0/001685/bk_acx0_001685_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
In 1550-51, Bartolomé de las Casas and Juan Ginés de Sepúlveda, in the Valladolid Debate, attempted to settle the issue of whether or not Native Americans should have been enslaved, given sanction by the Pope. Both carefully argued their sides, las Casas stating emphatically, through his ´´Apología´´, that Native Americans were not all uncivilized and that only Canaanite tribes could be enslaved. What ensued was a heated, good-versus-evil argument that settled nothing and still allowed the Catholic Church and the Spanish government to condone and support the continued enslavement of native peoples. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Dennis Logan. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/acx0/039554/bk_acx0_039554_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
The cowboy, America´s most popular folk hero, appeals to millions of readers of novels, histories, biographies, and folk tales. Cowboys command a vast audience on country radio, television, and at the movies, but what exactly is a cowboy? Authors Joe B. Frantz and Julian Ernest Choate, Jr., reveal the real, dyed-in-the-wool cowboy as a heroic being from the American past, who richly deserves to be understood in terms of reality, instead of myth. Here, then, is the definitive portrait of the American cowboy - in frontier history and in literature - reexamined, revitalized, and set in the proper perspective. Many exciting accounts of cowboy life have been presented by such talented writers as J. Evetts Haley, J. Frank Dobie, Wayne Gard, Walter Prescott Webb, Edward Everett Dale, Helena Huntington Smith, Ramon F. Adams, and C. L. Sonnichsen. But Frantz and Choate see the cowboy in relation to the entire panorama of western history and as part of a continuing tradition: ´´The American cowboy has carved a niche - niche nothing, it´s a gorge - in American affection as a folk hero, and in this role we have surveyed him.´´ 1. Language: English. Narrator: Steve Toner. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/acx0/060300/bk_acx0_060300_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
A social history of alcoholism in the United States, from the 17th century to the present day. Today, millions of Americans are struggling with alcoholism, but millions are also in long-term recovery. Alcoholics Anonymous and a growing number of recovery organizations are providing support for alcoholics who will face the danger of relapse for the rest of their lives. We have finally come to understand alcoholism as a treatable illness rather than a moral failure. Today´s advocates can draw inspiration from the victories of sober drunks throughout American history. Christopher Finan recounts the nation´s history with alcohol and its search for sobriety, which began among Native Americans in the colonial period, when liquor was used to cheat them of their property. He introduces us to the first of a colorful cast of characters, a remarkable Iroquois leader named Handsome Lake, who dedicated his life to helping his people renounce hard liquor. And we meet Carrie Nation, the wife of an alcoholic who destroyed bars with an ax in her anger over what alcohol had done to her family, as well as the idealistic and energetic Washingtonians, reformed drunks who led the first national movement to save men like themselves. Finan also tells the dramatic story of Bill Wilson and Dr. Bob Smith, the two drunks who helped each other stay sober and then created AA, which survived its tumultuous early years and has made it possible for millions of men and women to quit drinking. This is narrative history at its best: entertaining and authoritative, an important portrait of one of America´s great liberation movements. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Malcolm Hillgartner. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/blak/010049/bk_blak_010049_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
´´I´ll wage they found no bullets in his back.´´ - Jim Bowie´s mother, after hearing of his death at the Alamo. A lot of ink has been spilled covering the lives of history´s most influential figures, but how much of the forest is lost for the trees? In Charles River Editors´ American Legends series, listeners can get caught up to speed on the lives of America´s most important men and women, in the time it takes to finish a commute, while learning interesting facts long forgotten, or never known. Jim Bowie is one of 19th century America´s most famous names, even if what´s known about the man is more legend than fact. Like Daniel Boone and Davy Crockett, Bowie has come to represent the pioneering spirit of the frontier, along with the masculinity, machismo, and swagger that earned him a reputation for fighting. And like any good legend, he is perhaps best remembered for his death at the Alamo than for any aspect of his life. Bowie´s death and the defenders´ defeat at the Alamo, did not have a decisive impact on Texas´ War for Independence, but it became a poignant rallying cry in the immediate aftermath of the battle, and to this day, Americans associate it with patriotism, bravery, and determination. ´´Remember the Alamo´´ is still a widely used part of the English lexicon today, and the Alamo is a cherished piece of Americana. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Bill Hare. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/acx0/092910/bk_acx0_092910_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.