A People Numerous and Armed
by John Shy

A disappointing collection of essays about the American Revolution. I had expected data on the widespread support for the Revolution. Instead, he uncritically accepts John Adams' 1/3, 1/3. 1/3 estimate and alleges that compulsory militia service made the war possible in spite of the lack of popular support. He gives little attention to the ideological origins of the Revolution, although he mentions Bailyn's book in a footnote. He never explains why the compulsory militia service could help the cause of the Revolution more than the cause of the king. He simply assumes it without stating the implicit premise that most of the men in the militia favored the Revolution.

Year Read: 1978

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