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George Washington's Westchester Gamble:: The Encampment on the Hudson and the Trapping of Cornwallis Paperback – May 31, 2011
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"Richard Borkow has done a first-rate job of telling the story of the American Revolution in Westchester County and putting dramatic events there in the context of the larger war--especially the decision to march to Yorktown." --Thomas Fleming, author of The Perils of Peace, America's Struggle for Survival after Yorktown
"Just when it seemed that the subject of the American Revolution had been thoroughly explored, Richard Borkow has given us a fresh look at the war's culminating event--the 1781 march of French and American troops to Virginia." --Joseph Wheelan, author of Jefferson's War: America's First War on Terror, 1801-1805, and Mr. Adams's Last Crusade: John Quincy Adams's Extraordinary Post-Presidential Life in Congress
About the Author
That same "moment of choice," and the great risks that were associated with it, are explored in detail in George Washington's Westchester Gamble.
More About the Author
Westchester County's Role in the Revolutionary War:
Top Customer Reviews
Dr. Borkow's descriptions allow the reader to truly feel as if he or she is actually witnessing the events as they unfold. Also of great interest to history buffs is the translating of the battle sites into their modern-day locations and Dr. Borkow's ability to explain the social climate of the day and how it affected the decisions our forefathers had to make during this crucial period in our Country's formation.
I would highly recommend this book to anyone interested in United States History.
But, how did General Washington get to Yorktown? Dr. Richard Borkow takes us on a, heretofore, little known, but fascinating tale of the calculated risks that Washington and his army took. In the Summer of 1781, the Continental Army, led by Washington, had been encamped in and around Dobbs Ferry, in Westchester County, New York. New York City, some 20-odd miles south, was occupied by British forces.
From a military standpoint, the very idea of an untrained army of men, from all walks of life, could outlast one of the finest and well-trained military forces of the Western hemisphere was preposterous. Their financial resources were limited, at best, and delegations were sent to France and elsewhere, in an effort to bankroll the patriots' cause. Over the course of the war, the American patriots had tasted the bitter pill of defeat, time and time again.
But, fate has an interesting way of turning things around. Just a few miles north of Dobbs Ferry, British Major John Andre, had been captured, along with his concealed plans to capture West Point with the assistance of American General
General Washington and his army made the arduous and dangerous journey to Virginia, knowing full well that defeat by the British forces could spell the end of the Americans' dream of independence.
Dr. Borkow ably relates the journey that General Washington and his men took during those months of August through October of 1781.Read more ›
"George Washington's Westchester Gamble" is carefully foot-noted, contains some nice black and white photographs, and has an excellent bibliography.
Dr. Richard Borkow, village historian of Dobbs Ferry, New York and a trustee of the Dobbs Ferry Historical Society, does a good job using both primary and secondary sources to back up his points.
If I were to change the book at all, it would be to focus less on the overall context of the war and even more closely on the specifics of what happened in the greater Dobbs Ferry area.
Borkow's vignettes of political infighting and daily life in and around 18th century Dobbs Ferry are excellent. The book will be particularly valuable to Westchester area residents as Dr. Borkow carefully notes where the action takes place in regards to local streets and roads.
Dr. Borkow articulates clearly that Westchester was a "crossroads" and that most of the major and minor campaigns had a link to Westchester. He also did a fantastic job explaining how Washington was a pragmatic, logical, and politically savy tactician; I say this regards to the ongoing debate about the NYC vs. Virginia plan and how it is explained here in a very logical and chronolgical military steps; I am referring to the ultimate decision that led to the victory at Yorktown, Virginia.
This book demonstrates how any why Washington should get more credit as a strategist/tactician than he is conventionally given. I recommend this book to first time readers on the Revolution and those who think they've read everything on the Revolution.
I look forward to the author's next work!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Not only does this book describe the events leading up to the Battle of Yorktown, but it gives a good overview of both side's strategies during the entire Revolutionary War. Read morePublished on April 27, 2013 by Charles Walbridge
Wonderfully well researched and written, this book describes historical events, the context of the decisions, and the locations where it all happened. Read morePublished on March 26, 2013 by Amie Ziner
Dr. Borkow should be highly praised for putting into words this excellent account of General Washington's triumphant march to Yorktown. Read morePublished on February 12, 2013 by pam murrow
As Revolutionary War history buffs know, Washington's calculated, brilliant military strategy to march to Yorktown, Virginia, proved to be the defining moment in the long War. Read morePublished on February 8, 2013 by Manya
Unfort., this book could have used some major professional editorial oversight--it is all over the board as far as topic, geography, and time. Read morePublished on January 29, 2013 by Historian