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Foley "has written a readable, accurate synthesis of the events in Missouri's history up to 1820 and thereby provides layman and professional alike with an excellent volume for both reading and reference. Foley knows his history well. . . . One of the best parts of the book is the excellent description of the transfer of power from France to the United States and of the early problems in the territory as the Americans established territorial government. . . . The discussion of the War of 1812 in Missouri is also excellent and demonstrates many problems on the northwestern frontier during the crisis. . . . The book is outstanding."—Western Historical Quarterly
"Foley has really performed a service to his profession, to the people of his state, and to the reader in general. He has, for the present generation, supplied a readable, interpretative, and well-organized history of the early period in his state's history. Indeed, he has given a lucid portrayal of the life and times of the people."
—William & Mary Quarterly
William E. Foley is Professor of History at Central Missouri State University in Warrensburg. General Editor of the Missouri Biography Series, he is the author or editor of numerous books, including The Genesis of Missouri: From Wilderness Outpost to Statehood, Dictionary of Missouri Biography, Missouri Then and Now, New and Enlarged Edition, and Wilderness Journey: The Life of William Clark.