Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.
A Narrative of a Revolutionary Soldier Mass Market Paperback – September 1, 2001
|New from||Used from|
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
If you’re the author, publisher, or rights holder of this book, let ACX help you produce the audiobook.Learn more.
Top Customer Reviews
Martin recalls his experiences in military campaigns from 1776 to 1783. He was an enlisted man who rose to the rank of sergeant, and his memoirs present the war from that perspective, rather than from the viewpoint of generals or political leaders. The suffering of the common troops is vividly detailed. Martin tells of the sleep deprivation, hostile weather conditions, combat death and injury, and lack of clothes. The men suffered from many diseases. But their most constant enemy was probably "the monster Hunger." Martin describes at length the horrible foods the men had to eat: bread "hard enough to break the teeth of a rat," carrion beef, and even tree bark.
From a tactical standpoint, Martin's descriptions of 18th century trench warfare are fascinating. Martin is eventually transferred to the Corps of Miners, and I was especially interested by the descriptions of his corps' duties: blasting rocks, dismantling enemy fortifications with axes, etc. He gives insights into how the miners' corps worked together with the infantry.
Martin's narrative is enlivened by his wit and humor. One of my favorite lines comes after he mentions the village of Maidenhead: "don't stare, dear reader, I did not name it."
Martin ends his narrative with a passionate defense of the rights and dignity of veterans. He notes with anger that Revolutionary soldiers were "turned adrift like old worn out horses" after the war.Read more ›
He enlisted a second time during the spring of 1777 for three years and reenlisted until 1783. He served in a Connecticut Infantry regiment, in the Light Infantry, and then for most of the war as a sergeant in a company of Sappers and Miners (Combat Engineers.) His service took to the defense of Red Bank in the fall of 1777, Valley Forge, Monmouth, and back to the Hudson Highlands (where in 1780 he says he could have easily killed Benedict Arnold, an officer he hated, had he the benefit of hindsight.)
Martin marched to Yorktown, Virginia in 1781 and was one of Alexander Hamilton's storming party that captured a key redoubt.
After leaving the army he made his way up to Maine and wrote this book from memory early in the 19th century. Lucky we are that when it was first published no editor had tried to improve Martin's text. Reading Martin is like listening to an 18th century man speak. He leaves in sex and violence. He is not ashamed. And he tells the truth, which is something hard to do when recording something that happened forty years since.
This book will tell a reader more about the Revolutionary War and the 18th century American world than any other book ever published. I got my first copy of Martin forty years ago and I still read and reread him regularly.
High School and College level history teachers should place this on their recommended reading lists.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Martin was a very thoughtful person. He would not suffer an injustice to man or beast. Though starved, sick and driven to exhaustion he would not turn against his country.Published 1 day ago by Russ E.
I found the story interesting although slow.I had trouble following his travels but felt for his suffering and continuous misery, especially his hunger. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Harold A. Corzine
A very rare glimpse into a day to day of a Revolutionary War soldier.Published 2 months ago by Joe Vega NYC
Awesome memoir of the Revolutionary War, a very enjoyable and educational read!Published 2 months ago by Big Red Viking
We don't often get the views of the common soldier, and here, in the Revolutionary War we have a common soldier--a young man with a patriotic heart for his country who suffers... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Wendy D.
The classic first-person narrative of a common American soldier in the Continental Army. He describes in detail the vicissitudes and travails of what it was to be in an underfunded... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Vieux