"In the most original popular history of North Carolina in decades, Milton Ready draws upon diverse perspectives to offer fresh insights on the major social, political, and cultural themes that have governed the development, over time and in recent years, of the Tar Heel State."
From the Inside Flap
"In the first interpretive history of North Carolina in a generation, Milton Ready provides a skillful and well-written addition to the states historical literature. Drawing upon recent scholarship, Ready widens the scope of North Carolinas past, and his chapters on the states changing social and economic landscape since the 1970s chart the profound transformation of North Carolina in the twenty-first century."Jeffrey Crow, deputy secretary, North Carolina State Office of Archives and History, and coeditor of Writing North Carolina History
"The Tar Heel State constitutes an eminently readable, fast-paced, and thorough survey of North Carolinas past. The volume not only pays due attention to the enormous impact of geology and geography on the development of the colony and state but it also proves stunningly inclusive. The roles and contributions of women, African Americans (bonded and free), and Native Americans are discussed at length. Ready also appreciates and incorporates the tribulations and advances of the twentieth centurywars, depression, civil rights, demographic diversity, and economic improvementsas he brings North Carolina into the current era."Alan D. Watson, professor of history, University of North Carolina at Wilmington, and author of Society in Colonial North Carolina
"In this engaging and provocative original history of North Carolina, Ready illuminates the experience of an unpretentious people shaped by a diverse and not altogether welcoming land and seascape. From the outset, individualistic men and women coped with internal conflict as they settled diffusely in farmsteads and small villages, establishing patterns that continue to prevail on the land, even as Tar Heels embrace urbanization and greater diversity today."Lindley S. Butler, coeditor of The North Carolina Experience: An Interpretive and Documentary History
"Ready has written one of the most inclusive histories of North Carolina to date. He grasps the phenomenon of the North Carolina experience and brings the life of marginalized groups out of the archives and into the public consciousness. The Tar Heel State is a scholarly and compelling story of the divergent experiences of the states massesfull of interesting facts and details that are often absent in other studies on the same subject." Joyce Blackwell, chair of the Department of History and Political Science, St. Augustines College, and author of No Peace without Freedom: Race and the Womens International League for Peace and Freedom, 1915-1975
"Informative and well-crafted, Readys comprehensive one-volume history of North Carolina deserves a place on the shelf of every North Carolina library and home. It is essential reading for anyone who seeks to understand the history of North Carolina and will be of immense benefit to those interested in the roles African Americans have played throughout the history of the state." Olen Cole Jr., chair of the Department of History, North Carolina A&T State University