The Patriot Resource - American Revolution

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Reflections of Rebellion
Reflections of Rebellion
Hours with the Living Men and Women of the Revolution

by Benson J. Lossing
Published by The History Press
June 2005

Book Review from PatriotResource.com:
This is a reprint of a book that was published over 115 years ago. Benson Lossing was one of the foremost American historians of the 19th century. He wrote various histories on the American Revolution, War of 1812 and Civil War. The personal recollections were actually recorded by Lossing in 1848-1849 as part of research for his famous Pictorial Field Book of the American Revolution. As the fortieth anniversary of the publication of that work neared, Lossing revisited his notes and materials. The result was the twenty-one recounts found in Reflections of Rebellion.

One wonders about the true accuracy of writings done forty years after the interviews were conducted. These interviews were with men and women who were in their seventies, eighties and nineties and were recalling events from at least sixty-five years prior. That said, this book is highly enjoyable. Lossing's style is much like listening to an experienced storyteller spinning his yarn. The reader gets caught up in the tale and doesn't notice the shortcomings until later when it no longer matters. One thing to look out for is some of the recognizable tales of the war that often turn up in modern histories. Lossing's inclusion of them almost certainly popularized them, making them known to historians who have reused the accounts up to the present.

The book is highly enjoyable and gave this reader a desire to read more of Lossing's works. Lossing's style meanders at a good pace and is full of information from two historical periods (the period of the subject and the period in which the author himself lived). It is easily evident why this book was chosen to be reprinted. What is a mysterry is why it took so long for its reappearance.





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