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The Penobscot Expedition : Commodore Saltonstall And The Massachusetts Conspiracy Of 1779

Buker , George E.

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ISBN 10: 1557502129 / ISBN 13: 9781557502124
Published by Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, 2002
Condition: Fine Hardcover
From The History Place (Farmington, AR, U.S.A.)

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Bibliographic Details

Title: The Penobscot Expedition : Commodore ...

Publisher: Naval Institute Press, Annapolis

Publication Date: 2002

Binding: Cloth

Book Condition:Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Fine

Edition: First Edition

About this title

Synopsis:

Although a seminal event in early U.S. naval history, the ill-fated Penobscot Expedition of 1779 remains one of the least studied aspects of the American Revolution - and one of the most controversial. As part of the largest fleet ever assembled by the fledgling American navy, the vessels comprising the expedition were expected to swiftly defeat the British at Fort George on Maine's Penobscot Bay. But the armada lost some forty ships during the battle, suffering a defeat the magnitude of which would not be seen again until Pearl Harbor. Blame for the debacle was placed on Commo. Dudley Saltonstall, who was accused of cowardice and court-martialed.
In this book George E. Buker provides a compelling defense of Saltonstall. Bypassing historical speculation, he analyzes concrete factors that might well have caused the American defeat, namely the limitations of square-rigged ships in restricted waters, the geographic setting, and the British defensive alignment.
Thorough in his research and his arguments, Buker presents evidence that the Massachusetts Committee of Inquiry and the General Court conspired against Saltonstall and interfered with the commodore's court-martial proceedings to ensure a finding that would allow the state to assess Congress for part of the expenses. In 1793 Massachusetts did, in fact, receive $1.2 million from the federal government. Buker's conclusions, which solve a mystery that has puzzled generations of historians, are certain to foster a reassessment of Saltonstall and his actions.

From the Back Cover:

The ill-fated Penobscot expedition of 1779 remains one of the least studied and most controversial aspects of the American Revolution, despite being a seminal event in U.S. naval history. As part of the largest fleet ever assembled by the fledgling American navy, the vessels comprising the expedition were expected to swiftly defeat the British in the Penobscot Bay. Instead, the armada lost some forty ships during the battle, suffering a catastrophic defeat that would not be matched until Pearl Harbor. Commo. Dudley Saltonstall was blamed for the debacle, accused of cowardice and court-martialed.

In this groundbreaking book—the most detailed chronicle to date of the expedition—George E. Buker provides a compelling defense of Saltonstall. Bypassing historical speculation, he analyzes concrete factors that might well have caused the American defeat, namely the limitations of square-rigged ships in restricted waters, the geographic setting, and the British defensive alignment.

Buker presents stunning evidence that the Massachusetts Committee of Inquiry and the General Court conspired against Saltonstall and interfered with the commodore's court-martial proceedings to ensure a result that would allow the state to assess Congress for part of the expenses. Buker's conclusions, which solve a mystery that has puzzled generations of historians, are certain to foster a reassessment of Saltonstall and his actions.

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