By May 1776, the skirmishes at Lexington and Concord had already occurred, but the American colonies had not yet declared independence. An increasingly sceptical George III thought that a prolonged conflict in North America might be avoided and appointed Admiral Lord Richard Howe and his brother General William Howe to be peace negotiators. Their instructions limited their authority to granting pardons to rebellious Americans who would pledge their loyalties to the king, but stopped short of allowing them to deal with the illegal colonial governments, provincial congresses that had replaced legitimate royal officials. Because of the slowness of transportation and communication in that era, an effort to arrange a peace conference was not made until late summer. General John Sullivan was released by the British and sent to the Continental Congress to convey a proposal for a conference. Congress responded affirmatively by sending Benjamin Franklin, John Adams and Edmund Rutledge to the British headquarters at Staten Island.A chronicle of the fateful meeting on September 11, 1776, this book provides a compelling glimpse into politics, military diplomacy and American character at the dawn of independence from the eyewitness viewpoints of a feisty English traveller, a distressed Lutheran pastor, a precocious young lady, two sympathetic British officers, and an assortment of eccentric Founding Fathers. About the Author Thomas J. McGuire is the author of Battle of Paoli and the two-volume set The Philadelphia Campaign.
Stop the Revolution
America in the Summer of Independence and the Staten Island Conference
Mind, Body & Spirit /