Eyewitness to America by David Colbert
500 Years of America in the Words of Those Who Saw It Happen

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Thomas Jefferson complains about haggling over the Declaration of Independence ... Jack London guides us through the rubble of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake ... Langston Hughes visits the Scottsboro Boys on death row ... Andy Warhol paints the scene at Studio 54 ... John Seabrook receives e-mail from Bill Gates. Three hundred eyewitnesses -- some famous, some anonymous -- give their personal accounts of the great moments that make up our past, from Columbus to cyberspace, and infuse them with a freshness and urgency no historian can duplicate.

David Colbert has brought together a multitude of voices to create a singularly rich American narrative.  Here are the vivid impressions of men and women who were witnesses to and participants in these and other dramatic moments: the first colony in Virginia, the Salem witch trials, the Boston Tea Party, the Oklahoma land rush, the Scopes Trial, the bombing of Nagasaki, the lunch-counter sit-ins at the outset of the civil rights movement, New York City's Stonewall Riot, the fall of Saigon, and the 1992 Los Angeles riots.

With unparalleled and thrilling immediacy, these excerpts from diaries, private letters, memoirs, and newspapers paint a fascinating picture of the evolving drama of American life.

About David Colbert

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David Colbert is a writer and former Editor at HarperCollins. He lives in San Francisco and New York.From the Hardcover edition.
Published March 18, 1997 by Pantheon. 599 pages
Genres: History, War. Non-fiction

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A wide-ranging account of events in American history, as briefly reported and commented on by a plethora of eyewitnesses—from the Aztec-Spanish confrontation in 1519 to the rise of the aerospace industry and Silicon Valley in the 1990s.

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Publishers Weekly

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Using the same approach as he did in Eyewitness to America, Colbert presents a pastiche of newspaper accounts, book excerpts and other primary source materials that sketch the history of American finance from the founding of New Amsterdam in the 17th century through the bursting of the dot-com bu...

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John Paul Jones, on his intrepid raid on the northwest coast of England, the only military action on the British mainland during the American Revolution;

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This American system of ours .

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