Friends of Liberty by Gary Nash
A Tale of Three Patriots, Two Revolutions, and the Betrayal that Divided a Nation: Thomas Jefferson, Thaddeus Kosciuszko, and Agrippa Hull

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Synopsis

Friends of Liberty tells the remarkable story of three men whose lives were braided together by issues of liberty and race that fueled revolutions across two continents. Thomas Jefferson wrote the founding documents of the United States. Thaddeus Kosciuszko was a hero of the American Revolution and later led a spectacular but failed uprising in Poland, his homeland. Agrippa Hull, a freeborn black New Englander, volunteered at eighteen to join the Continental Army. During the Revolution, Hull served Kosciuszko as an orderly, and the two became fast friends. Kosciuszko’s abhorrence of bondage shaped histhinking about the oppression in his own land. When Kosciuszko returned to America in the 1790s, bearing the wounds of his own failed revolution, he and Jefferson forged an intense friendship based on their shared dreams for the global expansion of human freedom. They sealed their bond with a blood compact whereby Jefferson would liberate his slaves upon Kosciuszko’s death. But Jefferson died without fulfilling the promise he had made to Kosciuszko-and to a fledgling nation founded on the principle of liberty and justice for all.
 

About Gary Nash

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Gary B. Nash is Professor of History at University of California, Los Angeles, and author of over a dozen books, including The Unknown American Revolution. Graham Russell Gao Hodges is Professor of History at Colgate University and the author of numerous books and articles, including Taxi! A Social History of the New York City Cabdriver.
 
Published March 12, 2009 by Basic Books. 346 pages
Genres: History, Travel, Biographies & Memoirs, Political & Social Sciences, War. Non-fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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How and why the aged Jefferson, author of some of history’s most stirring words about liberty, declined to seize this relatively pain-free chance to free his own slaves—some, we now know, his own children—retreated from the Enlightenment goals of his youth and failed, finally, to honor his friend...

Jan 15 2008 | Read Full Review of Friends of Liberty: A Tale of...

Publishers Weekly

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Thomas Jefferson's betrayal of a loyal friend, the great Polish patriot Tadeusz Kosciuszko, is at the center of this book by Nash (The Unknown American Revolution ) and Hodges (Anna May Wong ).

Jan 14 2008 | Read Full Review of Friends of Liberty: A Tale of...

Entertainment Weekly

With the supply of unbiographied Founding Fathers running thin, Gary Nash and Russell Gao Hodges dig deep for a warm, unexpected survey of three late-18th-century men — the famous (Thomas Jefferson), the forgotten (Revolutionary War hero Tadeusz Ko´ciuszko), and the unknown (Agrippa Hull, Ko´ci...

Mar 21 2008 | Read Full Review of Friends of Liberty: A Tale of...

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