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John Barry: An American Hero in the Age of Sail
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John Barry: An American Hero in the Age of Sail

really liked it 4.0  ·  Rating Details ·  26 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
Finalist for the Rear Admiral Samuel Eliot Morison Award for Excellence in Naval Literature

“Ashore as well as at sea, Tim McGrath paints an informative, engaging and highly entertaining portrait of this worthy but neglected hero of American independence. The author shows us a man who was a magnificent embodiment of common sense—and uncommon courage and dedication. That suc
Hardcover, 704 pages
Published May 18th 2010 by Westholme Publishing
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Mike Prochot
Oct 28, 2012 Mike Prochot rated it really liked it
Back in 2007, visiting Independence Hall in Philadelphia, we came across a statue in the park behind the hall. At first glance, we all thought it was Washington. On the front of the statue there was a weathered bronze plaque which simply said "Barry". None of us knew who he was or why he was so important to have a statue placed in such a highly visible spot. We had to wait until 2010 and this book to really find out.

Hum drum history books in my day simply painted John Paul Jones as the lone nav
John Barry is often overlooked in the early American naval history. McGrath set out to rehabilitate Barry's image in history. He succeeds in support the argument for Barry to be better remembered. The issues in his book isn't the length of the book or his research but for me McGrath became a distraction in his writing from Barry. To often McGrath would personalize or interject his feelings into the text such as "Barry must have rolled his eyes". This became a distraction to the reading because ...more
Bob Bauer
Apr 15, 2011 Bob Bauer rated it liked it
Shelves: history, biography
Interesting to see that politics and petty rivalries existed as much in colonial times as the modern era. I have seen this in other historical books about Washington, Franklin and others. It is amazing we won our independence.
Barry was above playing the political game which undoubtedly hurt his career. He tried to let his actions speak for him. Came away appreciating his integrity and dedication to country.
Interesting to learn more about the use of Privateers (sanctioned pirates) and the incredi
Jan 07, 2014 Edward rated it really liked it
A thorough and insightful biography of a less than well known patriot and hero of the fledgling United States Navy. Always true to his country, his family, and most of all, his personal values of honesty and loyalty, Barry shines as an example of a man of duty, honor,and country as guiding principles. The book is an insightful look at facets of the history of the American revolution often overlooked, including personal pettiness in position, jealousy of office, and unbridled ambition. All in ...more
Mar 02, 2016 Jon rated it really liked it
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Jun 11, 2016 Joshua rated it really liked it
Apparently 500 pages instead of 700. The last 200 are notes and sources. Anyway, detailed account as best historians can determine, of the life of the father of the United States Navy. Details get a bit pedantic at times but it's a history book, it happens. Otherwise an easy read filled with details not just of Barry but of what was happening in America and other parts of the world around the Revolutionary War, and includes a brief look at trade with China in the late 18th/early 19th Century.
Paul Varner
Jun 15, 2012 Paul Varner rated it liked it
New insight into America's Revolutionary war. John Barry was Irish and his family had been opressed by the British in Europe for decades. He became an accomplished merchant marine captain and when we declared our independence, there was no doubt that he was ready to fight the British in any way he could. Book gave very detailed accounts of naval engagements.
Norm Lampton
Jul 20, 2013 Norm Lampton rated it it was amazing
A look at the Father of the US Navy. He is a forgotten figure in the American Revolution this is an excellent and remarkable book. It should be required reading of every Navy officer. .
May 28, 2012 David rated it really liked it
I am reading this book right now and it is amazing to think of the skill and the adventure of John Barry against the largest Navy at the time with his handful of ships.
Chris Kostenko
May 16, 2015 Chris Kostenko rated it really liked it
John Barry, one of the early captains in a navy that was born in his time. I knew very little about the battles fought at sea during the revolution. Enlightening.
Zach Marks
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Michael Barker
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Harry Miktarian
Sep 21, 2011 Harry Miktarian rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, history
A very good book about a neglected founder of the American navy.
Eric rated it really liked it
Mar 11, 2015
John Nail
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