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The Americans, Vol. 2: The National Experience (The Americans #2)

4.23  ·  Rating details ·  309 Ratings  ·  10 Reviews
Explores problems of community and the search for a national identity. Winner of the Francis Parkman Prize.
Paperback, 517 pages
Published February 12th 1967 by Vintage (first published February 1st 1967)
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Oct 05, 2012 rated it really liked it
A worthy follow-up to volume one of this three volume series on American History, where Boorstin takes us behind the scenes of the typical textbook names and dates during the time from the American Revolution to the Civil War. Organized by topic rather than chronologically, and through the telling of anecdotes, we learn, among many other facts, that George Washington wasn't always the hallowed legendary figure he is today, that New Englanders had a flourishing business selling ice to nations in ...more
Jun 10, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: theories, history
This unusual book is of something between history and philosophy of history. The author does more analysis and theorization than laying out out events or facts. There is no chronological order of events; also very atypically, war and major political events only occupy less than 1/10 of the book, as the humblest last part.

The author is completely free of the shackle of "political correctness". Under his pen, anyone or anything, even including those deemed as demigods, heroes, idols, sacred doctri
Mark Bowles
Aug 30, 2014 rated it really liked it
A. The Versatiles (New England)
1. The sea was very important. It was the first place where community began to form (on the ships coming over). Fishing became the main industry of Massachusetts Bay (like tobacco in Virginia and cotton in the South). After the Revolution the sea allowed an endless search for new markets for old commodities and vice versa. (Ex. Samuel Shaw the first American ship to China--ginsing exports began).
2. Resourcefulness: The great resource in NE was the resourcefulness
Jan 10, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: history, non-fiction
Since it was well known "New England produces nothing but granite and ice" then that is what they had to export. Ice to the Major cities of America and even the Caribbean to keep food from spoiling in an Ice Box.
They sold ice by marketing sanitation, nutrition & refreshment of the body with cooling drinks. Frederic Tudor of Boston, who came to be known as the "Ice King".

Granite was exported for the American architecture

Then came the "American System of Manufacturing", notably producing gun
Aug 28, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: owned
Another great book in Daniel J. Boorstin's "The Americans" series. Theme of book is following American's wanderlust which brought our forebearers here, and once here, drove them from sea to shining sea.
Apr 14, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
The chapter on interchangeable parts is great!
Thom Dunn
Mar 13, 2011 rated it it was amazing
{Francis Parkman Prize Edition (prize awarded 1966)--Foreword by Sean Wilentz, February 2002}
Feb 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
So many little bits on info came together in a really readable way.
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Daniel Joseph Boorstin was a historian, professor, attorney, and writer. He was appointed twelfth Librarian of the United States Congress from 1975 until 1987.

He graduated from Tulsa's Central High School in Tulsa, Oklahoma, at the age of 15. He graduated with highest honors from Harvard, studied at Balliol College, Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar and earned his PhD at Yale University. He was a lawyer
More about Daniel J. Boorstin...

Other Books in the Series

The Americans (3 books)
  • The Americans, Vol. 1: The Colonial Experience
  • The Americans, Vol. 3: The Democratic Experience
“Yet, while tobacco and the newly dominant Southern crop, cotton, put Southern roots ever deeper into the soil, the fisheries drew New England out toward the world.” 1 likes
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