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Through the perilous fight: six weeks that saved the nation

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In a thrilling and superbly researched narrative, Vogel tells the little-known story behind a crucial moment in America's history-one that culminates in the creation of one of the United States' most enduring and emblematic creations: the National Anthem.
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Grouped Work ID b4032994-294a-1dc5-414b-49352b27bc7e
Grouping Title through the perilous fight six weeks that saved the nation
Grouping Author vogel steve
Grouping Category book
Last Grouping Update 2020-05-31 22:53:41PM
Last Indexed 2020-05-31 00:04:19AM

Solr Details

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author Vogel, Steve.
author_display Vogel, Steve
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collection_catalog Non-Fiction
detailed_location_catalog Main Library - Adult Non-Fiction
Southeast - Adult Non-Fiction
display_description In a rousing account of one of the critical turning points in American history, Through the Perilous Fight tells the gripping story of the burning of Washington and the improbable last stand at Baltimore that helped save the nation and inspired its National Anthem.

In the summer of 1814, the United States of America teetered on the brink of disaster. The war it had declared against Great Britain two years earlier appeared headed toward inglorious American defeat. The young nation's most implacable nemesis, the ruthless British Admiral George Cockburn, launched an invasion of Washington in a daring attempt to decapitate the government and crush the American spirit. The British succeeded spectacularly, burning down most of the city's landmarks—including the White House and the Capitol—and driving President James Madison from the area. As looters ransacked federal buildings and panic gripped the citizens of Washington, beleaguered American forces were forced to regroup for a last-ditch defense of Baltimore. The outcome of that "perilous fight" would help change the outcome of the war—and with it, the fate of the fledgling American republic.

In a fast-paced, character-driven narrative, Steve Vogel tells the story of this titanic struggle from the perspective of both sides. Like an epic novel, Through the Perilous Fight abounds with heroes, villains, and astounding feats of derring-do. The vindictive Cockburn emerges from these pages as a pioneer in the art of total warfare, ordering his men to "knock down, burn, and destroy" everything in their path. While President Madison dithers on how to protect the capital, Secretary of State James Monroe personally organizes the American defenses, with disastrous results. Meanwhile, a prominent Washington lawyer named Francis Scott Key embarks on a mission of mercy to negotiate the release of an American prisoner. His journey will place him with the British fleet during the climactic Battle for Baltimore, and culminate in the creation of one of the most enduring compositions in the annals of patriotic song: "The Star-Spangled Banner."

Like Pearl Harbor or 9/11, the burning of Washington was a devastating national tragedy that ultimately united America and renewed its sense of purpose. Through the Perilous Fight combines bravura storytelling with brilliantly rendered character sketches to recreate the thrilling six-week period when Americans rallied from the ashes to overcome their oldest adversary—and win themselves a new birth of freedom.
Praise for Through the Perilous Fight

"Very fine storytelling, impeccably researched . . . brings to life the fraught events of 1814 with compelling and convincing vigor."—Rick Atkinson, Pulitzer Prize–winning author of An Army at Dawn

"Probably the best piece of military history that I have read or reviewed in the past five years. . . . This well-researched and superbly written history has all the trappings of a good novel. . . . No one who hears the national anthem at a ballgame will ever think of it the same way after reading this book."—Gary Anderson, The Washington Times

"[Steve] Vogel does a superb job. . . . [A] fast-paced narrative with lively vignettes."—Joyce Appleby, The Washington Post

"Before 9/11 was 1814, the year the enemy burned the nation's capital. . . . A splendid account of the uncertainty, the peril, and the valor of those days."—Richard Brookhiser, author of James Madison

"A swift, vibrant account of the accidents, intricacies and insanities of...
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publishDate 2013
Bib IdFormatFormat CategoryEditionLanguagePublisherPublication DatePhysical Description
overdrive:470e4cd2-0c69-4ee8-8cff-5954ea2c7d85 eBook eBook English Random House Publishing Group 2013
ils:CARL0000410764 Book Books 1st ed. English Random House, c2013. xviii, 534 p. : ill. ; 25 cm.
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subject_facet Baltimore, Battle of, Baltimore, Md., 1814
Cockburn, George, -- Sir, -- 1772-1853
Key, Francis Scott, -- 1779-1843
Maryland -- History -- War of 1812 -- Campaigns
United States -- History -- War of 1812 -- Campaigns
Washington (D.C.) -- History -- Capture by the British, 1814
title_display Through the perilous fight : six weeks that saved the nation
title_full Through the Perilous Fight Six Weeks That Saved the Nation
Through the perilous fight : six weeks that saved the nation / Steve Vogel
title_short Through the perilous fight :
title_sub six weeks that saved the nation
topic_facet Baltimore, Battle of, Baltimore, Md., 1814
Cockburn, George
Key, Francis Scott