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Abandoning America: Life-stories from early New England

Abandoning America: Life-stories from early New England

Susan Hardman Moore
Copyright Date: 2013
Published by: Boydell and Brewer,
Pages: 400
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  • Book Info
    Abandoning America: Life-stories from early New England
    Book Description:

    Abandoning America brings together the biographies of hundreds of people who crossed over to New England in the 1630s but braved the Atlantic again to return home. Some went back quickly, disenchanted or discouraged. Many invested everything to make New England a success, yet after ten or twenty years resolved to leave America behind. They reached their decisions in the context of dramatic events in England - civil war, fresh opportunities in Cromwell's commonwealth - and against a backdrop of personal dilemmas about family ties, health, prospects and profit. The stories of these people are usually overlooked because they are at odds with the onward march of American history. Abandoning America reconstructs, from thousands of fragments of evidence, the story of individual lives: not only magistrates and ministers, merchants and dissidents, but also wives and widows, servants, apprentices, military men, surgeons, shoemakers and shopkeepers. The book traces settlers' lives with an eye to the information historians look for. In a field where primary sources are thin and difficult, Abandoning America is an excellent tool for reference and research. The book is fully annotated and offers a substantial introduction providing for further historical context. SUSAN HARDMAN MOORE is Senior Lecturer, School of Divinity at the University of Edinburgh.

    eISBN: 978-1-78204-124-5
    Subjects: History

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-vii)
  3. List of illustrations
    (pp. viii-viii)
  4. Acknowledgements
    (pp. ix-ix)
    Susan Hardman Moore
  5. Abbreviations
    (pp. x-xvi)
  6. Map: ‘The South part of New-England, as it is Planted this yeare, 1634’
    (pp. xvii-xvii)
  7. Map: New England, c. 1660
    (pp. xviii-xx)
  8. Timeline
    (pp. xxi-xxviii)
  9. Introduction
    (pp. 1-28)

    The stories of those who went over to New England but did not stay are at odds with the onward march of American history. They have largely been overlooked. Yet the newly-built Harvard College saw almost half its graduates sail away to England before 1660. Of the godly preachers who left England in the ‘Great Migration’ of the 1630s – inspiring members of their congregations to emigrate too – around a third abandoned their flocks after 1640 and returned home. Among the population at large, perhaps as many as a quarter of New England’s earliest settlers sailed back across the Atlantic: not...

  10. Life-stories from early New England

  11. Appendix 1: Settlers leaving New England before 1640
    (pp. 334-353)
  12. Appendix 2: Settlers visiting England, 1640–1660
    (pp. 354-378)
  13. Bibliography
    (pp. 379-391)
  14. Index
    (pp. 392-412)
  15. Back Matter
    (pp. 413-413)