The British Are Coming: The War for America, Lexington to Princeton, 1775­–1777

Time Period
1764 to 1824
Media Type
Video
Topics
Military History
Politics & Government
Presenter
Rick Atkinson

On October 23, 2019, Rick Atkinson delivered the J. Harvie Wilkinson, Jr. Lecture entitled “The British Are Coming: The War for America, Lexington to Princeton, 1775­–1777.”

From the battles at Lexington and Concord in spring 1775 to those at Trenton and Princeton in winter 1777, American militiamen and then the ragged Continental Army took on the world’s most formidable fighting force. It is a gripping saga alive with astonishing characters: Henry Knox, the former bookseller with an uncanny understanding of artillery; Nathanael Greene, the blue-eyed bumpkin who became a brilliant battle captain; Benjamin Franklin, the self-made man who proved to be the wiliest of diplomats; George Washington, the commander in chief who learned the difficult art of leadership when the war seems all but lost. Full of riveting details and untold stories, The British Are Coming is a tale of heroes and knaves, of sacrifice and blunder, of redemption and profound suffering. Rick Atkinson has given stirring new life to the first act of our country’s creation drama.

Rick Atkinson is the bestselling author of the Liberation Trilogy―An Army at Dawn (winner of the Pulitzer Prize for history), The Day of Battle, and The Guns at Last Light―as well as The Long Gray Line and The British Are Coming: The War for America, Lexington to Princeton, 1775–1777. His many additional awards include a Pulitzer Prize for journalism, the George Polk Award, and the Pritzker Military Library Literature Award.

The content and opinions expressed in these presentations are solely those of the speaker and not necessarily of the Virginia Museum of History & Culture.

Want to listen to an audio-only version of this lecture? Listen now on Soundcloud.