(0)
 
American Connections : The Founding Fathers. Networked.
by James Burke

Overview - Using the unique approach that he has employed in his previous books, author, columnist, and television commentator James Burke shows us our connections to the fifty-six men who signed the Declaration of Independence. Over the two hundred-plus years that separate us, these connections are often surprising and always fascinating.  Read more...

 
Paperback
  • Retail Price: $22.99
  • $20.23
    (Save 12%)

Add to Cart + Add to Wishlist

In Stock. Usually ships within 24 hours.

FREE Shipping for Club Members
Not a member? Join Today!
 
 
New & Used Marketplace 27 copies from $2.99
 
 
 

More About American Connections by James Burke
 
 
 
Overview
Using the unique approach that he has employed in his previous books, author, columnist, and television commentator James Burke shows us our connections to the fifty-six men who signed the Declaration of Independence. Over the two hundred-plus years that separate us, these connections are often surprising and always fascinating. Burke turns the signers from historical icons into flesh-and-blood people: Some were shady financial manipulators, most were masterful political operators, a few were good human beings, and some were great men. The network that links them to us is also peopled by all sorts, from spies and assassins to lovers and adulterers, inventors and artists. The ties may be more direct for some of us than others, but we are all linked in some way to these founders of our nation.
If you enjoyed Martin Sheen as the president on television's "The West Wing," then you're connected to founder Josiah Bartlett. The connection from signer Bartlett to Sheen includes John Paul Jones; Judge William Cooper, father of James Fenimore; Sir Thomas Brisbane, governor of New South Wales; an incestuous astronomer; an itinerant math teacher; early inventors of television; and pioneering TV personality Bishop Fulton J. Sheen, the inspiration for Ramon Estevez's screen name, Martin Sheen.

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780743282260
  • ISBN-10: 0743282264
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster
  • Publish Date: July 2007
  • Page Count: 351


Related Categories

Books > Biography & Autobiography > Historical - General
Books > Biography & Autobiography > Political
Books > History > United States - Revolutionary War

 
BookPage Reviews

Founding Fathers

Everyone is connected, the argument goes, by a mere six degrees of separation: You have met someone who has met someone (and so on) who has met Queen Elizabeth II. James Burke takes this idea back through history to the signers of the Declaration of Independence. One by one, he traces the 56 names forward through time in American Connections: The Founding Fathers. Networked., leaping across oceans and continents (and even through outer space), until arriving at a modern resolution—usually a person with the same name, but in some cases a ship or a shared residence 200 years apart.

Burke's book is neither history nor biography. Perhaps the best description is to call American Connections a curiosity—an experiment in what you can do with names, people and places, from the mundane to the bizarre, to arrive at connections that no one would imagine possible—least of all the Founding Fathers. American Connections is best read in small servings, where the oddities can be appreciated as tasty morsels. Pick it up and read about Samuel Adams' accidental connections with spies, transvestites, poisoners and movie stars. Later, move on to Stephen Hopkins, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, and discover his links to a Nazi warship. Or follow founding father Matthew Thornton to the planet Mars. Burke's writing moves quickly and is often mixed with wry humor, which adds to the fun. Try it, and see where the quirks of history's network can lead. Who knows—you might find a connection to yourself.

Howard Shirley is a writer in Franklin, Tennessee.

 
BAM Customer Reviews

DISCUSSION