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George Washington

A Biography

Southern Biography

326 pages / 6.00 x 9.00 inches / 20 halftones

American History

  Paperback / 9780807121269 / September 1996

In George Washington, John R. Alden traces the interwoven histories of Washington and the nation he helped to create, defend, and guide toward the future. Alden recreates the major events of Washington’s personal and professional life, including his boyhood in rural Virginia, his early careers as a surveyor and then a soldier in the French and Indian War, and his staid but enduring marriage. The core of the biography is devoted to Washington’s leadership roles—his assumption of the post of commander in chief of the Continental Army, his part in the Constitutional Convention, and his presidency. As Alden reveals, Washington’s greatness lay in his total devotion to the cause of the American nation and in his wisdom as a leader. 

John R. Alden was James B. Duke Professor Emeritus at Duke University and wrote a number of biographies of important figures in the American Revolution, including Thomas Gage, Charles Lee, and Stephen Sayre.

Praise for George Washington: A Biography

“This is the best single-volume biography of Washington ever written. Alden has consistently produced well-written and –researched books, and this work shows him at his best as a writer of historical synthesis. . . .His book will become a standard for a generation.”— Library Journal  (starred review)

“Readers in search of a sprightly synthesis of Washington’s life will be well served by this book. . . .A worthy effort.”— Journal of American Histo ry 

“Well informed, workmanlike, and judicious. . . .A thoughtful biography by a thoroughly qualified author.”—American Historical Review

“This 1984 biography . . . was both the capstone of Alden’s career and the epitome of his craftsmanship. . . .Alden succeeds superbly in his admiring rendition of [Washington].”—Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science

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