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WITH A VIEW OF THE THIRTEEN COLONIES
AS CONSTITUTED BY THE
B. A. HINSDALE, PH.D.
“THE WORKS OF JAMES ABRAM GARFIELD"
“Religion, morality, and knowledge being necessary to good government and the happi-
--Ordinance of 1787.
“We look to you of the Northwest to finally decide whether this is to be a land of
SAVE New England alone, there is no section of the United States embracing several States that is so distinct an historical unit, and that so readily yields to historical treatment, as the Old Northwest. It is the part of the Great West first discovered and colonized by the French. It was. the occasion of the final struggle for dominion between France and England in North America. It was the theatre of one of the most brilliant and far-reaching military exploits of the Revolution. The disposition to be made of it at the close of the Revolution is the most important territorial question treated in the history of American diplomacy, After the war, the Northwest began to assume a constantly increasing importance in the national history. It is the original public domain, and the part of the West first colonized under the authority of the National Government. It was the first and the most important Territory ever organized by Congress. It is the only part of the United States ever under a secondary constitution like the Ordinance of 1787. No other equal part of the Union has made in one hundred years such progress along the characteristic lines of American development. Moreover, the Northwest has stood in very important relations to questions of great national and international importance, as the use and ownership of the Missis
sippi River, and the territorial growth and integrity of the Union. To portray those features of this region that make it an historical unit is the central purpose of this book. But as the Northwest is intimately dependent upon the Atlantic Plain, a view of the Thirteen Colonies as Constituted by the Royal Charters has also been given. No previous writer has covered the ground, and the work is wholly new in conception.
Dr. Edward A. Freeman insists “ that the most ingenious and eloquent of modern historical discourses can, after all, be nothing more than a comment on a text.” Historical texts are not history, but even ingenious and eloquent comments often suffer from lack of a sufficiency of the text that they are written to elucidate. In this work, liberal quotations from original documents will be found, accompanied by the necessary discussion. The subjects treated in Chapters VI., VII., XI., XII., and XIII., in particular, cannot be satisfactorily handled in any other way. Furthermore, while these documents are in no sense rare, they do not lie in the way of the common reader or of the ordinary student or teacher of history. This feature of the work, it is believed, will be highly appreciated by all these classes, and especially by the student and the teacher.
B. A. HINSDALE.
UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN,
ANN ARBOR, March 1, 1888.