Silas Talbot: Captain of Old Ironsides (Hardcover)
Silas Talbot's life illuminates his time--not with greater brightness than the lives of his more famous contemporaries, but with perhaps broader range and greater insight into the experiences and circumstances of a plain citizen of the new republic--a citizen whose bravery and energy helped to create it. Silas Talbot was a farmer's son who went to sea, learned the building trades, saved and invested his money wisely, married well several times, fought as a Rhode Island soldier in the Revolutionary War, became a lieutenant colonel, served with courage and competence, became a privateer and a prisoner-of-war in the conflict at sea, speculated in western lands, was elected to the New York State Legislature and the U.S. Congress, represented the interests of American sailors forced to serve in Britain's navy, and finally achieved the rank of U.S. Navy captain and became the second commanding officer of USS Constitution. In a full and energetic life of 62 years he met and served the famous--Washington, Adams, Hamilton, Lafayette--and also raised a family; advanced in the social, political and business circles of New York and Rhode Island; and was, as the author notes, "among the first of the new citizens of the new republic to seize its gifts.
William M. Fowler, Jr. is Director of the Massachusetts Historical Society and consulting editor to The New England Quarterly. He received his undergraduate degree from Northeastern University and his Ph.D. from the University of Notre Dame. He is the author of a number of books on American history including Empires at War: The French and Indian War and the Struggle For North America, 1754-1763, Rebels Under Sail: The Navy in the Revolution, The Baron of Beacon Hill: A Biography of John Hancock, Jack Tars and Commodores: The American Navy 1783-1815, and Under Two Flags: The American Navy in the Civil War. He is also co-author of America and The Sea: A Maritime History of America. He was Professor of History at Northeastern University from 1971 to 1998 and has taught a variety of courses in American history. He also teaches at Mystic Seaport Museum and has lectured at the Smithsonian Institution, the United States Naval War College and the Sea Education Association. He is a member of the Massachusetts State Archives Advisory Commission, The Colonial Society of Massachusetts, the American Antiquarian Society, and an Honorary Member of the Boston Marine Society and the Society of the Cincinnati. He received an Honorary degree from Northeastern University in 2000. The author lives in Boston, MA.