John Mack Faragher is the Arthur Unobskey Professor of American History at Yale University. He is the author of Women and Men on the Overland Trail, for which he received the Frederick Jackson Turner Award, and the acclaimed Sugar Creek: Life on the Illinois Prairie.
YA-- Well written and immensely satisfying in several ways, this biography separates myth from fact while also showing that this is a man about whom legends have been made. A person of many contrasts, Boone had 10 children but spent much of his time away from his family; liked solitude but led parties of settlers west; was uncomfortable with the ``system'' but served in the Virginia militia and that state's legislature; and liked Native Americans even while he was helping to displace them. Readers are also given a look at frontier life and the westward movement; Faragher brings to life aspects of history that have been reduced to a footnote in textbooks. Boone speaks to the American spirit in an elemental way that is wonderfully conveyed by this author, in a book that readers will find memorable.-- Judy McAloon, Potomac Library, Prince Williams County, VA
The popular image of Daniel Boone is that of an unlettered backwoodsman, skilled hunter and Indian fighter. But evidence argues that he was reasonably well educated for his time and place, that he was a landowner, businessman and a respected leader of frontier society. Faragher, history professor at Mount Holyoke College, author of Sugar Creek: Life on the Illinois Prairie , has sifted through folklore and fact to reconstruct a realistic portrait of Boone and the expanding frontier. Except for his long hunts, Boone was surrounded by a close, extended family; his deepest loyalties were to clan and community. The final chapters examine Boone in folklore, literature and art (he was the model for James Fenimore Cooper's Natty Bumppo in Last of the Mohicans ). Boone is worthy of historical attention as a personification of the westward movement. Faragher has written an absorbing, definitive biography. Photos not seen by PW. BOMC selection. (Nov.)
A richly textured portrait of a fascinating, complex man . . . Faragher's work is unique. "San Francisco Chronicle"" "A richly textured portrait of a fascinating, complex man . . . Faragher's work is unique." --San Francisco Chronicle "A richly textured portrait of a fascinating, complex man . . . Faragher's work is unique. "-San Francisco Chronicle