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Mutiny on the "Amistad"


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About the Author

Howard Jones is Professor of History at the University of Alabama and author of The Course of American Diplomacy and To the Webster-Ashburton Treaty.


In this well-crafted narrative Jones has fleshed out what was heretofore a footnote in the history of the American antislavery movement. The cause of the small band of black slaves who had mutinied during transport off Cuba and eventually washed up on Long Island (1839) temporarily united disparate factions of the fledgling abolitionist movement. Besides raising fundamental legal questions about the relevance of slavery and race to the American conception of liberty, the Amistad affair adversely affected relations between the United States and Spain and forced President Van Buren into improper interference with the judicial process. A key volume for scholars of 19th-century America and for specialists in the abolitionist movement. Thomas E. Schott, Office of History, Engineering Installation Division, Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma

An important new account of this extraordinary episode in American history. New York Times Book Review An analysis of an important moment in American history that casts a light upon politics and society during the preceding half-century, back to the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, and similarly illuminates the approaching Civil War. The National Review A nearly flawless historical study of an important episode in American diplomatic, legal, political, and ethnic history. Journal of American Ethnic History A rousing and satisfying tale, and it is well worth hearing it again in this careful and thoughtful telling. American Heritage

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