The frontiersmen were a remarkable breed of men. They were often rough and illiterate, sometimes brutal and vicious, often seeking an escape in the wilderness of mid-America from crimes committed back east. In the beautiful but deadly country that would one day come to be known as West Virginia, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois, more often than not they left their bones to bleach beside forest paths or on the banks of the Ohio River, victims of Indians who claimed the vast virgin territory and strove to turn back the growing tide of whites.
These frontiersmen are the subjects of Allan W. Eckert's dramatic history. Against the background of such names as George Rogers Clark, Daniel Boone, Arthur St. Clair, Anthony Wayne, Simon Girty, and William Henry Harrison, Eckert has re-created the life of one of America's most outstanding heroes, Simon Kenton. Kenton's role in opening the Northwest Territory to settlement more than rivaled that of his friend Daniel Boone. By his 18th birthday, Kenton had already won frontier renown as woodsman, fighter, and scout. His incredible physical strength and endurance, his great dignity and innate kindness made him the ideal prototype of the frontier hero.
Yet there is another story to The Frontiersmen. It is equally the story of one of history's greatest leaders, whose misfortune was to be born to a doomed cause and a dying race. Tecumseh, the brilliant Shawnee chief, welded together by the sheer force of his intellect and charisma an incredible Indian confederacy that came desperately close to breaking the thrust of the white man's westward expansion. Like Kenton, Tecumseh was the paragon of his people's virtues, and the story of his life, in Eckert's hands, reveals most profoundly the grandeur and the tragedy of the American Indian.
©2001 Jesse Stuart Foundation (P)2011 Tantor
"Historian-novelist Eckert has fashioned an epic narrative history of the struggle for dominance of the Ohio River Valley that makes compelling reading." (Publishers Weekly)
Actually bought this book seeking some insight on Tecumseh the great Indian chief. I was pleasantly surprised to find a book I almost couldn't put down - a great story of the American Midwest before the Civil War in the era of the "frontiersmen". Vivid descriptions of parts of the Midwest before it was settled, parts of which you can find on a map today from the author's description. So well written I felt I was there looking at it. Many adventures and action, and all true stories, of what it was like to be mostly (or all) alone in the wilderness. Similar to what you might expect reading about Daniel Boone (he's in here too) and other similar characters. I am a fan of Ambrose, and bought his Lewis and Clark book, and this book outshines it greatly in it's wonderful descriptions and stories of adventure - it is what I hoped to find in "Lewis and Clark". You will not regret this book!
"Just trying to get by being quite and shy in a world full of pushing and shove." Former forest ranger, non-profit CEO, newspaper editor.
Yes I think this is better than the print version as the reader does not have to struggle with the unique native american names which can really slow a person down
Simon Kenton just for the pure fact that he was a man among men who was larger than life but lived up to that
It is a long listen but really does move along well.
the history is so accurate and the story lines just keeps your attention
What I liked was the actual history is so accurate it keeps your interest
The story lines
No other than reading about my ancistors and the fact what my research of family history was correct
For anyone who enjoys the story of the American people and the westward expansion, this book is a must. I warmed to Kevin Foley's narration, a little unsure at the beginning if I was going to enjoy how he told the story. However, he is a perfect fit to what is a uniquely American story. Although it is history, it reads like a novel. Eckert not only brings the characters alive, he creates drama in the telling of this remarkable history. Whenever I was away from it, I couldn't wait to get back into the rich narrative and fascinating detail of this book.
The Frontiersman follows the life of Simon Kenton from coming of age as a restless do-nothing to trapper and Indian fighter in the mid-18th to early 19th century. Ohio and Kentucky were the wilderness, the frontier where land claims could be had simply by marking trees with an ax. As Kenton found out, with the arrival of civilization establishing title was a more complex procedure. The Indians were not willing partners in the settling of the land by colonists and immigrants. Tecumseh is the adversarial opposite of Kenton; he attempts to knit together an Indian confederation to take on the white man, to turn back the tide of immigrants. There are a great many historical characters including Daniel Boone who make appearances. Eckert uses his imagination depicting what happened on a micro-historical level and undoubtedly takes literary license frequently. It is a good device to keep the larger tale of history compelling. Both the Indian and pioneers commit heinous acts; justice is served at gunpoint more often than not. There are many insights and anecdotes to a story with a well-known outcome that keep it interesting.
The detail provided was/is great. I enjoyed the intricacies of the story, down to the melas and copnversations. This well researched story and delivery was very good....
The main character Simon Kenton added continuity to the story and numerous characters.
I am not sure...
The story was very good and kept my interest all the way through. I particylarly enjoy historical fiction and non-fiction.
His expressive and well articulated reading certainly adds to the drama and engagement with the book.
The many, many episodes and events ...that reveal "truth is stranger than fiction'!
Very informing and loaded with history, would have liked more on Simon and Daniel Boons relationship but overall a great story.
Me? I'm not who you think I think I am.
I definately enjoyed this book!! The story is told in a way that really draws you in and it is not afraid to show the dark side of both the Americans and the Shawnee. The Frontiersmen is well written and performed in a solid way that keeps you interrested despite it length!
I grew up near Cresaptown. The reader continually calls Capt. Cresap "Kree-sap" instead of "Krehssup"--grating to the ear. Apparently he went out of his way to practice the pronunciation of the various Shawnee words--why not check on how men pronounced their names?
Davina Porter is another one with her "sweetcase" (suitcase!) and the like. It is sooooo distracting in a most unpleasant way. You might as well have someone burst into your house yelling FIRE!
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