It is 1801, and President Thomas Jefferson has assembled a deep-water navy to fight the growing threat of piracy, as American civilians are regularly kidnapped by Islamist brigands and held for ransom, enslaved, or killed, all at their captors' whim. The Berber States of North Africa, especially Tripoli, claimed their faith gave them the right to pillage anyone who did not submit to their religion.
The most recent state to join the union, Hawaii is the only one to have once been a royal kingdom. After its discovery by Captain Cook in the late 18th century, Hawaii was fought over by European powers determined to take advantage of its position as the crossroads of the Pacific. The arrival of the first missionaries marked the beginning of the struggle between a native culture with its ancient gods, sexual libertinism, and rites of human sacrifice and the rigid values of the Calvinists.
"Good, but not enough history of the Island."
Jack London was born a working-class, fatherless San Franciscan in 1876. In his youth, he was a boundlessly energetic adventurer on the bustling west coast—by and by playing the role of hobo, sailor, and oyster pirate. From his vantage point at the margins of Gilded Age America, he witnessed such iniquity and abuses that he became a life long socialist and advocate for reform. Award-winning western historian James L. Haley paints a vivid portrait of London—adventurer, social reformer, and the most well-known American writer of his generation.
"A life of bright flames to ashes..."
In a time where thousands pushed westward to find their fortune, Stephen Austin went west to found a colony. The fierce struggle between Austin's settlers and the Mexican government would lead to the birth of Texas and countless stories of heroes and heroism. Jailed by Mexican authorities, Austin fought a long, bitter struggle for the survival of Texas. Many may not know that Austin's dream almost did not come true.