America’s Hidden History: Untold Tales of the First Pilgrims, Fighting Women, and Forgotten Founders Who Shaped a Nation by Kenneth C. Davis

Not what I expected, but still a good read for those interested in the story behind the story of America.

America’s Hidden History, by Kenneth C. Davis, is chockfull of tidbits that highlight certain events in the beginnings of United States….before it was the U.S.

Just think, in a way, it was a woman that discovered America. Queen Isabella of Spain was the one that gave the go ahead for Columbus and others to explore. She also funded it.

The other thing that I had never thought of, yet found extremely interesting is that the early colonists were all about religious freedom, but only if it was the right religions. I had always assumed that the scorn of all things Catholic stemmed from the wave of Irish immigrants that came during the Potato Famine. How wrong I was. The colonists vehemently hated and distrusted Catholicism even going so far as to consider refusing French help in the Revolution. They feared a “Catholic Invasion” from the French provinces in the north.

The only Roman Catholic signer of the Declaration of Independence was Charles Carroll. He was one of the richest men in the country, so I guess that they were able to overlook his “idolatry”.

America’s Hidden History is organized into chapters that are sort of mini stories about periods of American history up to the 1780’s. All of the vignettes in Davis’ book are interesting and pretty brief. Some left me wanting more and at least one left me wondering, “So what?” When you read the chapter on Benedict Arnold, you will see what I mean. I mean really, is a military genius any less of a traitor because of that genius? For me, a smart traitor is still a traitor.

If you enjoy history, but don’t want to get mired down in 200 pages on one battle or issue, this is the book for you. The tales are tightly wrapped and just enough detail to understand not only what was going on, but the why and the how. I enjoyed learning about some of the motives and the people behind the major events of our country and I think you will too.

You can check out a sample and learn more about Kenneth C. Davis at the America’s Hidden History site.

America’s Hidden History: Untold Tales of the First Pilgrims, Fighting Women, and Forgotten Founders Who Shaped a Nation by Kenneth C. Davis
List $26.95 Amazon $17.79
Hardcover: 288 pages
Publisher: Collins (April 29, 2008)
ISBN-10: 0061118184
ISBN-13: 978-0061118180