Cover image for Redcoats : the British soldier and war in the Americas, 1755-1763
Redcoats : the British soldier and war in the Americas, 1755-1763
Brumwell, Stephen, 1960-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Cambridge, U.K. ; New York : Cambridge University Press, [2002]

Physical Description:
ix, 349 pages : illustrations, map ; 24 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
E199 .B89 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



This book examines the experiences of the British Army soldiers, or 'redcoats', who fought in North America and the West Indies between 1755 and 1763. It explores the Army's distinctive society, using new evidence to provide a voice for ordinary soldiers who have previously been ignored by historians. While other books on the period concentrate upon major personalities and events, this study examines events from the perspective of the individual: the experience of combat, captivity among the Indians, the Army's women and the fate of veterans. Stephen Brumwell is a former newspaper journalist and Lecturer in Modern History at the University of Leeds and now works as a freelance writer. He is the author of scholarly articles and the co-author of The Cassell Companion to 18th Century British History (2001). Hb ISBN (2001) 0-521-80783-2

Reviews 1

Library Journal Review

This new book by British freelancer Brumwell (coauthor, Cassell's Companion to 18th-Century British History) makes a nice companion to Fred Anderson's Crucible of War: The Seven Years' War and the Fate of Empire in British North America, 1754-1766 (LJ 2/1/00). Whereas Anderson gives a magisterial overview of the conflict, Brumwell concentrates on the experiences of the rank-and-file "Redcoats" in the British army. Drawing on wide-ranging research in North American and British archives, he revises the standard negative view of the ordinary British soldiers and their officers. This negative view sees the rank and file as the dregs of society who obeyed orders only out of fear of the lash, while their officers tended to be unimaginative fops or fools who had purchased their commissions. While not denying that there is an element of truth in these stereotypes, Brumwell demonstrates that by the end of the war Britain's "American Army" had become a flexible, impressive fighting machine. Brumwell notes the irony that George Washington's Continental Army owed much of its success to its emulation of the British army in the Seven Years' War. This is a noteworthy, engaging book for specialists as well as general readers. Highly recommended for all academic and public libraries. T.J. Schaeper, St. Bonaventure Univ., NY (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Table of Contents

List of illustrationsp. vi
Acknowledgementsp. vii
Abbreviations used in footnotesp. x
Introduction: Approaching the 'American Army'p. 1
1 Britain's war effort in the Americasp. 11
2 Gone for a soldierp. 54
3 Following the drump. 99
4 The environmental parameters of American campaigningp. 137
5 The 'American Army' and Native Americansp. 162
6 Irregular warfare in the Americasp. 191
7 The tactical evolution of the redcoatsp. 227
8 The Highland battalions in the Americasp. 264
9 The legacies of the 'American Army'p. 290
Appendix Statistical tablesp. 315
Bibliographyp. 321
Indexp. 343