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Clark of the Ohio Frederick Palmer

Clark of the Ohio

Frederick Palmer

Published March 15th 2007
ISBN : 9781406759099
Paperback
564 pages
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 About the Book 

Text extracted from opening pages of book: CLARK OF THE OHIO A Life of George Rogers Clark by FREDERICK PALMER With Illustrations New York DODD, MEAD & COMPANY 1929 GEORGE ROGERS CLARK. FROM A PAINTING IN MIDDLE AGE BY MATTHEW JOUETT, INMoreText extracted from opening pages of book: CLARK OF THE OHIO A Life of George Rogers Clark by FREDERICK PALMER With Illustrations New York DODD, MEAD & COMPANY 1929 GEORGE ROGERS CLARK. FROM A PAINTING IN MIDDLE AGE BY MATTHEW JOUETT, IN POSSESSION OF THE FILSON CLUB OF LOUISVILLE. THERE IS NO PORTRAIT OF CLARK IN HIS YOUTH COPYEIGHT, 1929 BY DODD, MEAD AND COMPANY, INC. PRINTED IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA BY THE VAIL-BALLOU PRESS, INC., BINGHAMTON, N, Y, PREFACE In a period when a new outlook, coursing familiar waters, is recharting great reputations and often finding that their achievement is not altogether worthy of their fame, a voyage of discovery may reveal men whose reputations are far be low their achievement. Why should we know young Paul Jones and young Alex ander Hamilton so well and so little of a youth who should mean as much to us in our origins and character as Clive or Drake to England, La Salle to France or Cortez to Spain? Except in one section of the United States the historical association of the name of Clark is with William Clark of the Lewis and Clark expedition. He was the Clark of the North west of his time and as it is known today, a competent army officer to whom fame was assured when, through the recom mendation pf his elder brother, George Rogers Clark, he was assigned, by President Thomas Jefferson, with Meriweather Lewis, Jeffersons private secretary, to explore the unknown northern portion of the new Louisiana Purchase. George Rogers Clark was the genius of that enterprising Clark family. He was the Clark of another Northwest who won all the area from Pittsburgh to the source of the Missis sippi which was once officially The Territory of the U. S. N.W. of the River Ohio. Its seal is on the cover of this book. But for him the borders of Canada might be on the Ohio and Allegheny rivers, and there might even have been a British corridor east of the Mississippi to the Gulf of Mex ico, which would have made the Louisiana Purchase rather an impracticable accession, not to mention that it might have deprived younger brother William of his pioneering journey to the unexplored Rocky mountains. This makes vi PREFACE interesting speculation when one is looking out of the car window on the way to the Pacific coast- but its value, for my purpose in this preface, is the suggestion of results which were gained through sheer personality by Clark before he was thirty years of age. One of the dramatic moments of the Revolution was when harassed George Washington received word of the capture of Vincennes by the young leader of forlorn hopes. Historians who differ in manner as much as Theodore Roose velt and Albert Bushnell Hart have fallen under the spell of Clarks career- and yet he has not come into his own. Is the reason that his uncanny skill in action against superior inumbers won almost bloodless victories? that he had some of the failings of genius which often go with its force and the prodigality with which it is spent? that he lacked the proper popular heroic pose in his later years? that he was ahead of his own time? that he did not think that to kill an Indian was the only way to make him a good Indian? His swift movements, his blithe conquest of obstacles and distances, without funds or support when for a year he had no word from his chief, while he won an empire in the wilder ness, would have the incredibility of a legend if documentation did not attest the fidelity of his own records which were long hidden from the world in family garrets. I have written something of the social and economic background from which he sprang, and of which he was the product, as every leader is no less than of his own times. He grew to manhood in a period of the searching of minds and of agitation which culminated in a peoples revolution ary action. It found in him the instrument and the spirit of an advance more formative, hazardous and picturesque than its offspring of the covered wagon and cowboy epoch of the