front cover of Battlefield Pennsylvania
Battlefield Pennsylvania
A Guide to the Keystone State's Most Sacred Ground
Brady J. Crytzer
Westholme Publishing, 2018
A History of Pennsylvania through Places of Conflict, from George Washington’s Fort Necessity to the Flight 93 Memorial
Pennsylvania is a battlefield. Fort Necessity. Brandywine. Gettysburg. The Homestead Strike. Flight 93. In many ways battlefields are like scars on the landscape. They remind us that history is real, and their effects stay with us forever. In Battlefield Pennsylvania: A Guide to the Keystone State’s Most Sacred Ground, award-winning historian Brady J. Crytzer takes the reader on a fascinating tour of over three hundred years of Pennsylvania history through twenty-nine of the state’s most significant battlegrounds, based on his popular Pennsylvania Cable Network television program. The author shows that debates and neighborly disputes have been present throughout the history of William Penn’s “Peaceable Kingdom,” but that battles are not the natural resolution of these conflicts; they are a failure of the system. Understanding how these systems break down and descend into violence and chaos is one of the most important purposes of this book. When the forces of Britain and France met on the battleground of North America, they each waged war in the name of a vision—a defense of the future, not merely the present. The same can be said for the Indian warriors and settlers of the backcountry, and the striking workers of the industrial age. When the young men of the American Civil War era donned the Butternut and Blue, they were not just fighting over a hill or a railroad junction, but for an American future. Illustrated with maps and period and contemporary images, Battlefield Pennsylvania presents each event through background information, a description of the battle itself, the legacy of the battle, and what a visitor can see today. Rather than viewing preserved battlefields as a hollow tribute to days gone by, the author demonstrates that these sites are a great inheritance provided by past generations, and just as they entrusted them to us, we will entrust them to future generations as well. 

front cover of Guyasuta and the Fall of Indian America
Guyasuta and the Fall of Indian America
Brady J. Crytzer
Westholme Publishing, 2013
A History of the Influential Seneca Leader Who Fought to Maintain Indian Sovereignty During the Bitter Wars for North America
Nearly a century before the United States declared the end of the Indian Wars, the fate of Native Americans was revealed in the battle of Fallen Timbers. In 1794, General Anthony Wayne led the first American army— the Legion of the United States—against a unified Indian force in the Ohio country. The Indians were routed and forced to vacate their lands. It was the last of a series of Indian attempts in the East to retain their sovereignty and foreshadowed what would occur across the rest of the continent. In Guyasuta and the Fall of Indian America, historian Brady J. Crytzer traces how American Indians were affected by the wars leading to American Independence through the life of one of the period’s most influential figures. Born in 1724, Guyasuta is perfectly positioned to understand the emerging political landscape of America in the tumultuous eighteenth century. As a sachem of the vaunted Iroquois Confederacy, for nearly fifty years Guyasuta dedicated his life to the preservation and survival of Indian order in a rapidly changing world, whether it was on the battlefield, in the face of powerful imperial armies, or around a campfire negotiating with his French, British, and American counterparts. Guyasuta was present at many significant events in the century, including George Washington’s expedition to Fort Le Boeuf, the Braddock disaster of 1755, Pontiac’s Rebellion and the Battle of Bushy Run in 1763, and the Battle of Oriskany during the American Revolution. Guyasuta’s involvement in the French and British wars and the American War for Independence were all motivated by a desire to retain relevance for Indian society. It was only upon the birth of the United States of America that Guyasuta finally laid his rifle down and watched as his Indian world crumbled beneath his feet. A broken man, debilitated by alcoholism, he died near Pittsburgh in 1794.
Supported by extensive research and full of compelling drama, Guyasuta and the Fall of Indian America unravels the tangled web of alliances, both white and native, and explains how the world of the American Indians could not survive alongside the emergent United States.

front cover of Hessians
Officer, Baroness, Chaplain—Three German Experiences in the American Revolution
Brady J. Crytzer
Westholme Publishing, 2023
Three Stories. Two Worlds. One Revolution. Revealing the German Experience in the American Revolution through the Experiences of an Officer, a Baroness, and a Chaplain
In 1775 the British Empire was in crisis. While it was buried in debt from years of combat against the French, revolution was stirring in its wealthiest North American colonies. To allow the rebellion to fester would cost the British dearly, but to confront it would press their exhausted armed forces to a breaking point. Faced with a nearly impossible decision, the administrators of the world’s largest empire elected to employ the armies of the Holy Roman Empire to suppress the sedition of the American revolutionaries. By 1776 there would be 18,000 German soldiers marching through the wilds of North America, and by war’s end there would be over 30,000.
To the colonists these forces were “mercenaries,” and to the Germans the Americans were “rebels. ”While soldiers of fortune fight for mere profit, the soldiers of the Holy Roman Empire went to war in the name of their country, and were paid little for their services, while their respective kings made fortunes off of their blood and sacrifice among the British ranks. Labeled erroneously as “Hessians,” the armies of the Holy Roman Empire came from six separate German states, each struggling to retain relevance in a newly enlightened and ever-changing world.
In Hessians: Mercenaries, Rebels, and the War for British North America historian Brady J. Crytzer explores the German experience during the American Revolution through the lives of three individuals from vastly different walks of life, all thrust into the maelstrom of North American combat. Here are the stories of a dedicated career soldier, Johann Ewald, captain of a Field-Jäger Corps, who fought from New York to the final battles along the Potomac; Frederika Charlotte Louise von Massow, Baroness von Riedesel, who raced with her young children through the Canadian wilderness to reunite with her long-distant husband; and middle-aged chaplain Philipp Waldeck, who struggled to make sense of it all while accompanying his unit through the exotic yet brutal conditions of the Caribbean and British Florida. Beautifully written, Hessians offers a glimpse into the American Revolution as seen through the eyes of the German armies commanded to destroy it.

front cover of War in the Peaceable Kingdom
War in the Peaceable Kingdom
The Kittanning Raid of 1756
Brady J. Crytzer
Westholme Publishing, 2016
The First Military Action Authorized by Pennsylvania and How it Changed the Future of the American Colonies
On the morning of September 8, 1756, a band of about three hundred volunteers of a newly created Pennsylvania militia led by Lt. Col. John Armstrong crept slowly through the western Pennsylvania brush. The night before they had reviewed a plan to quietly surround and attack the Lenape, or Delaware, Indian village of Kittanning. The Pennsylvanians had learned that several prominent Delaware who had led recent attacks on frontier settlements as well as a number of white prisoners were at the village. Seeking reprisal, Armstrong’s force successfully assaulted Kittanning, killing one of the Delaware they sought, but causing most to flee—along with their prisoners. Armstrong then ordered the village burned. The raid did not achieve all of its goals, but it did lead to the Indians relocating their villages further away from the frontier settlements. However, it was a major victory for those Pennsylvanians—including some Quaker legislators—who believed the colony must be able to defend itself from outside attack, whether from the French, Indians, or another colony.
In War in the Peaceable Kingdom: The Kittanning Raid of 1756, historian Brady J. Crytzer follows the two major threads that intertwined at Kittanning: the French and Indian War that began in the Pennsylvania frontier, and the bitter struggle between pacifist Quakers and those Quakers and others—most notably, Benjamin Franklin—who supported the need to take up arms. It was a transformational moment for the American colonies. Rather than having a large, pacifist Pennsylvania in the heart of British North America, the colony now joined the others in training soldiers for defense. Ironically, it would be Pennsylvania soldiers who, in the early days of the American Revolution, would be crucial to the survival of George Washington’s army.

front cover of The Whiskey Rebellion
The Whiskey Rebellion
A Distilled History of an American Crisis
Brady J. Crytzer
Westholme Publishing, 2024
In March 1791 Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton shocked the western frontier when he proposed a domestic excise tax on whiskey to balance America’s national debt. The law, known colloquially as the “Whiskey Act,” disproportionately penalized farmers in the backcountry, while offering favorable tax incentives designed to protect larger distillers. Although Hamilton viewed the law as a means of both collecting revenue andforcefully imposing federal authority over the notoriously defiant frontier, settlers in Western Pennsylvania bristled at its passage. They demanded that the law be revoked or rewritten to correct its perceived the injustices, and begged their representatives to lobby Congress on their behalf. 
   As the months passed however the people of Western Pennsylvania grew restless with the inadequacy of the government’s response and they soon turned to more violent means of political expression. Treasury officers across the west were targeted for their involvement in the tax collection, and they were brutally attacked by armed bands of disgruntled locals. They were tarred and feathered, burned with hot irons, and whipped; their homes were ransacked and burned. Extralegal courts were established in a direct challenge to federal authority, and the frontier slowly drifted toward a state of rebellion.
   In response President George Washington raised an army of 13,000 men, one of the largest forces he ever commanded, to suppress the rebellion. No major battle ever occurred, but weeks of arrests, illegal detentions, and civil rights violations rocked the west. The event polarized the nation, and highlighted the dramatic differences between Washington’s Federalist perspective and Jefferson’s emerging Democratic-Republican Party. Two centuries later the Whiskey Rebellion stands as the second largest domestic rebellion in American History, only outdone by the Confederate States of America in 1861.
   In The Whiskey Rebellion: A Distilled History of an American Crisis, historian Brady J. Crytzer takes the reader on a journey through Western Pennsylvania following the routes of both the rebels and the United States Army to place this important event into context for the reader. Complete with images and maps, the author illuminates what visitors can still see from the period while providing a cogent and engrossing account of this crisis unfolded and how it was resolved. 

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