Great Booklist Review of Henry Knox’s Noble Train

Jun 16, 2020 by

Booklist Online Exclusive: June 15, 2020
Henry Knox’s Noble Train: The Story of a Boston Bookseller’s Heroic Expedition That Saved the
American Revolution.
By William Hazelgrove
2020. 280p. Prometheus, $26.95 ( 9781633886148)

It was a simple problem of logistics. George Washington needed cannons to repel the British
reinforcements that would arrive in Boston harbor in the spring of 1776. The only available
cannons were 300 miles away, at Fort Ticonderoga. Somehow, 60 tons of armaments had to be
moved from one place to the other in the dead of winter. Over the objections of the experts in his
war council, Washington turned to an amateur, a former bookseller who had no experience
commanding large forces and no training as an engineer. The author of Wright Brothers, Wrong
Story (2018) does an impressive job of sifting through frequently contradictory primary and
secondary sources to piece together an engaging account of Henry Knox’s “noble train”—an
astonishing assembly of people and animals that brought the artillery to Boston just in time to
avert the possible derailment of the American Revolution. It was an arduous and danger-fraught
expedition, and Hazelgrove makes readers feel as though they were a part of it. This is a fine
example of dramatic, immersive history.

Henry Knox Noble Train

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Born in Richmond, Virginia, and carted back and forth between Virginia and Baltimore, I blame my rootless, restless personality on my father. He was and is a traveling salesman with a keen gift of gab, great wit, a ready joke, and could sell white tennis shoes to coal miners. [read more...]

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