Lecture – “The Compleat Victory: Saratoga and the American Revolution”
November 9, 2022 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Join us on Wednesday, November 9 from 7 to 8 PM at the Washington Crossing Historic Park Visitor Center for a lecture with Kevin J. Weddle on his book, The Compleat Victory: Saratoga and the American Revolution. This book is the recipient of the 9th annual , Gilder Lehrman Prize for Military History which is bestowed by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History in recognition of the best book in the field of military history published in English during the previous calendar year.
In the late summer and fall of 1777, after two years of indecisive fighting on both sides, the outcome of the American War of Independence hung in the balance. Having successfully expelled the Americans from Canada in 1776, the British were determined to end the rebellion and devised what they believed a war-winning strategy: sending General John Burgoyne south to rout the Americans and take Albany. When British forces captured Fort Ticonderoga on New York’s Lake Champlain with unexpected ease in July of 1777, it looked as if it was a matter of time before they would break the rebellion in the North. Less than three and a half months later, however, a combination of the Continental Army and militia forces commanded by Major General Horatio Gates and inspired by the heroics of Benedict Arnold, forced Burgoyne to surrender his entire army. The American victory at Saratoga—described by one general as “the Compleat“—stunned the world and changed the course of the war. In the end, British plans were undone by a combination of distance, geography, logistics, and an underestimation of American leadership and fighting ability.
Weddle will discuss some of the key events and themes from this pivotal event in US history based on accounts detailed in his new book, The Compleat Victory: Saratoga and the American Revolution (Oxford University Press, 2021). The Chair of the judging committee for the Gilder Lehrman Military History Prize said this of the book: “The object of this prize has been to reward scholarly, well-written, accessible and ground-breaking military history, and the judges had no hesitation in awarding this year’s award to Kevin Weddle’s masterly book. The judges were astonished at the way Weddle kept up the tension throughout, despite everyone knowing the eventual outcome.”
The talk will be held in-person and will also be livestreamed. Books will be available for purchase and a book signing with the author will be held after the talk. The event is free to attend but registration is required. Click here to register.
This event is hosted by the David Center for the American Revolution at the American Philosophical Society.