Life and religion at Louisbourg, 1713–1758.
By A. J. B. Johnston. London: McGill-Queen's
University Press, 1984, paperback edition, 1996. Pp. xxxii+227. ISBN 0-7735-1525-9.
The New Orleans Cabildo: Colonial Louisiana's first city government,
1769–1803. By Gilbert
C. Din and John E. Harkins. London: Louisiana State University Press, 1996.
Pp. xvii+330. ISBN 0-8071-2042-1. £42.75.
Revolution, romanticism, and the Afro-Creole protest tradition in Louisiana,
1718–1868. By Caryn
Cossé Bell. London: Louisiana State University Press, 1997. Pp. xv+325. ISBN
Hopeful journeys: German immigration, settlement and political culture in colonial
America, 1717–1775. By Aaron Spencer Fogleman. Pennsylvania: University of Pennsylvania
Press, 1996. Pp. xii+257. ISBN 0-8122-1548-6. £15.95.
Britannia lost the war of American independence but still reigns over the historiography
of colonial North America. This is a problem now that historians of early America have
embarked on an attempt to apply an Atlantic world perspective to colonial
development. The complex web of human, cultural, economic, and political encounters
and exchanges among Europe, Africa, and the Americas spreads well beyond the
familiar terrain of Britain and its thirteen mainland colonies. While the histories of
Indians and enslaved Africans are beginning to find their way into the historical
narrative of early America to challenge the British hegemony, non-British Europeans
remain virtually invisible, except as opponents in the imperial wars that punctuated the
colonial era. These four books illustrate obstacles that must be overcome to remedy this
gap and offer glimpses of the rewards to be gained by drawing the history of continental
Europeans previously treated as peripheral into the centre of the major debates
currently shaping early American history.