Early U.S. History Reading List

Important Historiographic Collection

Foner, Eric. The New American History


Recommended Synthesis: Taylor, Alan, American Colonies: The Settling of North America.

  • Bailyn, Bernard, Atlantic History: Concept and Contours (2005)
  • Berkin, Carol. First Generations: Women in Colonial America
  • Berlin, Ira. Many Thousands Gone: The First Two Centuries of Slavery in North America
  • Brown, Kathleen. Good Wives, Nasty Wenches, and Anxious Patriarchs: Gender, Race, and Power in Colonial Virginia
  • Calloway, Colin. New Worlds for All: Indians, Europeans, and the Remaking of Early America
  • Cronon, William. Changes in the Land
  • Greene, Jack. Pursuits of Happiness
  • Greven, Philip. Four Generations: Population, Land and Family in Colonial Andover, Massachusetts
  • Gutierrez, Ramon. When Jesus Came the Corn Mothers Went Away
  • Isaac, Rhys, The Transformation of Virginia
  • Jill Lepore, The Name of War: King Philip's War and the Origins of American Identity (1998)
  • Morgan, Edmund, American Slavery American Freedom
  • Norton, Mary Beth. Founding Mothers & Fathers: Gendered Power and the Forming of American Society
  • Richter, Daniel. Facing East from Indian Country: A Native History of Early America
  • White, Richard, The Middle Ground

Revolution/Early Republic

Recommended Synthesis American Revolution: Robert Middlekauf, The Glorious Cause: The American Revolution, 1763-1789

Recommended Synthesis Early Republic: Gordon Wood, Empire of Liberty: A History of the Early Republic, 1789-1815

  • Berkin, Carol, A Brilliant Solution: Inventing the American Constitution (2003)
  • Bailyn, Bernard. Ideological Origins of the American Revolution
  • Holton, Woody, Unruly Americans and the Origins of the Constitution (2007)
  • Kerber, Linda. Women of the Republic: Intellect and Ideology in Revolutionary America
  • McCoy, Drew. The Elusive Republic
  • Nash, Gary. The Urban Crucible: The Northern Seaports and the Origins of the American Revolution
  • Rothman, Adam, Slave Country (2007)
  • Sellers, Charles. The Market Revolution
  • Taylor, George Rogers. The Transportation Revolution
  • Ulrich, Laurel Thatcher. A Midwife's Tale: The Life of Martha Ballard, Based on Her Diary, 1785-1812
  • Waldstreicher, David, In the Midst of Perpetual Fetes: The Making of American Nationalism, 1776-1820 (1997)
  • Wilentz, Sean. Chants Democratic: New York City and the Rise of the American Working Class, 1788-1850
  • Wood, Gordon. Creation of the American Republic
  • Young, Alfred, The Shoemaker and the Tea Party
  • Zagarri, Rosemarie, Revolutionary Backlash: Women and Politics in the Early American Republic (2008)


Recommended Synthesis Antebellum: Howe, Daniel Walker. What Hath God Wrought: The Transformation of America, 1815-1848 (Oxford)

  • Boyer, Paul. Urban Masses, Moral Order
  • Feller, Daniel. The Jacksonian Promise: America, 1815 to 1840
  • Genovese, Eugene. Roll Jordan Roll
    Levine, Lawrence. Black Culture and Black Consciousness
  • Litwack, Leon. North of Slavery
  • Walters, Ronald. American Reformers, 1815-1860