He commanded privateers during the American Revolution, explored the waters of the Pacific Northwest, and sailed the first vessel to fly the American flag in a Japanese port. He was also the first captain of an American ship to make the dangerous passage around Cape Horn. Brave, charismatic, and fiercely independent, John Kendrick played a significant role in the birth of modern America, and in this electrifying history, Scott Ridley tells the story of his rich life.
Ridley follows Kendrick on his seven-year-odyssey aboard the Lady Washington, from skirmishes in the war for Independence to his exploration of the icy Pacific waters of the Northwest to his daring attempt to steal the market on pearls, wood, and fur from the Spanish and English—a voyage from which Kendrick never returned. With the verve and drama of the acclaimed historical bestsellers of Nathaniel Philbrick, Morning of Fire vividly captures the Revolutionary period—a time of global intrigue and empire, when nations battled to reign supreme in matters of trade, territory, and power and the future of a fleding United States was fragile and uncertain. "In the morning of fire that was rising, as much as any major military campaign or act of government, the odyssey he was to embark on would spark changes that would shape world history and the future of the new nation," Ridley writes.
Moving effortlessly from ship to shore, Ridley shines new light on the towering figures of the age, including Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton, Gouverneur Morris, and George Washington; British Prime Minister William Pitt the younger; Spanish’s foreign minister Jose Monino de Floridablanca, and Diego de Gardoqui. A bold and exciting chronicle of a man and his achievements during a pivotal time in world history, Morning of Fire is popular history at its best.