Ambrose To America Essay

1751 words - 8 pages

Living from 1936 to 2002, Ambrose published many great historical works. Perhaps his greatest work was finished months before he passed away, as he finished writing one of his last books, To America: Personal Reflections of an Historian. This book was his final goodbye to the country he so dearly loved. The topics he covers in this book range from the beginning of the Founding Fathers to World War Two to the turn of the millennium. Throughout his life, he was always fascinated with militaries and war. This book reflects his perspective on matters regarding the history of America and one message he portrays was his fascination with war, the military, and the men who lead or served in battle, such as Dwight Eisenhower. This also exposes Ambrose’s great patriotism for his country. He portrays his messages by using many descriptive adjectives and an upbeat style of speech as well writing about achievements he has done throughout his life, for instance launching a museum in commemoration for World War Two veterans. Ambrose was also very influenced by historical and biographical factors such as his Father, the period in which he grew up in, and of American figures.
Stephen Ambrose speaks much on wars that America was directly or indirectly involved in. In one chapter, The Legacy of World War Two, he saw war, for the US and the Allies, in World War Two, as “not to conquer, not to enslave, not to destroy, but to liberate” (Ambrose 120) He goes on to say that “the Marshall Plan was the most generous act in human history.” (Ambrose 121) The Marshall Plan created NATO, the Berlin Air Lift and Ambrose swimming in patriotism claimed it was “the American spirit, more than American productive power, that made it so.” (Ambrose 121) He continues his eccentric patriotism by stating a strong and definite statement in which “The generation who fought World War 2 has done more to spread freedom and prosperity than any preceding generation.” (Ambrose 123) He writes confidently and is clearly certain of how his country handled these situations in a justified, civilized way. He truly encourages and advocates the idea that through the American spirit and helping hand lent to the enemies and allied countries that “we can do it, we can rebuild Europe and hold back the Red Army and avoid World War 3- was the great gift of the New World to the Old World” (Ambrose 124), and when one looks back on the time, America did in fact aid Europe in closing the war and restoring peace that’s still lasting today.
Through the table of contents, it is easily to notice that nine out of nineteen of the chapters are about wars and battles fought in American history. In one of the earlier chapters, The Battle of New Orleans, he focuses on Andrew Jackson and the War of 1812. Theodore Roosevelt is frequently quoted in this chapter, describing the soldiers and “Old Hickory”. Ambrose re-counts the speech of Jackson on the battle site, “he praised his troops for their ‘undaunted courage,...

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