Revolutionary War Author and Historian
Norman Desmarais, professor emeritus at Providence College, lives in Lincoln, RI. He is an active re-enactor, a member of the 2nd Rhode Island Regiment, Le Regiment Bourbonnais, and the Brigade of the American Revolution. He is editor-in-chief of The Brigade Dispatch, the journal the Brigade of the American Revolution and the author of Battlegrounds of Freedom, the 6-volume The Guide to the American Revolutionary War, and The Guide to the American Revolutionary War at Sea and Overseas (in preparation) which covers more than 10,500 actions. He has also translated the Gazette Françoise, the French newspaper published in Newport, RI by the French fleet that brought the Count de Rochambeau and 5800 French troops to America in July 1780. It is the first known service newspaper published by an expeditionary force.
The Guide to the American Revolutionary War at Sea chronicles more than 10,500 actions -- far more than other naval histories. Vol. 7: 1782, 1783 and Overseas documents 1809 engagements, 1430 which occurred in 1782, 263 which occurred in 1783 and 116 which occurred overseas. It ends in June 1783 after the signing of the peace treaty and includes some actions fought after the signing of the peace treaty which resulted in the release of prisoners when the participants learned of the cessation of hostilities. It includes the actions of the Continental and state navies, the French and British navies, the actions of American and British privateers and those of their allies.
In addition to the engagements in the Atlantic Ocean, along the American and European coasts and in the West Indies, there are accounts of actions in the South Pacific, the Mediterranean and North Seas and the Indian Ocean.
The accounts are arranged chronologically and are drawn from letters, diaries, personal journals, pension applications, ship’s logs, prize lists, Admiralty court and auction records and newspaper accounts. The chronological arrangement shows what was happening elsewhere at sea at the same time and gives the reader a broader scope of understanding.
Each entry provides the date, location and narrative of the action along with references to sources for further research. Many entries include anecdotes, personal accounts and human interest stories.
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by Norm Desmarais