J. L. BELL is a Massachusetts writer who specializes in (among other things) the start of the American Revolution in and around Boston. He is particularly interested in the experiences of children in 1765-75. He has published scholarly papers and popular articles for both children and adults. He was consultant for an episode of History Detectives, and contributed to a display at Minute Man National Historic Park.

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Monday, March 09, 2020

Hsiung on “The Metabolism of Military Forces,” 10 Mar.

On Tuesday, 10 March, the Massachusetts Historical Society will host a joint session of its Pauline Maier Early American History Seminar and Boston Seminar on Environmental History series.

Prof. David Hsiung of Juniata College will present a paper on “The Metabolism of Military Forces in the War of Independence: Environmental Contexts and Consequences.” Here’s his preview of the work:
In order to function during the War of Independence, armies and navies needed multiple sources of energy—food, firewood, work animals (which also needed food), ammunition, and more. How did specific natural environments, both proximate and distant, fuel those military metabolisms? How did such actions affect those environments in the decades and centuries that followed? This paper is the seed of a book proposal that, when watered by your feedback, will germinate come summertime.
The format of these sessions is that the printed paper is available for subscribers to read in advance and the author offers a brief précis or comments to launch the conversation. At this session, James Rice of Tufts University will then comment on Hsiung’s paper, followed by group discussion. Finally, around 6:45 P.M. there will be refreshments and more discussion.

This seminar is scheduled to start at 5:15 P.M. at the Massachusetts Historical Society on Boylston Street. Register in advance through this page.

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