Book Review: Connecticut Unscathed: Victory in the Great Narragansett War, 1675–1676


by Jason W. Warren

Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2014. Pp. xiv, 250. Illus., maps, notes, biblio., index. $29.95. ISBN: 0806144750

An Untold Part of “King Philip’s War”

Warren (Army War College) argues, quite convincingly, that the received version of what is traditionally called “King Philip’s War” has been told almost entirely from a Massachusetts Bay and Plymouth perspective, and thus omits the significant role of Connecticut in the colonial victory.  

Warren demonstrates that although threatened by spillover from the war, Connecticut’s relatively moderate policies toward the Mohegan and Pequod peoples not only King Philip from gaining these peoples as allies.  In addition, helped by its peaceful relations with its Native American neighbors, Connecticut developed a hybrid European-American military system, modifying European military practice to better suit local conditions.  As a result, Connecticut’s hybrid military system proved very effective against the Narragansett attempt to invade the colony and helped prevent heavier suffering from the war. 

Warren also takes a look at the largely neglected roles of Rhode Island, New York, and the Iroquois nations in the war, another neglected aspect of the conflict. 

In addition to being “revisionist” history in the very best sense of the term, ‘Connecticut Unscathed’, a volume in the excellent Oklahoma series “Campaigns and Commanders”, reminds us that historical memory is often determined by whoever gets into print first.


Reviewer: A.A. Nofi, Review Editor   

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