George Washington at WAR — 1776  by John Koopman III

Second edition – now illustrated!

In this fast-paced, action-packed, historical novel on the early campaigns of the American Revolution, history buff and Revolutionary War re-enactor John Koopman tells the stories of the Siege of Boston and the Battle of Harlem Heights from the soldier’s point of view. Koopman skillfully portrays the crucial maneuvers of the battles while providing insight into the thoughts and emotions of the participants, from the foot soldier to General George Washington himself. The book gives readers a close look at George Washington’s character and his skills as a military strategist, battlefield general, and equestrian. The Washington portrayed here is not the gray-haired figure so familiar to many Americans but a vital, athletic man at the height of his powers. Readers will also learn of Washington’s great affection for horses — his favorite warhorse, Nelson, in particular — and the crucial role horses and horsemanship played in the war.

The exploits of three groups of Continental soldiers in Washington’s Army are also featured. The Abbot brothers of Andover, Massachusetts, joined the fight to avenge the death of their older brother, who was killed at the battle of Bunker Hill. Sergeant Justus Bellamy of Cheshire, Connecticut, shows bold leadership to the men of his company and also suffers a great personal loss.  Lieutenant Colonel Thomas Knowlton of Ashford, Connecticut, leads his Rangers on dangerous missions. The men who made up the Continental army were not the professional equivalent of their British counterparts, who often referred to the Patriots as Rabble. As Koopman’s story shows, however, they honed their own unique fighting style as they became soldiers. 

Although George Washington at War — 1776 does not read like a history book, its contents are authenticated by the author’s careful research, clearly documented research. Extensive footnotes are provided for those wishing to dig deeper into the period. The book will be an engaging, informative read for both general readers and history buffs.

Here are two examples showing the quality of the illustrations by Sariah Clonts that accompany each chapter:

Cover:  Painting by Don Troiani,

Praise for George Washington at War — 1776

“John Koopman’s George Washington at War – 1776 is one of these rare products that mixes sound, thoroughly researched history into historical fiction to provide the human facets of the American War of Independence that all too often get lost in traditional accounts of that conflict. Narrated as only an expert horseman – and long-time Washington impersonator – such as Koopman could tell the story as we anxiously accompany the commander-in-chief on his daring escape from a detachment of the 17th Light Dragoons.”

Robert A. Selig, Ph.D.

Scholar, author, lecturer, and project historian for the National Park Service’s Washington–Rochambeau Revolutionary Route National Historic Trail