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Download Bound for Canaan: The Underground Railroad and the War for the Soul of America Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Bound for Canaan: The Underground Railroad and the War for the Soul of America Audiobook, by Fergus M. Bordewich
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (214 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Fergus M. Bordewich Narrator: Fergus M. Bordewich Publisher: HarperAudio Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: September 2005 ISBN:
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An important book of epic scope on America's first racially integrated, religiously inspired movement for change.

The civil war brought to a climax the country's bitter division. But the beginnings of slavery's denouement can be traced to a courageous band of ordinary Americans, black and white, slave and free, who joined forces to create what would come to be known as the Underground Railroad, a movement that occupies as romantic a place in the nation's imagination as the Lewis and Clark expedition. The true story of the Underground Railroad is much more morally complex and politically divisive than even the myths suggest. Against a backdrop of the country's westward expansion arose a fierce clash of values that was nothing less than a war for the country's soul. Not since the American Revolution had the country engaged in an act of such vast and profound civil disobedience that not only challenged prevailing mores but also subverted federal law.

Bound for Canaan tells the stories of men and women like David Ruggles, who invented the black underground in New York City; bold Quakers like Isaac Hopper and Levi Coffin, who risked their lives to build the Underground Railroad; and the inimitable Harriet Tubman. Interweaving thrilling personal stories with the politics of slavery and abolition, Bound for Canaan shows how the Underground Railroad gave birth to this country's first racially integrated, religiously inspired movement for social change.

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Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sparkle | 2/16/2014

    " this book made me so proud to be part of such a country!! There were so many great people willing to help those that needed it even when the National Policy did not allow it. I loved it. Plus it there were so many crazy adventures it told about. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Willis | 2/16/2014

    " I found this to be fascinating and once I started I couldn't really put it down. It describes the evolution of the Underground Railroad from the early 1800's until its end with the Civil War. There are a lot of courageous people (both black and white) who were part of the effort to bring slaves from the South to the North and then onto Canada. It also talks about the effect that the Underground Railroad had on the Civil War, the eventual abolishment of slavery and even its impact on the women's suffragette movement and the Civil Rights movement of the 1960's. The Underground Railroad does have a lot of myth associated with it, but I felt that the book was pretty accurate and not biased in that it tried to present the different characters as they really were. You'll learn a lot about famous people connected in some way with the railroad, such as Harriett Tubman, Frederick Douglas, John Brown, Uncle Tom as well as lesser known individuals who were no less courageous. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jaime Payne | 2/12/2014

    " I thought this book was fabulous. It was meticulously researched and the stories of both known and unknown participants were told in a very compelling way. Some of the reviews I saw saw here complained about the stories starting off and then being picked up later. I loved that about this book, because instead of profiling each of the participants separately,like a series of unrelated short stories within the book, they were weaved together in a chronological order. We got to see the whole picture. While this was happening over here, that was going on over there. We got to see it all. I borrowed it from the library, but I plan to buy a copy because it was the most complete book on the UGRR that I have read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mark Nenadov | 2/10/2014

    " A reasonably good book. That said--I feel the author sort of dropped the ball here. Fergus took an amazing historical topic, and didn't really do justice to it. I feel a central narrative is lacking, and rather than a "story" you get a collection of jaggedly connected stories. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Catherine Mustread | 1/22/2014

    " Great Lakes Book Award General 2005. Interesting look at the facts and some of the fictions about the Underground Railroad and life for escaped slaves prior to and during the Civil War. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Audrey | 12/26/2013

    " I've always been fascinated by the Underground Railroad, and the Quakers in particular. This is a really interesting read that personalizes it in so many ways. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Beth | 12/23/2013

    " Excellent book. Easy to read, lots of information about people who have largely been forgotten. It debunks a lot of myths about the Underground Railroad. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Dave | 12/1/2013

    " Pretty good overview of the underground railroad. I learned some interesting facts, but the delivery was a bit dry at times. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Amy | 11/13/2013

    " Loved it. Very readable history of American slavery and the Underground Railroad. Really relevant to today's political climate, actually. Well worth reading. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Annette | 11/5/2013

    " I've always been fascinated by the underground railroad. Having had family members who were involved in the underground railroad in Illinois in the 1840s and 1950s, I found this book to be very interesting. It contained many new ideas and perspectives that I hadn't heard before. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Chris White | 11/4/2013

    " A real page turner. Not only is this book excellent history, it is an exciting read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Debbie | 10/28/2013

    " Its a slower read but the research was amazing and I loved getting a fuller grasp of the Underground Railroad "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Deborah | 8/30/2013

    " Very comprehensive history of the underground railroad.The story is told in a large part as a series of stories about some of the people involved. Not a dry history at all. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lynne | 6/16/2013

    " I learned a lot about the underground railroad, but it struck me more as a series of lectures than a single narrative. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Brenda | 5/23/2013

    " a great history of the underground railroad and those who were involved. if you enjoy history, it is a must read and will lead you to other relative books. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jeremy | 5/11/2013

    " Great book. I wish I had learned this stuff in seventh grade. So exciting, really one of the best moments of collective resistance to the status quo in America. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kirshaq | 2/12/2013

    " I loved this book. I read this three years ago, but I still have a vivid memory of the stories of the slaves that escaped and those that helped them gain access to the North and to Canada. Great stories of bravery and sticking to what you know is right and wrong. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lesley | 4/29/2012

    " Issues with credibility. Not a good social history for a person attempting to get accurate details, however extremely interesting and gives a general idea of the Underground Railroad was a corroboration between both whites and blacks, not just white abolitionists. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rich Stuart | 1/3/2012

    " I met Bordewich and he spoke to a workshop on the Underground RR I attended at Dickinson College in 2006. Good History and not by a "historian." Well worth it. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Marianne V | 12/13/2011

    " Outstanding story of the struggle; great discussion of the history of the age, and many comparisons to modern day struggles. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Beth | 8/31/2010

    " Excellent book. Easy to read, lots of information about people who have largely been forgotten. It debunks a lot of myths about the Underground Railroad. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Chris | 2/5/2010

    " A real page turner. Not only is this book excellent history, it is an exciting read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Catherine | 5/10/2009

    " Great Lakes Book Award General 2005. Interesting look at the facts and some of the fictions about the Underground Railroad and life for escaped slaves prior to and during the Civil War. "

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About the Author
Author Fergus M. Bordewich

Fergus M. Bordewich is the author of several books, among them America’s Great Debate: Henry Clay, Stephen A. Douglas, and the Compromise That Preserved the Union, which won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize in history. His articles have appeared in many magazines and newspapers. He lives in San Francisco. Visit him at FergusBordewich.com.