The Francis Parkman Page

( 1823-1893 )


Major Works

William R. Taylor selected and annotated the texts for The Oregon Trail, The Conspiracy of Pontiac (1991); David Levin selected and annotated the texts for France and England in North America, Volumes I and II (1983), all for Library of America (New York). Also, Samuel Eliot Morison selected and edited The Parkman Reader, Boston: Little, Brown, 1955.

The Oregon Trail (1847). The record of Parkman's trip west to see the native Americans at first hand. His later books depended in part on his familiarity with the original peoples of this continent.
The Conspiracy of Pontiac (1851). His first history; it comes chronologically after the events of all his other historical works.
Vassall Morton ( 1856 ). A novel.
The Book of Roses (1866). A subject on which Parkman was an expert.
The Jesuits in North America (1867). For all of Parkman's anti-religiosity, he could write movingly about the sacrificial lives of these early missionaries.
The Discovery of the Great West (1869).
The Old Regime in Canada (1874).
Count Frontenac and New France under Louis XIV (1877).
Montcalm and Wolfe (1884).
A Half Century of Conflict (1892).
The Journals of Francis Parkman. Two Volumes. Edited by Mason Wade. New York: Harper, 1947.
The Letters of Francis Parkman. Two Volumes. Edited by Wilbur R. Jacobs. Norman: U of Oklahoma P, 1960.

About Parkman

Charles Haight Farnham, A Life of Francis Parkman. Boston: Little, Brown, 1900.
On-Line Book: David Levin's History as Romantic Art. Deals not only with Parkman but with other nineteenth-century historians as well. It is great good fortune to have this fine study on line (U of Virginia server).
Mason Wade, Francis Parkman: Heroic Historian. Hamden CT: Archon, 1972. Parkman was heroic because he wrote his histories under the most adverse circumstances.

from: The San Antonio College LitWeb Francis Parkman Page


While Microsoft Encarta 1996 no longer contains a separate entry for Francis Parkman, Microsoft Encarta 1993 had a caption that in its brevity and unevenness (e.g., regarding the author's Western experience) is remarkable:

Parkman, Francis (1823-93), American historian, an authoritative historical writer on the struggle between France and England for dominance in colonial America. He was born in Boston. After graduating from Harvard University in 1844, he studied law for two years. He then traveled in Europe and returned to explore the American West, living at times among the Sioux and other Indian tribes. The hardships he endured seriously injured his health; yet in spite of this and his defective eyesight, Parkman established a reputation as an authority in his field.

His journey on the overland route from western Missouri to Oregon is recorded in The Oregon Trail (1849). In 1851 The History of the Conspiracy of Pontiac appeared. His chief works, a connected series, should be read in the following order: The Pioneers of France in the New World (1865), The Jesuits in North America in the Seventeenth Century (1867), The Old Régime in Canada (1874), La Salle and the Discovery of the Great West (1869), Count Frontenac and New France Under Louis XIV (1877), Montcalm and Wolfe (1884), and A Half-Century of Conflict (1892). Parkman also published Historic Handbook of the Northern Tour (1885) and numerous articles.

"Parkman, Francis," Microsoft (R) Encarta. Copyright (c) 1993 Microsoft Corporation. Copyright (c) 1993 Funk & Wagnall's Corporation

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