History professor to speak at library

ALLENTOWN – Jake Ruddiman, the author of “Becoming Men of Some Consequence: Youth and Military Service in the Revolutionary War,” will present a lecture at the Allentown Public Library, 16 S. Main St., at 2 p.m. Dec. 3.

His book is included the March 2017 Journal of the American Revolution’s “100 Best American Revolution Books of All Time,” according to a press release.

Ruddiman is an associate professor of early American history at Wake Forest University, Winton-Salem, N.C. He is a 1996 graduate of Allentown High School.  Ruddiman graduated from Princeton University in 2000 with degree in history. He was awarded a doctorate in history from Yale University in 2010, according to the press release.

He writes, “Early America draws me as a teacher and historian because it stands as a hinge between eras. It mixes the familiar and foreign, mythic and controversial, foundational and revolutionary.

“The era’s actors point us toward questions of human experience: how did people build lives, communities and meaning? And the American Revolution – boldly begun but never quite finished – pushes us to engage with its triumphs and failures, demanding we challenge ourselves to seek what still remains to be done.”

His 2014 book, “Becoming Men of Some Consequence: Youth and Military Service in the Revolutionary War,” explores the lives and choices of young men in the military maelstrom of the American Revolution, according to the press release.

His current research explores the Revolutionary era in the Southeast. One project examines the place of slavery and enslaved people in soldiers’ travel writing during the War of American Independence.

Ruddiman will share soldiers’ stories from the book and his current research projects with implications to the historical understanding of the American Revolution. He will take questions and will be available for to sign copies of his book, according to the press release.

The Dec. 3 event is free and open to the public. Reservations are requested and may be made by calling the library at 609-259-7565.