Skip to main content
Back to Results
Cover image of Being American in Europe, 1750–1860
Cover image of Being American in Europe, 1750–1860
Share this Title:

Being American in Europe, 1750–1860

Daniel Kilbride

Publication Date
Binding Type
Request Exam CopyRequest Review Copy

When eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Americans made their Grand Tour of Europe, what did they learn about themselves?

While visiting Europe In 1844, Harry McCall of Philadelphia wrote to his cousin back home of his disappointment. He didn’t mind Paris, but he preferred the company of Americans to Parisians. Furthermore, he vowed to be "an American, heart and soul" wherever he traveled, but "particularly in England." Why was he in Europe if he found it so distasteful? After all, travel in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries was expensive, time consuming, and frequently uncomfortable…

When eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Americans made their Grand Tour of Europe, what did they learn about themselves?

While visiting Europe In 1844, Harry McCall of Philadelphia wrote to his cousin back home of his disappointment. He didn’t mind Paris, but he preferred the company of Americans to Parisians. Furthermore, he vowed to be "an American, heart and soul" wherever he traveled, but "particularly in England." Why was he in Europe if he found it so distasteful? After all, travel in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries was expensive, time consuming, and frequently uncomfortable.

Being American in Europe, 1750–1860 tracks the adventures of American travelers while exploring large questions about how these experiences affected national identity. Daniel Kilbride searched the diaries, letters, published accounts, and guidebooks written between the late colonial period and the Civil War. His sources are written by people who, while prominent in their own time, are largely obscure today, making this account fresh and unusual.

Exposure to the Old World generated varied and contradictory concepts of American nationality. Travelers often had diverse perspectives because of their region of origin, race, gender, and class. Americans in Europe struggled with the tension between defining the United States as a distinct civilization and situating it within a wider world. Kilbride describes how these travelers defined themselves while they observed the politics, economy, morals, manners, and customs of Europeans. He locates an increasingly articulate and refined sense of simplicity and virtue among these visitors and a gradual disappearance of their feelings of awe and inferiority.

Jump to
Quick Add
Being American in Europe, 1750–1860

Daniel Kilbride

Publication Date
Binding Type
Request Exam CopyRequest Review Copy
Related

Related Books

Cover image of Joel Barlow
Joel Barlow

Richard Buel Jr.

$40.00
Quick Add
Joel Barlow

Richard Buel Jr.

Publication Date
Binding Type
Preorder
Cover image of Replayed
Replayed

Henry Lowood
edited by Raiford Guins
with a foreword by Matthew G. Kirschenbaum and an interview by T. L. Taylor

$50.00
Quick Add
Replayed

Henry Lowood
edited by Raiford Guins
with a foreword by Matthew G. Kirschenbaum and an interview by T. L. Taylor

Publication Date: June 6, 2023
Binding Type
Preorder
Cover image of Making Machines of Animals
Making Machines of Animals

Neal A. Knapp

$60.00
Quick Add
Making Machines of Animals

Neal A. Knapp

Publication Date: May 9, 2023
Binding Type
Preorder
Cover image of A Centaur in London
A Centaur in London

Fabian Kraemer

$60.00
Quick Add
A Centaur in London

Fabian Kraemer

Publication Date: April 25, 2023
Binding Type
Preorder
Cover image of The Interlopers
The Interlopers

Vera Keller

$60.00
Quick Add
The Interlopers

Vera Keller

Publication Date: April 18, 2023
Binding Type
Reviews

Reviews

Being American in Europe confirms and provides a new perspective on older scholarship.

Kilbride's book offers a lucidly written and valuable contribution to our understanding of the relationship between the United States and Europe, and the development of American identity in this period.

Kilbride has given us an impressive work of intellectual and cultural history that will prove key to understanding the creation of American identity and its sources.

Daniel Kilbride's study provides much needed insight into an aspect of American history that is relatively unexplored.

Being American in Europe is a valuable contribution to the literature because it pulls a diverse array of travelers (many of whom are already well-known to historians in other contexts) into one analysis in order to reveal the fundamental questions of national identity that travel to Europe posed. Like the insights gained by the travelers he studies, Kilbride's book helps us better understand the United States as an emerging nation in the Atlantic world.

See All Reviews
About

Book Details

Publication Date
Status
Available
Trim Size
6
x
9
Pages
248
ISBN
9781421408996
Illustration Description
1 map
Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Routes of Four American Travelers in Europe
Introduction
1. "English association," 1750–1783
2. "The blows my republican principles receive are forcible," 1783–1820
3. "What we Anglo

Acknowledgments
Routes of Four American Travelers in Europe
Introduction
1. "English association," 1750–1783
2. "The blows my republican principles receive are forcible," 1783–1820
3. "What we Anglo-Americans understand by the significant word comfort," 1821–1850
4. "The manifold advantages resulting from our glorious Union," 1840s–1861
Conclusion
Notes
Essay on Sources
Index

Author Bio
Daniel Kilbride
Featured Contributor

Daniel Kilbride

Daniel Kilbride is an associate professor of history at John Carroll University in Ohio. He is the author of An American Aristocracy: Southern Planters in Antebellum Philadelphia.