Omohundro Institute of Early American History & Culture

Leading Early American Scholarship Since 1943


Unless otherwise indicated, all Institute books are published and distributed by The University of North Carolina Press. For ordering information, call 1.800.848.6224 or fax 1.800.272.6817. Please note that these books can be purchased only through UNC Press and not through the Institute.

Forced Founders

Indians, Debtors, Slaves & the Making of the American Revolution in Virginia

Woody Holton

Paper ISBN 978-0-8078-4784-8

Copyright 1999 by the University of North Carolina Press

A Prize-Winning Book

  Fraunces Tavern Museum Book Award (2000)
  Merle Curti Award, Organization of American Historians (2000)

Visit the University of North Carolina Press web page for this book.

“The Revolution in Virginia is at last explained.... Woody Holton shows most persuasively that armed Indians, rebellious enslaved workers, and democratically active smallholders were just as much active agents of the Revolution as Lord North and Patrick Henry.”

--Rhys Isaac

“In this tour de force, Woody Holton takes on a powerful image: (white) Virginians moving together into independence, united behind a patriot leader class. He shows instead how Virginians of all sorts confronted a shared crisis from their own points of view, how all of them influenced the outcome, and how living through that crisis changed them all.”

--Edward Countryman

“[Holton’s] insights into the interplay among class, race, and ideology produce a complex and persuasive account of Virginia’s path to revolution.... A really well-written book, with vivid descriptive details and clearly presented analysis.”

--Carol Berkin