BOOK DESCRIPTION: Americans have learned in elementary school that their country
was founded by a group of brave, white, largely British Christians.
Modern reinterpretations recognize the contributions of African and
indigenous Americans, but the basic premise has persisted. This
groundbreaking study fundamentally challenges the traditional national
storyline by postulating that many of the initial colonists were
actually of Sephardic Jewish and Muslim Moorish ancestry. Supporting
references include historical writings, ship manifests, wills, land
grants, DNA test results, genealogies, and settler lists that provide
for the first time the Spanish, Hebrew, Arabic, and Jewish origins of
more than 5,000 surnames, the majority widely assumed to be British. By
documenting the widespread presence of Jews and Muslims in prominent
economic, political, financial and social positions in all of the
original colonies, this innovative work offers a fresh perspective on
the early American experience.
Seven years in the making, Jews and Muslims in British Colonial America was published by McFarland Publishers on February 21. It is a followup to the same authors' When Scotland Was Jewish (2007). A third study on crypto-Jews and crypto-Muslims in English and Welsh history under way will complete a series begun by Hirschman and Yates ten years ago.
Read a notice from Rutgers News service from October 2010.
Jews and Muslims in British Colonial America A Genealogical History by Elizabeth Caldwell Hirschman and Donald N. Yates
- Price: $45.00
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An Index to Jews and Muslims in British Colonial America Lookup tool for Hirschman and Yates' book Jews and Muslims in British Colonial America
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Nothing Short of Amazing
A few years ago, I retired from a career as a police detective. Sadly, in retirement, I became a junkie. Yes, I freely admit I've been a genealogy junkie for a number of years now. Recently, my insatiable habit has been fed by a newly discovered connection, that of the books authored by two stalwart researchers Elizabeth Hirschman and Donald Panther-Yates. First, there was When Scotland was Jewish.
And now, I've just finished my first read through of their latest endeavor, Jews and Muslims in British Colonial America.
As a person addicted to family history, I know I share a frustration with like minded souls in that I've not had the time or means to run down every lead or theory that I'd developed while gazing at family trees, naming patterns, ports of emigration, and maps of migration. Suddenly, I've found two fellow travelers, Hirschman and Yates, who have not only done light years worth of investigation for me, they have actually validated many of the theories I'd developed on my own.
When Scotland was Jewish was an eye opening sojourn through the lands of many of my European forefathers. Jews and Muslims in British Colonial America, on the other hand, has brought it all closer to home. It is nothing short of amazing.
I completed my first read through in two sittings and found so many families I recognized from my own amateurish sifting, including: Van Cortland, Van Resselaer, Abrahamsen, Coffin (Cohen), Giles, Gardner, Van Sandt, Ash, Moore, Yeamans, Davis, Swan, and Vann. The list is almost endless. If you are like me, an obsessed archaeologist, rooting around in your past, Jews and Muslims in British Colonial America is your book. I can only hope the next offering of these two authors is as enlightening!
--George Collord Mount Shasta, California