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Terror to the Wicked: America's First Trial by Jury That Ended a War and Helped to Form a Nation

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A brutal killing, an all-out manhunt, and a riveting account of the first murder trial in U.S. history--set in the 1600s in colonial New England against the backdrop of the Pequot War (between the Pequot tribe and the colonists of Massachusetts Bay), an explosive trial whose outcome changed the course of history, ended a two-year war, and brought about a peace that allo A brutal killing, an all-out manhunt, and a riveting account of the first murder trial in U.S. history--set in the 1600s in colonial New England against the backdrop of the Pequot War (between the Pequot tribe and the colonists of Massachusetts Bay), an explosive trial whose outcome changed the course of history, ended a two-year war, and brought about a peace that allowed the colonies to become a full-blown nation. The year: 1638. The setting: Providence, Plymouth Colony. A young Nipmuc tribesman, returning home from trading beaver pelts, is fatally stabbed in a robbery in the woods near Plymouth Colony, by a white runaway servant and fellow rogues. The young tribesman, fighting for his life, is able, with his final breaths, to reveal the details of the attack to Providence's governor, Roger Williams. A frantic manhunt by the fledgling government of Plymouth ensues, followed by the convening of the first trial, with Plymouth's governor Thomas Prence presiding as judge. The jury: local settlers (white) whose allegiance seems more likely to be with the accused than with the murdered (a native) . . . Tobey Pearl, piecing together a fascinating narrative through original research and first-rate detective work, re-creates in detail the full and startling, pivotal moment in pre-revolutionary America, as she examines the evolution of our nascent civil liberties and the role of the jury as a safeguard against injustice.


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A brutal killing, an all-out manhunt, and a riveting account of the first murder trial in U.S. history--set in the 1600s in colonial New England against the backdrop of the Pequot War (between the Pequot tribe and the colonists of Massachusetts Bay), an explosive trial whose outcome changed the course of history, ended a two-year war, and brought about a peace that allo A brutal killing, an all-out manhunt, and a riveting account of the first murder trial in U.S. history--set in the 1600s in colonial New England against the backdrop of the Pequot War (between the Pequot tribe and the colonists of Massachusetts Bay), an explosive trial whose outcome changed the course of history, ended a two-year war, and brought about a peace that allowed the colonies to become a full-blown nation. The year: 1638. The setting: Providence, Plymouth Colony. A young Nipmuc tribesman, returning home from trading beaver pelts, is fatally stabbed in a robbery in the woods near Plymouth Colony, by a white runaway servant and fellow rogues. The young tribesman, fighting for his life, is able, with his final breaths, to reveal the details of the attack to Providence's governor, Roger Williams. A frantic manhunt by the fledgling government of Plymouth ensues, followed by the convening of the first trial, with Plymouth's governor Thomas Prence presiding as judge. The jury: local settlers (white) whose allegiance seems more likely to be with the accused than with the murdered (a native) . . . Tobey Pearl, piecing together a fascinating narrative through original research and first-rate detective work, re-creates in detail the full and startling, pivotal moment in pre-revolutionary America, as she examines the evolution of our nascent civil liberties and the role of the jury as a safeguard against injustice.

51 review for Terror to the Wicked: America's First Trial by Jury That Ended a War and Helped to Form a Nation

  1. 5 out of 5

    David

    In 1638 four indentured servants attempt to make their way from Plymouth Colony to New Amsterdam. Along the way they encounter a native tribesman and kill him. At a time when the relations between natives and colonists are beginning to devolve into the tragedy for the natives to come, the several colonies agree to sit a jury to hear evidence, some of which is provided by the natives. Pearl does a great job of describing the world of this time. He adds context and fleshes out the players, many of In 1638 four indentured servants attempt to make their way from Plymouth Colony to New Amsterdam. Along the way they encounter a native tribesman and kill him. At a time when the relations between natives and colonists are beginning to devolve into the tragedy for the natives to come, the several colonies agree to sit a jury to hear evidence, some of which is provided by the natives. Pearl does a great job of describing the world of this time. He adds context and fleshes out the players, many of whom are well known in our nation’s history: Standish and Williams for example. As we grapple with the more negative aspects of our nation’s history, this book sheds light on an episode mixed with impending doom and with uplifting hope.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Shawna Corner

    I only wanted to read about the trial, not about the pilgrims settling in Plymouth and the Pequot war.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Alicia P

    Engagingly written telling of the first jury trial in Plymouth Colony. Background info was excellent. Only quibbles were odd title and a surplus of flowery adjectives.

  4. 5 out of 5

    David Johnson

  5. 5 out of 5

    eileen m henthorne

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    Kathleen C

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    Ryan Tresser

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    Sivani

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    Rachel

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    Lindsay Miraglia

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    JANE CURRIER

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    Laurie Markoff

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    Joseph Thomas

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    Bill

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    TEELOCK Mithilesh

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    Michelle Folan

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    James M. Hilton

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    Gregory Linton

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    Amy Lee

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    Christine Hensley

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    William Lexner

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    Liz Sullivan

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    Andrea Engle

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    MBP

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    Olive Fellows (abookolive)

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    Rebecca Kiefer

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    DanaMAnonfiction

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    Amy Sturgis

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    librarian4Him02

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    Morgan Fenton

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    Elia

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    Tera Slawson

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  48. 5 out of 5

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    Charlie

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  51. 5 out of 5

    Mortisha Cassavetes

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