Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates

Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates Summary

“Another blockbuster! Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates reads like an edge-of-your-seat, page-turning thriller. You will love this book and also wonder why so few people know this story. No one captures the danger, intrigue, and drama of the American Revolution and its aftermath like Brian Kilmeade and Don Yaeger.” —Brad Thor

This is the little-known story of how a newly indepen­dent nation was challenged by four Muslim powers and what happened when America’s third president decided to stand up to intimidation.
When Thomas Jefferson became president in 1801, America faced a crisis. The new nation was deeply in debt and needed its economy to grow quickly, but its merchant ships were under attack. Pirates from North Africa’s Barbary coast routinely captured American sailors and held them as slaves, demanding ransom and tribute payments far beyond what the new coun­try could afford.
Over the previous fifteen years, as a diplomat and then as secretary of state, Jefferson had tried to work with the Barbary states (Tripoli, Tunis, Algiers, and Morocco). Unfortunately, he found it impossible to negotiate with people who believed their religion jus­tified the plunder and enslavement of non-Muslims. These rogue states would show no mercy—at least not while easy money could be made by extorting the Western powers. So President Jefferson decided to move beyond diplomacy. He sent the U.S. Navy’s new warships and a detachment of Marines to blockade Tripoli—launching the Barbary Wars and beginning America’s journey toward future superpower status.
As they did in their previous bestseller, George Washington’s Secret Six, Kilmeade and Yaeger have transformed a nearly forgotten slice of history into a dramatic story that will keep you turning the pages to find out what happens next. Among the many sus­penseful episodes:
·Lieutenant Andrew Sterett’s ferocious cannon battle on the high seas against the treacherous pirate ship Tripoli.
·Lieutenant Stephen Decatur’s daring night raid of an enemy harbor, with the aim of destroying an American ship that had fallen into the pirates’ hands.

·General William Eaton’s unprecedented five-hundred-mile land march from Egypt to the port of Derne, where the Marines launched a surprise attack and an American flag was raised in victory on foreign soil for the first time.
Few today remember these men and other heroes who inspired the Marine Corps hymn: “From the Halls of Montezuma to the Shores of Tripoli, we fight our country’s battles in the air, on land and sea.” Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Piratesrecaptures this forgot­ten war that changed American history with a real-life drama of intrigue, bravery, and battle on the high seas.

Book Reviews

Peter 14

Interesting5 star

Very interesting part of early American history that was not taught in my schools. A good learning experience.55


A must read for historical enthusiasts5 star

Informative and captivating55

Larry Yeager

Thomas Jefferson & The Tripoli Pirates - by Larry Yeager5 star

It was absolutely a great read and a wonderful history lesson for every American. It's also interesting to note that until we established a global naval presence our new country had little credibility. That hasn't changed in the subsequent centuries......Thank God our new President sees that as crucial to our safety & survival.....55


Informative but lacking4 star

I give the authors credit for shining a light on a little known chapter of American history that is nonetheless pivotal to our country's development. The story, however, is detailed more like a high school text than an adult non-fictional work. There are a lot of chronological details but little of the color and breadth of the individuals and events depicted. It must be acknowledged that a more complete version of these events would not likely find a publisher in our modern-instant gratification-culture. So I'll salute the authors for their efforts at motivating more people to a greater appreciation of how we became the United States of America, and believe that the future holds a more nuanced version of this epoch.45


Really Interesting -Good Read5 star

I'd never heard of these early American conflicts before reading this book. I found it easy to read, interesting, and informative. If only I could get our HS kids to read this; it could spark their interest in these fascinating events of our nation's founding and early years...55


Superficial history2 star

I really wanted to like both this and "George Washington's Secret Six" by the same authors. They are important and engaging episodes in American history. However I found both books to be rather superficial, written with less sophistication than a high school history textbook. The historical personalities are presented as one dimensional and the description of events lacks the detail that would draw a reader in. The complex issues that arise, such as diplomacy versus military action, were not really engaging in a thought-provoking way. Overall the writing and story telling was just too simplistic.25


Captivating5 star

Wow ! Truly puts together the begining and the current 2016 worldwide events. Brings to light the honorable brave men that blazed the path to America's freedom and the capacity to help all who want to live a prosperous life as free women and men. A must read for anyone that can ( read)55

Knapper '68

One complaint4 star

My only criticism is that it had to end! A great read. And as retired naval officer I thoroughly enjoyed learning more about our "birth". Thanks.45


Well written history!5 star

This was a great book that enjoyed from beginning to end. Normally, I can only read a chapter or two at a time, but I couldn't put this book down.55


History does repeat itself5 star

Amazing book that opens your eyes to a vital part of our history that most Americans, myself included, had no idea about. Who would know just how and why our navy, the greatest in the world, was formed. What is also amazing and sad is how two presidents view the same threat. Jefferson decided to stand tall and fight. Another bows to the same enemy that is trying to hold us hostage again. Well done Brian and thanks for making mornings enjoyable!55

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