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Silent Heroes
A Morning in June
This Destructive War
Hell in An Loc
Flying with the Fifteenth Air Force
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A Dark and Bloody Ground
Obama on the Home Front
New York's War of 1812
The Battle for Western Europe, Fall 1944

The American Military FrontiersThe American Military Frontiers

The United States Army in the West, 1783-1900

Robert Wooster

Winner of the 2010 Robert M. Utley Award from the Western History Association

Narrated by Jack Chekijian

Available from Audible

Book published by University of New Mexico Press

As the fledgling nation looked west to the land beyond the Appalachian Mountains, it turned to the army to advance and defend its national interests. Clashing with Spain, Britain, France, Mexico, the Confederacy, and Indians in this pursuit of expansion, the army's failures and successes alternately delayed and hastened western migration. Roads, river improvements, and railroads, often constructed or facilitated by the army, further solidified the nation's presence as it reached the Pacific Ocean and expanded north and south to the borders of Canada and Mexico. Western military experiences thus illustrate the dual role played by the United States Army in insuring national security and fostering national development.

Robert Wooster's study examines the fundamental importance of military affairs to social, economic, and political life throughout the borderlands and western frontiers. Integrating the work of other military historians as well as tapping into a broad array of primary materials, Wooster offers a multifaceted narrative that will shape our understanding of the frontier military experience, its relationship with broader concerns of national politics, and its connection to major themes and events in American history.

Robert Wooster is Regents Professor of history at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi. He is author or editor of ten books on the army, the West, and the Civil War, most recently Frontier Crossroads: Fort Davis and the West.


“This impressive volume, part of the 'Histories of the American Frontier' series, sums up and advances understanding of the US Army in the West....Highly recommended. ”


“Wooster deserves an appreciative audience for this work, among both lay readers and specialists alike.”

Great Plains Quarterly

“Robert Wooster...has achieved in one volume what not other historian has. The scholarship is sound throughout, and the documentation that is drawn from diverse manuscript collections, the National Archives, published government reports, and period newspapers adds to the originality and authenticity of the study. The major national themes raised in this book provide important vantage points for sophisticated discussion, and, at the same time, the anecdotal examples chosen for illustration of these points help provide a truly human face to the complex story. ”

The Journal of Arizona History

“Professional scholars and laymen alike, who share a passion for military history—and particularly the American West—should hasten to add this volume to their collections. ”

Military History of the West

“Historians of the frontier, American West, and United States military will find gems of insight in its pages. ”

American Historical Review

“An acknowledged authority on the field of the United States Army and the frontier, Robert Wooster provides an effective and updated survey of the army's activities in the changing borderlands of the United States.”

Utah Historical Quarterly

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University Press Audiobooks