The Strange Death Of Silas Deane Analysis

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James West Davidson and Mark Hamilton Lytle, the authors of “After the Fact - The Art of Historical Detection, Volume 1 Sixth Edition” used “The Strange Death of Silas Deane” as the prologue to their book. Through this reading the authors demonstrate how the everyday view of history as “history is what happened in the past” can be profoundly misleading by going into a detailed examination of an event that “happened in the past” – the death of Silas Deane. The authors feel that the story of Silas Deane’s death is an excellent example to illustrate the difference between “what happened in the past” and what history really is since the event cannot be fully understood by merely transporting facts from the past, courier-like (without distorting or forcing new perspectives on them), to the present. In the first section of the story- An Untimely Death, the authors describe Silas Deane’s background and key events throughout his life at seem relevant to his death. Deane was born in Groton, Connecticut. He went to Yale College, got married twice and eventually entered politics. After serving as a delegate on Connecticut’s Committee of Correspondence, Deane served as a delegate to the first and second Continental Congress. Deane was sent to France by Congress in 1766 (as the first American to represent the united colonies) to purchase military…show more content…
Now that the authors briefed us on both Deane and Bancroft we can now question the theory. Why would Deane wait ten years to commit suicide and why would he go talk to the captian just before doing so? Perhaps Bancroft was afraid that Deane would sell him out once he returned to the United States to reclaim himself and start a new life. Bancroft was an expert on poisons. But if Bancroft wanted Deane dead how did he do it when he wasn’t on the ship. Maybe he had some that worked on the ship poison Deane’s breakfast that

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