Stephen Ambrose, born Stephen Edward Ambrose

Ambrose, born Stephen Edward Ambrose

American Historian and Biographer

Author Quotes

Immigrants do more than help us win our wars, or set up cleaning shops or ethnic restaurants.

Jefferson could write, I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just.

No, I realize that you didn?t think of it! But I did.

The first man stepped up to the open door. All the men had been ordered to look out at the horizon, not straight down, for obvious psychological reasons.

Through the late spring [1975] we made our way up the Missouri River, stopping at Lewis and Clark campsites along the way. We canoed the river at every stop. Each night around the fire, we would read aloud from the journals.

Who today is willing to say that Texas and California and the remainder of the Southwest would be better off if they were governed by Mexico?

Arthur Moore describes the results: Whole forests of oak, beech, poplar, maple, and walnut, standing since Columbus, collapsed ? from girdling and deadening with fire. There was in the heart of the new race no more consideration for the trees than for the game until the best of both were gone; steel conquered the West but chilled the soul of the conqueror. This assault on nature, than which few more frightful spectacles could be imagined, owed much to sheer need, but something also to a compelling desire to destroy conspicuous specimens of the fauna and flora of the wilderness. The origin of this mad destructiveness may be in doubt, but there is no question about its effect. The Ohio Valley today has neither trees nor animals to recall adequately the splendor of the garden of the Indian which the white man found and used so profligately.

During the Second World War, the Germans took four years to build the Atlantic Wall. On four beaches it held up the Allies for about an hour; at Omaha it held up the U.S. for less than one day. The Atlantic Wall must therefore be regarded as one of the greatest blunders in military history.

In 1945, there were more people killed, more buildings destroyed, more high explosives set off, more fires burning than before or since.

Jefferson owned slaves. He did not believe that all were created equal. He was a racist.

Nor did the Americans find it necessary to wage a ruthless campaign. As has been mentioned previously, both sides respected

The German today is like the June Bride. He knows he is going to get it, but he doesn't know how big it is going to be.

To be a slaveholder meant one had to regard the African American as inferior in every way.

Winning the Revolutionary War, or the Civil War, or World War II were the turning points in our history, the sine qua non of our forward progress.

As a people, we have wrestled with Vietnam's legacy for many years, as was and is our duty. Now we want to remind ourselves of what we have done right. Our involvement in World War II was us doing right.

Eisenhower had the clearest blue eyes. He would fix them on you. In my every interview with him, he would lock his eyes on to mine and keep them there.

In 1993 we invited the smartest people we knew to join us for a Missouri River trip, a July Fourth commute at Lemma and a horseback crossing on the Lolo Trail. I was getting ready to write Undaunted Courage and wanted to know what questions popped into bright people's minds after a day on the trail and a reading of the journals around the campfire.

Johnson had been the most powerful man in the world, yet the North Vietnamese and the Vietcong had resisted, overcome his power, broken his will.

Nothing is inevitable in life. People make choices, and those choices have results, and we all live with the results.

The great wars of the 20th Century made it into the worst Century ever.

To have some parts flowing free again . . . with deer grazing on its banks . . . ducks and geese raising their young in the backwaters . . . eddies and twists and turns for canoeists . . . and fishing opportunities such as Lewis and Clark enjoyed . . . would be the finest possible tribute to the men of the Expedition, and a priceless gift for our children.

Within Easy Company they had made the best friends they had ever had, or would ever have. They were prepared to die for each other; more important, they were prepared to kill for each other.

As I have always held it a crime to anticipate evils I will believe it a good comfortable road until I am compelled to believe differently.

Eisenhower is my choice as the American of the 20th Century. Of all the men I've studied and written about, he is the brightest and the best.

In America, Jefferson noted with approval, women knew their place.

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Ambrose, born Stephen Edward Ambrose
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American Historian and Biographer