Continental soldier's diary of the Siege of Yorktown

Siege of Yorktown painting

I saw this article in the Washington Post this morning and thought it might of interest to OUTLANDER fans, as we wait for Book 10.

A diary written by a Continental Army officer, Captain James Duncan, describing the events leading up to the battle of Yorktown in 1781, was sold at Sotheby's recently for upwards of $300,000.

From the article:

“To have an English-language contemporary journal written by a Continental [Army] soldier … is exceptionally rare,” Selby Kiffer, Sotheby’s international senior specialist for books and manuscripts, said before the auction.

“The content, the fact that it was about such a pivotal event, that fact that it just reads wonderfully — this gripping, first-person narrative — that fact that it’s still in the family of Captain Duncan,” he said.


Duncan’s diary “is very much the narrative of a citizen soldier,” he said. “It shows us, I believe, that the Revolutionary War was won by people like Duncan and people like his comrades, the ones who were being killed or maimed by cannonball.”

Kiffer added: “It’s one thing to read a letter from Washington in which he’s discussing strategy. Here is war stripped down to its real horrors.”

If you want to read Captain Duncan's account for yourself, check out the Sotheby's page describing the diary. I thought it was fascinating!

Knowing that we will very likely see the battle of Yorktown in Book 10, I mentioned this to Diana Gabaldon on TheLitForum, and she said,

Wow! What a totally cool document! Thanks for telling me about it!

Who knows, maybe some of the details from Captain Duncan's account will end up being included in Book 10?

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