GPO Holiday Gift Guide: Publications for the American History Buff

Holly jolly, so good to see you, our little elves! Welcome to our final installation of the 2019 GPO Gift Guide. Do you know someone who loves American history? We have the perfect gifts for them, so take a break from stuffing those stockings, and read on!

To be a true American History buff, you’ve got to know the story of Lewis and Clark! United States Army and the Lewis and Clark Expedition, prepared as part of the Army’s contribution to the observance of the Lewis and Clark Bicentennial Commemoration, is an engaging account of a stirring and significant event in American military heritage. While most Americans have some inkling of the importance of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, officially designated the “Corps of Volunteers for North Western Discovery,” relatively few recognize that it was an Army endeavor from beginning to end.

Blending their fine writing skills, authors David W. Hogan Jr. and Charles E. White tell the unvarnished story of Captain Meriwether Lewis’s and Captain William Clark’s military mission ordered by President Thomas Jefferson. Lewis and Clark, with twenty-seven other soldiers plus four civilians, two of whom were under contract with the War Department, carried out the president’s intent and trekked from the mouth of the Missouri River to the Pacific Coast and back. Hogan’s and White’s memorable study is evocative of the courage and discipline of the Army today.

Another must have for American History lovers? This pocket-sized booklet containing the complete text of the Declaration of Independence and Constitution of the United States. Now, the words of our Founding Fathers will be available right at your American past aficionado’s fingertips. This little booklet is the perfect size to fit in all those stockings you’ve been trying to fill. Toothbrushes and candy are classic stocking stuffers no doubt; add this little surprise in, and you’ll be almost as professional a gift giver as Santa Claus himself … almost, that is.

For someone who needs to dress up their room a little bit, this Philadelphia, 1776 poster offers detailed information about Philadelphia, including its intellectual awakening of the Enlightenment, its budding architecture, and its economic prosperity, during the Revolutionary War. And the poster Continental Soldier in the War for American Independence gives detailed information about how the infantry fought, who the army commanders were, and the nearly impossible conditions American soldiers endured. Plus, once wrapped, these tubular shaped gifts are such a fun addition to the present pile full of perfect boxes. See who can guess what it is before it’s opened!

Then, give your special recipient the gift of knowledge with Defending a New Nation, 1783–1811. This initial volume of the “U.S. Army Campaigns of the War of 1812” series published by the Department of Defense, the Department of the Army, and the Center of Military History describes how the American Army gradually rose to the top during the War of 1812. The booklet tells the story of several military campaigns against Indians in the Northwest Territory, the Army’s role in suppressing the Whiskey Rebellion (1794), the Quasi-War with France and confrontations with Spain, the influence of Jeffersonian politics on the Army’s structure, and the Lewis and Clark Expedition.

Do you have additional gift ideas for someone who can’t get enough American history? Let us know in the comments below. Thanks so much for following our 2019 Holiday Gift Guide. Happy holidays from all of us here at GPO!

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Visit our Retail Store: To buy or order a copy of any print editions from this collection at GPO’s retail bookstore at 710 North Capitol Street NW, Washington, DC 20401, open Monday–Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., except Federal holidays, Call (202) 512-0132 for information or to arrange in-store pick-up(s).

Order by Phone or Email: Call our Customer Contact Center Monday through Friday, 8 am to 4:30 pm Eastern (except US Federal holidays). From US and Canada, call toll-free 1.866.512.1800. DC or International customers call +1.202.512.1800.  Email orders to

Visit a Federal depository library: Search for U.S. Government publications in a nearby Federal depository library. You can find the records for most titles in GPO’s Catalog of U.S. Government Publications.

Find more than a million official Federal Government publications from all three branches at

About the author: Blogger contributor Cat Goergen is the PR Specialist in GPO’s Public Relations office.

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