Cromwell's Convicts

The Death March from Dunbar 1650

John Sadler

On 3 September 1650 Oliver Cromwell won a decisive victory over the Scottish Covenanters at the Battle of Dunbar - a victory that is often regarded as his finest hour - but the aftermath, the forced march of 5,000 prisoners from the battlefield to Durham, was one of the cruellest episodes in his career.
Date Published :
April 2020
Publisher :
Pen and Sword
Contributor(s) :
Rosie Serdiville
Language:
English
Illustration :
20 black and white illustrations
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Hardback
ISBN : 9781526738202
Pages : 240
Dimensions : 9.25 X 6 inches
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Not Yet Published. Available for Pre-Order
$34.95

Overview
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On 3 September 1650 Oliver Cromwell won a decisive victory over the Scottish Covenanters at the Battle of Dunbar – a victory that is often regarded as his finest hour – but the aftermath, the forced march of 5,000 prisoners from the battlefield to Durham, was one of the cruellest episodes in his career.

The march took them seven days, without food and with little water, no medical care, the property of a ruthless regime determined to eradicate any possibility of further threat. Those who survived long enough to reach Durham found no refuge, only pestilence and despair. Exhausted, starving and dreadfully weakened, perhaps as many as 1,700 died from typhus and dysentery. Those who survived were condemned to hard labour and enforced exile in conditions of virtual slavery in a harsh new world across the Atlantic.

Cromwell's Convicts is the first book to describe their ordeal in detail and, by using archaeological evidence, to bring the story right up to date. John Sadler and Rosie Serdiville describe the battle at Dunbar, but their main focus is on the lethal week-long march of the captives that followed. They make extensive use of archive material, retrace the route taken by the prisoners and describe the recent archaeological excavations in Durham which have identified some of the victims and given us a graphic reminder of their fate.

About The Author
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Born in 1953, John Sadler has law degrees from Northumbria University and the University of Westminster. A part-time lecturer in military history at Sunderland University Centre for Lifelong Learning, he is currently studying toward a PhD in history and is soon to begin an Imperial War Museum Fellowship in Holocaust Studies. He is the author of over 20 books, including Scottish Battles, published by Birlinn in April 2010. He is married with two children and lives in Newcastle.

Rosie Serdiville is a social historian and re-enactor with a particular interest in the wider impact of war on civilian populations. She delights in spending time in archives: some of the most interesting characters in this volume have emerged from archival materials.

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