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Conversations at the Washington Library

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United States

Twitter:

@MountVernon

Language:

English

Contact:

703-780-2000


Episodes

Digitizing the Constitution with Julie Silverbrook

10/17/2019
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The word “impeachment” is in the air these days. Wouldn’t it be nice if we had a website to find information about what the Constitution’s framers thought about impeachment or any other Constitutional issue. Well, The Constitutional Sources Project is the place for you. The project, called ConSource for short, is a Washington, D.C.-based initiative to digitize and transcribe the documents that shaped the Federal Constitution, and increase our historical literacy. On today’s episode,...

Duration:00:52:39

Walking through The Field of Blood with Joanne B. Freeman

10/10/2019
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What comes to mind when you think about Congress in the nineteenth century? Perhaps you imagine great orators like Henry Clay or Daniel Webster declaiming on the important issues then facing the republic. And yes, in 1856, South Carolina Congressman Preston Brooks attacked Massachusetts Senator Charles Sumner on the floor of the Senate. But Congress generally was model of solemnity, right? Well, you would be wrong. As Dr. Joanne B. Freeman of Yale University argues in her latest book,...

Duration:00:53:08

Entering a World of Paine with Harlow Giles Unger

10/3/2019
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On today’s show, veteran journalist and biographer Harlow Giles Unger talks to Jim Ambuske about revolutionary radical Thomas Paine, one of his predecessors in the newspaper business. He is the author of the new book, Thomas Paine and the Clarion Call for American Independence. It is the latest in a long line of Unger biographies about the founding generation. Unger reveals a fascinating character in Paine, a man who never met a revolution he didn’t like. He also shares with Ambuske about...

Duration:00:51:13

Simulating 1793 and the Fate of the Republic with Trey Alsup and Sadie Troy

9/26/2019
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Imagine you lived in the year 1793. The United States has recently suffered its worst military defeat in its history at the hands of the Miami-Shawnee Confederacy. The French Revolution has turned horrifically violent and France is now at war with most of Europe. And both the British and the French are pressuring the United States to choose a side. Now imagine that you are one of the American, European, or indigenous leaders whose voices will shape how the U.S. responds to these events....

Duration:00:56:52

The Power Broker and the King Maker: The Life of Elizabeth Willing Powel with Samantha Snyder

9/19/2019
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In this episode of Conversations at the Washington Library, Samantha Snyder speaks to Jim Ambuske about the life of Elizabeth Willing Powel. Powel was a prominent Philadelphian who became close to the Washington family. Although her loyalties were unclear in the early years of the American War for Independence, she eventually embraced the Revolution. Powel was at the center of Philadelphia politics, but her influence reached beyond the city to the banks of the Potomac and places further...

Duration:00:45:42

Tracing the Rise and Fall of Light-Horse Harry Lee with Ryan Cole

9/12/2019
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You may know him as Robert E. Lee’s father, but Henry “Light-Horse Harry” Lee was so much more. Born into a Virginia dynasty, the man who would become one of George Washington’s protégés came of age with the American Revolution itself. Lee was a graduate of Princeton University, a cavalry commander in the war’s brutal southern theater, and he later served two terms as Virginia’s governor. He was a dashing figure who romanticized the ancient world and aspired to be one of the new nation’s...

Duration:00:53:46

Making Sense of Murder in the Shenandoah with Jessica Lowe: Explorations in Early American Law Part 4

9/5/2019
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On July 4, 1791, fifteen years after Americans declared independence, two men walked into a Virginia field. Only one walked out alive. John Crane, the son of an elite Virginia family, killed a man named Abraham Vanhorn after the two exchanged some heated words. Crane was arrested in the name of the law, but two decades earlier he would have been detained in the name of the king. Why does this change matter? And what does it have to tell us about how Virginians and other Americans remade...

Duration:00:44:22

Interpreting George Washington's Constitution with Lindsay Chervinsky: Explorations in Early American Law Part 3

8/29/2019
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In the fall of 1789, George Washington ordered a printed copy of the Constitution along with the laws passed by the First Federal Congress. A book binder bound the printed sheets in leather and added the words "President of the United States" to the front cover. Washington referred to the volume as the "Acts of Congress." Inside, he made a few short marginal notations next to key passages in the Constitution. You can see a digitized version of the Acts of Congress here. Why did Washington...

Duration:00:59:26

Meeting Alexander Hamilton, Attorney at Law, with Kate Brown: Explorations in Early American Law Part 2

8/22/2019
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We all know Alexander Hamilton for his service during the Revolutionary War, his tenure as the first Secretary of the Treasury, and his death at the hands of Aaron Burr. But have you met Alexander Hamilton, Attorney at Law? In Part 2 of our four-part exploration of early American law, Dr. Kate Elizabeth Brown of Western Kentucky University introduces us to a man who was as ferocious in the court room as he was battling Thomas Jefferson over the National Bank. And as Dr. Brown argues in her...

Duration:00:48:49

The Transatlantic Reach of Thomas Erskine and Law in the Age of Revolutions with Nicola Phillips: Explorations in Early American Law Part 1

8/15/2019
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In what ways did the United States remain bound to Great Britain in the decades after American Independence? As it turns out, the law and legal ideas served as a connection between Americans and their former British brethren. In today's episode we talk to Dr. Nicola Phillips of Royal Hollway, University of London, about the life and career of Thomas Erskine. The Scottish-born Erskine was a member of an elite family whose ranks included Henry, Lord Advocate of Scotland, and David, 11th Earl...

Duration:00:41:43

Finding George Washington in Scotland with Rachel Hosker

8/8/2019
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How did a George Washington letter find a home Scotland? In this episode of Conversations at the Washington Library, Jim Ambuske talks with Rachel Hosker, deputy head of special collections and archives manager at the University Edinburgh Library about a document that connects Washington to Adam Ferguson, one of the major figures of the Scottish Enlightenment. Recorded in Edinburgh at the library's Centre for Research Collections, Ambuske and Hosker also look over Washington's Political...

Duration:00:39:45

Resilience in a Time of War: A Special Purple Heart Commemoration Day Conversation with LTC Matthew Kutilek, USMC

8/1/2019
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In this episode, Jim Ambuske chats with LTC Matthew Kutilek, USMC, a 2001 graduate of The Citadel in Charleston, South Carolina. Kutilek is a United States Marine Special Operations Officer with 18+ years of active duty service with multiple combat deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan. He is this year's featured speaker at Mount Vernon's Purple Heart Commemoration Day on August 10th. In this podcast, Kutilek discusses his passion for history, service in the Marine Corps, and the 2010 combat...

Duration:00:49:45

Looking for Lafayette with Jordan Pellerito

7/29/2019
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In this episode, Jim Ambuske sits down with first year Ph.D. student Jordan Pellerito of the University of Missouri who is interning this summer at the Washington Library. Pellerito tells us about her Master’s degree work on the Marquis de Lafayette and how she is spending her summer working with the Library’s collection of Rare Books while researching early U.S. Chambers of Commerce.

Duration:00:34:01

The Only Unavoidable Subject of Regret Part 2

7/11/2019
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The Only Unavoidable Subject of Regret Part 1 In this episode Dr Jim Ambuske continues his conversation with the Washington Librarys Research Historian Mary V Thompson to discuss her new book The Only Unavoidable Subject of Regret George Washington Slavery and the Enslaved Community at Mount Vernon For more information check out our website wwwmountvernonorgpodcast

Duration:00:40:49

The Only Unavoidable Subject of Regret Part 1

7/4/2019
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The Only Unavoidable Subject of Regret Part 1 In this episode Dr Jim Ambuske sits down with the Washington Librarys Research Historian Mary V Thompson to discuss her new book The Only Unavoidable Subject of Regret George Washington Slavery and the Enslaved Community at Mount Vernon For more information check out our website wwwmountvernonorgpodcast

Duration:00:30:23

Republican Laws and Monarchical Education

6/27/2019
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Republican Laws and Monarchical Education In this episode Dr Jim Ambuske sits down with Library research fellow Dr Mark Boonshoft to discuss education in the early republic For more information check out our website wwwmountvernonorgpodcast

Duration:00:31:14

Welcome Jim Ambuske!

6/20/2019
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Welcome Jim Ambuske In this episode Dr Kevin Butterfield sits down with Dr Jim Ambuske the Washington Librarys new Digital Historian and future podcast host For more information check out our website wwwmountvernonorgpodcast

Duration:00:30:20

Aboard the USS George Washington

6/13/2019
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Aboard the USS George Washington In this episode Dr Douglas Bradburn sits down with Captain Glenn Jamison Captain Daryle D Cardone and Command Master Chief Maurice Coffey of the USS George Washington on location at the aircraft carrier For more information check out our website wwwmountvernonorgpodcast

Duration:00:25:16

Pen Versus Plow

6/6/2019
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Pen Versus Plow In this episode Dr Kevin Butterfield sits down with Kings CollegeGeorgian Papers Fellow Dr James Fisher to discuss his latest findings on the topic titled George Washington and the Transatlantic Circulation and Reception of Agricultural Literature and Knowledge For more information check out our website wwwmountvernonorgpodcast

Duration:00:32:19

Birthing a Nation

5/30/2019
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Birthing a Nation In this episode Associate Curator Jessie MacLeod sits down with Library research fellow Sara Collini to discuss her latest findings on the topic titled Birthing a Nation Enslaved Women and Midwifery in Early America 17501820 For more information check out our website wwwmountvernonorgpodcast

Duration:00:29:10