Episodes

Slavery

224. Unpacking the Slave Empire with Dr. Padraic Scanlan

June 24, 2022

In the early decades of the nineteenth century, the British Empire began dismantling the slave system that had helped to build it. Parliament banned the transatlantic slave trade in 1807, and in 1833 the government outlawed …

Women Politics

223. Attending a Lecture on Female Genius with Dr. Mary Sarah Bilder

May 19, 2022

In May 1787, George Washington arrived in Philadelphia to attend the Constitutional Convention. One afternoon, as he waited for the other delegates to show up so the convention could begin, Washington accompanied some ladies…

Slavery

Introducing Intertwined Stories: Finding Hercules Posey

April 6, 2022

We're delighted to bring you one of the bonus episodes from our other podcast, Intertwined: The Enslaved Community at George Washington’s Mount Vernon . In Intertwined Stories , we're featuring extended interviews with some …

American Revolution Politics War

222. Winning a "Compleat Victory" at Saratoga with Dr. Kevin Weddle

March 25, 2022

The Battle of Saratoga in September and October of 1777 was a decisive turning point in the American War for Independence. The American victory over the British in northern New York put a stopper to London’s dreams of a swif…

Women Slavery Politics Literature

221. Reading the Political Poetry of Hannah Lawrence Schieffelin with Dr. Kait Tonti

March 9, 2022

Hannah Lawrence Schieffelin was an American poet who rhymed about some of the most important issues facing the early United States in the eighteenth century, including the British occupation of New York City during the Ameri…

Guest: Kait Tonti
American Revolution Politics Early United States

220. Educating Early Americans with Drs. Mark Boonshoft and Andrew O'Shaughnessy

Feb. 18, 2022

If you had been alive in eighteenth-century America, you would've had little opportunity for formal schooling or an advanced education. Unless you were among the elite or at least of some means, your chances of attending a l…

Presidency Politics Early United States

219. Negotiating Federal-State Relations with Dr. Grace Mallon

Feb. 2, 2022

For years after the ratification of the Constitution, Americans debated how the Federal Government and the several states should relate to each other, and work together, to form a more perfect union. The success, if not the …

Guest: Grace Mallon
Mount Vernon Slavery The Washingtons

218. Finding Washington at the Plow with Dr. Bruce Ragsdale

Jan. 20, 2022

In the 1760s, tobacco was one of Virginia’s chief exports. But George Washington turned away from the noxious plant and began dreaming of wheat and a more profitable future. Washington became enamored with new ideas powering…

Slavery Literature Cartography Early United States

217. Exploring Star Territory with Dr. Gordon Fraser

Jan. 6, 2022

In the 18th and 19th centuries, North Americans looked up at the sky in wonder at the cosmos and what lay beyond earth’s atmosphere. But astronomers like Benjamin Banneker, Georgia surveyors, Cherokee storytellers, and gover…

Guest: Gordon Fraser
Politics Digital History

216. Digitally Deconstructing the Constitution with Dr. Nicholas Cole

Dec. 23, 2021

When delegates assembled in Philadelphia in the Summer of 1787 to write a new Constitution, they spent months in secret writing a document they hoped would form a more perfect Union. When we talk about the convention, we oft…

Guest: Nicholas Cole
American Revolution Politics Early United States

215. Reading Thomas Paine's Rights of Man with Dr. Frances Chiu

Dec. 2, 2021

For most Americans, Thomas Paine is the radical Englishman, and former tax collector, who published Common Sense in early 1776. His claim that hereditary monarchy was an absurdity and that the “cause of America was in great …

Mount Vernon Slavery The Washingtons

Previewing Episode 1 of Intertwined: The Enslaved Community at George Washington's Mount Vernon

Nov. 17, 2021

On this week's show, we bring you Episode 1 of Intertwined: The Enslaved Community at George Washington's Mount Vernon. Entitled "Passages," it features the life of Sambo Anderson, who was just a boy when he was captured in …

Mount Vernon Slavery The Washingtons

Intertwined: The Enslaved Community at George Washington's Mount Vernon (Coming November 15, 2021)

Nov. 10, 2021

Intertwined tells the story of the more than 577 people enslaved by George and Martha Washington at Mount Vernon. Told through the biographies of Sambo Anderson, Davy Gray, William Lee, Kate, Ona Judge, Nancy Carter Quander,…

American Revolution Politics Cartography

214. Weaponizing Settlement in Nova Scotia with Dr. Alexandra Montgomery

Nov. 4, 2021

Although you might not realize it, in the years before the American Revolution, Nova Scotia was all the rage. People concocted various schemes to settle it, and the British government saw it as one of the keys to its new vis…

Slavery Early United States

213. Sailing to Freedom with Dr. Timothy D. Walker

Oct. 23, 2021

In May 1796, an enslaved woman named Ona Judge fled the presidential household in Philadelphia and escaped to freedom on a ship headed for New Hampshire. Judge’s successful flight was one of many such escapes by the sea in t…

Biography American Revolution War

212. Recruiting the Hero of Two Worlds with Mike Duncan

Oct. 6, 2021

To kick off Season 6, we bring you the story of America’s Favorite Fighting Frenchmen. In 1777, the Marquis de Lafayette sailed from France with a commission as a major general in the Continental Army. Unlike many other Euro…

Guest: Mike Duncan
American Revolution Early United States Indigenous History

211. Revitalizing Myaamia Language and Culture with George Ironstrack (Summer Repeat)

Sept. 22, 2021

In the eighteenth century, the Myaamia people inhabited what are now parts of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, and Wisconsin. More commonly known in English as the Miami, the Myaamia figure prominently in the early history of the Un…

Politics Early United States Digital History

210. Winning a Consolation Prize with Dr. Abby Mullen (Summer Repeat)

Sept. 15, 2021

Consuls are essential to American foreign relations. Although they may not be as flashy or as powerful as an Ambassador like Thomas Jefferson or John Quincy Adams, they’re often the go-to people when an American gets in trou…

Guest: Abby Mullen
Biography Women Early United States

209. Reading Letters by Early American Women with Kathryn Gehred (Summer Repeat)

Sept. 1, 2021

If you pull any decent history book off your shelf right now, odds are that it’s filled with quotes from letters, diaries, or account books that help the author tell her story and provide the evidence for her interpretation …

Politics Early United States

208. Harnessing Harmony in the Early Republic with Billy Coleman (Summer Repeat)

Aug. 18, 2021

On September 14, 1814, Francis Scott Key began composing "The Star-Spangled Banner after witnessing the British attack on Fort McHenry. Of all the things he could have done after seeing that flag, why did Key write a song? …

Mount Vernon Politics The Washingtons

207. Offering George Washington a Royal Gift with Professor José Emilio Yanes (Summer Repeat)

Aug. 4, 2021

In 1784, King Charles III of Spain sent George Washington a token of his esteem. Knowing that Washington had long sought a Spanish donkey for his Mount Vernon estate, the king permitted a jack to be exported to the new Unite…

Presidency Politics Religion Early United States

206. Promoting Joseph Smith for President with Dr. Spencer W. McBride

July 22, 2021

The American Revolution dismembered a protestant empire. In the years during and after the war, states disestablished their churches, old and new denominations flourished, and Americans enshrined religious freedom into their…

Biography Women The Washingtons

205. Grieving with the Widow Washington with Dr. Martha Saxton

July 12, 2021

In the eighteenth century, death stalked early Americans like a predator hunting its prey. In Virginia, as in other colonies, death made children orphans and wives widows, making a precarious existence all that much more cha…

American Revolution Politics Early United States

204. Raising Liberty Poles in the Early Republic with Dr. Shira Lurie

June 24, 2021

If you’ve taken part in a part in a protest recently, perhaps you carried a sign, waved a flag, or worn a special hat. But if you had grievances in the American Revolution or early Republic, you might have helped raise a Lib…