Episodes

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…

Religion Colonial America Economy

203. Planting the World of Plymouth Plantation with Dr. Carla Gardina Pestana

June 10, 2021

Plymouth Plantation occupies a powerful place in American national memory. Think of the First Thanksgiving in 1621; Englishmen escaping religious persecution; the rock marking the alleged spot where settlers first landed; an…

Biography American Revolution Digital History

202. Digitizing the Maryland Loyalist Experience with Dr. Kyle Roberts and Dr. Benjamin Bankhurst

May 27, 2021

Maryland wasn’t so merry for some Americans during the Revolutionary War, especially if you happened to side with the king. Professing fealty to the Crown, for whatever reason or motivation, cost many Maryland colonists thei…

Biography American Revolution Digital History Washington Library Fellows

201. Uncovering the Virginia Loyalists with Drs. Stephanie Seal Walters and Alexi Garrett

May 13, 2021

Virginia was home to many of the most famous rebels like George Washington during the American Revolution, but it was also a den of Tories who remained loyal to the British king. Loyalists in all the colonies rejected what t…

Digital History

200. Transcribing From The Page with Sara and Ben Brumfield

April 29, 2021

When the COVID pandemic stuck last spring, thousands of cultural heritage sites, including the Washington Library and Mount Vernon , had to find ways to help team members do work from home. That wasn’t always easy, especiall…

Biography Early United States Washington Library Fellows

199. Unravelling the Strange Genius of Mr. O. with Dr. Carolyn Eastman

April 15, 2021

In the early years of the nineteenth century, former Virginia schoolteacher James Ogilvie embarked on a lecture tour that took the United States by storm. Born Scotland, Ogilvie became a renowned orator, packing rooms in urb…

Politics Early United States Washington Library Fellows

198. Contesting Monuments and Memory in South Carolina with Dr. Lydia Brandt

April 2, 2021

The South Carolina State House Grounds is a landscape of monuments and memory. Since the capital moved from Charleston to Columbia in the 1780s, South Carolinians have been erecting, moving, and contesting monuments on the c…

Slavery Colonial America

197. Stumbling Upon the Journal of Johann Peter Oettinger with Craig Koslofsky and Roberto Zaugg

March 18, 2021

Two weeks ago, we brought you the story of Johann Peter Oettinger, a seventeenth-century German-speaking barber-surgeon who in 1693 journeyed to Africa and the West Indies on behalf of the Brandenburg African Company. His jo…

Slavery Colonial America

196. Reconstructing the Life of a German Barber-Surgeon in the Atlantic Slave Trade with Craig Koslofsky and Roberto Zaugg

March 4, 2021

In 1693, the young German barber-surgeon Johann Peter Oettinger joined a slave trading venture for the second time. In the employ of the Brandenburg African Company, Oettinger sailed with his shipmates from Europe to the Afr…

Mount Vernon Politics The Washingtons

195b. [En Español] Ofreciendo a George Washington un regalo real con el profesor José Emilio Yanes

Feb. 18, 2021

Bienvenido a Conversaciones en la Biblioteca de Washington. Hoy, Jim Ambuske habla con el profesor José Emilio Yanes de la Universidad de Salamanca en España. Yanes es el autor del libro El Regalo de Carlos III A George Wash…

Mount Vernon Politics The Washingtons

195a. Offering George Washington a Royal Gift with Professor José Emilio Yanes

Feb. 18, 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…

Digital History

194. Building Digital History Projects at the Washington Library with the ITPS Interns

Feb. 4, 2021

One of the most important things we’re able to do at the Center for Digital History is offer internships to college students. Working with students allows us to move our projects forward while giving them real world opportun…

American Revolution Women War The Washingtons Economy

193. Rifling through Washington's Receipts with Dr. Julie Miller

Jan. 21, 2021

Take a receipt out of your pocket. What does it say about you? Receipts can tell us a lot about people and the world in which they lived. And George Washington kept receipts. On today’s show, Dr. Julie Miller joins Jim Ambus…

Throwing a Change-Up at the Washington Library with Jim Ambuske

Jan. 14, 2021

We wanted to let you know of some exciting changes we’ll be making to the podcast that will allow you to hear more from groundbreaking historians and scholars in new ways. Beginning today, Conversations at the Washington Lib…

Mount Vernon The Washingtons Economy

192. Drinking Washington's Whiskey with Drew Hannush

Jan. 7, 2021

For many people, one of life’s great joys is a lovely dram of whiskey. Whether you’re a fan of Kentucky Bourbon, Single-malt Scotches, Japanese or Tennessee whiskey, every glass tells a story or contains memories that conne…

Guest: Drew Hannush
Mount Vernon Slavery The Washingtons

191. (Recast) The Only Unavoidable Subject of Regret with Mary Thompson: Part 2

Dec. 31, 2020

This is Part Two of Jim Ambuske's July 2019 chat with Washington Library Research Historian Mary V. Thompson. We’re recasting it in celebration of her 40th anniversary at Mount Vernon. If you missed Part One, please do give …

Guest: Mary Thompson
Mount Vernon Slavery The Washingtons

190. (Recast) The Only Unavoidable Subject of Regret with Mary Thompson: Part 1

Dec. 31, 2020

Forty years ago, Mary V. Thompson began her career at Mount Vernon as a museum attendant and history interpreter. She was quickly promoted to Curatorial Assistant, and within a few short years was named Curatorial Registrar,…

Guest: Mary Thompson
Politics Religion Colonial America

189. Confronting an Absolutist Monarch with Dr. Karie Schultz

Dec. 24, 2020

In this season of religious renewal, we bring you a story of religious dissent. In 1638, many of King Charles I’s Presbyterian subjects gathered at Greyfriars Kirkyard in Edinburgh to sign the National Covenant . By renewing…

American Revolution

188. Exploring the Benjamin Franklin House of London with Dr. Márcia Balisciano

Dec. 17, 2020

In 1757, Benjamin Franklin returned to London after an over thirty-year absence. He first ventured to the imperial capital in 1724 to continue his education as a printer; he went back in the late 1750s as a politician, after…

Politics Early United States Digital History

187. Winning a Consolation Prize with Dr. Abby Mullen

Dec. 10, 2020

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 goto people when an American gets in troub…

Guest: Abby Mullen
American Revolution Early United States Washington Library Fellows

186. Exploring New Frontiers in Early American History with Alexi Garrett, Michael Blaakman, Derek O’Leary, and Krysten Blackstone

Dec. 3, 2020

In the eighteenth century, Benjamin Franklin and other early Americans likened themselves to a rising people who were creating something new under the sun. It’s fair to say that historians have a similar mindset: we’re const…