tv The Presidency James Monroes Life Legacy CSPAN April 2, 2021 8:27pm-9:15pm EDT
next on american history tv, historian scott harris talks about james monroe's life. we are about fifth presidents revolutionary war service, his work as a lawyer, his path to the presidency and the that carries his name. mr. harris is director of the james monroe museum and memorial library. the most be heritage area association hosted this 45 minute event, which was part of a symposium called james monroe, presidential inauguration. bicentennial commemoration and reflection. >> our first speaker that were privileged and honor to have your today as scott harris, who is the director of the james monroe museum and memorial
library and has been such since july 27th -- 2011. this museum is operated by the university of mary washington and fredericksburg and it is the largest repository in the country for artifacts and documents related to the fifth president of the united states. previously, scott was the director of the newmarket battlefield state historical park, owned by fiemme i. and he was the previous to that, director of historic resources for the city of manassas. he received his b.a. with honors from the university of mary washington, and holds a masters degree from the college of william mary. mr. harris? >> i'm not going to drop the
mic, but i'm going to lower gently to the ground. thank you very much, and good morning. >> good morning. >> oh come on good morning! >> good morning. >> turn your hymnals to number 61. oh no that's tomorrow. sorry. i couldn't resist, i was talking about that earlier. it is a pleasure to be here and if i may take the chance and the house of worship to say to spur the gospel of james maduro, as my colleagues will also being doing today and anytime we have the opportunity to help raise awareness of the man that i like to call, the hardest working president in show business, we like to do so and so, will be free to do so today here to do that. one of the iconic images of the revolutionary war is emmanuel lewis he's 1851 painting,
washington crossing the delaware. it's the night of december 25th, 1776, the continental army is being transported across the delaware river to attack harrison entrench in new jersey some nine miles to the south. in the foreground, and anonymous men and possibly one woman, a varying national eighties and races weren't overloaded boat across the river, pushing great slabs of ice out of the way. to the bows occupants are not anonymous. george washington, standing resolutely near the bow, and young lieutenant james mineral holding stars and stripes. what he's painting his glorious and rolling in almost every duty. the river resembles the, rhyme more than the delaware, the vote is too small and inaccurate design. there's too much light, for what was a night crossing. washington did not cross standing up, and the stars and stripes had not yet been adopted of the continental
congress, and james monroe was not holding a flag, not in the boat, not even present with the army. he was already across the river. he was busy. washington's plan for surprise attack on trenton was a risky attempt, for the patriot cause. during the summer of 1776, british forces, including mercenaries had driven the continental army from new york across to new jersey, and into bucks county pennsylvania. enlistments and desertion uninspired enlistments, and many people were despondent. an isolated attack against a british outpost they thought, would encourage the people. three regiments, with about 1400 men were at trenton. washington planned to bring 2400 continental soldiers across the river overnight, on
the ferry, and march to trenton and i tackle for don. two other elements of the army were part of the problem plan, but we did not make it into the operation. the bad weather that occurred, stop both of those deployments meaning that everything would depend on the main body. the army's password for the evening, was victory or death. washington's plan include it's sending a small detachment of troops to delaware first, to get the truth the root of march. it is autobiography, which he wrote late in life, and did not complete before his death, monroe described the mission. the command of the vanguard consisted of 50 men, it was given to captain william washington, third virginia regimen. lieutenant monroe offered his services, which is promptly accepted. on the 25th of december 1776, they passed the delaware in
front of the army, and the dust of the evening, and the ferry ten miles above trenton. they hasten to a point about one and a half miles from it, in which the road by which they descended intersected that, which led from trenton to princeton, for the purpose of obedience of orders, and cutting off all communication between them and the county or the country to trenton. mr. monroe, could be having a run on sentence every now and again. one row noted that the night was to petrus, and will commanding their post they thought the continental were british troops. describing this many years later at what washington dinner, monroe recall that the man, whose name was john reich are, was determined in this manner, and profane. upon learning that the soldiers were americans, he brought food from his house and sent to one role, i know something needs to be done and i am going with you.
i am a doctor, and i may help some poor fellow. doctor reich are, proved efficient. the main armies river crossing to trenton took longer than planned. and occurred well after some up some up. they sent today division, which was by nathanael green which attack from the north, and another by general john sullivan attacked from the south. i am the assault began, at 8 am it began. they had the vanguard in front, and shut down the commanding officer, and drove it before him. a general alarm then took place among the troops in town, the drums were beat to arms, and two candidates were placed in the main street, as entered. captain washington rushed forward, and put the troops around the cannon to fight and the position of it. moving on afterwards he
received a severe wound, and was taken from the field. the command devolved to lieutenant monroe, who attacked of the head of the core, i was shot down by a musket ball, that passed through his breast and shoulder. he was carried from the field. monroe was brought to the same room, where washington lay, and their wounds were dressed by the armies surgeon general and by dr. john reich are. his prediction john wrecker of helping some poor fellow, king true. what they didn't realize at the time, the physician had saved the life of a future president. and the painting here of the surrender, shows monroe in the background and initially on the field before being taken to the dressing station. the best commentary on james monroe's performance at trenton, -- .
writing to an acquaintance in 1779, washington noted monroe's zeal, and he discovered by entering the service at an early period, and a character he supported and the manner in which he's distinguished himself at trenton where he received the wound. the general concluded, that james monroe had in every instance maintain the reputation of a brave an active and sensible officer. the american revolution was a transformative experience for james monroe. when that he described in a letter written later in his life. though young at the commencement of the revolution, i took part in it. its principles have been very ably guide me since. nothing could be more deeply fixed, than the judgment and heart of any war, that are the principles of our free system of government in mind. a james monroe was born, april 28th, 1758 in westmoreland county. as will not possessing a large
line holding or wealth, like some of their neighbors. the monroe's live comfortably and were able to send their eldest son to one of the best local schools. among his schoolmates, was supreme court justice john marshall. who would be monroe's lifelong friend, and occasionally a political adversary. he entered college in june of 1774. like many of his classmates, he was caught up in revolutionary fervor. here's part of a group of students who ceased arms from the governor's palace in 1775. february of the next year, he was commissioned it lieutenant in the third virginia infantry. the third virginia, on the command of colonel or burglar george in fredericksburg, was it in 1776. on september 16th, the regiment took part in the american
victory of harlem heights. promoted to captain and major, after recovering from his trenton wound, he became -- up to william alexander. and the british had something to say about that. on favorite 23rd, 1778, during the harsh winter in valley forge, monroe sign this furlough, for a pennsylvania soldier. the earliest known image of his signature. which i'm glad to say we have this. monroe served with young men, who would figure later in his life. among them our marquee the lafayette. as the soldiers were a year
apart in age, and they became lifelong friends. also his friend, and future chief justice, john marshall. and alexander hamilton, destined to fight the most famous dual in american history. i think it was a musical or some other play. something. i seem to remember it. during the autumn of 1777, he fought in the battles of brandy wine and germantown. and in june 1778, he sent messages to george washington, to move the british against the british. he became a lieutenant colonel, of virginia forces, a military aid to thomas jefferson, and was unsuccessful in being able to recruit enough soldiers for regiment of his own command. and seeing very little prospect
to further his military career, he left the army and began to study law with jefferson. first in williamsburg, and then enrichment for when the virginia capital moved that city. 13 years older than his protegee, jefferson became monroe's mentor. describing then wrote to another of his disciples, james madison, jefferson declare turn his soul wrong side outwards and, there's not a speck on him. on february 16th, 1786, he married elizabeth -- of new york. their union produced two dollars, elijah, and very elizabeth, and james spent mineral. who died in infancy. the mineral family was close knit. they stayed together even is james embarked on a busy busy political career in the united states and abroad. as between 1778, an 1811,
monroe had a larger and longer public service resume, than anyone who has ever been elected president of the united states. he practiced law in fredericksburg. served as a state and federal legislature. he was a delegate, to the virginia ratifying convention for u.s. constitution. i was elected to four terms as governor of virginia. he was u.s. ambassador to france twice, to great britain, and to spain. he helped negotiate the louisiana purchased treaty, coming into attempt to help with the resolution of the treaty, which was only supposed to have been for the acquisition of the port of new orleans, and then being presented with the opportunity to buy all of louisiana. fortunately, for the country's development, there was a quick decision on that part, that leader would prove very important. he also, with his wife attended the coronation of the pole ian
bonaparte. unfortunately at this time, he was doing some diplomacy trying to negotiate with the british, over issues regarding navigation of the seas, and trade rights. he was dealing with the spanish, trying to acquire florida. and going back to napoleon's coronation, some of this activity had taken him out of favor with the french, and monroe complain that he and his wife were put up in what we were called the cheap seats. not with the rest of the diplomats. but we are in the back, and they were complaining where they were. they were not as seeding you -- she was well dressed, and he was well dressed. to give some indication of the sartorial style that he brought to his diplomatic career. in january of 1811, monroe began his fourth term as governor of virginia. he resigned in april, to become secretary of state in the
administration of james madison. the united states was locked in a struggle with great britain over trade policies, and were seizing british sailors at deserters in the british navy. they declared war on june 18th 1812, over the next two years, american victories at sea were offset by repeated defeats on land. as the british naval and military force and entered the chesapeake section, monroe and others call for better defenses for the u.s. capital. but little was done. british troops came ashore, on in maryland on august 19th of 1814, and became marching. when monroe suggested the system of careers to report the enemies movements, it was disregarded by secretary of war john armstrong, monroe went to the field himself. he used his telescope, to count the number of ships, and british forces are reported
back to president madison. at the battle of -- on august 24th, the british quickly -- and minerals move some american units on the field in a manner that did little to improve the chaotic command structure. while the cartoon at the above right, implies that madison fled from the british in panic, in fact he and most of the cabinet, including monroe stayed on the field. until the end. and your barely avoided capture. the british moved onto washington d.c., where they build where they put on fire many public buildings including the white house. armstrong had resigned as secretary of war, and monroe remained secretary of state. the british soon departed washington, but the possibility of another count on another attack on the capital, they
made preparations so that would not happen. monroe, was elected president in 1860. a combination of his public service career, which have been taken from so many different offices, different experiences here and abroad. he undertook the restoration and refurbishing of the white house project, that would continue throughout his two terms in office. and it really cannot be overstated, how significant the role of the monroe's was in defining what we come to understand today which is the white house style. they were starting with a blank canvas, and they use most of their own furniture in initially, and eventually it became part of the white house furnishings. later efforts, at redecorating and trying to recapture some of the style that was lost over the centuries really, right up until then including jacqueline kennedy's work, the monroe
example was what many of those subjects tried to recapture. this mrs. monroe's experience that as first lady, she liked european salons. was it was well received in washington society. as president, monroe urged congress to appropriate sufficient funds, to expand an army and navy, and a more modern system of coastal ports. though he did not get everything he wished for, work did begin on new installations, including one in 1819, that was named for monroe in his honor. during two regional tours of the country, in 1817 and 1819, monroe inspected the nation's defensive defenses, and he perhaps inadvertently, at least at the start, brought something of the modern presidency to different parts of the country. and we're familiar today with a presidential motorcade, or
presidential arrival in the community, all the things that could be implied. that was a novelty in 1817. and it generated an immensely positive reaction, and one that i think even monroe was not suspecting would happen. that tour especially true so popular, that it created the catch phrase for his administration which was the era of good feelings. he dealt with the perennial problem of relations with native americans people. in 1821, a large delegation, the indian chief visited washington. where they were portrait iced, by some of those amazing images, and those wonderful images that unfortunately many of which were destroyed in a fire in the basement sony and in the 19th century. but copies of them survive. monroe as presidents before and after, had done, he had
presented the delegations with peace metals, professing peace and friendship. as monroe sought to harmonize relationships with the indians, he faces faced a greater immediate challenge. a bitter debate over the extension of slavery in the territories west of the mississippi. when missouri, sought admission to the union, it precipitated a political crisis by claiming to upset the balance of power between slaves and free states. collectively the missouri compromise. monroe signed off the compromise with relief, and expressed optimism that the slavery question would be resolved, before tore the union apart. his old mentor jefferson, calling the missouri compromise a fireball in the night.
as much as he believed separation was the solution, the problems between indians and whites, monroe sought to send free blacks back to africa. although not as present in the promotion to do this, -- . four years later, the ship elizabeth, take the first group of african americans to the colony that would eventually be named liberia. the capital of which, monrovia, is named for you know who. while the end of the war of 1812, and the final defeat of napoleon had largely result in free trade, and conflicts with britain, acquisition of florida had still not occurred. when monroe had entered the white house. in 1817 he sent andrew jackson,
to florida to suppress seminal indians, and future slaves that we're conducting raids into u.s. territories. jackson enlarged upon his mission, by attacking spanish forts in the region, and executing two british nationals, that he suspected of working against his army. whether jackson exceeded his orders, or simply doing what he was told to do in confidence, secretary of state john quincy adams was able to overcome the spanish protests which and purchase florida,. this became some contention and controversy between them. during the same period, the monroe administration recognize the independence of latin american republics. that had fought for their independence from spain and portugal. the united states was one of the first nations to recognize the newly independent republics of chile, peru, columbia,
mexico and present day argentina. worried about stability in latin america, and weary of russian imperialist claims on the coast of north america, monroe made a policy statement that would be among the most enduring legacies of his presidency. his annual message to congress on december 2nd 1923, contain the rundown of expenditures, operation of lighthouses, how the postal system was doing, sort of run-of-the-mill things. but then the message also declared, that the american continents, by the free and independent commission, in which they have assumed, and maintained our henceforth not to be considered as subjects for future colonization by any european power. this was followed a few sentenced later by in the words of the european powers, in manage relating to themselves, we have never taken part nor
does it report with our policy to do so. it is only one our rights are invaded, and menaced that we make preparation for our defense. this foreign policy position, articulated in the president's message, of course is known as the monroe doctrine. i said the monroe doctrine. john quincy adams, is often you know by many historians, assumed and identified as the author of the monroe doctrine. it will come as no surprise, i disagree with this. adams did have crucial suggestions to make, regarding final form of this message, but monroe's own experience on the world stage, informed very much his thinking and the final message, the final responsibility of its issuance was monroe's. the the immediate impact on the monroe doctrine was low-key, although the import was clearly
understood by leaders in europe. and appreciated by those in latin america. although u.s. military and naval power at this time would not have been sufficient to counter and determine coalition of european aggressors, such as development it was unlikely. the declaration also invoked the philosophy of george washington. who warned the united states against engaging in any diplomatic commitments that could drag the country into any european war. advice to be followed until 1917. the monroe doctrine, was a cornerstone of american foreign policy for most of the 19th and 20th century's. teddy roosevelt introduced a corollary to the document, the sanction u.s. military intervention in conflicts between european countries and latin american latin america. his cousin franklin, defended with access attempts to infiltrate the western atmosphere before and after the entry into world war ii.
and the monroe doctrine, famously came into play, during the run up to, and the development of the cuban missile crisis in 1962. that lower right image, is one of my all-time favorites, you can't quite see it it's a ship, bearing the flag of theyé&ñ mone doctrine, outside of cuba, bullfrog, with a case on his shoulder, it switches for nikki to khrushchev, is swimming to cuba. this appeared to fourth before the discovery. so it's remarkably foreshadowing. what was about to happen. in the 24 century, the monroe doctrine had some rough handling. had some interesting interpretation. president george w. bush, in a post 9/11 world created the bush doctrine. a justification for wide range
military intervention around the world, often without regard necessarily to the opinion of parts of the world. in 2013, secretary of state john kerry told the organization of american states, that the era of the monroe doctrine is over. and had a sort of surprise reaction and a scattering of applause. and that was a good thing. the statement was intended to look at the vitality and independents of latin american countries. but whatever the future holds for the monroe document for the monroe doctrine in this period, that statement made an 1823 to making, that it could still be a matter for debate in our day today. although he refused most invitations to hold public office, after the presidency, james monroe did agree to chair the virginia constitutional convention in 1929.
joy was joined there by charles mercer, and by other lifelong friends, james madison who is addressing the body here. former chief justice john marshall, who is behind madison. but monroe was ill for most of the time, and had to resign before the convention adjourned in 1830. elizabeth monroe, she died in 1830. her grieving spouse went to mariah's home in new york city. unable to return to virginia, monroe died in 1831, after the deaths of thomas jefferson and john adams. after an elaborate funeral, of which there was an estimated 70,000 attendees, monroe was buried in new york cities marble cemetery. the commonwealth of virginia had his remains taken and
brought to virginia. elijah his daughter is actually buried in paris. when they created the two, the birch birdcage it's a familiar landmark if you will if you have or been there. this is an 1865. that's a photograph, scene there and for the first time since its creation, the tomb has been restored. and has been going through an extensive process, of refurbishment in which almost ñ iron has been replaced. and i'm hopeful, that it will be ready in time for monroe's birthday observance coming up this april. because he desperately needed work to save this treasure. over the years, james munroe has been memorialized in many ways. from commemorative coins, postage stamps, a crackerjack price, in the upper right. symbols of education, and of
military might. he ranks near the top in the number of places named for u.s. presidents. and as we observed, is the only american from a foreign capital. in 1927, monroe's great granddaughter, rose -- and her son, saved a billion safety billy building for demolition and charles berke. it was a theirs threat came from james monroe service station. but always gets a laugh. after saving the building, they created a museum. depicting his law office in library that he had an 18 -- . the first director sir for 51 years, and the families correction of heirlooms, was an insatiable collecting effort, which had books and artifacts in archives.
1948, the foundation was created to administer the site. it transferred ownership of the museum, to the commonwealth of virginia 1964. the university of virginia was the initial administrative authority, until 1972. when uva's women's division, mary washington washington college became independent. in 2004, the college became the university of washington. and it was converted into a gallery format in 2006, because it was discovered that the building that they occupied, which is actually three buildings that emerged overtime, all prostate monroe's ownership of the property. we are not the first monroe site, to have to come up with a few different approaches about what to do with our property. hopefully it will last. but we've had some interesting developments about that. so in any case, though it has given us an opportunity by going to this gallery based
approach, to show a collection of artifacts, which is the largest in the country related to our]gykyk the bicentennial of monroe's presidency, offers a wealth of opportunity. to highlight the apex of his service career. there was a joint press conference on presidents'day, with monroe interpreter jay harrison, and troy -- and he will be inaugurated in april of this year. and we are on the verge of observing the moderation with mr. monroe. and we are struck by the similarity in writings of these men, 200 years apart and about education and leadership and about civic responsibility and so the press conference turned out to be really engaging program that we were very happy to be part of. on march 4th, we commemorated monroe's eggnog ration, exactly 200 years after the historical
event. he inspired at least one young man to honor where his campaign from. on the same, day at highland, a succession of speakers who had excerpts from minerals an auto address in a fitting citizen tribute to a leader who dedicated his life to serving our democratic republic. another bicentennial an issue dive that involves students in the museum studies program be at the university mary washington, which i'm extremely proud, they design a traveling exhibit that will visit some of the places that monroe went to during his 1817 northern tour. this is a joint project, which we have in our museum and the papers of james mineral and it is particularly rewarding and meaningful to me is in them list of mary washington as an employee to know that we are helping students hone their skills and the areas of the museum studies, of self
preparation and working on this and letting us share this exhibit with the wider audience. we're in the process now of booking all the sites where this will go and will be working on another one for the 1819 southern tour, as we come up on its anniversary. many other exciting opportunities also lie ahead over the next two years as we commemorate the bicentennial sin presidency. i want to thank you for your kind attention and i don't know if we are doing questions and now, okay we will do questions at this point before the break, which i hope i have not run up against too much. thank you. >> i think that given the fact
that president monroe tried to be as out upheld as he can during his presidency, a that certainly possible. i think then president might have more intimate knowledge of whether that was something that happened, exclusively or at least in part. see how i pivoted right you dan on that question? >> thank you. when he first started discussing the issue, he was not this way so, partly yes.
>> see, he has an answer everybody could be happy with. yes or. >> most miners rank in the importance of the hierarchy of the presidency as a whole? >> well, i would say here and then everybody else. it's interesting, james mineralize typically, over the years that there have been rankings of presidents, then near the top of the second tier, i think is the best way to put it. we have the top ten that are traded around and then anywhere from 11 to 15 or so is generally where everyone is falling. i think he was actually, and say the last 50, years migrated up somewhat and i think there was a ranking of presidents just recently revealed and i want to say he was at six. that's not fake news, that's real.
no, i think that the appreciation of monroe's accomplishments as a result of partly improved scholarship that is getting into sources that weren't previously accessed, and to some degree, trying to read across the debates that were going on on some of these issues, appreciating the fact that mineral was acquired and effective leader, that was not necessarily looking for the limelight. face, it when you're in a room with henry clay, he tends to take a lot of the air out of the room. but i think monroe's effectiveness is being more recognized. sir? , >> how long does he hold on to our support of the french revolution? >> i think that monroe saw his belief in and adherence to the revolutionary principles of france as a logical extension of what the american revolutionary experience meant to him. he, as many of the democratic republicans viewed, it saw the two as almost like a binary organism that the one was an
organic product of the other. as the excesses of the revolution became quickly bloody and violent, he did recoil from that and yet he never lost a sense of appreciation for the french devotion to liberty and to republican principles and his hope was that there could be a reconciliation of, those are many of those with american interests. washington administration, alexander hamilton has the former and leader of developer of the federalist party, saw a different future. one more closely aligned with great britain. and that really, not only set the tone for our first real political party evolution here, it set the tone for a lot of conflict that monroe had with a double is could try prairies. but i do think he stayed very devoted to those principles and his affection for france was genuine and personal, as well as philosophical. >> yes ma'am?
>> i'm surprised to hear that at one point, monroe was governor for four terms concurrently, it's only one term. was this a change during this constitutional -- >> it wasn't changed then. the evolution of the governorship of virginia has had several periods and when we look at it from the independence, from 1776 when the first constitution is being separate from great britain, governors can be elected for more on your terms, to which they were eligible for two subsequent elections. and so, a governor could serve, and some people call it a term off three years, if they're reelected. we choose to look at it has three elected terms because there's the possibility he would have not have been in years two and three. so he did have those three initial lines and then he had been elected to a fourth, which presumably could have set up a fifth and a sixth, had he
stayed, except he went and joined the madison administration. patrick henry just beat him out. patrick henry i believe ended up having five terms. so if monroe had hung in there a little longer, he might have gone -- and i showed an image in that when i referred to it have the governor's mansion in richmond, which monroe never got to stay in. he signed that legislation that had bills, but he didn't stay in the governor's position long enough to actually enjoy the new house that he authorized. >> he say a few words about the relation between monroe and lafayette? >> it was a friendship borne have shared service during revolution and it also coincided with monroe's awakening to the wider political and social world of the philosophy. the french thinkers and writers who had such an impact on revolutionary thought. and lafayette helped share that, that and the fact they were both masons, that they were
young soldiers confronting this great conventional lives and it really cemented the bond between them. lafayette had run the full relationship smith many of his contemporaries as well. defection, the correspondence between them continued, monroe's presence in france actually coincided with the time that lafayette was an exile. and, yet there were still this interaction, monroe and mrs. mineral particularly were instrumental and paying a very publicized visit to buffer gets imprisonment to help and convince the french authorities to not execute members of her family, but to let her go eventually. so they had a role in helping engineer that. and then when mineral was president, not forget that his famous visit here in 1924, and will receive him at the white house and although trying to keep it somewhat low-key and not make a big state visit affair of it, he made it known he would have a place to basically, and a hot meal whenever he wants to come by. so it really was truly a
lifelong friendship that went right up to minerals death. >> he spoke french to? >> he did speak french, i understand some italian, which i only learned a little while back from being on the staff there. and it was competent in parsing some other languages too. i get spanish as well to some degree. but, yes french. >> flattening creek, of course yes. but i think that the use of french was both something useful in his diplomatic career and something that the family employed for their own head -ification to. >> i was going to ask about the idea of being considered a felony father because he was of the revolutionary generation. as president, having been a revolutionary war veteran and
wounded have one of the very famous battles, didn't he train and how to use that? >> it's probably instructive to know that even as president, he most fondly like to be called colonel monroe. so i think that has a little something to do with it. his style of crisis when he was on his northern tour was not a military uniform, but it was above purchase and a dark coat. a nice big hat that was of the revolutionary by point style, which we have in your collection, actually. and there's a wonderful story i'm going to share, just because you give me the opening. that hat is very napoleon, very big white bryant had, we've actually made a reproduction of it for our jay harrison to wear. and we were contacted recently by the historical society about barring the hat. because the american school for the death and connecticut was founded during monroe's tour in 1817, and he visited there. and they did not have a sign,
an american sign language at four presidents. i'm so the stories related to us is, the sign was created that day and this is still today the, asl sign for president. it's this on the story, is it's because of the hat he was wearing. i wish we could claim remain that, up we didn't, this was brought to us. so we're about to -- do the observers of the school. but i think it's a wonderful image to help influence something that is under two for 200 years, and if it's not true, it's a great story.