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tv   The Presidency James Monroe George Washington  CSPAN  April 5, 2021 3:52pm-4:18pm EDT

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geolocated. as you walk along monticello, you can look at it, you can see where things were. they'll tell their ancestor stories. anybody can google that real quick, find it on the app store. it's real strength in doing exactly what you're saying and how it changed over time. >> we also had an outdoor audio tour that helped people with buildings that might have been there outside the interpretative period. we tracked montpelier back to 1886, and that's the period we chose to interpret. >> i think we have time for just one more question. >> yes, hello. my name is heather scarlett from kent state university in ohio.
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i would like to know as leaders, do you think public reinforcement is enhanced more by reenactors or by things such as podcasts and videos? thank you. >> are there reenactors? >> at montpelier we use a james madison reenactor and a dolly madison reenactor who are highly vetted and very good at what they do. one guy reads the same newspaper madison would have read 200 years ago. he's great, he looks like madison, he's strange. i think when interpretation is done well, it's great. i also say it's really hard to do it well. and when you're looking at a
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plantation site in particular, it's hard to do well because of the people you would need on staff to interpret it accurately. >> yeah. yeah. >> same. we contract people in. most of the interpreters we use are professionals from colonial williamsburg. they aren't there all the time but they come to monticello sometimes because they're really good at what they do. but for the most part, i think my answer to your question would be yes, right, which is better, yes, depends on the situation, depends on who you're using and what kind of digital work is being put out. >> i would just caution you not to use technology for the sake of technology, right? don't use technology for the whiz bang factor, use it because it's the best method to convey the stories in the most effective way. >> so i just -- before we thank you guys, i just want to say that one of the things that's been so exciting for me about this conversation, and i know there are a lot of folks in the
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room who do public history, but for those of us who don't do public history, to hear how collaborative this work is on both sides, because i presumed that the interpretation was the collaborative space, right? like when you're engaging with the public. but what i have learned today is the intense collaborative work that you do both with each other, with other professionals, but then also with community members. and i just find that incredibly exciting and really energizing. so i want to thank you all so much for sharing that with us. they'll stay here for a minute, so come and talk to them if you have other questions. thank you. [ applause ] american history tv on
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c-span3 every weekend documenting america's story. funding for american history tv comes from these companies who support c-span3 as a public service. james monroe and george washington shared a bond forged in the revolutionary war. each man would serve his country as president, but the politics of the young nation drove a wedge between them. next on the presidency, in this lecture from the university of mary washington's great live series, scott harris explains where things went wrong. he's the executive director of the university's museums. the university of mary washington provided this video. scott harris received his b.a. with honors in history and his preservation from the university of mary washington in 1938 and an m.a. in history and
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museum administration from the college of william and mary in 1988. in january 2018, he was named executive director of the university of mary washington museums, a position which he currently holds. this followed six years as director of the james monroe museum, which is administered by the university. prior to that, he was director of the museum park. scott is a peer reviewer for the accreditation and assessment programs for the american museums and for the journal of the association. he has a dictionary of white house biography.
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on a personal note, i think there are few things more gratifying to teachers than to witness the success. i'm particularly proud of tonight's speaker as i can claim him as the very best that has ever taught in a law career at mary washington. it is a personal pleasure, then, to welcome our friend scott harris. thank you and good evening. on december 13th, 1799, george washington was dying. a throat infection that had set in after a long ride around mt. vernon the previous day in sleet and snow made conversation with his secretary, tobias lear, increasingly difficult. lear noted in his journal that washington's mood, despite the hoarseness, was very cheerful as
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they sat in the parlor reading newspapers aloud. washington's demeanor changed when the subject turned to virginia politics. he requested me to read him the debates of the virginia assembly on the election of a senator and a governor. and hearing mr. madison's observations respecting mr. monroe, he appeared much affected and spoke with some degree of austerity on the subject. what prompted washington's austerity for george's row? how did these two families who were acquainted for generations go from being soldiers for a common cause to bitter political foes. george washington and james monroe were each born to families that inhabited west
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county in virginia. evidence of their association includes a notice in 1661 talking about a suicide in the county. the coroner was george washington's great-grandfather. as shown on a map by johnson, frey and jefferson in 1775, the birthplaces of washington and monroe were separated by only a few miles, yet they had no apparent contact in their naifsh -- native community. by the time of monroe's birth, george washington's family had moved to king george county. the washington family's westmoreland lands were extensive with farms on mills creek. it was a life of privilege and prosperity that george
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washington was born on february 22nd, 1732, to john and mary washington. george washington's youth is the stuff of legend, most notably in the folk tale about george's chopping down of a cherry tree and his statement, i cannot tell a lie, when confronted by his father. george's head apparently matured well before the rest of his body. as a youth he worked as a surveyor for the fairfax family and later was the official surveyor for the county. washington completed close to 200 surveys on numerous properties totaling 60,000 acres. during the french and indian war, he served as an emissary for the governor of virginia and later in combat during general gratis' ill-fated path.
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the only surrender that washington encountered in his entire career under arms, washington took an active leadership role in the growing conflict between the american colonies and great britain. a member of the virginia house of delegates, he was part of the commonwealth's delegation to the first continental congress. when the second congress determined to name a commander to lead the continental army, washington, nominated by john adams, was called to serve on june 15, 1755. now, how the general gets to know his army, take a step back for a moment, and consider james monroe. james monroe's revolution began with his birth on april 28, 1758, to spence and elizabeth monroe. while the holdings secured by andrew monroe were not as big or prosperous as some of their
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neighbors the washingtons and other families as well, the family lived comfortably and were able to send their oldest son to one of the best schools and then to the college of william and mary. monroe enrolled at william and mary in june of 1774. like many of his classmates, he was soon caught up in revolutionary ferv. he soon saw arms in the governor's palace in 1775. in february of 1776, monroe was commissioned to lieutenant in the third virginia infantry regimen. for the next two years as george washington led the continental army in victory and defeat, on which more the latter, james monroe took part in the battles of highland heights, germantown and monmouth rising to the rank of major before his 28th birthday. monroe was also at trenton where washington's gamble of attacking
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an out post paid off in an aspiring victory the day after christmas 1776. the battle produced monroe's greatest moments of both peril and fame during the revolutionary war. as he described in his unfinished autobiography written late in his life in the third person. command of the vanguard consisting of 50 men was given to captain william washington of the third virginia regimen. lieutenant monroe promptly offered his services to act as a subordinate under him. on the 17th of december, 1776, they passed the delaware in front of the army in the dusk of the evening. understand, he was not in front of the boat. he was already on the other side of the river. the next morning the battle was joined, and again, i read from monroe's autobiography. washington then moved forward with the vanguard in front, shot down the commanding officer and then drove it before him.
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the drums were beat to arms and two cannons replaced in the main street. captain washington rushed forward, attacked and took possession of them. he received a severe wound and was taken from the field. the command then evolved upon lieutenant monroe who attacked with like manner as the head of the corps and was shot down by a musket ball which passed through the breast and right shoulder. he was also carried off the field. when monroe was brought to a makeshift hospital there, dr. john riker, who monroe had met just hours before, repaired an artery in his shoulder damaged by a musket ball. this picture was captured by trenton in 1776, and you see in the inset monroe clutching his shoulder examine chest. that bullet stayed in his body for the rest of his life. in 1779, washington noted
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monroe's, quote, zeal he discovered by entering the service in the early period, the character he supported in his regiment and the manner in which he carried his wound. he maintained the reputation of a brave, active and sensible officer. despite this endorsement and others, monroe was unable to recruit enough troops to form a regiment's command. he entered this continental army service and embarked upon a political career. after studying law with thomas jefferson who became his political mentor and serving in the house of delegates and on the governor's counter of state, james monroe was elected a general governor in congress in 1773. monroe was present on december 23rd, 1783, when george washington resigned his commission, his commander in chief of the continental army.
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he's shown here very nattily a tired, with a musket, looking right at him. when washington was chosen unanimously as the first president of the united states under the constitution, he was determined to govern in a manner that would minimize faction and promote the welfare of all americans. however, as the country evolved its domestic and foreign policies particularly against the backdrop of worldwide struggle between great britain and france, two political principal movements emerged. a strong economic government and policies were led by washington's treasury secretary, alexander hamilton. the anti-federalist faction who called themselves democratic republicans or simply republicans favored the states as the power base and had closer
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ties with france. they had helped the united states achieved independence in the revolutionary war and was reinforced for republicans in the advent of the french revolution in 1789. thomas jefferson, secretary of state in the washington administration, was the acknowledged leader of the republicans. he counted upon steadfast support in the house of representatives from james madison, and in the senate, from james monroe. early in 1794, washington sent chief justice john jay to england to negotiate a treaty that would result in british withdrawal from force in the northwest territory of the united states, improve the balance of trade between the two countries and curtail or impress the forceful removal of sailors of american ships in the navy. alexander hamilton drew up the instructions from the british in advance to facilitate an
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agreement. republicans bitterly opposed the diplomatic overture and the anchor breaking of the alliance. washington appointed james monroe, american minister to france, in may of 1794. the son of a prominent republican legislator, who was a declared admirer of france, was meant to appease the ally while also removing monroe from the domestic political scene. soon after the monroes arrived in france, the new minister appeared before the national assembly to present his credentials. he delivered an address in support of the united states revolution and commitment to the alliance. meanwhile in england, john jay negotiated a treaty that secured some of the american objectives but did little to address the
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imbalance of trade between great britain and the world navy. nevertheless, the treaty was ratified on february 9, 1796. republicans were incensed. and that is evident by a bit of graffiti that appeared on a wall in boston. damn john jay. damn everyone who won't damn john jay. damn everyone who won't put lights in their windows and sit up all night damning john jay. jay raleigh observed that he could make his way through pennsylvania at night by the light of his burning effigies all the way through the state. news of the jay treaty reached the french government even before it was officially revealed to james monroe. washington, irritated by monroe's everettly pro-french actions and statements, instructed secretary of state pickering to recall the minister. monroe received word of his dismissal in december 1776.
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excuse me, 1796. monroe delayed his return home until august of 1797, partly to avoid harsh atlantic weather and partly to avoid the appearance of meekly acquiesing to his recall. he published a pamphlet of his return, really it was a book, telling his side of the story, aiming harsh criticism at the washington administration and predicting the dire consequences of repudiating the american alliance with france. publication of a view of the conduct of the executive prompted an extraordinary reaction from george washington. his copy of the book, preserved at the houghton library of harvard university, contains what the national archives calls, quote, the most extended, unrelenting and pointed use of taunts and jabs in all of his
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writings. monroe claimed his deterrence of the french alliance. particularly in doubt of the mission to lawrence from the apprehension those would produce in our foreign nations, precisely the ill effect they did produce. to which washington replies unpardonable. when they were different political sentiments from mr. monroe whose judgment one must presume is infallible. monroe wonders why his pro-french statements were unsatisfactory. i could not imagine showing my favor for the impending documents and favor of the french nation.
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the president gives his answer, the great purpose was to preserve peace by having a position completely neutral. it wasn't known beforehand what the collaborative session may be, perhaps with one nation providing feelings to other nations that we were at peace and wish to remain so. when monroe reflects on why he delayed his departure from france, upon mature reflection, therefore, it appeared i had one alternative, which was to remain where i was and proceed in the functioning of my office, notwithstanding the embarrassments to which i might be personally subjected, or in retiring without explaining my motives for it, or by explaining it, denouncing my administration to the public. i therefore vow to stand firm to
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my post. washington replies in disdain. purely laughable that you're a man in these circumstances talking seriously when his recall is a second death. the two men never spoke again following this rupture in their relationship, though perhaps each wanted reconciliation. washington did not pay a call on him in mt. vernon as their mutual friend lafayette had done years before. when washington died the following year, the first president was venerated. monroe instructed members of his executive council to join him in wearing mourning ribbons for his former commander. during three successive one-year terms as governor, monroe visited himself in construction of the state's first penitentiary in arsenal.
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in 1700, he took an action of aborting the role of counselor. when washington signed a legislation to build the governor's mansion shown here still in use today, though he never resided there. monroe went on to other roles in government and diplomacy. thomas jefferson sent him back to france in 1883 to join robert livingston in a negotiating purchase. instead monroe and livingston accepted the surprise offer to buy the entire louisiana territory, adding over 60,000 square miles to the united states. monroe became secretary of state in the administration of his friend james madison in april 1811 and briefly served simultaneously a secretary of war during the war of 1812. he was present with madison at
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the battle of latensburg where they personally chose militia. madison was reportedly on the front line with very little result. they narrowly escaped capture. they burned many buildings, including, of course, the white house. monroe was elected president in 1816. he and his wife elizabeth undertook the restoration and refurbishing of the white house, a project that would continue throughout his two terms in office. elizabeth monroe's experience as first lady was characterized by a fondness for european style salons that were not always well received by washington society. she also endured a range of physical ailments that prevented
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her from being a white house hostess, her daughter taking over many times. but in both her social sishlg -- circles and in the refurnishing the monroes did at the white house, they still maintained a style that we still appreciate today. during his presidency, monroe took two initiatives that consciously or unconsciously echoed those of george washington. in 1789 washington had completed a full tour of new england. in 1817, monroe also went on tour, visiting not only new england but all the northern states and territories over a period of 15 weeks. he cruised the chesapeake region in 1818, and in 1819, spent five months visiting states of the south and west. the popularity of these presidential excursions, particularly the first one, produced what one newspaper called an era of good eelgz in


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