tv Tonight From Washington CSPAN May 3, 2012 8:00pm-11:00pm EDT
we knew he was making early on to al-shabaab and somalia. we knew he was involved in all the sorts of things with hundred individuals but we knew he was there doing that and as a consequence and no surprise when her talking about a local ideology is ideology was relevant. 's been asked on a special thursday night edition of booktv, authors and historians talk about the james madison white house. elizabeth dowling taylor talks about paul jennings a slave who worked in the white house.
here is author elizabeth dowling taylor talking about her book, "a slave in the white house." hertog in the library of congress is just under one hour. >> good afternoon. welcome to the library of congress. i am john kohl, the director of the center for the book in the library of congress. the center is the reading promotion arm of the library of congress. we were created in 1977 by librarian of congress daniel boorstin to help the library of congress stimulate public interest in books and reading and literacy. we operate primarily through a couple of national networks.
there are state centers for the book and in most of the state. they work with us to promote books in their respective states and in particular to promote writers and writing. we also have national reading promotion partners, many nonprofit groups and government organizations that we also work with to promote looks and reading. we are a major component in the national book festival and i hope many of you know about the national book festival and have attended in the past. i can tell you that this year's festival will be on the national mall through september 22 and 23rd. we are delighted to be able to have expanded the national book festival in the last year and that is going to continue. there are some more seats up front please if you would like to come up. there is plenty of room. today, we are featuring another kind of way that we promote
books and reading. we love to give up talks at the library of congress to make a couple of points, that a lot of the research at the library of congress and many other libraries results in a book in the printed word. we are pleased to feature authors and their books that have a special relationship with the library of congress. in this case, as you will learn, much of the work for beth taylor's book was done here at the library. we also help sponsor project books, books that come out of long-term library of congress efforts. so we are very pleased to have you here. there is really a listing of future talks. every one of our talks is supported, almost all of our talks are supported by one of the custodial biz decisions and
we are grateful for the manuscript edition for being our co-sponsor. today's noontime talk will be filmed both by c-span and by the library of congress. more than 200 of our talks are available on the library of congress's web sites on offense you can get a snapshot of current literature and writing in the united states, not only through books and talks on our web site but also through national book festival programming. since the book festival was created in 2001, we have accumulated war ore than 730 minutes, 45 minute talks from different writers so i hope you take advantage of that. it's really a snapshot of the importance of american writing that is growing each year and now we are lo and behold, going to go into our second decade of national book festival and books
beyond talks. because today's talk is being filmed i urge you to turn off all things electronic. once our speakers introduced, you will hear from her. there are more seats up front please if you want to come on up. then there will be a session about a 20 minute session of questions and answers. then there will be a book signing, so books are for sale at the special library of congress discount in the back of the room and you also can pick up a schedule for future talks ahead. in in the question and answer period, we will be filming that part of it for c-span as well and i'm going to ask people to come up to the microphone but i'm also asking a question and i'm participating you're giving the library of congress
permission to use your image and your wonderful questions on part of our programming while you wait for the wonderful answers from our speaker. to introduce beth, i am pleased to introduce julie miller's who since june 2009 has served as the specialist in american history in in the manuscript addition. i also want to add shortly after julie join their staff, she spoke in our books and beyond serious about her new book abandoned, founding links and century new york city. you can see you have authors and readers coming at you from all engles when you come to it look talk. would like now to turn this over to julie miller and let's give her a hand. [applause] >> he thank you. our speaker today has a
doctorate from the university of california-berkeley. she has been the director of interpretation at monticello, thomas jefferson, the director of education at montpellier, james madison's house and a fellow at the virginia foundation for the humanities and now she is the author of this book, "a slave in the white house" paul jennings and the madisons. and i might add she has also appeared on "the daily show" which you may be interested in seeing. i met death when she came with the manuscript here the library and in the reading room she realized that the library's collections of papers of leading colonial national figures contained papers and information about people who are not those people that other people, the people who surrounded them and very often those people were slaves. that information takes the form of mentions and letters journals and records but sometimes they consist of letters written by the slaves themselves.
this is a case of paul jennings, the paul jennings letters that beth found in the dolley madison papers. often, it's interesting to revise documents like these survived often because they were swept up into the papers of prominent people, people who were recognized for being prominent and in some cases we can assume these records are the only written records so they are really very valuable things that we incidentally have in the manuscript division. bass accomplishment in this book is that she was able to excavate the stories of paul jennings and now i'm very proud to introduce beth taylor. [applause] >> well, i thank john and julie for having me today. i thank all of you for turning out. a slave in the white house, paul
jennings and the madisons was a great labor of love. i spent three years researching the book and a year writing it. i have a fondness for good narrative nonfiction, and a lot of times if i read journalistic pieces, i enjoy when they begin with an extended anecdotal lead, so i adapted that approach in my book and each chapter starts with what we might call a vignette. i really labored over the details. if i save james madison so for code was olive, i have an eyewitness and so on. so i thought what i might do today is intersperse my comments with reading absurd -- excerpts from some of these vignettes. in one case it's the hatch of a
ship and in this first one it's it is an open grave. on or about 28th of february 1801 montpellier, the madison plantation in orange county virginia. the old master died in february but. on their way to the burial and the family graveyard, the house servant passed by the slave graveyard where most of them expected to be buried someday. it was cold and they walked on, passing between its tobacco fields to the east and the original homestead to the west. the madison family graveyard was located in the backyard of this first homesite, the main dwelling long burned to the ground and supplanted by the georgian mansion once they have and formal procession. once the household was circled around open grave, the house servants raised an expectant eye to the new master montpellier,
james madison jr. standing next to his mother nellie. there was this day at montpellier, another mother and son. the mother's name is unknown. the name of the toddler at her skirt was paul jennings. she perhaps help the little boy's hand, hoping not to transmit her anxiety over what might happen next. for the death of a master always a time of tension for his and slave people. they would have little control over decisions about their future including the fate of their nearest family members. well, james madison jr. became the fourth president of the united states. paul jennings journey from slavery to freedom would play out in the highest circles of ideas and power, the white house. james madison's study and in freedom he would author as created by the white house historical association, the
first white house memoir and its full text is included in the appendix in "a slave in the white house." it was my familiarity with his memoir that first drew me to jennings story. it is titled, "a colored man's reminiscences of james madison" and as that title implies, it is more about the so-called great man then it is about the author himself. but my interest was in jennings, so i have set out to discover elements of his biography, uncover the circumstances behind the publication of the memoir in 1865 and track down and interview living direct descendents. paul was only 10 when he came to washington in 1809, the first year of the madison administration.
he was chosen from among 100 montpellier slaves as just two or three to be part of the white house domestic staff. and he found washington to be dreary as indeed it was. not only because he was likely homesick, but because this was a planned city and at that time existed very much more a paper than it did on the ground. but i think soon enough, paul realized that he was at the start of a great adventure. he would be a footman in the presidents house for eight years and would come of age in washington, aged 10 to age 18 and in the process, he would be an important witness to history in the making.
31 may, 1809, the first of dolley madison's white house drawing rooms. it was a rainy wednesday. paul jennings likely have the initial duty of meeting guests at the north entrance with an umbrella. there was no portico then for protection from elements. tonight was the first of what would become dolley madison's legendary drawing room with the presidential mansion open for everyone who was properly introduced. more gentlemen and ladies attended this from your night as would be expected in a town with many government men and residents without their families. had more ladies than present, dolley still would have sat apart not because she was seated on a platform as martha wash and had been at her courtly reception, but because of the charming intertwining of her personality and dress. jennings himself later described describe some of her ensembles.
fabrics a purple of purple velvet and white satin all in the finest material and trimmed mesh. president madison happy to leave the limelight, was as tired as usual in the old old-style, richard and powdered hair. paul had no way of knowing he would one day serve as madison's ballet and be responsible for his clothes and his -- as they guess mingled among the room servants came through with trays or tracer refreshments, wine, punch, coffee and ice cream. young jennings may have been among the servers that first night but more likely was a runner acting on the stewart command to replenish this from the pantry or toad fed up from the cellar. it was both frightening and exhilarating experience, the carriage, music, mirrors and chandeliers, the sophisticated political conversation. paul the observer, paul the
listener received and i an eiffel and an earful this evening. si began my research, i prepared a word document headed, what would paul jennings like? and i added to it, as i went along. two characteristics among others became clear. he was a good listener and he was a good networker, two traits that serve anyone well who is interested in getting ahead. i enter. jennings life as a deliberate, courageous and successful pursuit of their right the right to rise which really is the most american of promises, isn't it? >> jennings, after his eight years in washington thought
about running away. instead of returning to the plantation with the madisons. the evidence for this is a letter in the madison papers written by jefferson's nephew, warning him that there was such a rumor. and i visualized jennings, his last window of opportunity to act and thinking not only about whether he had the nerve to chance and illegal run and perhaps be punished but realizing also that virginia plantation was his home too. could he leave the theme of his boyhood, the home of his mother, never to return? he could've said if i don't make it back this christmas i will be sure to do that next christmas. this would be forever in what we know is in the event, jennings indeed returned to virginia and
he was promoted if you will, to the position of james madison's personal attendant or body servant. and as such, as a constant servant, he was present as madison received a queue of notables from thomas jefferson to andrew jackson, henry clay, daniel webster and very many young men. madison's niece wrote that jennings cry for freedom was enamored with freedom. well, you bet. those young men of learning, they would rhapsodize about spending one evening listening to the father of the constitution. jennings like part of the wallpaper, was present for
hundreds of such discourse and in the book, i developed a thesis that jennings was able to absorb the theoretical underpinning that would support his an innate yearning for freedom and allowed him to identify it as a natural right of man. late february, 1837, jennings prepared madison city house in washington for future use by the widow dolley madison. paul jennings had returned to lafayette square for the first time in 20 years. james madison died the previous summer and mistress dolley decided she would make use of her city house in washington and sent jennings ahead to ready the dwelling. it was still february but in anticipation of a new administration, already the town noise was gathering along with
springs first frost. the atmosphere must have reminded jennings of james madison's inauguration 28 years earlier. jennings took stock of a much off -- altered lafayette square. bought from the medicine house the restored white house now supported porticos at lord the north and south friends. half the building charge and week and exterior walls had been built where the workmen dug out the dinner display that jennings had prepared and torch the mansion in august 1814. the george washington portrait had been retrieved from the maryland farmhouse where it had safely rested after the fire and returned to the white house. as for jennings himself, his young manhood was behind him and he was still a slave. nevertheless now it i husband and father, he led a life of meaning and took advantage of opportunity as they came out. jennings rise would always
require unremitting resistance against legal, social and psychological impediments. the contrast with dolley is striking. hopelessly alcoholic and with neither occupation or spouse. of course one could say payne took advantage of the situation too. he certainly take advantage of his mother and stepfather time and again slowly draining their finances and goodwill. as you know, every presidential family needs an embarrassing ne'er-do-well. and in this case, it was dolley's son from her first marriage, payne todd. and pain beautifully filled out the role for me and the arc of my story as a foil to paul jennings. here he had every advantage in life and squandered everyone. jennings had no advantage in life and yet even while still a
slave, managed to carve out a life of meaning for himself. now, when james madison died, jennings was disappointed to learn that he had not been freed as he had reason to expect. he was then given to understand that madison had made an agreement with his widow that she would free all the montpellier slaves, all the 100 slaves. that certainly was not going to happen. she and her son began selling slaves right away although in her 1841 well, she did have a term that would freed jennings as the only slave treated. he wasn't so sure about that as time went by. he got on her bad side. now, he is back in washington, but his wife and his children are owned by another master in
virginia, a neighbor of madison so not only has he not lived with them up until now, visited with him only on the one traditional day off day, sunday but now he was altogether geographically separated from them. dolley at this time was tiring him out to president james pope so jennings had a second white house experience beginning in 1845 and at this point, the president and his mistress had given them permission to go back to virginia for a visit with his family. but he had stayed longer than dolley approved of and she wrote to her son and said that paul will lose the best place and his mistresses convenient resources. i want to stop with that story for a second, because i want to
tell you a about my research at the library of congress and how it was here that i got my firsthand as to paul's family. i think it is an interesting episode because it illustrates undertaking historical research in this day and age and a likely path for it. it often starts, as it did with this aspect, with google books, and google books, you never know what you are going to get the codes you put in different combinations of key words and you see what comes up. at one point, even though i thought certainly i had tried as many times before, i discovered that here in the manuscript of the library of congress was a 29 page manuscript titled, paul
i was just so excited. at this point i was director of education at montpellier but thought when saturday comes out of going up to washington. let me call ahead than make then make sure they really do have this item and can share it with me on saturday. so i called up and someone in the manuscript division, and i must say everyone who works here is always assisting me with great thoroughness and kindness and i really really appreciate that. such was the case with this gentleman on the phone who said well, he looked it up window and came back and said, that may look a little bit more. do you have another minute to hang on the phone? i said i would be happy to hang on the phone and have you read me all 29 pages of this manuscript, so that is no problem. but anyway, so he said yes indeed we have it and i went out
on saturday. the fellow who was working that day in the manuscript division, i showed them the printout from google books. he was surprised to see that would have been digitized on google books was the actual book of manuscripts in the library of congress. he had pulled out his copy and it was like the bible. he did display a certain, a certain aspect of claiming this as their special document. don't tell me now anybody can get their hands on this from google books. but anyway once he brought forth the manuscript, i was just beside myself because right on the first page i learned five new facts about paul jennings biography. this was where i first learned that he had a wife named nanny gordon. you see i've also learned for
the first time about daniel murray. daniel murray was the first african-american assistant librarian of congress and he had been preparing a monumental but never published biographical encyclopedia of the race, prominent african-americans of his time and he included paul jennings among them because he was familiar with his having authored "a colored man's reminiscences of james madison." in 1901, he had interviewed paul jennings only child at that point franklin jennings and he has put together some notes. so i got to see both on microfilm some of the notes that murray had put together as well as this opening page of this manuscript. paul jennings in his time.
what was interesting, and what is part and parcel of research so often is that according to murray, franklin had said that his mother was -- to the sister of general, eventually president zachary taylor. well i knew that was not possible because i was familiar with the tailor family, no relation of orange county virginia and i knew that's zachary taylor was born in that area but his immediate family had quickly moved on to kentucky. so that timing just wouldn't work out. but what it gave me was a hint that it was some mystery in the tailor family and indeed it was. later i was able to verify that six ways to sunday through the orange county courthouse records
and through other records at the national archives and so on. but that was really one among many exciting days of the library of congress. now the rest of the story then. so paul jennings needs his freedom now. he was actually -- what actually happened was his wife dies so now his children back in and orange are motherless, the youngest just two years old. this was when he went to senator daniel webster for help. now remember i said he was a good networker and he knew it helps to have acquaintances in high places, even as a slave. webster came to his rescue and he advances purchase price. he was not a rich man. he struck a deal with jennings whereby jennings would work in his household and pay that purchase price back as arrays of
$8 a month. finally at the age of 48 paul jennings became a free man. and here is one thing he got involved with that very first full full-year freedom. night, saturday, 15 april, 1848, landing near the seven street wharf washington city. it was a moonless night and that was an advantage for the activity at the wharf was highly illegal. paul jennings played a role in the operations that led to this action and was thought to have been a black man silently observing the scene in the shadows noticed by ship captain daniel drayton. drayton approach the witness who told him he know was going on but he had no apprehension on his account. before the night was over, 77 and slave men women and children would board the pearl anchored at the edge of the potomac weather and throw themselves
under the hatch before the new day dawned. they would be on their way to freedom in the north. among the individuals sitting in the hall was dolley madison's runaway slave ellen stewart. jennings had likely escorted the 15-year-old girl to the doc at mile or so south of pennsylvania avenue and watched her board the day schooner. it may well have been her desperate need for flight that precipitated jennings own involvement in the slave escape ensher. and a approximately five months earlier, dolley had called ellen to the lafayette square house not only for an errand but to quote show her to a georgian that the colored people call the slave driver. after allen was dismissed valley arrange for the traitors pick traders pick up the girl in the public square where she was under the ruse of -- but ellen got wind of the maneuver and dashed across lafayette square and escaped into the bustle of the city.
as i say, it impresses me that jennings was rich. his hard-won status as a free man by helping others try to achieve that same condition. this was not to be. jennings was one of the black operatives who worked with white northern abolitionists to plot this escape attempt out. it was part of the underground railroad and it turned out to be the largest attempted slave escape ever in american history. the pearl left the harbor but met with light winds and that slowed it down. i got to the chesapeake and in the wins were too heavy to enter the day. still they might've made it to freedom in the north but for a turncoat in the black community back in washington who informed on them, that got the owners on their tail sooner than later.
they caught up with them and they hauled the pearl back to washington. those slaves aboard -- or sale to the deep south and permanent separation from home and family. now another thing that paul jennings did soon after he achieved his freedom is to march himself down to the photography studio and said for his area type. here he is on the cover and let me tell you how i discovered this image. it is the only known likeness of any montpellier slave. i worked to seek out jennings direct descendents and i had tips to the living direct descendents of two of jennings children's but none for his son
franklin. when i finally cracked that line it led me to to sylvia jennings alexander. she was 93 years old when i had the privilege of meeting her and she was the keeper of the jennings family oral tradition. our living room wall was the light is of paul jennings. mrs. alexander lived another year and a half after i met her and though she had physical maladies when i first met her, her mind was sharp as a tack and her memories that she learned from her grandfather franklin -- franklin lived to be 90 so she heard right from franklin many of the family stories that go back to the slavery days and she very much enriched my story and also my own personal experience. by the way, she shared many family photographs with me and
"a slave in the white house" has over 20 photographs and maps and other graphics but there are many more that couldn't go into the book, and i hope you will check out the paul jennings web site where many of them have been posted. is paul jennings .info. but back to this likeness. it didn't take me too long to compare it with the statue of james madison that is here in the madison building of the library of congress and that of course is because madison, even as you see jennings here, holds the book in his right hand. jake madison was always the statesman with a book under one arm and it's clear that jennings was proud of his literacy, but he is posing with a prop of his choice, a book. here is the last benyette excerpt that i will read.
31 october, 1854, l at 18th street, northwest washington. paul and desdemona jennings appreciated their home. was a small but great significance to them. carpenter john james on lot 23, square 107 and having divided the land into three parcels, he billed three wood frame houses facing l street. each parcel had ran from 84 to 115 feedback to a diagonal alley. jennings purchased easternmost house or $1000. dsa $400 of the purchase price, substantial down payment. earlier on this day a month after the sale husband and wife have been at the washington clerk's office where each sign a document borrowing the 600-dollar balance. desdemona is jennings second
wife, played your market knowledge in the same as her husband. namely that if their payments were not made the property would be forfeited. the arrangement specified quarterly installments of $100 plus interest, accumulating the down payment could not have been easy and coming up with $100 every three months would not be either. washington was one of the most expensive cities in the world. an office clerk earning nine to $1800 annually were hard-pressed to support their families. jennings salary was 400. the debt would be satisfied in may, 1856 and paul jennings the man legally held his property for 48 years with bonus piece of land and modest house free and clear for himself and his heirs forever. there were just a scattering of houses in the area. the city established finer residences ran from capitol hill to the white house and a small section north and west from
there. so it was only a few blocks further on. paul and desdemona's neighborhood was in a cow pasture, countryside where rabbits could be shot in black areas and huckleberries grew in season. while i'm sure most of you know that spot, l on 18th street northwest and if you were book lovers, you will remember that is where until not long ago there was a borders book. i would go there and sit in the café, get a copy in thing, i think i could be sitting at paul jennings kitchen table right now. what is interesting too as many the places where jennings either lived and/or worked are still in washington. the winder building and the patent office building where he worked for the department of interior, the dolley madison house, the octagon which was the temporary white house after the white house burned and of course the white house itself.
well, before we get to questions and answers, i want to make a couple of comments on paul jennings legacy. james madison wrote of liberty and learning leaning on each other for their mutual insured support. like madison, jennings applied his learning in the service of liberty. he secured his freedom and his family's future as an intrepid antislavery activist. he forged free papers for slaves, was an operative in a major attempted slave escape and he raised funds for slaves in peril. by helping to purchase them from their masters.
his is a unique story, but it's also important to appreciate that at the same time, he is representative many, many african-americans of his time who stories may never be known, but who like him, overcame a barrage of obstacles in pursuit of the right to rise. and i will close by referring back to the library of congress and the great goods that they do here in preserving the written word. you know when jennings offered that first white house memoir, it was a private printing. i don't believe that there were more than 150 to 200 copies, so really it is quite remarkable that it survived at all and wasn't altogether a loss over
the years. in part, we do have daniel murray because that assistant library of congress helped put together and exposition in 1900 of the works of black authors and that included paul jennings. you know this is in contrast to 12 years of slaves. there were 8000 copies printed and sold in just the first month when it came out in 1853 and many thousands and thousands would follow. so i'm grateful to daniel mari and the library of congress that jennings memoir is still with us and i thank you for preserving our heritage of the word. i thank all of you for your kind attention. [applause]
>> we are grateful to beth of course not only for the research that went into this story, but also to highlighting a little bit of the library of congress, the history and our own story. as part of the american story. we are not done yet or do we have a question and answer. not to go. i did not mention to liberally that this discussion also can continue on facebook at the books and beyond facebook page, where you can learn about past talks and contribute your own remarks to the ongoing discussion that we are about to start now. i would like to ask for those of you who have questions of death please come to the microphone in the middle and ask a question. i also will be able to assure you that we have until 1:00
until the signing starts, so let's start with one more round of applause for excellent speaker today. [applause] and will someone take the first step? if not, i will ask the first question and i expect others to come up and follow. i have an easy question. what was it like to be on "the jon stewart show"? what kind of preparation did you do mentally before you took that first step? [laughter] >> you know it is funny because the publicist at my publishers and did and i didn't know it until one evening when i got back to my house in virginia, having been up here in washington, picking up my son who was a college student at
american university and bringing them back home for the christmas holiday. when i got back there were six telephone messages, 20 e-mails, where are you? you are booked on "the jon stewart show" and want to make your travel arrangements. naturally my sending 21 is a prime jon stewart and i sat him down and i said i know you are not going to believe this but i am going to be a guest on "the jon stewart show." he first of all coached me, asking me questions. i try to grip -- might get a grip on minor for which i did just the afternoon of the taping anything so when i did go over to the studio, the experience could be fun for me as indeed it was. the entire thing was just one of the most privileged and enjoyable experiences i have ever had.
of course jon stewart is my new best friend because i do feel like i have him to thank for this vigorous book sale. speeding i was just wondering if you got a sense of his personality and if it was what you expected when you set out on the journey of the book? >> the question was what sense i got up paul jennings personality yes i did get a good sense i feel as time went by. i feel there were a couple of sides to him. he was an intelligent, courteous, well read. he played the violin. he liked to read. he was steady and precise. he was patriotic. he had another side that he was especially able to address
freedom and i feel like he was a man about town in washington. he married three times, the last time at age 70. sylvia jennings alexander's great-granddaughter said her father, franklin, described him as a jim dandy. in other words, he thought that he was hot stuff at that time and he said if he had any extra money he would buy fine shoes for example. i think about how he watched washington change, coming here in 1809 as a 10-year-old lloyd and then living and dying in northwest washington, dying at the age of 75. even to take one thing like the u.s. capital and imagine how it evolved over the years, remodeled, burned by the britisg the civil war coming to its
prominence as it looks today. although he never did see the washington monument completed. for 25 years, he never saw that. >> i was about to ask how long did he get a chance to enjoy his freedom? >> let me say a little bit more about his life and freedom. now remember daniel webster advance his purchase price and so it would have taken close to a couple of years to pay that back at the rate of $8 a month and he continued to work for webster for about four years. then he decided apparently he wanted another kind of job. remember i said that he was a good networker. so what he did was get a letter of recommendation from daniel webster. he found the original and the
papers of albert chaplin. he is from orange county and he is the cousin of madison's but he was living in washington at this time, working as a clerk in the department of the interior. the next thing you know, jennings gets a job in the department of the interior so it's easy for me to imagine he is taking his letter of recommendation that webster wrote for him and jennings name, paul jennings on the envelope but then handing it over to his contact where albert chaplin gets him a job in the same department. he had a steady but low-level government job. this was most coveted among free black men and about the highest black men at that time that he aspired to in terms of likelihood or ghosts of he worked in the detention office
under the department of the interior for at least 15 years. >> what a fascinating positive. i was wondering if you want to tell the story bring it for. >> first all, i worked at monticello and montpellier for a combination of 22 years, and i saw the opportunity to make a small contribution by telling a fuller story of the african-american heritage, and wherever slavery existed. at these two presidential plantations it was all the more poignant and all the more important to do so. so i had that ongoing interest. paul jennings became the focus of my study because of this memoir. i thought, you know, my
question, it's a precious document and its quite interesting and yet you young near finish it you feel like saying what about you paul jennings? i wish you had included more about yourself. the visitors who came to montpellier were interested too. the memoir, you can find the text on line but they have nevercome at any new additions since 1865 and at first i thought well, i will bring that out, the reminiscences themselves and do a biographical essay with them perhaps. and then i just got more ambitious from there until it turned into a full-length book. >> mentioned that he died in 75. where is he buried, and washington? >> i would say that story. he was. was buried in harmony cemetery which is southeast of and that
was okay, except as the years went by, that aerial ground became very much overrun with weeds and then the metro itself encroached on it. as some of you may know, the burials there were dug up and re-interned in maryland. i don't know if there were other cases but paul jennings remains never made the trip. this is alexander, sylvia jennings allergan -- alexander, remember her cousin pauline crying, they have lost grandpa paul, they have lost grandpa paul. and so although we know initially he was buried in harmony cemetery, just where his remains are at this moment are unknown.
>> when i first met death, she was at monticello and she recalled the story to me earlier. i hadn't seen her for a number of years. i knew she was working on this book and she came wandering down the hall about an hour before the talk, and i knew it had to be bath because she was caring kind of a decrepit but important bag to the center for the book. it was the old center for the book bag that i had given her how many years ago? >> about 12 years ago. >> 12 years ago and i said that must be bath but i had better check it out. then i saw the condition of the bag and i said well that speaks well for the durability of the quality of our products here. in addition to thanking her and telling you that we would like you have to line up over here for the book signing and have a
line come along that wall, i would like to present beth with -- [laughter] a brand-new bag. it is in great shape, never been used. i will not take this one back though. >> sentimental value. >> sentimental value. join me in one more time and thanking beth for a wonderful talk. [applause] >> thank you very much. >> booktv continues tomorrow night with biographies of memorable individuals.
>> here is the flannery building going up in 1903. we see this all the time. if you stop and think what is the technology, basically back in the 1890s when they were introduced, they were explained as a railroad bridge on its end. that is how they explained it. most people were afraid of this thing and as a matter of fact you might think we were all loving it. we love innovation. we are new yorkers and americans but this thing with little scary. the poor guy who had this building was none to happy. he couldn't render down and he couldn't sell it. nobody wanted to be in this building because they figured any moment the building would tumble onto them.
up next on booktv, the story of hugh howard talks about the war of 1812 from the perspective of the president james madison and his wife dolley. madison, the first president to declare war was forced to flee washington by advancing british troops. mr. howard talks about his book, "mr. and mrs. madison's war at the book loft bookstore in great barrington massachusetts. >> hello book friends, and welcome. thank so much for coming to the book loft on this fine berkshire evening. as many of you know in our nearly 40 years of business, we okies at the book loft are very proud of our staff. they represent a -- in fact we will often ask each other so what are you reading?
and when told it will ask -- well maybe or not or yeah. even though hugh howard and i are best friends and have downed more than a few beers together over the years and a briton many side-by-side while skiing it doesn't necessarily follow however that i would pick his excellent new book. i did it because it is in fact an excellent book. more on that in a moment. hugh hubbard got his book working in publishing houses as an architectural historian. he wrote a series of articles for "the new york times" which became the basis for his first book, the preservation of progress. over the ensuing years he has written over a dozen books on american architecture, art and history. happily for us, he and his wife betsy moved to colombia county in 1981 where he chronicled their efforts remodeling an old colonial in his terrific book
house dreams. since then among his other projects he has turned his eye to thomas jefferson and his role as an architect and as an inspiration to other early american architects in his book, dr. campbell and mr. jefferson. in the painter's chair, he brought to life the founding fathers of american painting and the elusive george washington. more recently along with his longtime collaborator and photographer roger straus, he wrote of the houses of the founding fathers in the book of the same name. he and roger are hard at it again in a sequel of sorts to be called houses of the president. i so envy his researchers. you should ask him sometime about his visit to bill clinton's boyhood bedroom. he has turned his attention to the war of 1812 with this new book, "mr. and mrs. madison's war america's first couple at the second world war of independence published by the
whims buried vote and a history book club selection of the month. most of us i suspect have a sort of grade school remembrance of the war of 1812. frances scott key, dolley saving the george washington portrait and that's about it. but of course it was a much more complicated affair on numerous fronts in the time of considerable political division. we yankees wanted nothing to do with that war. and what a fascinating and diverse cast of characters. chief among them was that the diminutive and brilliance james madison and his vivacious and cunning wife, dolley. arguably they were america's first power couple. no doubt the obamas could learn much from james and dolley. perhaps they already have. it was a pivotal moment in our nation's history as america besieged on all sides sought to maintain its independence from forces seemingly too huge to
repel. but repel them they did. it is a concept that we few independent bookstores left standing fully appreciate. thanks to c-span, booktv court here this evening recording his remarks, be sure to check out the tv schedule to find out when this event will be held. it will be telecast. he will be offering some remarks after which he will take some questions and of course will happily sign copies of his book. also copies of his book will be available on our web site, but book loft.com. ..
independent stores are becoming in this world and for those us who enjoy the process of browsing through books as well as reading and writing at the bookstores or whatever the merits of the web are a special place. so i thank them for being here, both to welcome us tonight, but also to sell us their wares. to begin man, a question comes
to mind is why a book on the war of 1812? apparently the answer is because i can read a calendar. this is 2012 and therefore it's the bicentennial of the war of 1812. anniversaries i can't have a kind of doppler effect if you will. you don't really hear them much and then everything happens in a sort of fade away. i was really hoping that i could touch that moment and to judge from the folks we have here, i say maybe it's working. another reason for a book about the war of 1812 is my curiosity. and i think other people's. because as eric said, it is a war that kind of tends to lower. i think if you ask any casual student about revolution or the civil war or any other conference in the 20th century, you probably get a pretty good answer.
for example if you asked about the revolution where the declaration of independence, the shot heard round the world, the battle of yorktown, valley forge, all kinds of great things and stories we all know. and they come pretty easily to mind. but with the war of 1812 is rather a different matter. i've asked this question repeatedly over the last few years under the war had some remarkable moments of great stories and great heroes, for the most part the war is kind of a no man's land when it comes to our memories i believe. so i wanted to do some in about that. a third reason for doing this book is that deciding what to write next isn't always the most obvious thing and to come up with an idea sometimes they come out and sometimes they don't put the pattern is basically the same and basically i do some homework. usually with the original
sources. i want to find something that hasn't been said by a bunch of other people and i want to find something based upon what the participants way back in time new and experienced. mri have a little bit of a handle i put a few words on paper. after a while you know there's always a moment when i either drift off and moved to another subject or i know i want to write this book. i know it's right for me. and when "mr. and mrs. madison's war" happened when this paragraph came to me more or less in a moment. i'm going to read it to you. picture a president looking morosely at the ruin of two of his nation most iconic buildings. he mourns their loss, burned as they were in an act of international terrorism. a war declaration is the air, one based on false intelligence.
there's the promise as well have been easily accomplish victory. unfortunately the conflict will turn into a long slog that divides the country, empties his stretcher in the none of the warring partners feeling transit. now consider the president was james madison, the buildings the capital and the presidents house in the year eight and 14. are history echoes interesting, sometimes the past can be oddly contemporary. but back to 1812. the more i learned, the more intriguing and confusing was the subject. for example the name of the war, the war of 1812 was something of a misnomer, indeed it wasn't declared in june of 1812, that it was fought throughout the balance of 1812, it all of 1813,
all of 1814 and into 1815. it was a 32 month war. seems odd. for another example, the biggest single military victory was the battle of new orleans, which was fought after the war was over. after the treaty of peace was signed. of course this is an area without cell phones and e-mail hemlines. so in order to get the news from doll show more the treaty was signed to the united states, a messenger had to climb on a boat, sailed to england, sailed to new york, claim a carriage and take that to another carriage after that all the way to washington d.c. that took approximately seven weeks, during which time the british attack andrew jackson and his men at new orleans and all the hickory just plain demolished the british wars, a couple thousand british soldiers
were killed. so it is in some sense hardly surprising people to remember this war given the sequence of events were just too dang confusing. and by the way, the treaty that ended the war was not income essentially nothing because the stated reasons for going to where we left entirely out of the treaty. now we have andrew jackson. and that's john quincy adams by the way standing in the short jacket. the treaty can be summed up in a lack of the phrase that quincy avenue, which is status quo antebellum. that is the way things were before the war. no territory change from a very little change in fact really except that in some ways psychologically and politically in particular the war with some pain of a watershed.
and while this not have proved a memorable war, i'd like to make the case it was nonetheless a very important war in shaping the american character. to put it in more contemporary terms, we were being bullied and we stood up for ourselves. it was david and goliath and although we didn't knock our opponents to the ground, the world's expectations and our own self-confidence of the nation were altered as a result of the war. i think it may be useful to explain "mr. and mrs. madison's war" in the title. probably it is a function of chronology. madison was president when the war began and his declaration began it, so he got the blame and eventually whatever credit
loss. in new england, as eric alluded to, no one really wanted to go to war and the politicians in the ease as the region was known for mostly merchants. and so a new england pamphleteer quickly dubbed the conflict, mr. madison's lawyer said with disgust. although madison was small, sickly and intellectual by nature, his voice sounded fragile. he was always dressed in black, but the name of the war, his name stuck to that war. the first american writer to make a living off of his boat, washington irving described madison as a wizard little apple char. the president madison had come to think that going to war was necessary. he had been his friend thomas and jefferson secretary of state for two terms and by the time the war came around, he'd seen a
dozen years and that the risk of sounding like i am teaching to the test, anybody ready to take their advanced placement in world history? madison hunt for more or less essential reason for going to war. first there was impression. maybe you remember that word in history. the british in the midst of a long war with the french had enough the habit of helping themselves to sailors off the backs of american ships. some of them were indeed british who had gone awol, but lots for americans. more than 5000 american soldiers were impressed in this way in the years before the war. the second reason the british had limited themselves to sailors either, but they'd taken ships. more than a thousand nature ships, merchant ships confiscating without american honors. the navy was the most powerful in the world as it could
misbehave with impunity. madison's third reason for war was evidence that the british employed secret agents to spy on them. we didn't like it then and we don't like it now. fourth, it was alleged that the british were stirring up the indians. there is a close call and they came in the current use and 1960s and the declaration were madison referred to the warfare had just been viewed by the savages in the northwest territory. he blamed the english for causing trouble in some degree it was true. best, with the support of the new faction in congress, mostly westerners called war hocks, these reasons added up to the rationale of water. it probably didn't hurt the people are not madison told him that taking canada would be an
easy matter. in fact the mentor, jefferson predicted that canada would be a mere matter of marching, which makes good alliteration, but unfortunately bad soufflé and. it didn't play out that way at all. next i'm delighted to say i must talk about mrs. madison. i knew when i decided to write this book that i wanted to tell it from a human perspective and that would be mr. madison, but also this is not a sense, all of which meant i got to spend a couple years hanging out with todd madison. she can make gilbert stuart in 1804 is still pretty young in this picture. i think 36. and if you'll excuse the anachronism, she was a bit of a
babe, unafraid of her décolletage. but let's look at her. her is, so was she. when she met james in 1794 coversheet was recently widowed. he was 43, world renowned political philosopher and the principal author of the constitution. and he still lives with his parents. she was 17 years younger. she stood taller, handsome, black hair, striking good looks that quite literally turns out on the streets. but as a team, you might say they were ready for primetime. in this picture, perhaps you can sense her personality in a think i can see why washington irving having dissed her husband as the weather apple john found this madison more to his taste. he knew her as lady present.
the term first lady didn't come into use until 1848 when not madison's funeral jackie taylor refers to her as first lady. that was the first time that a debt for pennies it is going to characterize this one. she made no attempt to be willow and her admirer she was perfect. a service that of her, mrs. madison is a fine, courtly bucks and being who has a smile and pleasant word for everybody. when james was secretary of state and his friend jefferson's administration, dolly was the president's hostess. jefferson he recalls a widower. and she was on her way to becoming the central figure in washington and society, a role she took on full-time at a took the oath of office march 4, 1809. she wasn't the one of the world sees her sort, no homespun for her and what admirer and served
on the eve of her has been swearing-in, she let the queen. she had that to the parisian fashion by wrapping a strip of silk fabric and a three or four feet in length about her had. james who admitted to having slept poorly the night before he looked pale and exhausted. dolly, affable to the berlin decided happily. however, mrs. madison did more than look great. for 16 years she ruled benevolently over at washington society welcoming political friend and foe alike. so many came in fact through so-called drying runs that during madison's presidency they were known as squeezes. she was well known and probably more widely loved and admired and her has been. in fact charles posts for from south carolina the man defeated in 1808 was heard to remark
after the votes have been counted was beaten by mr. and mrs. manus and might of had better chance. taken together then i decided that james and dolly madison decided different but complementary and could provide a unique means of telling the story in the war of 1812, thus the title, "mr. and mrs. madison's war." now, to tout the story of the word of 1812 to take hours rather than the minutes we have here. but i would be remiss if i didn't tell a couple of war stories. the conflict it produced the legends that are essential to the american anthology, even if not everyone associates these with a war. in the early weeks, it 18-pound chemical jumped off the ship built for a tear in state as a
unique survivor and i'm guessing more than a few people in this room have walked it stacks. well, on august 19, 1812 the constitution won a decisive tree when the american ship produce the hms carrier to its own captain turned a perfect unmanageable rat. the american also when it's name that day. the ship of course was out. now that was a great day for u.s. navy history, but i'm going to read you another story of an american sailor ran on the pages of my book. the two great ships were well out under easy sail in the mid-de son on the tranquil sea the hms shannon at the uss
chesapeake, but this was a pursuit in name only as the captain's reach the understanding that their ships would square off in a fair fight. at the struggle for oxfam said seven miles separating the ships, the americans fired a gun. -- captain philip broke ordered the topsails we, showing flow in the's progress. by half past five, the chesapeake was closing fast on the shannon. both ships steered into the wind, moving barely fast enough to maintain weight broke watch as his opponent came down upon the shannon starboard quarter at a speed of six or seven knots. the moment wasn't nervous when that might have passed under the stern of the british burkett and opened fire. the american captain chose not to attempt a maneuver. again an unspoken gentleman's agreement honored, the two ships
with saigon equal terms. this has to be an artillery duel and close range at the ships sailing nearly side-by-side separated by a mere 50 yards. there were 20 miles east of boston night and the chesapeake ranged up on the shannon 10 minutes before 6:00. the american cat didn't come in even as she slowed, the ship entered firing range, work standing order was that this cruise to shoot when there part of the chesapeake. the creature before the chesapeake replied. the standard and they exchanged three broadsides. the deafening boom of the canon and crackling pops a small fire of musket that hellish cannon
fire and blow blasted into the decks and homes of both ships. don't try to fire into quarters, neil decks into the main decks in quarter decks in the ship is yours. killed a man in the ship is yours. on those ships come in many meant so. a rifleman in the rigging shot the helmsman of the chesapeake. the man who took his place soon at the same fate. bradshaw beheaded a lieutenant in an explosion to the brain. two men were killed outright, and that they have displayed or not. the opinions of the action occurred the chesapeake sustain at least 100 casualties, a third of them got been a salve. aboard the shannon, more than 50 men were dead or wounded. clearly visible from the tops, captain lawrence in his uniform made a pretty targeted at damascus soon ripped into his leg.
he could no longer stand without bracing himself, but he issued orders refusing to be carried below. as grape canister and solid shots razorbacks, the chesapeake simonton carried her beyond where guns which aired on the shannon. her had sales damaged, the sailing master dad and homes shattered by cannon shot, she fell off her course and into the path of the shannon as it continued. captain lawrence blood pouring from his life called for a party that the british were quicker. as the ships collided, captain stapp on the railing of the ship onto the muscle of the chesapeake care not at that onto the deck of the chesapeake. before captain lawrence could order a counterattack, another shot struck him as when ripping into his. he staggered and fell, calling to his men faraway lab. several american sailors that the british commander with force. the chaplain discharged a pistol
but miss the british capped, struck him in his face at this last comment, and avoided the pike on the second assailant, but two other attackers drove to the death, one with the of a musket, the other a section of the school bearing a portion of his brain. a marine came to broke save and then added the attackers. another british band the captain pat boone. broke lapsed in and out of consciousness and overwhelmed and then in a matter minute. another wave of british marines came aboard the american ship entered the chesapeake's remaining crewman below deck unsecured the hatchet, all of them. captain lawrence had been carried below the citizens cockpit. decided since he still issued commands. don't surrender the ship your order. when the ship surgeons and is making to him, he sent them away to tend the wounded man who
would arrive before him. i can wait my turn ham-fisted. but upon hearing the quiet of his own ship's guns he issued more orders. order them to site faster, fight the ship till she thinks. even with another wounded officer miscarried in his head bleeding profusely from the saber wound, the news he brought didn't seem possible. they carried her he reported it, but lawrence remained assisted. don't give up the ship he ordered again. don't give up the ship. his expectations be made his countrymen in full control of the attack had already called down the chesapeake scholars and hoisted the british flag in its place. captain james lawrence would live three days before he died of his wounds. a few doubts were expressed as to the wisdom of seeking out broke and fighting shannon that day, but many much louder voices
extol the pair would send an soon offered by the likes of secretary of state, james monroe in washington in this society in new york. but the most prophetic was spoken in baltimore. the inspiring words of the illustrious lines don't give up the ship, be the eventual internal motto of america. in fact, kerry certainly is dependent on his chest longship on the waters of lake erie. the ship was the uss lawrence named after the late captain lawrence and the instance have been somewhat lawrence's famous phrase, were subsequently became the motto of the uss navy, don't give up the ship. ironically, the horrific loss with both an american hero and a rallying cry for american forces. now, i don't have any video of
quarters from the war of 1812. church eastman and thomas edison couldn't figure out how to do that for many decades to come, but in my minds eye i can envision a movie trailer, one of those that hollywood does to sell us an up coming movie. and the highlights would have to include the dialogue also more, the crucial conflict with the citizens of the city resisting both the land and sea force. the bombardment of the road may be observed by maryland bear stared and he was held captive membership in the in the harbor. he recorded what he saw in a poem titled at its first publication, defense of fort mchenry and someone else and it to music and renamed it the star-spangled banner. we would have to see oliver hazard perry with the smokes in the battle of lake erie still in the air come and chat in a note
to the secretary of war and pencil on a used envelope he pulled from his pocket. we have met the enemy he ranked and they are ours. most are not a cabal for my money would be dolly madison on the afternoon of august 24, 1814. we've clinched the battle of ladenburg for the british route the american just a few miles from the capital. rockets flying through the air come is very british that i grenadier rowdiness saber number to jump into the presidents house, where dolly is awaiting james returned, which is the only time in american history when the president has actually been a front during the war. only mr. madison did not return. instead retreating soldiers to the town. so i suppose for going to have a pod here at dolly looking down from the high window in the
nation's largest house, spyglass to arrive. for days she has been packing james papers along with her red velvet curtains, waiting and wondering until the messenger arrives with the word from james. it's a freed slave named james smithy brings the word that they must leave. but she can't, at least until she deals with george. because, you see, although she can hear the boom of cannon from the drums and the presidents house, she refuses to leave until she is a with safe departure of the whitesides portrait of george washington hanging in the dining room, ever politically savvy, dolly recognizes that he apprised for the invaders. infectiousness later, edward to fall into the hands of the enemy, its capture would allow them to make a great finish. two servants to the task of frame the portrait merely an arm
span when it endlessness is nonsense permission to hack away the decorative frame of the hatchet. once the frame is reduced to little more, but can assist lower to the floor. all my time can be cut to the carriage on the streetscape and watched mrs. madison to part, the two friends who caught up to safety in a barn in rural maryland would make a great scene in the film. if i are planning a movie, i suppose i would want to convey in the copy in the 21st century turns, dolly was a little bit hot, but james was a little bit nerdy, andrew jackson became a rock star with his big wins in new orleans. more seriously, we must grapple with the substance of the war. afro-americans would put a
winning, which may help explain why the war of 1812 became the forgotten war. it's an unusual case from which no clear winner emerged. in fact when i recently read about lyndon baines johnson talking to his to thank ambassador south vietnam, henry cabot lodge and saying, i'm not going to go down in history as the first american president to lose a war and mumbled under my breath, hold the phone. that ship sailed because hasn't james madison already lost the war at least sort of? which made me think a little bit about a winners than losers and he won the war of 1812 anyways? although it may seem one candidate is canada -- that me explain. and a handed misreading of what the neighbors were thinking, and many americans talked themselves
into thinking that the canadians would welcome an invading american forces open arms and it wasn't only jefferson. henry clay assured president madison that the militia of kentucky alone competent to place canada at your feet. quite incorrect as it happened. when it came to the american invasion the canadians did not welcome the south as liberators and a three-pronged invasion of canada approved abject failure. in august 1812 the northwestern army of the united states surrendered to a much smaller force. it was a debacle. in october the same year, american force in niagara is captured on the canadian soil. in november, major general henry dearborn and to gain a retreat from a terrifying exchange of friendly fire between american forces. in short, the british more than
held their own in the war. so perhaps it can be said that in a supporting role the canadians were indeed the tories. a group certainly didn't win with the american indians with settlers encroaching upon their land, many indigenous tribes sided with the british before the war began. then some dirt and reject someone with many others in washington believe native americans have been excited toward that a secret agents of great britain. but the ongoing fear among westerners about lexington kentucky called the scalping knife and a tomahawk of the british savages, indians found themselves doing battle with dwindling henry harrison and the northwest territory, and tippecanoe fanta later brigadier general andrew jackson after he took forces in the u.s. south. the charismatic tecumseh
wellington of the indian thursday was called by one british officer fell at the battle of times. after a massacre of inhabitants have for being in what would later become alabama by a band of red state creeks, and jackson led campaign against the indians culminated in march 1814 at the battle of horseshoe bend. one result of jackson was the creeks were forced to see some 20 million acres from away settlement. the american indian was the biggest loser in short a country mile. native americans set backs proved to be for many others in decades to come. another loser was the federalist party. to president madison, the federalist, the late alexander hamilton and george washington with a disloyal opposition. first they voted as the black 39
to nothing against the war declaration in june 1812. does that sound familiar by the way? i think the republicans in around congress and put a strategy if unanimous opposition rather often. in truth, mitch mcconnell really has nothing on 1812. anyway, the federalist leader of postwar in congress in their own region or opposition to our extensive gestures as continuing to trade with the enemy and a refusal by the government of massachusetts to commit his militiamen to the war outside the boundaries of massachusetts. as madisonconfidant, treasury control massachusetts than half of the women i fear. and in the final ultimately suicidal back him in the body of new england and hartford behind closed doors for what came to be the harper's convention. did move towards a radical reform of the national compact
but in fact as an open secret they were advocating withdrawal or even an alliance with britain. now the convention didn't succeed on agreeing to any kind of radical action. the resolutions were just politics. however, they would poison the party and by the time of the next presidential election in 1860, the federalist at any political party in washington. the electoral count was 183 for james monroe and 34 for federalist versus kane from new york. for generations the nation would in effect have the one party in the wake of this, the democratic republicans. the federalist party died during the war of 1812 of the self-inflicted wound. now how about his britannic majesty and mr. madison?
their countries because it aureus. well, the much vaunted royal navy was shown to be vulnerable. in the ship to ship confrontations that began to work on the tiny american 15, devastating both prowess of the american sailors and nt and the illusion that his majesty's navy was invulnerable. on the other hand we did do a very good job to protect in our capital and witness the burning of the nation's public domains by a british course of a few hundred men. which in short form is to say wars have one, either his last, the still others like the war of 1812 merely and when the combatants, both bloody about pack up and go home. that is kind of what happened at the end of the war of 1812, yet given how the goals of our most recent wars have devolved, the
focus has become less on winning and more and going home. maybe we should make a particular attempt to look again at the war of 1812 and the forgetfulness it seems to have gendered. it's not that i dedicated this book to presidents than in now but unwinnable wars. all that said, there are outcomes that serves american interests. with the return of peace in europe with the signing of the treaty of ghent, ship soon departed daily to ports around the world. a westward boom was soon underway in the united states restrain land values without the population growth and substantial new towns. there is a new unity symbolized by james and dolly madison. there's james himself.
they left the tide of popularity in april of 1817 in madison successor, james monroe upon taking office that year embarked on tours of the north and south that one boston newspaper called the era of good feeling. the fighting had been launched out of the perception of henry clay expressed as if were to set necessary to america as a tool is to a young officer to prevent his being bullied and output in society. and while the american belligerence has clearly not vanquish the fellow, the war of 1812 did that with the nation's competence. quoting one observer, french ambassador leave their va, the war has given the americans what they so essentially laughed, and national character founded on the glory, and to all. in ensuing decades with policies such as the monroe doctrine, the
united states would begin to demonstrate its newfound confidence in the belief that the united states had an essential role to play in the larger world. then i think is the most significant like his the "mr. and mrs. madison's war." thank you for listening. [applause] if we have any questions, we have a microphone i think needs to be delivered to the questioner and it's on its way. there was this just a second. please. >> very interesting. you called this "mr. and mrs. madison's war." to any extent do you think it was madison's initiative to go to war? there's a premise to make question. that war was 525 years after the constitution. it was the last big event done
by the constitutional generation before server there is the founding took over. it was the first and last time congress actually followed the rules and congress debated and declared war before we got started fighting. but you say you think it was nonetheless not a sensation. >> well, i think he certainly rode a wave of fairly widespread public opinion. that is to say if you got out of the north, out of the east so-called at that point, he certainly found lots and lots of folks who thought that it was necessary to go toward to save face, to do this. and there was support in the congress. there is a great shift of the election in 1810 were many war hawks came to power. that was certainly part of it. in no sense was that his idea. the notion of going to war had, before in 1807, the same ship
chesapeake was attacked quite unexpectedly by the british ship. at that time during many calls for going to war. the idea was in the war and it was around and there is no seemingly easy solution and the british didn't seem to be very interested in negotiating terms. so it wasn't clearly his idea, but he was the one who finally decided it was a necessity. he was the one who dictated the document that was delivered to congress and subsequently was turned into an ratified as a of war. if that answers your question. >> any of our questions? >> to what extent do you think -- [inaudible]
>> at the same time of the war of 1812 going on at the same time quite >> interesting question. i think that certainly was at the beginning award is a major issue. however, napoleon abdicated april of 1814 and all the unpleasantness, on the land were in came thereafter because so many troops in the duke of wellington's trained men arrived here and marched on washington and the difference they did and of course a subsequently turned back to baltimore. but i think that it's pretty hard to separate both the causes of the war in the events of the war from what was happening in europe because one of the principal reasons that the press that was taking place was they were just sailors of the rants so they needed doorman. they had been a war for almost 20 years by this point.
so i think the simple answer is that it's impossible to separate the french words from the floor and that it's integrated in a very complicated way. i'm not sure that's a good answer, but -- question? >> for people who are interested mostly in the naval aspects of it, the fact that adams had started loading a navy, which jefferson had to write two atoms of how proud he was that there may be. there is a defense that was six bigots were bill, which the british could not defeat repeatedly on lake erie convinced willington they could never really win. and that led to them being willing to make peace.
would you have a comment on that defense quite >> i don't think there's much question -- actually know there's a letter the wellington row. after the wanton forces prevail in napoleon -- wellington was minister to france and i know there's a letter he wrote that to london when his advice was solicited as to what should be done in america and he said -- i'm obviously paraphrasing here, but more or less of it be silly to pursue this word because you're not in a win. now this also came in the wake of the battle of plattsburgh. this came in the wake of the battle of baltimore, both of which were significant american victories. so i think those are more likely to be -- to have impacted his decision to apply to his
recommendation that this recommendation to prosecute the war further than battles on the other lakes. but there's no question that wellington's opinion carried a lot of weight and it was solicited and the peace negotiation and didn't the character of the negotiation shifted all at the same time. i don't think there's any question that wellington had impact on the thinking. >> i'm curious if you can toss a little bit about the romantic myth that ike learned about in school about the alliance between andrew jackson and shaughnessy and the battle of new orleans. what is true? >> i think it is a very interesting story and i'm sure
there are those who know a lot more about it than i do. but what i do know is that early in jackson's time in louisiana, he wanted nothing whatsoever to do with fines than he had some rather unpleasant terms that he used to describe them. however, jackson was nothing if not pragmatic. a number of different skills and also an intimate knowledge of a very complicated lottery turning and i think that for reasons of strategy, reasons of personnel, the simple reason he wanted to prevail, he made a bargain with john defeat and the pirates. i don't think it is ever happy about it. maybe he was happy after they acquitted themselves extremely well at the battle of new orleans. but i think andrew jackson did not hold them in high regard but found a pragmatic solution to a
problem that had about enough men, none of it telogen series goes about this things to him. i see a question here. >> so dolly madison. so the way you describe her, she sounds as if she might've been the first of the modern first ladies and i'm just curious what she would say about our potential first ladies right now. who do you think is the most like dolly? >> interesting. whatever it was you said before. >> i don't think there is any question she is the model -- the participatory first lady opposed to an example in her time when she was the young woman and
abigail was first lady martha washington was first lady. she knew all those people. at their events come at their weekly events where they welcome the general republic, people i do, then politely bow in order to get the attention of the first lady. but dolly set up for squeezes, she mix, mingle it, shake hands. at about she kissed cheeks or not, but she was definitely a very accessible, friendly and warm person who among other things welcomed both sides of the political, all sides of the political spectrum to her squeeze is, which clearly was a force for political good and would be a very nice thing if we could do a little bit more of that today. i'm not placing any shame on michelle obama because he's such a polarized situation in
washington. that would be the best at this? i guess i don't do enough about the first ladies although one has to inspire a variety of things that any number of them. i guess i don't know enough about contemporary first ladies to offer you a good answer. [inaudible] [laughter] i see another question in the back. >> i just wonder if you send a copy of the book to the president and mrs. obama yet. >> good idea. i don't think we have, but we should do that. any others? vizcaya one mori. >> i have a loud voice. what really up to the
microphone? >> up for the benefit of c-span. >> you mention how you did some early research. go back a step before that. how did you then pick the subject to do research on? >> well, was partly a consequence of looking at the calendar and saying, 2012, 1812 and may be an opportunity to get some attention to this subject. and also my previous post on the last book i wrote was about george washington. that was about thomas jefferson. so there is a kind of logic to writing about the federal era. i know quite a bit and so i was sort of in this general vicinity. and then chronologies said. i did also know a little bit about time that end, which attracted me because it makes it a little more interesting. traditional history is about great white guys doing all the things that now we can talk about spouses.
we could talk about children, art, architecture and i think that take an assertive more broad-based approach i thought maybe he could make the history of the world a little bit more interesting. that's what i hoped to bring to it. >> you did. >> thank you. >> well -- another question. >> of other public buildings in washington were burned except for the albrecht golding at 810 hi, which was inhabited by the u.s. marines and the commandant at the time, brimmer has it that the royal marines spared it from burning out of respect for all marines, but nobody knows the absolute truth. can you shed any light on that? >> you know, i am wondering if we are talking about one building that was aired was the patent office and the reason it was spared was the head of the
patent office, an architect that executed the first time from the capital. he literally stood in front of the building until you can't do this. this would be worth destroying alexandria library, crime against humanity because it's not a political place and not about politics. i've never heard the story about the marine building. so i'm afraid i can't shed any light on that. well, thank you all for coming. you've been a lovely audience. i appreciate your time and listening and good evening to you. [applause]
>> bin laden was a strategically relevant communicator with various and disparate outfit into a certain extent i have to could as i had insider knowledge while still in uniform i worked for site content afghanistan and i worked on the problem of iraq and we knew bin laden personally was involved in communications trying to corral and bring under control of algeria. we knew he was making a reach early on to al-shabaab in somalia. we knew he was involved in these things working through mediums and other individuals but we knew he was there doing that. as a consequence and is surprised when you talk about a global ideology, bin laden was relevant. >> in his book, james madison and the making of america, the
story of kevin gutzman discusses james madison's role in founding documents and institutions of the united states. his talk at the new york public library is an hour and a half. >> good evening. i intend tonight to discuss one of the most overlooked elements of james madison's career. perhaps i should say the most underemphasized elements of james madison's career. and one reason why it doesn't get the emphasis it should get his here as in other areas of his political life, madison self-consciously stood in the shadow of one of his contemporaries, that of tom jefferson. so for example, madison is often seen as lieutenant of jeffersons who claimed credit for drafting the virginia staff for religious freedom atop the virginia
general assembly in 1986 and in fact checkers than was wise enough or perhaps we should say machiavellian enough to sketch his own gravestone on which he said that he wanted included statements that he was the author of the declaration of independence and of the virginia religious freedom besides father of university of virginia and this is commonly the way we understand the process that led to the establishment of a secular government in the old dominion. but if you think about it, you realize that jefferson was claiming credit for some team for which madison should get a lot, not he and the reason it most commonly when we discuss a particular legal enactment, we credit the politician who is the prelude to get through the
legislature, perhaps the chief executive has stressed that was the leading element of this program and so for example when it comes to the voting rights act of 1965, we don't say which should steer attorney on the senate judiciary staffer at the actual language of the voting rights act. what we see is which politician pushed back and so lyndon johnson tend to get the credit for it, even though johnson has nothing to do with the actual drafting of the act. here when it comes to the virginia statute for religious freedom mr. in 1777, jefferson drafted the bill. he actually tried to get it.did. he failed. he was nine years that from the legislature when madison picked it up and pushed it to adoption. the site income and the fact that jefferson and claimed credit for it and madison never complained about that tells us something significant about madison political personality
and his personality generally. but i think the establishment of this principle of secularism, secular government i should say this sounds dated virginia was despite the fact he took the lead in several other extremely important developments in american politics. the most significant of madison's achievements. before i go on, let me just say a quick thank you to deborah hirsch and admit town library for having me tonight. i'm very happy to be here. it was nice of them to make preparations that were necessary here and i am really thrilled to be old to present this talk to you. madison's insistence on the principle of secular government can be understood if divorced from his own experience through his childhood and early
adulthood. and i think in order to get an idea of where madison first became convinced that virginia should be the first quality to adapt this principle of secular government, we have to go back to his decision, which he took in his late teens or he would go to college. madison was a sickly young man, although he was born to the wealthiest bantering orange county and piedmont, virginia, which was essentially the frontier about 100 miles inland. he was born in orange county to the wealthiest man in the county one might expect did that if you are interested in studying medicine and he would go off to eat and baroque or if you're interested in studying i go to the ends of court in london. or if you have no interest in either of those he might spend some time as most of these peers did at the colonial college, the only college south of princeton colonial america, william and
mary. but when the time came, madison did none of these in the reason was that he sometimes referred to as his poor can't petition. that was that he was perennially unwell and he thought it people did at the time the williamsburg was disease ridden environment. they got the vapors made cheesesteak and so he decided to go off to what was then called the college of new jersey, what we now call of princeton. this is going to have a very important fact i madison's political career. there is a significant distinction to be made in those days between princeton and william and mary. william and mary was not a rigorous academic environment. it was a school in which enlightenment thinking dominated. on the other hand, it was run by the colonial church of virginia, the episcopal church. if he had gone there, madison
would've had a different kind of nurturance of his intellect and he encountered at the college of new jersey. the college of new jersey at the time was run by john withers then, who is a recently immigrated scottish presbyterian divine. and in the college -- at the college of new jersey, madison encountered particular current enlightenment thought that led him to have a very skeptical attitude about human nature. the one way you can distinguish revolution, most notably the french and russian is that the people at the head of the american revolution tended not to think, as leaders of the french and russian revolutions bad, that if their political program were successful, we would be a kind of transformation of human nature. ..
>> mattison, then age 21 to 23, wrote several letters to bradford. he got responses on the question of the relationship between government and religion. what he said to him first was that he would like for bradford to tell him exactly how it worked in pennsylvania that there was no established church. of course pennsylvania and new jersey, being founded by quakers, never did have established churches. they were essentially in the same boat as rhode island, though those not for the same reasons. madison also -- i'm sorry, with a quaker and rhode island's experiments, because he said although there is normally an
establishment in new york, there has not been one effectively. madison was limited in 1772 with the authorities in virginia because he said that in those and neighboring counties, by that he meant in orange county in the virginia piedmont, there have in recent weeks on 10 weeks being jailed, width, find, and otherwise mistreated for being baptists and spreading baptist teachings. in fact, there were also a couple of cases in nearby counties. it happened fortuitously, although i don't know if mattison would've said this was fortuitous. it happened that madison was born in the epicenter of radical protestantism in america. the baptist movement was in the neighboring counties in virginia the two of them were witnessed to this treatment that was being given to the baptists in
virginia. these very last few years of the colonial period. besides the whippings that were complained of, in one case, the local leader of the gentry, that is the local elite cheap figure, -- waited until the baptists had gone into a meeting on sunday, he locked the doors and through api through the window. there was another episode of the gentry, this was an episcopalian church, likely a wizard family to pay for the capital. another time, another family in colonial virginia had waited for the baptist to go into their meeting house on a sunday morning. all of them in on horseback, riding down a center idle,
whipping everyone in reach. apparently there this was some kind of sport. it was another case when the baptists had snakes thrown through the windows of their meeting house on sunday mornings. if you think of it as fiction, this could be humorous. we might chuckle or we might be somewhat embarrassed and nervously chuckle. for madison, this was appalling. he could not leave this kind of thing can happen. he finally, at the end of this correspondence, with bradford, he said here we see a breakthrough in thought. he took the lead in writing the u.s. constitution. but i think this is the most important insight he arrived at. at age 23, madison wrote to william bradford, if we eat, and all of north america, could
agree on the what the right church to establish, and if we had been right that was the right one, it still would've been a bad thing to establish it. because, he said, wherever you have an established church, you are always going to have freedom and other areas of intellectual life, too. even if we all agreed on what the true religion was, even if we were right and established best an establishment would've been a bad thing. for the rest of his life, madison was going to see to it but there was no such thing. it happened in 1776. madison, age 25, was elected to a parliamentary body in the first time. and what a parliamentary body this was to be elected to. madison was elected the youngest delegate to the virginia revolutionary convention. what happened here is that the colonial governor last appointed -- royally appointed governor had fled virginia. jefferson said this was a wise decision. a wise decision for him to flee. he had fled virginia and so that
council, the house of burgesses, the oldest body in north america, decided to rule in his absence. they met jointly in what became called the convention. then they had an election for that convention. people were told what we were going to be doing. we will be creating a new model of government. this virginia convention of 1776 was responsible for writing the first written constitution adopted by the people's people's representatives in the history of the world. madison was the youngest participant. before they did that, they decided, and here we see the influence of george mason, madison's older colleague, who called himself a man of 1688. because he was a devotee of a lorry is revolution in england, by which parliament had been mean supreme and super or donated above the monarchy, in other words. they decided before the adopted the constitution they had to first layout their philosophical
messes with a declaration of rights. madison was appointed a member of the committee, chaired by george mason to draft a declaration of rights for the full convention to consider. once again, he was the youngest member. this is a very interesting episode. when the committee reported out its draft declaration of rights, it had 16 articles, and to begin with statements about political philosophy. men are born free and equal. they had a debate about that. and they made an amendment and said when they enter into a state of society, government is responsible for protecting their rights. what they were doing there was deciding that the slaves in virginia were not being allowed to enter into society with the whites, and so from the beginning, the virginians were deciding that the black people in virginia were a separate people. thomas jefferson would resort to them as a captive nation. i tell my students that they
were not african-americans. they were not allowing you to be an american. that was the crime. madison did not object to that. they went on to say that government authority was properly derived from the consent of the governance. and that they must periodically have elections. then there were articles having to do with individual rights. the right to own a gun, freedom of speech, trial by jury, and finally, the very last article, article 16, drafted by george mason, a man of 1688 said that the virginians were going to be entitled to the fullest toleration of the matters of religion. toleration was the formula that was used in england at the time. in england in the 17th century, they had a conflict between a parliament dominated by
puritans. of course, the king was an episcopalian. finally, the parliament one nas executed the king and established a puritan society. they asked the king to come back, then they adopted the act of toleration which said that you can be any kind of protestant that you want. this was a very liberal position in the world in the 17th century. in spain you could be any kind of catholic that he wanted. right? in russia you could be any kind of orthodox that he wanted. in turkey could be any kind of muslim that you wanted. but in england you could be any kind of protestant. george mason, who was a liberal -- i'm being facetious, of course, george mason said that virginia should be according to the fullest toleration. madison, age 25, the youngest man says i object to this idea. he said, the implication of
toleration offended him. the problem, he said, was it he said the government was going to tolerate your religious opinions, you were saying a couple of things. the first one was that the government knew better than you did, and the second one was the government was putting up with your air for now. of course from the implication was in my correct itself later. madison suggested that he thought what article 16 should say that virginians were entitled to the free exercise of religion, and once madison said this in the full convention, george mason, the chairman of the committee said, i agree. that is a superior formulation. at that point, the record tells us the agreement was unanimous. everyone accepted this idea. at age 25, madison invented the notion of the free exercise of religion on the basis of his experience in orange county, and under the influence of his having been in new jersey instead of in virginia, because
of his sickly nature. i should say that madison was complaining in his early 20s that he was sickly and about to die and he was going to be complaining about that for 60 more years. [laughter] >> he was. and if you read his correspondence, i have read every word -- we find him saying that he is still complaining. he is just going to die at any moment. he was finally right, of course. [laughter] [laughter] i gave away the end of the book, sorry. [laughter] anyway, and 1776, after he had had this success, and i committed to say that the virginia declaration of rights was the first american declaration of rights. not only when was he the youngest, he also took this significant role second only to
george mason, as i would argue, in drafting the first american declaration of rights. he then might've thought that he could be elected to virginia's house of delegates. newly renamed in this new constitution that madison helped write from the house of burgesses. of course the house of burgesses was the first elected assembly in the western hemisphere. that is not to say that no native americans ever had democratic government. they tended to have a kenyan style democracy. but the virginia house of burgesses were first elected body like this. after they renamed it, madison thought the he would run for election. here we see something about his personality. they had a tradition in virginia called treating. that is, in other colonies, you may not know this, but in new york, for example, when you showed up on voting day, you
showed up at the polls, and if you didn't show up in virginia, you could be fined. if you were elavil to be there and you did not, people were fined for not voting. not a good idea idea. not too sure about that. anyway, madison thought that he could be elected to the house of delegates. they have this tradition of treating, which was that people would show up in the sheriff would ask you, who do you vote? and i could say that i voted for john randle. and randolph would say i will never forget it. and of course the other day saying, i will never forget it. this is why people tended to vote for the nearest rich guy. the rich fellow living here is your house was a patron, you will count on him in case your horse came up lame at some time or you needed by sport putting your burn backup if it burned
down, if ugandans in with them, then you vote for your neighbor. not a boat or whoever. after the voting, they went out into the lawn outside the courthouse and the people that had voted for randolph or smith would expect randolph was meant to give them all the whiskey they could drink. virginians were known for this. i should say, i think virginia is still notable for this. my father was in the army when i was a kid. i happen to live in texas when i got out of high school and i went to the university of texas. i buy some partying in texas, basically you have church schools from agricultural colleges, and the university of texas. if you want to party, you go to the university of texas. but i never saw drinking until i went to virginia. i'm not exaggerating. i saw people hanging out of cars and i saw people lying
unconscious on the sidewalk. it was amazing. this was a very old tradition. in the 17th century, it was a place where people drink a lot. put them -- to put it in context, the average american drinks 5 gallons of whiskey per year. 320 ounces in a year, is that right? that would be announced today. men women and children, young and old. people visited philadelphia, reported seeing 5-year-olds standing around the street. it's true. people drink like fish back then. virginians drink more. people talk about how virginians drink more. unbelievable. madison thought this treating and tradition -- did you vote for me, i will give you all the ham and whiskey you can consume in a weekend, that is just not republican. people should vote for me because i'm the most qualified. so i'm going to stand up for this principle. so the house of delegates election of 1776 was the only one that james madison lost.
[laughter] virginians had not changed their mind about this young whippersnapper. what this means is that voters from the house of burgesses that was renamed, they ran the executive branch of the new government. for that reason, madison was not in the house because he was not been elected in 1776. he didn't have any role in that. but his friend jefferson, and jefferson did become a good friend of his is one of the governors while madison was on the council, his friend jefferson was sent to france in 1784 to be the american minister to france. while he was gone, madison came back to virginia and was elected to the house of delegates.
he was there just in time to oppose a new proposal for what was called a general assessment. the idea here was, and this was an idea that was shared by several prominent figures in virginia politics, notably edmund pendleton, who is a cousin of medicines and who was the top judge in virginia, and patrick henry, easily the most popular politician in revolutionary virginia, they have the idea that during the revolution, popular reality had declined. so for example, they thought that there had been more betting than before. it's hard to imagine. it's like saying there's more drinking than before. apparently, more betting and tippling houses, which we would call bars, people were not paying their taxes, for various reasons, they thought, that there needed to be a general assessment. what this is going to be the kind of resuscitation of government involved in religion. both hamilton and henry were
episcopalian. what they were proposing was not to restore the establishment. beginning in 1776, the government of virginia had stopped collecting the taxes to pay for the state church. in theory, the episcopal church, would still be established as a church, but they were not collecting the taxes. pendleton and henry said in the legislature, what we need to do is collect these taxes again. but we won't force everyone to pay for the church of england. what we will do instead is a, you can specify where your tax money will go. for example, if you are a methodist, you can say not episcopalian, but the methodist congregation will get my tax revenue. by doing this, they hoped that they would restore such situations in which all
virginians were contributing to protestant religion. in fact, that is what the act said was about protestant religion. you can imagine madison disapproving of this idea. one secret of early american political history is that you couldn't beat patrick henry and virginia politics. every time they butted heads, patrick henry one. one-time jefferson said, i guess the only thing we can do is pray for him to die. [laughter] [laughter] what happened with this general assessment in 1785 was that they were following the state constitution's requirement that every bill pass on three readings. so they brought it up for the first vote. it passed pretty easily. they brought it up for a second vote. it passed pretty easily. the third time around, madison said, i have an idea. i think that patrick henry ought to be the governor. under the 1776 constitution
governor was elected. it just happened that the one governor expired between the second and third readings. so james madison nominated patrick henry. they did. as soon as henry was sent off in sworn in, he was kicked upstairs, he said here's what i said. rather than take another bow, we should prefer this to the people. we should print copies of this and distribute it in every county. then we need to have a full public conversation throughout virginia of this question, whether people believe that we should have tax support for religion. for the first time ever, there was a statewide popular political campaign in virginia. they didn't have political parties. there wasn't a statewide elections for governors. so this was the first statewide political campaign. what it was about this question whether there should be a general assessment. now, george nicholas, who was the delegate from jefferson,
went to madison and said i think what we need is a pamphlet laying out the argument against this idea. you need to write it. madison said, well, okay. i will write it. they keep my identity secret. in fact, people did not know that madison had written this document, which is called from oil and remonstrance. memorial and remonstrance. it laid out the classic evangelical argument, essentially, the radical argument against state establishments. by the time madison made speeches, he had laid out several arguments about why there should not be -- why there could not be both state support
for some kind of protestant religion and religious freedom. he said anytime you save your going to allow money to be spent on some kind of partisan, you're going to get virginia government asking who is a christian and who is not. so we had madison's two sets of notes that he made against the idea of a general assessment. the first one he laid out several questions that he didn't think proponents could answer. for example, suppose a judge has a question brought before him. here is a local minister. these people want to give him their tax money, but i don't think he is a christian, so they should not be able to give him the tax money. then the judge is going to ask, okay, well, it's using the bible in the services? which bible? madison says which bible is going to be required? will be the hebrew bible? will it be the greek bible when it isn't going to be the vulgate
latin bible? which translation of the bible is christian? which scriptures are going to be accredited and approved by the state, is going to be the protestants? is going to be the catholic list of books in the bible? is going to be the lutheran list of books in the bible? once we get past this question of what text to use, what approach will a minister be required to take before he is accredited as a christian? is he going to have to say that the bible is divinely inspired and every word? is going to have to say that the bible is divinely inspired and general? is he going to have to say that the bible is divinely inspired and essentials? if we can agree about that, how is he going to define god? will he have to say that god is the trinity and the orthodox were his? in the art ariana way? that he created jesus? instead of god beginning jesus? you might think that this is some abstract monkey stuff.
but the point medicine was making, i think, is incontrovertible. once he said, only christians can receive this tax money, the government is going to be right back into the game of deciding who is a christian and who is not. whose religion is accredited and whose is not. who'll be able to get money and who's not. the next thing you know, we are going to have an act of uniformity and we are right back in england. then you will think that toleration is liberal again. any other speech that madison laid out against this idea, of a general assessment, he took different routes. here, he said, religion is not for the civil authority to be concerned in. once the civil authority is involved in enforcing any kind of definition of christianity, you are on your way toward uniformity. in other words, you're on your way towards queen elizabeth's decision at the end of the 60s and beginning of the 17th
century in england. this is what christianity is. it means the same thing everywhere in my kingdom, and we are going to be doing that in virginia. people are going to be back to whipping baptist. were they necessary to christianity? utah clearly not. besides that, he said several states have been devoted to religious freedom and have pejers was more christian than virginia. he pointed to article 16. he said this is contrary to our state declaration of rights. people are going to be entitled to the free exercise of religion. my religion says i should only support a minister who is behaving the way i think he he ought. this guide is there. this year i don't want to give him any money. i should be able to give no one my money this year.
not because i am deciding i hate religion, but because i like it. madison didn't think that the government should be secular because he was your religious. we often make the mistake of thinking that anyone enforcing religious positions doesn't think religion is important. his view was that it was the most stated position -- that it was because most important thing. he didn't want people to be involved in an. he didn't want politicians to be involved in it. if you think about the world today, you will see that it is true. he thought that having a general assessment would drive immigration. if you started enforcing religion, people would believe virginia. they would go to kentucky and other places where they could have free religion. it happens in our world all the time. besides that, the argument people are making in favor of a
general assessment doesn't even make sense. if there has been a breakdown of society during the war, it is because we had a war. and the war wasn't like the war in two dozen 12. if you are paying attention and are involved, it is important to you, but it's not like having a war bought here in manhattan or in danbury. it's not like that. madison said, the reason why we had any kind of decline in popular morality is because we had this war thought in our own backyards. people marched across virginia. well, that is passed. things are going to improve. we don't need is for this reason. this was his culminating argument. a general assessment would dishonor christianity. it implies that it is necessary. he thought, he insisted that it wasn't necessary. as i said, in that memorial remonstrance, he took his most radical of evangelical positions about the proper relationship
between government and religion, he said. here he was always the wrong, but he said that a close link between church and state had never assisted christianity. everyone knows the early history of the christian church knows that that is not true. this was the most radical position in madison's time. it was clearly one that he had imbibed at the college of new jersey, and one that he had come to believe in after witnessing what was being done to the baptists in orange county. worship was for god and not the state. if a general assessment of the order, so could an establishment and so on. this does petition and pamphlet were circulated across the state. thousands of people signed. when they came back into session the following year, the house of delegates didn't even vote on the general assessment again.
not only to not vote for it, they didn't even bring it up. instead, they decided the woman. then madison said i have an alternative. that is when he waved the virginia statute for religious freedom. it was at that point that virginians were ready to adopt this policy. which said that, well, it has three sections. the first section is a long philosophical predicate written by jefferson. it is the most harshly antiestablishment position you can envision. it does essentially, my favorite part, where he says, government can only make people into hypocrites are liars if it requires them to say what they think. if you require me -- for example, john adams wrote the 1780 massachusetts constitution. it said if you are going to be the governor coming at us where you were christian. jefferson's bill said, well, if i run for governor, are you not
should apply to hindus, muslims,, freethinkers. it's really somewhat breathtaking at madison came to these conclusions. given the context in which he was writing. he agreed with jefferson's preamble is essentially almighty god has created the mind free and in the wake of the adoption of the religious freedom, not offend wrote he thought the project of finding men's minds have forever been laid to rest in virginia. this was accomplished in 1786. you might think any one of these -- either his role in the declaration of rights or at.dean's virginia statute for religious freedom would be enough for a whole career. name a politician who's done more than that. you can't. that wasn't the end of course
because in 1787, not offend finally succeeded in the project had long been working on and that was in bringing together an interstate convention, supposedly with the call of amendment two confederation. at least that was the theory of it. so the confederation congress in the 12 states that it delegates to philadelphians 1987 said that the reason was the articles of confederation. people like madison did not have that in mind. they have substituted the national government for the federal government. we don't have time to go into the whole description of the back-and-forth over the question of whether should be national or federal, especially whether authorities should initiate in the center and be partial to insofar as its convenience to the sender. or should be in the states and
delegated to the federal government as it was convenient for the states of the federal model. madison favored the national idea but was defeated in philadelphia on that. not only was he defeated in philadelphia were authority ultimately should be seen and the federal system, but it to have his virginia colleagues were among the three people who stay through the whole summer of 1787 in philadelphia and refused to sign the constitution. george may send and the governor of virginia edna grand falls who had been the right hand man and the national model one of the reasons both mason and randolph gave for not signing the constitution was dayside there should be a bill of rights. it is unacceptable there should be a bill of rights and there's no reason we could not state that various rights of englishmen will be expected by
any central government. the argument made against them including that madison was we don't need to have a bill of rights. we don't need to lay out because they said this is only being given the powers expressly enumerated. article i, section eight the reasoning goes you don't see anything that says congress can take away your gun, and therefore congress can't take away your gun. congress can regulate the price, congress can have your house without a warrant therefore congress can't have your house searched without a warrant. the chief proponent of the argument was madison joined in making this argument. he was among the majority of ultimately all the state delegates voting voted not to have a declaration of rights in the constitution and the philadelphia convention and that was one of the main reasons for
maine mason and randolph receipts to sign in the night defend the constitution colonel mason has less philadelphia in a very ill-humor indeed, mason had promised he would go home to virginia and see the constitution was not ratified in the governor drafted a pamphlet and thank you to the speaker of the house of delegates laying out his objections. there were several important ones, but the chief was that there is no bill of rights in this unamended constitution. so what to do? will come and madison got around a little for not after the constitution signing day sending a copy to his friend jefferson and france. everyone thinks jefferson wrote the constitution that he was in france. so madison wrote to jefferson and gave him a long description of what happened in the philadelphia convention, because
several reasons why he didn't like the constitution is that it's better than articles that went for it. it will feel in a few years but i am for it. jefferson wrote back and said okay, i like the way they should have compromised the claims of the large states and small states by having different ways for portion in the and senate and i like the way you compromise the interests of slave states and kerry stayed by compromise regarding importation of slaves and terrorists. i like various parts, but there's two things i really dislike. number one, perpetually eligibility of the president. once someone is elected president he can be there for life. there needs to be a term limit. in the second thing was in there has to be a bill of rights. it's just essential. madison wrote the next thing i just told you they thought about the congress is in expressly given the power to violate the rights and congress won't have
that power and they went back and forth a couple times. finally jefferson said he bill of rights is that the people are entitled to against any government in the world. if you're not missing you must've been thinking okay jefferson, randolph, nathan, and this isn't looking too good in virginia. so they're going to have a ratification convention in virginia as in each of the other states do not than hot at first thought he would stay out of it. he was a draftsman of the constitution show you shouldn't play a role in passing on it, but he said well, and several other states people in the philadelphia convention up in participating, so i want to do that, too. the baptist norge county were going to defeat him and the rumor -- his father wrote in the letter. please send me your participating in the confederation congress and his father sent him a letter that says you better get back to urge county because they're telling
everybody you want a national church and that is why there's no bill of rights and the constitution. he goes back and promises his neighbors if you will like me to the ratification convention i will see to it we do some in about this and something laughing about this. he goes to the convention and they make the same kinds of arguments any theory skeptical about the idea. the constitution is merely ratified in virginia and it's time to have elections for the first house of representatives. the caution comes up with the bill of rights. they skipped the goal is madison's candidacy at madison how to travel around. this is not expected by him. at one point he said i today had to do has never done before and i was to stand upon a public roster and rang the planters. he thought it was beneath him to give a public talk comment saying why he had to be a let date. the reason why he had to travel around his district with james
ben wrote, is leading opponent of ratification was the baptists are skeptical. he told them okay, like me to congress and i will see to it that amendments are proposed, making clear the whole not being a national church. of course hoping they'll cannot at this is the first amendment, which reflect to use the same language medicine used in article xvi. but we don't often note here is the peculiar language of the first amendment posted a failure or as a result of the failure of madison to get what he wanted in congress in this regard. madison's proposal for first amendment that they wouldn't be establishment of religion. at that point congressman from three new england states objected and said well, does this mean it can't be any religion at all? c. at the time massachusetts, new hampshire and connecticut still has two churches and they wanted to keep state churches. if you had a new provision is
that there won't be establishment of religion, they were afraid this would mean you to stop taxing people for purchase from so they were for it. madison says okay here's what we'll do. congress shall make no law respect in an establishment of religion, which would mean congress can establish a religion. congress could establish a religion. congress couldn't say anything about establish religion. the point is although madison wanted a national statement about freedom of religion, what ended up coming out with the federal principle we left the states to decide what their religion and policy wise. he also tried to get a statement included in the constitution that states could not violate free exercise of religion, trial by jury or freedom of the price. this too was the end people in the congress were in favor was clarification of limits of federal authority, but not some new limit on the state's power in area.
and why was that? well, they've just gotten through revolution against centralized authority. they had just won the revolution on behalf of local self-government through legislative elections and they weren't about to turn around and say here five, six years later we wanted newfangled model in which we new yorkers, were not going to have control over these questions. so madison ultimately did not get an establishment clause he wanted out of the first congress. this was also not kind of madison's role in deciding what the federal machines relationship with you to religion because as president, which he was from 1809 to 17 he had two locations to beach on the basis they violated the principle of establishment of religion. the first of february 2nd, 1811. what happened here is congress passed a bill that would've
incorporated the episcopal church in alexandria. it is part of the district of columbia. congress has restricted at the part of virginia that was originally part of d.c. d.c. now is all in maryland. is not virginia anymore. the vision of the district of columbia was the full 10-mile square the constitution allowed imparted that without that the potomac included in alexandria. congress passed a law incorporating and among other things that would've set off internal authority would work in the episcopal parish in what is given certain welfare functions to the vestry there in colonial america, especially on the episcopal colony of. if you are blind or or an old widow who couldn't take care of herself, it was the local episcopal church could handle these functions. they didn't have a welfare state. instead handled through the
church. the congress envisioned having that continue and madison says no is unconstitutional. we cannot have congress telling the episcopal church total function and we cannot have the congress delegating civil functions to the church. only a couple weeks later and madison had a second opportunity to consider what the meaning of the establishment clause was then in this case, congress had given land to some mississippi baptist for setting up a local congregation in their community and he said well of course we can't be having congress gave land to religious congregations. in fact, that is the north carolina go to the president and thanked him for this veto. so the principle of the establishment was one still central to baptist identity. we don't have any response or record of the responses mississippi baptist i suppose they're less happy in the north
carolina converse. after 1800 according to gca stagg, editor of the papers of james madison university of virginia, stagg told me we don't have any record after 1800 madison made any positive comments about christianity that is as a doctrine. you might think does that mean he was a religious? the answer is no, he called religious references from his correspondence. so we don't have his ruminations on religion. why is that? it is because he thought public figure should not be trying to influence you by the weight of their names or offices and what kind of religion you follow. we know that was his opinion because circa 1819 has scribbled notes, which historians have called detached memoranda on subjects in one of the once he came to his of religion and he said he didn't think there should eat public -- government
days of thanksgiving. the reason he didn't and there should be government gave the thanksgiving is the implication that the government was doing this lane at a prayer for people to say for a schedule or even saying you should prayers that all. this does not mean nice and didn't say prayers. people knew he went to church, but the point was that government should not try to influence you in this direction. the alternative leading you to the right of uniformity. madison batmobile that the president should he telling you when you pray, what to pray, how to pray come he apparently thought he had been mistaken during the war of 181221 sites people to pray for american arms. he also decides being against it for thanksgiving and calls for prayers that he did not think the government should pay for there to be chaplains and military or chaplains and the
congress and why was that? when it came to the congress, he said it was impossible to have a chaplain without offending somebody. no matter which nomination, everybody else had to pay two. the only way to avoid the problem with not to have one. if the members of congress wanted to pray, they could do that but shouldn't do it on the public dime. why was that? again he was opposed to the idea of establishment generally remained opposed to his surprise he can tell from the point in the early 1770s and has a very young man he was writes william bradford added to the very end of his life. thank you very much. [applause] >> the idea here is were going to take questions but you need to await the microphone's arrival please.
>> is that on? >> what did not offend my -- what did not have been learned from weatherspoon that made him think differently about the baptist from the other virginia? >> it was about the baptist specifically. it is the idea of religious persecution, the fact of the environment in new jersey in which people were punished for religion. so madison annexed here and an environment in which there is complete religious toleration is very sad and in new jersey, they can be in a quaker state. so when i got home and saw the whippings come the beatings commence next to the window, he thought this was appalling, shameful. he was contemplating leaving virginia, which there is a saying among historians, dukes don't emigrate. the fact that he was leaving at
the county was far-fetched. he was appalled because he had seen the contrary possibility in action in new jersey. >> thank you very much. use the word enough for me several times. but his historical etymology of that as far as to the context of founding fathers and diversity of thought and what was written as far as how important diversity is because not inadequately look at that as the corresponding solution that diversity of an equation actually will provide a vast solution versus equation. >> well, the word uniformity -- thank you, should've explained what he meant by that. i didn't realize they've managed to do that. there is an active uniformity detected by parliament at 16th century queen elizabeth decided she was not going to issue the
establishment of bishops and would require people to use the book of common prayer throughout the kingdom. if you're familiar with the episcopalian church today, they still have what is called the book of common prayer although it's not the same one. what that meant was the matter which pierce you are in an queen elizabeth vampire in a particular do you think the same prayers and say the same hands, same implications and seen scripture readings and any other part of the kingdom literacy and affirmative services throughout the kingdom. and of course the implication was people would be made to do what they didn't believe in and that was what andersen was supposed to. so with once you -- the point in regard to the general assessments and madison thinking was that once you say christians will be eligible to receive this tax money if their designated
local taxpayers, you're automatically going to have a situation in which the judges would have to decide which sells for investigators were christian. have you cite would an actual christian is and then get back to question that which can and can the scriptures, translation, how do you define god? the whole thing. recapitulate the whole history of christian dogma every time this came into a courtroom and the implication was no judge is equipped for that. who knows all that stuff? the only way to avoid an active uniformity de facto was not to the general assessment, not any establishment in all, even if it were so liberal as to say any kind of christian. >> yes, what do you think madison was say about the current situation, where churches get tax breaks, which is a form of government interference and it should be
challenged on constitutional grounds because a lot of people are secular, freethinkers and a lot of people don't get their churches paid for by the government to tax abatement, for example, which is the tentacle worshipers than others. so what you say about the tax breaks for churches? not ascend in his old age when he was writing the cash memoranda and a longer one was about the subject of religion. he was opposed to tax breaks for the very reason you've pinpointed. it seems obvious that anytime you have a tax break for anyone it's effectively a subsidy. and so, he thought nobody stuck to pay for anybody else's religion, should be forced to do it. again what you end up is a situation in which some people's decisions are made eligible and others aren't. that's a situation you want to avoid. the pressure finger on the contemporary practice to a
chaplain sees season so on, yeah. >> first of all, it thank you for your access. >> you're welcome. thank you. can you give some information regarding this family background , like his parents very rich people and so, did he practice any medicine or law as a lawyer? and whether he had any input in the drafting of the independence? peanut gallery. we have three elements of the question. the first of that madison's family background. taken about madison's legal
training of any and the third with his role if any in drafting the declaration of independence. well, i mentioned a couple times that madison's father was the wealthiest men in orange county. he was the biggest landowner, slaveowner. he was the center of the political and social elite in orange county. during the revolution he was the county lieutenant, which means he was head of the militia and accounting and responsible for mastering the militia when the governor called for them to come out. not ascend -- james madison senior is what i'm talking about. james madison senior, our hero, the president -- james madison junior also was later a member of the vestry. we know he attended church through his life. he went to church right across from the white house today. in fact recently a television i
saw president obama and his family coming out of the same church james madison used to attend pierces through his wife he did attend church. when he was a young man he apparently was uncertain what he wanted to do for a career. so after he completed his graduate studies at prince and he stayed on as a graduate student for a year, where he studied among other things hebrew and the only practical application of hebrew for a protestant guys from orange county i think what has been to the time a minister. but apparently he decided at an early age he did not to be a minister to the next he turned to the idea he would become an attorney and a static which after a few weeks he described as exceedingly dry and i can say yes. it's exceedingly shy. he had absolutely nothing to do with drafting the declaration of independence because he was in virginia drafted the declaration of rights. these are done at the same time.
thomas jefferson is now more famous for madison because he was the chief draftsman of the declaration of independence. one philadelphia was writing to williamsburg same please release me. send someone to be in congress. i would succumb to what this is all about, which is held after state constitution. such ever since i drafted the state constitution was what the war was about. at one point he said if we end up with a bat over a device in iphone except when it was on a her from across the water without albeit in. the main thing we do here is my constitution. he didn't get to hold to that food be satisfied with the declaration of independence. madison was on the ground for doing such ever since i was the more important thing, inventing the idea of written constitutions adopted by the people's representatives, were not ascend that his political start and of course the end of playing the lead role in drafting the federal constitution. i didn't mention this because he
didn't have anything to do the church and state, but at the end of his life in 1829 and 30 when he was and has laid a 70s, he was involved in another constitutional convention where they revise the original state constitution peers that was the last major political event and that is in place. -- event in madison's life. [inaudible] >> not that i'm aware of. apparently he thought better of his one call while president for people to pray for american
arms. but it was in retirement he said he didn't think this kind of thing should never be issued. for example, annual days of thanksgiving are entirely contrary to his principle. but you can see through his life actually he is working on this idea and he did see it implemented or incorporated into the virginia constitution and u.s. constitution but it is becoming more liberal in regard if he thought it more in retirement. so you might say well, the notion, for example that they would be tax subsidies, in other words come a tax-free status for church congregations seems to be implicit in the notion of not having an establishment. but he hadn't elaborated that idea until he was an old man. i think the same is true about the chaplain he is.
>> at the age -- at the age of 25's, what idea was rejected and why? >> well, when he was 25 he was involved in the virginia convention about the constitution and declaration of rights. i am not sure which you are referring to. i can't think of a proposal he made in the convention that was reject it. >> i meant the idea. >> i can't think of one. >> what -- what -- i mean, i'm sorry, my bad. how old was he when he was the youngest participant?
>> he was 25 years old when he was the youngest member of the participant. he was the youngest member of the convention and of course the youngest member of the committee that drafted the declaration of rights in the constitution. as i said what they were of the declaration of rights he played a key role in drafting article xvi. he was the one who came up with the idea of guarantee of the free exercise of religion instead of just toleration. >> i wonder how you explain the difference between how the founding father came out of the revolutionary war in favor of freedom and we come out after 9/11 in the opposite direction and many people feel the constitution is being shredded by the petri attack and obama's recent executive order. and also, we have chaplains in the congress and how is all this