tv America at War CSPAN September 13, 2015 7:03pm-8:02pm EDT
anniversary edition. thank you all for coming. inis an honor to be here fraunces tavern. i am a lover of all places historical. i have been since i was a small child. , ourct, when i was a kid idea of summer vacation was throwing army surplus sleeping bags and a canvas tent in the back of the car and go off to places like fort ticonderoga, gettysburg, valley forge. visiting those places as a kid gave me the sense that history is not something that happens. it happens to real people in real places. that is the idea that has driven me throughout my career -- to make history as exciting, interesting, and, most of all, human as it was for me as a child. i stood at the battlefield in
gettysburg. i remember it like it was yesterday. it was 1963. the centennial anniversary of the battle of gettysburg. i remember being a child, standing there, not fully understanding with the civil war was about. what the gettysburg address was about. what had really happened gettysburg. but knowing, in my heart, as i stood there, feeling the summer stones -- if you have been there, they are unforgettable -- i knew something extraordinary had happened. this was a sacred place. i took home from the visit in 1963 a small wooden revolver, a souvenir, with the dates of the bowel stamped on the barrel -- battle stamped on the barrel. i keep it as a reminder of what
history really means. morei set out to write than 25 years ago, hard to believe, but when i set out, i wanted to maintain a sense of childlike wonder about history. i could not understand people saying, history is so dull. so boring. all these days and battles and speeches. history is anything but that. it is the story of real people and real places. when you are in a place like this, and history is probable, le, ites me -- palpab gives me that feeling. it is wonderful to be in this flat room. flag day.w, sunday is importantly, june 14 is
th anniversary of the birth of the u.s. army. we will talk about that tonight. but i want to reflect on the flag for a moment. much mythology, and that is one of the things we will be talking about, the mythology that permeates our history of the flag. one of my favorite characters in history is frances hawkins and on, a signerhopkins of the declaration of independence and who takes credit for the design of the betsy ross flag. that was a family story handed down for a generation, not published for more than 100 years after the revolution. someone came across a bill that
submitted to the congress for the design of the evidence of his hand in designing the stars and stripes. it was interesting because in payment for his services for a quarter cask of the public wine. i did not know we had a public , when he submitted the bill. they turned him down because he was on the payroll. is the case of wine interesting because here we are in this tavern. know,m sure many of you george washington was not a man who would turn down a glass of port. december,ening in
was, i am sure the port passed around. if you have been to mount vernon and seen it, by the time he retired from the presidency, george washington was america's largest distiller of whiskey. he owned a distillery at mount vernon. 11,000 gallonsg 1800.skey a year by so he was the owner of the largest distillery in america at that time. after hecame suppressed the whiskey rebellion , farmers who did not want to pay taxes on whiskey. washington,s me to being here. , wheretraordinary place
he did say farewell on 1783. i want to take you to the other end of the story, the day he becomes commander of the u.s. army. little andack up a refresh ourselves on the dates and settings and scene. 1775, shots fired at lexington and concord. washington was on his way to philadelphia at that time, the second congressional continental congress. he knew this really meant war would be coming. by the time he arrived in philadelphia, wearing a blue army suit, by the way, blue military uniform he had made for him, he had military experience.
it was a not-so-subtle hint of his ambitions and interests as he came to philadelphia. he was the only one wearing a military uniform in philadelphia in 1775. that uniform was made for him by a scottish taylor named andrew judge. atwas an indentured servant the mount vernon plantation as a tailor. he had a child with one of ,ashington's enslaved people whose name was oni judge. little departure, but because it fits in with what i am talking about in terms of judge was the only person who escaped as a slave
while washington was president. the man who made washington's uniform, the father of a slave, runs away from washington. this is the true story of american history that is so much better than any novel could be. these are the fascinating threads i tried to find and we ave through the stories i have told in my book. mentioning, the feeling ehat i get here, the palpabl viewing of being in a place where washington stewart and him, knox stood with really does connect to that personal history. for all too many people, i hear it all the time, it is so ago,
so boring. dates.f days -- but history is about what real people do. somber poet of the civil war, who served as a volunteer nurse, once said the real war will never get in the books. and i have had that in my mind for many years, and certainly as i wrote "the hidden history of america at war." these are the stories about real people. this is the real war getting in the books. the story in the hidden history of america at war is the story of who fight our battles, who goes to war for us, and why we go to war.
those are questions we should be asking ourselves. i do this by talking about six battles in american history. tom the battle of yorktown in 2004. historys of american told through the lens of six battles. i have tried to get behind the stories your schoolbook left out, the hidden history. certainly, in the story of yo rktown, which i will focus on tonight, that is the essence of what we all learned in the school-based. that george washington won the battle of yorktown. that is true. the supreme moment of triumph. what they did not tell you and i will talk to you about is how washington did that.
first of all, he did not do it alone. he had the help of the french navy and army, which was larger than any other army on the battlefield. he had the help of african-american soldiers. very important to start with the story of yorktown. one of the other pieces of the story i would like to expand on is what happened after the was over,yorktown when washington recovered 5000 or 6000 african-american slaves with the british that day during the battle. these included 17 people from mount vernon, washington's own dozen from and two jefferson's plantation. you make sure they were returned as property that belonged to people in the state. of the storyide that is important to understand
and the side of the story that gets left out of schoolbooks and is all too important to understand these days. let's go back to that moment in philadelphia, when washington is standing around in a blue uniform, and work comes down in april, 1775, congress had who had beeniamen fighting the british. they are going to become the first continental army. riflemene a company of from a few other states so this would be a truly united states army. the question is, who is going to take command? washington certainly had his own ambitions and ideas in his uniform. another gentleman also had ambitions to leave the army
named john hancock. we do not think of john hancock as a great military leader, and he was not. the militia in training in massachusetts. expectinghn hancock his good friends john adams and samuel adams -- after all, he and samuel adams escape the british on that day in 1775. he was quite sure samuel adams would put his name in nomination to command the army. well, john adams gets there first and suggests it should be george washington who leads the army. ce, the records show his jaw truly dropped. samuel adams seconds the nomination. it was unanimous quickly. adams never got along well after that. it was a fracture they never got
over. it is part of the idea that all thosend ego, things that play a part in politics and life today, we're just as true of the founding fathers. they all had ambition, ego, agendas. that is the story i love to find and tell. yorktown, 1775, washington goes to cambridge in july, taking with him a young gentleman named billy lee, who did not wear a uniform. he was wearing the servant's li very. he was a slave that stayed with washington every day of the revolution, through the disappointments and disasters and defeats. valley forge, he shivered with
no uniform. lee is watching all of this. we have this great contradiction of washington leading the fight for liberty and freedom and keeping a man in slave bondage every step of the way. it is a contradiction we have to discuss and talk about. shift to six years later. yorktown is over. washington has won the war. but who did actually win the war? who won the revolution? we say the americans. but in american history and days day,patriots' day or flag the minutemen get most of the credit. the embattled farmers.
muskets asered their soon as the alarm bells rang, ready in a minute to run off, drop their farm tools and apron back the mighty redcoats with the shot heard round the world. then they enter the patriotic postwar legend as populist heroes who secured america's liberty and the right to bear arms. back to that in a minute. it is a grand story and one to feel proud of. but like most schoolbook history centuries ago, it is as much mythology as myth. revolution of the will be a continued live from one end to the other. there is no argument that the
locals who rushed out to lexington performed heroically. but it is a small piece of a much larger story. after the revolution is over, politicians were eager to flatter voters -- imagine that. politicians who want to flatter voters by promoting militia, the minutemen, as the part-time citizen soldiers, over the regulars of the continental army that washington had formed who had done most of the fighting and suffering. menhis idea that militia win the war is a story will and together by-- woven politicians and historians ever since. very a myth rooted in a deep distrust for standing armies. that america's founding generation had. it carried over for many years
into the way we saw soldiers in this country and the way we treated them, both during the war and afterwards. that is one of the things i focus on most in the book -- how do we treat the men, for most of our history, and certainly women now -- who wear the uniform and do the fighting? the question of who actually fought was an urgent long for washington when he takes over in 1775. he saw 15,000 men wandering around, disorderly, disorganized. they did not know how to dig trenches for latrines. these are listed men voting on who would be their officers. he came out of the british military tradition and new this was not going to do. but he was frightened of the
idea that he would have to defeat the british army, perhaps the most powerful military force at the time, with these amateur, disorganized, and ill trained men. some of whom were black with guns. op t that as well. washington was not going to allow blacks to enlist in his l army, at least in the beginning. , he was really concerned about the army and wrote to congress, to place any dependenc e upon the militia is resting on a broken staff. not the picture of the brave minutemen, is it? after his defeat a little later right here in new york, said, the summer soldier and the sunshine patriot
will, in this crisis, shrink from service. his summer soldier and sunshine patriot, these were the militia men, eager to head home. they were summer soldiers. signed on for a few months. they would go off for a while and had to get back to the harvest. this was not going to do for washington. paine.right, of course, following that first blush of , places likevor lexington had trouble rounding up a quota of citizen soldiers willing to serve. the performance of the militias, the citizen soldiers, so-called minuteman, was often unreliable, amateurish or worse. recruitment was troubled in rhode island. they could not get enough men to
reach enlistment quotas. so they created a rhode island regiment, a group of emancipated slaves given their freedom in exchange for service, and their owners were compensated. this was something washington very slowly agreed to. he knew he needed more bodies in his army, so he was willing to accept this one outstanding example of african-americans serving. he did not want to make it a nationwide issue. he knew that southern , fellowders slaveholders from south carolina and georgia and virginia were not going to agree to the idea of arming blacks. of the scaleend from the black soldiers being
emancipated from slavery were the militias in places like afraida, where men were to leave their homes to defend their state because they were afraid, if they left, their slaves would leave. had really virginia terrible service records during the war. thomas jefferson learned this in 1781 when he was chased out of richmond by a british army led by none other than benedict arnold. isn't history wonderful? virginia withd in handcuffs for thomas jefferson. they did not tell you that in my school books. the revolution, in other words, an army that is not the one depicted in the paintings we have. a frenchman in 1781 right, it is truly incredible that troops almost naked, composed of old
men and children and negroes, should behave so well under fire. it simply would not do to have the story of america's freedom won by a selection of out of work teenagers, recent immigrants, including the german and irish, who were detested by -- because they were catholic, and african americans. i am so gladout i'm here to talk about this tonight that lafayette is on display. he is a major figure in the first chapter about yorktown and washington's men. lafayette, one of the idealists of the revolution, was completely devoted to the idea of abolition and emancipation. i am thrilled there is a lafayette display. i urge you to learn more about this extraordinary character, who was such a hero in our
nation's creation. back to the idea of the minuteman myth, the noble idea that part-time soldiers had won freedom -- it was soon carved in stone. why? they are a threat to freedom. thomas jefferson, who was chased out of town by an army when the militia would not stand up for him, said in the same year that to army and navy would lead a military expense making the supperlessborer go to bed. he did not want to pay for an army. these men had seen what kings could do. they knew the history of rome and what an ambitious leader
with an army could do. their mistrust emerged throughout the revolution in ways that the men were fought bothed -- were treated after the revolution and its aftermath. , as the british are getting ready to leave, officers in newburgh are unhappy. they have not gotten paid, have not gotten the pensions. credit, he goes up to new bird and suppresses the newburgh conspiracy. 3, a couple178 hundred men in harrisburg are upset because they have not been paid, so they march on philadelphia, where congress was meeting. they stopped at a few of the tickling houses, so they were
well oiled by the time they reached congress. , he iser hamilton arguing that the man should be paid, they should get their pensions. it is falling on deaf ears. these soldiers force alexander hamilton and the rest of congress to flee to princeton nearby. a few years later, angry farmers in massachusetts who are very upset because they lost the right to vote, have had a farms tolost their unfair taxes in massachusetts, and rise of -- up threatened to take over the state armory in springfield, massachusetts. this was known as shays rebellion.
the rebellion is eventually put down. , it convinces men like washington and james madison that the country needs a better government and better constitution. certainly, that was one of the key elements in forcing congress to call a constitutional convention in 1787. theythey do that, when begin their debate in philadelphia, the question for a need of america's army is front and center. the constitution was being discussed in 1787. james madison warned -- was really serious -- he did not like the idea of a standing army. would be a standing military force with an overgrown executive that will not be a safe companion to liberty. a famous massachusetts
, hetician, albert gary spoke to many of the founders and mockingly compared a standing army to -- how can i say this delicately? the male member. he said it was a dangerous invitation to foreign adventure. that was his view about having an army. that derision and fear of a standing army permeated many of eas,founding fathers' id along with their frugality. they were cheapskates. after the war was over, the army was reduced to 800 men. it did not work out well for their first wars with native americans. to a long tradition in this country of paying lip service to america's fighting , cherryith a simplistic
tree version of history that we teach our children and tell ourselves. daily cascaderly of stories of scandal, neglect. it is a very long history of the way we treat the men and women who fight and wear the nation's uniform. since the nation was born, soldiers have gotten the short end of the stick. in the revolution, washington had to beg for troops to be fed, cloth, for boots, ammunition. in a letter from valley forge, he says one of my service is nearly naked. probably was not himself. probably had a good uniform.
presumably, the naked servant is william lee i mentioned. "shoddy"vil war, became used to describe union uniforms. right up to iraq, where they have trucks and equipment even to our men and women as they serve. america has always talked a good game about honoring his troops but rarely delivered on the promise. in the aftermath of world war i, when the veterans bureau was created to handle the immense medical needs of returning doughboys, it was born in scandal. cabinetmember of the was actually sent to prison for fraud and corruption. the current disgrace at v.a. hospitals, suicides, homelessness, drug abuse,
posttraumatic stress disorder, all these issues amongst veterans are very much modern eeptiges of the founders' d disdain for when they called men of the blade. day or memorial day or veterans day, go down with them. history is observed. we like to thank our troops in the airport for their service. we have the flyovers at the stadium these days, which the army has paid for. the nfl teams have accepted money, which is another scandal. but these simplistic thank you's for service are rooted in a ide that goest pr back to the time of the revolution. there is awledge
mistrust that led to the elevation of the minuteman myth to the great american gospel. let's tell a real story. that is what i have tried to do in "the hidden history of america at war." it is the stories of the mostly men who have fought for us. it is the story of african americans who served, usually without recognition. it is a story of their service in the civil war, the second chapter of the book, which is about petersburg, when the color first allowed to fight and usually given tasks like burying the dead were being in the most forward position, certainly being paid less than their fellow white servicemen. after the war, they became buffalo soldiers. these are the real stories. a fascinating piece of the
buffalo soldier story in the third chapter is about balangiga in the philippines. most people have forgotten why we were in the philippines in the first place. one of the things the army did was bring buffalo soldiers from the west to florida to send them to cuba because they believed that african-american soldiers were resistant to tropical diseases. this was an idea that went back slsleep times when people -- ave times when people believed they would not get tropical diseases. the death rates from yellow fever and malaria had nothing to do with being immune from disease because you are african-american. these are the stories that permeate america at war. it is part of the story i try to tell in this book. it is also a history that past
to present. one of the things i discovered as i wrote the very last chapter , which is about the war in iraq and, specifically, the balfour fallujah is that, the marines that went into falluja went in with bayonets fixed. that may not seem surprising and we have 2004 the most high-tech army in the world with drones and cyber warfare. these marines go into the city to retake a hardscrabble iraqi city with fixed bayonets. on that night, when george washington orders and assault at yorktown in october, 1781, he , the alexander hamilton marquis de lafayette, that he
wants the men to go in with cold steel. he once these british outposts taken without firing any shots. to be done in silence, to do it quickly with hand-to-hand combat. i was struck by the extraordinary contrast between washington ordering those men in in 1781 and the marines in falluja in 2004, exactly the same way. so much has changed over those 230, almost 240 years, but some things do not change. the way that men go to war has remained the same. that is what this book is ultimately about, asking questions. who fight our battles? why we go to war? what is a good war? i start out with a quote from benjamin franklin saying, in
1783, around the time washington is saying farewell here, there was never a good war or a bad peace. part of what i try to explore in this book is whether franklin is right or not. article wars, bad peaces? i believe she is incorrect. i think there have been good wars. they are few and far between. certainly, the most important thing we can do as citizens is ask the questions. but we cannot ask the questions unless we know the real story. and that is why these stories of what these men did throughout our history are so important for us to learn and understand. thank you very much. [applause] i really: if i may,
like questions. i hope we can have some here tonight. i asked questions in the books that are as rudimentary as what did the declaration of independence declared? why is there a statue of john wilkes booth? i would be happy to explain, but history is about asking questions and getting questions. i would welcome any questions. because we have c-span here, we went to hear the questions. please raise your hand if you have a question, comment. right behind you? >> big fan. i'm one of the teenagers who read your book. mr. davis: you make me feel so old. >> sorry. the first chapter is a
revolution, the second is civil war. you talk about bad wars and good wars. 1812 and the war of mexico -- can you talk about that? mr. davis: which six battles did i choose and why did i leave others out? there are six battles. yorktown. petersburg. civil war. because it isthat one of the overlooked. we know about gettysburg, atlanta burning, antietam. petersburg gets overlooked. it is unfortunate for a number of reasons. did really is the final point at are battlinggrant face to face. it is the story of the people of petersburg caught between two warring armies. as fact they were starving
this nearly year-long siege goes on. story ofascinating what war does to people affected by it. the third chapter is the war in the philippines, the spanish-american war, and of secure war for most americans today. i was particularly drawn to the story because the water cure was a form of enhanced interrogation. prisoners were laid on the ground. water was poured down there throat until they were basically drowning. sounds like waterboarding, but it was happening in the philippines 100 years ago. this is not a story, digging into vast, secret documents. this was a controversy that reached all the way to the white house, was the subject of a senate hearing while roosevelt
was in his first term in the white house. if we want to talk about learning from history, we have to understand history. the story of the philippines and what happened there, young americans being sent to a jungle in asia at the turn of the 20th century, committing atrocities, getting involved in torture, we can certainly learn a lot from the story, but we did not. story is a bit of a departure but fascinating, because it is the battle of berlin. that was left out of my schoolbooks and certainly the hollywood telling of stories. d-day,ed about iwo jima, but not about the fall of the capital of germany, perhaps the most significant event of world war ii because it leads to the death of hitler and the end of the 1000-year reich. we do not hear about it because the soviets did it.
when the war was over, the soviets were no longer our allies but our enemy. that whole chapter about what happened in berlin gets left out of so many history books just as the role of the soviets is very unfamiliar to many americans, who are surprised to learn that approximately 27 million people in russia died during what we call world war ii and they call the great patriotic war. celebration of the 70th anniversary of victory in europe day. there were old planes that flew over washington dc. the same day, in moscow, 500,000 people carried pictures of people who had died in the war. salient part of their history and part of their history we have to understand
when we look at what is going on in russia today. we talk about learning from history, but if we do not know it, we cannot learn it. the story of berlin is ghastly because of the extraordinary mass rape that took place of german women in retribution for what the germans had done to russian women when they invaded russia. this is the horrible side of war that we often leave out of movies at history books. the other aspect of berlin that is so important -- there was tension right away. soldiers were shot by americans in a number of instances.
the cold war, that was about to begin, really begins in berlin in 1945. that is a piece that hidden history i try to bring out. the last chapters are much more contemporary. thestory of hue during tet offensive. hue gets overlooked. it was the citadel city, the home of the emperor for a long time. it has really been spared from most of the fighting in the indochina war. 1968, all hell breaks loose. walter conquer in new york the teletype machines chattering and says, what is going on? i thought we were winning the war. the pentagon had been telling
him that there was a light at the end of the tunnel. walter cronkite, who was a veteran of world war ii, as a correspondent, got his flak jacket and uniform out to go to vietnam to look at what is going on. humidity will not to remember that february night in 1968 that walter cronkite told america we were losing the war. after that, lyndon johnson decided not to run again. one of the general lessons of vietnam was not to let television cameras on the battlefield. that is the story in that chapter, how reporters became much of the story. , a storyly, fallujah which has not ended. theymarines left in 2004,
do not think the city would fall 10 years later to forces related to al qaeda now called isis. that is a very quick overview of 230 years of military history. i left some wars out and could have chosen others. but i chose these battles because each was emblematic of something important in the history in its relationship with the military and how we see the people who fight, how the military has changed. since really only been 1960, when eisenhower left and gave a farewell address, that we had a warning of the military-industrial complex. until world war ii, americans had fought wars, gone back to business. but world war ii, obviously, changed that with the creation
of what roosevelt called the arsenal of democracy. it has changed forever. that is something we have to understand. too many of us do not have a connection to the military anymore. we read the stories and brush them off, but that is a roundabout answer to your question. somebody else? >> i have a question. yorktown, one of the myths i grew up with was was somehowlis incompetent in his dealings. later on, i learned cornwallis accomplisheded and in the european theater. where do you stand on that? mr. davis: he certainly was a
veteran with all the honors. but he did not do a very good 1780n the south from about on. he and clinton, the commander in chief of british forces in north america here in new york, were at each other's throats. when you talk about backbiting or fighting, deciding he does not know what he is talking about, all that happened in the revolution too. cornwallis was an honored and decorated veteran but did not perform well when he came to america in the american south. the fact he was really allowed to get trapped on this really small peninsula, where the french navy was crucial in the battle of yorktown, was able to cut him off and allow washington's army and the french
army to come in and start a terrible a terrible, strategic disaster for cornwallis would be blamed for. he would blame clinton for not sending enough troops. they would write angry letters for the rest of their lives, but he was really to blame. just as other generals in our history have gone back-and-forth about mistakes in american history. it was not his promised moment. though, he goes back to england on the same boat that takes benedict arnold back to england. what conversations the two of them must have had. role indict arnold's the revolution is a fascinating. arnold had been truly one of the
heroes of the early american revolution. ego, pride,ion, feeling like he is passed over at every turn, he is wounded at saratoga. very important battle. still leaves a charge that helps turn the tide of battle. when the time came to honor those who file at saratoga, they put up statues and left a niche empty. someone felt arnold's heroism should be marked. marble bo marvel -- ot at saratoga. it does not say it is arnold's, but it is. thats wounded in his leg day and never walk properly. that is why there is a statue of arnold's boot.
fascinating character study of this man who was close to washington. washington trusted him. but he and his very ambitious and young wife had other ideas about what would happen. again, i would love to be on the to hear what the two of them talk about. there are lots of hands. >> over here? mr. davis: then right in the back after that. a minuteman at great ridge who fought with lafayette on the way down to charleston and camden, he was in yorktown. ofgeneral, i am supportive the approach to consideration of
the continentals, a large percentage of whom were immigrants. pennsylvania, new york, 50% of the soldiers were foreign-born. have, ihe questions i do not know if your book gets to it, was the payment to the enlisted men. we know they got paid in largely worthless scrip bought up by speculators and later redeemed. we also know that newburgh conspiracy was about taking care of the officers. the officers did get taken care of. the enlisted men did not get pensions until much later. i wonder if you have comment. mr. davis: first of all, thank you very much for that. i want to add that i am not
painting militia with -- you know, they are all a bunch of cowards. certainly, many performed admirably and heroically. there are cases of that that i document. the men in harrisburg were enlisted men who marched on philadelphia because they had not been paid and wanted pensions. 1781,ion also that, in early in 1781, washington is desperate. he has mutinies. at least two massive mutinies. first among the men of the pennsylvania line. he negotiates with them and sells that. then some men from new jersey who also apparently stopped by house, also rebel.
washington sends in troops to put this one down and has the ringleaders of that mutiny executed by firing squad. inputs some of the mutineers the firing squad, expected to execute the leaders of the rebellion. there are many other cases of this happening. extraordinary sha y's rebellion, men who were expecting pensions and needed them, leading to the constitutional convention. one story stands out for me, and i told the story because i write about joseph plum-marvin. enlisted at 16o and served through the entire war. much later in life, he wrote an account of that anonymously. it came out under the name of "a
dandy."oodle this is the real account we have 's-eye view. martin went to maine and struggled getting his pension and lived on the property of henry knox. propertyws him off the because he says it is not his property. dug thelum-martin trenches that knox put cannons in in yorktown. later, they are arguing and knox throws him off his land. died choking on a chicken
bone. not to say other is just a curiosity that a man who survived the revolution dies choking on a chicken bone in serious debt because things have not turned out well for him. same story,he again, about how the fighting man, the revolutionary soldier, was usually not taken care of. i am sure you know the expression "not worth a continental." soldiers were paid with continental paper money, which was not worth a continental. when washington addressed the troops at newburgh, the meeting house is still there. when he addresses the troops, wasn't there a bit about him pausing and taking out his spectacles? mr. davis: mr. davis: he said,
i've never had to use these, but i am getting all and my eyes are getting back. very poignant moment. ofre were many moments here,gton's officers, that they wept. that is a tribute to the love and devotion they had for him. conspiracy put the down is a reflection of the degree of love and affection. i am getting the high sign here. i do not know if we have time for more questions. thank you very much for coming. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2015] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] >> american history tv is
featuring c-span's original series, "first ladies" at 8:00 eastern on sunday nights throughout the rest of the year. series"roduced this version with the white house historical association. first ladies. lou hoover on first ladies about 90 minutes. ♪ lou and herbert hoover came to the white house as trained geologist. as experienced world travelers who were successful in the public and private sectors. months into his term, the market crashed. first lady lou hoover used her office for advocates of charity but as the depression deepened, their one term and it a midst great public frustration.
good evening. tonight story is up lou henry hoover. 1929-1933 and what an interesting life she had. lifeto tell us about the she led before the white house is a net dunlap. .- annette dunlap she is working on a biography of lou henry hoover. what interested you in looking at this woman? annette: i got interested in her when talking with a friend of mine in canton, ohio. when i started looking at lou, i realized this woman story had not been fully told. there were so many layers of her. legacy for women in particular, even today, that i would like to see more people know about. susan: let's talk about her growing up years. she was born in whether luke, iowa. her father wanted a boy. annette: