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tv   Colonial Williamsburg  CSPAN  December 5, 2015 11:00am-3:31pm EST

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women and men who have suffered for years under the taliban regime. each and every one of us has the responsibility to stop the suffering caused by malaria because every life in every land matters. and all of us can do something to help. after studying the first ladies and knowing some of them well, ake my own mother-in-law, or fellow texan, lady bird johnson, we benefit i whatever our first laura bush is the first woman in history to be the wife of one president and the daughter-in-law of another. with less than nine months in office, the 9/11 attacks occurred and laura bush helped comfort the nation while
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pursuing issues that were important to her like education, literacy, and women's health. laura batch, this -- laura bush, this sunday night. examining the public and private lives of the women who filled the position of first lady, and their influence on the presidency. from martha washington to michelle obama, sunday at 7:00 -- 8:00 p.m. eastern. >> good morning, everyone, and welcome to american history tv live from colonial williamsburg. on the eve of the american revolution williamsburg, virginia was a bustling capital , home to a large enslaved population.
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american history tv returns to the williamsburg at the 1770's where we are live from the historic district. burgesses, where george washington once served, and the governor's palace, home to king george. we will also be taking your questions as we talked to historians, curators, and interpreters that will all be aboard the c-span bust today. joining us is colonial williamsburg president mitchell reiss. thank you for being here this morning, i appreciate it. >> my pleasure. >> for someone who has never visited colonial williamsburg, how do you describe it? think it is important for people to know it is more than the sum of its parts. you have 88 buildings that have been immaculately preserved.
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you have world-class interpreters who are impersonating some of our nation's founding fathers. you have a remarkable campus with retail stores, world-class hotels, golf, tennis, baseball, and wonderful restaurants. it really is something for everybody but what it is more than that is a very special place, because it is really where our country began. it was here in williamsburg where the first discussions and debates took place over whether we should be independent, how we should become americans, and in fact that debate led to a decision to become independent, to declare that and to fight for it and when it ultimately. all of those stories took place in colonial times in williamsburg and we create that and connect people to our heritage every day. >> how do you do that?
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what is happening in 1774 that you are reflecting? mitchell: we have a variety of ways in which we can do this. there is a wonderful website. people can curate a little bit of their tour even before they arrive. the buildings are will preserve that are really there to tell blessed and we are very in having some of the most talented storytellers in the country right here to interact with our guests every day, to explain what it was like to live in the early 18th century, through colonial times, that revolutionary upheaval. to understand what it meant to be enslaved for african-americans in that time, and that dark chapter in our country's history. there is something important to connect to. the issues we are hearing today on the presidential trail, immigration, tax reform, individual rights, state rights,
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all of those stories and debate began here and you can reconnect with them every day. >> when and why was this idea of representing the 1770's colonial williamsburg? when did it come about and why? mitchell: it was the brainchild of a remarkable individual, the reverend goodwin, a professor at the college of william and mary next-door and the pastor of the bruton parish church. he decided that this history was too important to continue to decline. he saw the buildings here in eroding so he reached out to john d rockefeller junior and enlisted his support in restoring 18th century williamsburg. the reverend chose well and wisely, and john d rockefeller and the rockefeller family have been supporters ever since. >> what goes into preserving the buildings today and making it
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function on an everyday basis? mitchell: as the question suggests, it really is quite a challenge because we do not want people to just look and not touch. we want people to go into the buildings, to see the art and artifacts, to understand what it really meant to live, to go to school, to dine in the 18th century. we have to be very mindful of the legacy that we need to preserve. we have some of the country's leading experts, archaeologists who unearthed the history but preservationists and conservationists to make sure we continue to stuart this inheritance for future generations. >> commission for colonial williamsburg is so the future -- the mission for colonial williamsburg's so the future will learn from the past. mitchell: that motto goes to the
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heart of our educational mission, to share with americans and beyond the values and ideals that first took flight here in williamsburg back in the 1770's. how did we become america? how did we decide that we wanted to be independent from the british? the about one third of colonists decided that was what they wanted to do, one third were loyal, and one third were sitting on the sidelines. those discussions took place here. the debates lead to decisions that led to the revolutionary war. independence,our we had another debate, what does it mean to be an american? all of those discussions took place here, so how can we connect people to that history, to the first successful revolution in the world is something that we think is
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extremely relevant to current life. >> what do you think are some things that people might not know or realize about colonial williamsburg? before,: as i mentioned i think the scope of what we have to offer here. we have over 300 acres in the historic area and beyond for people to discover, learn, and explore. museums,wo world-class one, the leading full art museum in the country and the leading museum on the revolutionary times, the art and artifacts of that time. many do not know that these museums exist. as i said before, we have great hotels, dining, and other entertainment. >> we are talking with the president and ceo of colonial williamsburg, mr. mitchell reiss joining us aboard our c-span3 bus this morning live from williamsburg.
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employees, 1800 volunteers, an annual budget of $200 million, 500 reconstructed buildings. john d rockefeller funded the restoration of the town. where does the budget today come from? mitchell: thank you for asking. patriotsver 100,000 who donate their money to preserve and to promote colonial williamsburg. that role is essential for our financial stability, and we are very grateful for their support. receive any direct funding from the state or federal government. we also earn money through ticket sales, retail stores, and hotel and dining. we do the core of what really depends on the generosity and philanthropy of over 100,000
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people across the country and around the world. greta: what is your role, your job? mitchell: my job is to make sure that we focus on our core educational mission. again, to connect people to this very special place, to be able to tell our stories, to share the values, founding ideals of our founding fathers, and to make sure we can do so in a financially sustainable way. greta: we were recently back in williamsburg in october filming a street scene. 26, 1774 when governor dunmore, the royal governor of virginia dissolve the house of burgesses. can you help set the stage for the viewers? what was the mood of the colonists? mitchell: it was one of rising rebellion, of anger at the imposition of additional taxes
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by the brits after the tea party in boston. again, the idea that no taxation without representation, the first tax rebellion to lace at that time. .- took place at that time and the rise of a commercial class that decided they were not going to take this any longer, so tensions rose and spilled over. lord dunmore had to flee in the middle of the night, leaving behind some items which we still have here. reached to a very famous by patrick henry that many people know, and the virginia declaration of rights which became the foundation for our declaration of independence from the brick. -- brits. the core stories, core values started in colonial williamsburg and that is why this is so important for all americans to connect with. greta: we want to say thank you to you and colonial williamsburg
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for welcoming american history tv and the c-span bus to williamsburg. thank you, sir, for your time as well. mitchell: my pleasure. please come back anytime. greta: we will be taking your phone calls and text messages after we show you the short little bit from colonial williamsburg. may 26,id, this depict 1774. we will be back in about 15 minutes and we will be talking with colonial waynesburg historian joseph beatty who will be taking your calls and text.
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>> could you make your trees and a little quieter? people are stopping and staring. >> people need to know what the government intends. >> what are you posting? >> that does not mean i agree with this and i do not care who knows it. being deeply impressed with the apprehension of americans from hostile invasion -- hostile invasion? >> read on. necessary byhly humiliation and threat.
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how is he usurping has authority? >> criminals, you say. i say american patriots standing up for their rights. >> patriots who disguised indian warriors. >> no taxation without representation, i say. the entire government was removed. we must work with the king and the governor to make sure they know we are honorable subject, dedicated to a solution. >> that is a humiliation prayer. i know it to be true. treason, i say. >> progress, i say. not children that men standing
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up for justice. >> they will have your head. we have a port, we have a harbor, we have tea. >> is that not the governor approaching? >> someone must have warned him about this. >> warned him about what? what will happen when the king and his governor tread on the rights of people? >> fetch me those.
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a session will be recorded for posterity. drive on.
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>> my fellow virginians, i know what many of you may be thinking. what does this have to do with me? your homes and visitors are being taxed as unfairly as any bostonians. let me remind you that the king's right hand has announced he was not here to complain.
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asu, my neighbors, -- loyal subjects to our king, we have grievances. >> the governor will close our board. it is unspeakable. >> it is not unspeakable. that can happen to anyone of these new colonies. we need to band together and declare to those great sons of liberty to the north that we shall fight for our right. the people of williamsburg, subjects of his most gracious , iesty king george third stand before you faxed and a troubled man -- vexed and a troubled man, betrayed as you
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have been betrayed. as right good people, you have been betrayed by the very men that you yourselves elected to be your voice and government. on the 16th night of december men, 1773, traitorous disguised as indians and in the dead of night in the port of board three ships of the east india company. they sent some $10,000 worth of tea into the sea in order to prevent a tax upon private property. ,arliament, with his majesty
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closed boston harbor until the tea is paid for, to be affected on the first day of june but six days hence. -- are of no bother to us in virginia. harsh punishment for those primes -- crimes has been attempted. the kings justice has been served. your burgesses do not agree. indeed, your burgesses have adopted a resolution for a day of fasting, humiliation, and prayer in sympathy for those destroyers of property, and wanton lawbreakers in boston. some may ask, what harm may be done by a call for prayer? what possible affronts need to
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be taken for a day of fasting? i declare to you that such a call is not be nine. with a call for allegiance bulls and traders. burgesses know all too well that a day of fasting and prayer i only be decreed by his majesty. or by myself as appointed executive. and yet, in some dangerous state of delusion, these burgesses have ordained themselves proclaim it. i hold in my hand the paper published by this house, received in such terms as reflect so gravely upon his majesty and the parliament of great britain that it is required me to dissolve them.
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dissolve youre house of burgesses accordingly. king.ve the virginia.e ladies, we have been dissolved. we will accordingly remove ourselves from this house. --served at the pressure pleasure of his excellency and it is our duty to obey governor dunmore. even you that we have not desktop and even greater duty, and that is to you good people. you elected us to represent you and your interest, the rights of representation blows -- flows through the blood of every briton. i see the actions of one man,
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whether he be governor or came, cannot wash away magna carta. [applause] he has dissolved this house, dissolved our obligation to remove all cause of danger to american liberty. this attack on boston is an attack upon us all. we may not be able to pass laws being dissolved but that does not mean we cannot remain strong in support of our revolution. therefore, let it be declared -- resolved that this house i should say, this former house, she would meet once again does days -- dose days -- two be theand it should consideration of a non-importation of association great britain.
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we should not purchase british goods until we are recognized as full british subject. i hope to see all of you on the first day of june at briton parish for a holiday of fasting, humiliation, and prayer so maybe ask for divine interposition to inspire into the mind of his majesty and parliament to avert this heavy calamity that threatens the destruction of our civil rights through the evils of war. god save us all, my fellow countrymen, and may god save virginia. >> god save virginia. >> we cannot have an illegal government. >> it is not illegal. is the elected
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officials in town are meeting unofficially. there is no treason. they are going to be after hours. they are not burgesses. >> i do not understand how the king wishes to have his debt repaid. >> that is not the point. they say they are protesting peacefully but they did not take into account that those people who are not with them, they tore and feather them. as years ago with the boston massacre, they decided to go in the royal governor's house with women and children inside. anyone who does not agree with them will suffer violent repercussions. >> whatever they determine on is simply an agreement amongst gentlemen. they are not meeting as a government. you cannot force anything when you have no -- you cannot enforce anything when you have no authority. >> this is a radical action.
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arethe county militias going back under the control of the county tenants. >> as they should be. >> the governor cannot call them up anymore. there 3000, 6000 red coats on their way now? can create our own forces here in virginia, put together our own men to give the right men control. we put together our own virginia forces. >> those very same men that are talking about the rights of the freeborn britain are the same channel custody. you can sell us and by us as you see feet -- see fit.
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live on american history tv on c-span3. we are in the colonial williamsburg historic area where the c-span bus is at the end of the palace green in that area. aboard the bus is historian joseph beatty, manager of historical research and training in historical williamsburg. our viewers were just watch watching -- watching what happened. who was governor deadline? -- governor dunmore? joseph: he was the last royal governor of virginia who came to the united states in 1771 when things were in a state of turmoil. he stayed through the very earliest parts of the rising conflict as the revolution started, but left williamsburg in 1775 and left virginia in
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1776. greta: why? joseph: things really heated up. what we just saw with the dissolving of the house in some ways really kind of marked a point of no return for any hopes of peaceful reconciliation with the royal government. to,so things really started tension started to rise and people in town, after the house was dissolved the burgesses set up a shadow government and eventually, things sort of came to a head. at the same time that lexington and concorde fought their fight, here in williamsburg we saw order,he governor's
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powder removed from the magazine here in town. this really was in some ways the spark that set things off, and this led to some real, open confrontation really with the governor. i think he found it unsafe to be here in town anymore and decided that he was safer elsewhere. greta: what was the house of burgesses? joseph: the house of burgesses was the legislative body that represented virginians. it was the first representative body in colonial british north america. andas established in 6019 in some ways it was kind of modeled after parliament. each county sent two representatives to the house and electors, the qualifications for my made a person and a lector changed over time. by the time we get to the 18th
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century, looking at land owning white and, they had to hold the minimum amount of land. these folks elected representatives to the house of burgesses, and these folks really worked on the laws of the colony with the governor and his counsel sitting on top of this mirroring theways structure of parliament. greta: what our viewers just saw, did that really happen and how do we know? joseph: it did happen. indeed dissolve the house of burgesses. thomas jefferson wrote in his diary, and wrote letters to other folks describing and recollecting the events of the day. it was certainly a memorable occasion for them. dunmore was not the first and only governor to dissolve the
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house of burgesses. this was in the governor's prerogative. this incident was a little bit different because as tensions dunmore increasing, really saw this as and a front to his authority, i think, and a challenge to royal authority. the house at that point was really sort of acting in open particularly with their open and vocal support of their countrymen in massachusetts, dunmore felt as the scene per trade that this was intended really to stir the population -- as the scene portrayed, that this was intended to stir the population.
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and start the population against him. i have lost myself. greta: that is ok. let me ask you this -- at this point in 1774, how long had virginia been a colony and what did that mean? joseph: virginia had been a colony since 1607. that is almost 170 years. so virginia was the first successful, permanent british colony in north america. it predated massachusetts or plymouth by 13 years. virginia was in some ways , it was the largest and most populous colony in british north america. was really a powerful
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outpost of the british empire, so for this to be happening it was a significant event. really,ink dunmore maybe going a little too far to say he took this personally i think he took this a little personally, especially as the weresses in his mind really acting in open defiance. greta: we are talking with historian joseph betty this history tv,merican live from colonial williamsburg. he will be taking your questions .nd tech -- texts if you live on the east coast, -8900. if you live on the -8901.oast, 202-748
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you can join the conversation on and we willtwitter take your comments from there as well. beatty, you are talking about virginia becoming one of the first colonies, but how did it compare to the other colonies? startedso virginia was really as a commercial , which is in some ways much different from the impulses that started the colonies that plymouth and massachusetts, they were looking for religious freedom or freedom from religious persecution. virginia was really established as a business venture. they were seeking gold. they did not really find it. they were seeking timber, which they found an awful lot of. they were looking to turn this into a commercial venture, to
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extend the new and emerging british empire. in some ways, that makes virginia as early days -- virginia's early days different from some of the other colonies. some are formed on the principle of religious freedom or freedom from religious persecution, and others are founded more on a commercial basis. i think virginia is the first of these that starts out really in the essence of trade. greta: what challenges did virginia present that these other states did not, to the british? years orn the early just as a colony in general? greta: as a colony in general. as they set it up as a business venture. what challenges were there? joseph: one of the challenges is
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that people who are interested improvingmoney and their share in life do not always take a long-term view of their situation. if you look at plymouth or massachusetts, the colony was settled by families, by men and women, sometimes children. we see multigenerational families moving and they , and sort ofowns group along the model of towns as the center of their community . in the sort ofa, commercial enterprise after they made it through the really difficult first years where merely staying alive was a real challenge, once the colony started to develop, folks who came here were mostly men.
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not to say that there were not women, but predominately a male population and they were looking at and interested in making some money, and hopefully heading back to england. they did not do things like build towns in the same way as they did in new england. once tobacco becomes really the cash crop of virginia, it forces and encourages the population to , whichout and disperse means that we do not see here in virginia in the very early years the kind of robust community center and towns like we do in new england. virginia was in some ways kind of challenging environment to live in with disease and all this, but it was a sort of challenging environment also because of the way the population started to move around, and the way the economy
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started to develop. greta: let's get to calls here for mr. beatty. >> thank you for this program. i am disabled and am not able to get to williamsburg, but this is a wonderful program and i appreciate it. dunmoreion is, lord tried to incite the black slaves to join the british side. he offered them their freedom. how did this affect the blacks in williamsburg, and about how many at that time were slaves and how many were free? thank you. joseph: that is a great question. there are really two things in here. proclamation offered freedom to enslaved people who would fight for the british side at the beginning of the war.
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this had really important and powerful ramifications here in town. it really, really stirred up people here against dunmore, against royal authority. it is kind of ironic because to,ore's goal in this was he almost wanted to do something so profoundly shocking that it s tod stir the loyalist rise up from their slumber and put down this rebellion. instead, it had the opposite effect. rather than stirring up up thets, it stirred rebels to really fight harder and stronger. in williamsburg at the time of the revolution, the population 1880,n the city was
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according to the 1775 senses. about 52% of that population was african-american. the majority of those folks were enslaved. a small but significant number of people fled to dunmore's side , enough that he was able to muster together his ethiopian regimen. but i do not know that it had quite the effect he had wished that it would have, either in terms of its outcome with loyalists or with stirring up the population. i mean, any support from enslaved people. this was, if you consider the perspective of enslaved people considering this decision, this is fraught.
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do you choose to stay on with the situation that you know, or face a situation that in many ways is entirely unknown? you do not know what commitment the british have two holding up their end of the bargain. that is a great question. greta: we will hear from linda next in michigan. >> thank you. williamsburg this august, and i have been there years before. i do have a question, how often do they go through the buildings to redo them and stuff to keep things up to par? was, whenhe fighting washington and adams and the other founders came, how long were they there in williamsburg to start the capital in williamsburg? thank you very much and have a great day. joseph: thank you.
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that first question, i love this question. thank you for asking it. we have curators of our historic properties, and maintenance folks that go through our properties and our buildings on thetating basis, and do really valuable and essential maintenance to keep them standing. we have a powerful charge to steward these buildings and sites and stories into the future. it would not be possible without these folks who do that every day. the schedule of building maintenance, and it was projected out for three or four years. and this is an incredible ongoing process. some sites see maintenance annually.
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everyites see maintenance two to three years. some sites see maintenance maybe every nine years or so. it is essential to do this kind of work. we sort of take it for granted that these buildings stand and are in good repair. it is through the really hard work of the folks who go in and make sure that things are sound and stable, and touch up the paint. it is a wonderful site to walk down the street here and to see ourguests stop and watch workers paint the building. they ask about, how do you do that? it is a really cool thing to see. question, i am sorry. greta: i was going to remind you, she asked about when the founding fathers came to
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williamsburg and how long they were there. joseph: it sort of depending on who they were. some unlike washington would come when the house of burgesses was in session so he would stay for a couple weeks or months at a time. someone like jefferson who attended the college of william studied and studied here in town -- studied here in town, would have been here much longer. ,s the colonial capital essentially all of the really important business at the colonial level was administered here. if these individuals had business that needed to be done with the state, they had to come here. this was a busy place with people coming and going and visiting, sometimes for longer and sometimes for shorter.
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by all accounts, it was a pretty happening place. greta: when did williamsburg become the capital? joseph: williamsburg becomes the virginia in 1699. from 1607o that, -- 21698 the capital was in jamestown. in 1698, the statehouse in jamestown burned down to the third time and they started to look for -- they took the opportunity to see if there was a better location. williamsburg at that time was known as middle plantation. it was the home to the college of william and mary. it had an established church at bruton parish. a couple of college students and their professor leaned a little bit, or lobbied on the assembly to say, maybe you should consider coming here.
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geographically we are in a relatively high location, about right in the middle of the peninsula. we have fairly good water access to both the york and james river systems. i think they did the math and decided that a move here to middle plantation would be good, and once they made that decision, changed the name to williamsburg and laid out plans for the city. greta: going back to the dissolving of the house of burgesses, what is the reaction of the town? we saw a little bit of it during that street scene, but what is the reaction from the town? folks in town had a lot on their minds. the move that caused the house to be dissolved was this call
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for a day of fasting, humiliation, and prayer in support of their friends in massachusetts. this was because of the boston port act, which was going to close boston. this was one in a long chain of call "thew "the courseacts" or of all attacks -- the co ercible acts." there was some uncertainty, they did not know what was happening. i think there was some real concern that what was happening in boston could happen here. we in williamsburg do not have the same kind of port that boston has where the british
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could blockade the port, but our axis here by water is through the mouth of the chesapeake bay. ifre is a real concern that the british could blockade boston, they could blockade that they and that virginians here would face may some of the same kinds of consequences that were happening up in massachusetts. so people were concerned. there was real uncertainty. there have been recent conflicts on the border with pennsylvania. the boston tea party. there are things that are causing people to have concern. rightly, in here was think people were anxious but once the house reassembled at
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the raleigh tavern and set up a shadow government, it probably caused another layer of uncertainty because as you heard in some of the chatter on the street afterwards, is this really going to work? can they do this? off, just top things a few weeks after he dissolved the house done more left for -- -- done more d dunmore left. i think people were a little concerned. greta: let's go to richmond, virginia. william. >> thank you. i am enjoying the show immensely. i have enjoyed wonderful, extemporaneous conversations with the interpreters in colonial williamsburg. how are these people chosen and
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trained to provide such great in-depth information? thank you. joseph: that is a great question. have a couple different types of interpreters who face the public year. arefolks who are describing probably first-person interpreters who take on a historic personage and act that person's character in life. folks wholy higher have a background in acting, and train them on the historical information they need to support their role. and so we have several different levels and programs of training that go through preparing people to understand what is happening in williamsburg as a place, what life in the 18th century was
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like here, and then once that happens, we really sit down with them and pair them up with a historian and help them flesh out the details of their character. we are fortunate that we have a bunch of really talented folks who are out in the historical area who help each other and support each other in finding the best ways of communicating, sharing information, and the best ways of really trying to re-create a sense of what life in the 18th century was like. greta: later on here on the program this morning, our viewers will get a chance to talk to president thomas jefferson, who will be per trade portrayed byr -- bill barker.
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next, jacksonville, florida. >> i would like to thank mr. beatty for specifying that virginia was the oldest british colony in north america. one of my many visits of williamsburg coincided with the archaeological dig at the present site of the coffeehouse. i was curious to know whether there were any archaeological digs ongoing, or any future reconstructions like the coffeehouse? joseph: thanks. out, and i to point should rightly point out that the spanish did establish the first european settlement at saint augustine, right down the road from you. -- yes, about archaeological excavations. we have a variety of excavations
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going on. i do not want to say all the time, but on an ongoing basis. recently we have done some excavations at whether burn -- tavern.urn's a porch that may have been attached to the site, and we have been working with others in excavations at the bray school. yes, we do have ongoing excavations. i do not think right now we have any grand plans for any new sites to emerge. although just a few weeks ago, we cut the ribbon -- last week, actually -- cut the ribbon on our new market house which is our newest historic structure in town. if you are familiar with the site here, it sits on market square, more or less between the magazine and the courthouse.
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this is our newest structure based on archaeological excavations there, and historical architectural research. greta: we are asking viewers to text us their questions as well. one viewer texted in, lord war has been considered to be the first battle of the revolution. can you discuss? at the beginning of the war, what was the percentage of loyalists versus patriots? war may wellre's be one of the first battles of the revolution. if we consider the timing of things, i think there is some cause to argue that. although i do not want to steal too much thunder from lexington and concorde, but i think there
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is some claim to this. dunmore left ear and marched off onto the frontier in a place that was growing increasingly down their.d put -- there. i am going to have to ruminate on that. the question about the numbers ,f loyalists here in virginia that starts the beginning of the revolution. for a long time historians argued about one third of the population was loyalist during the war. recently we have sort of revised those numbers down to about 15 or 20%. williamsburg, we do not loyalists and we
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see a number of loyalists who advertise in the newspapers that they are quitting the colony, they are settling their business affairs. we see debate in public, in private, in the newspapers where people are clearly debating the loyalist versus patriot causes. really really -- suffered and have a lot at stake during the war, especially during the early years as things were gaining steam. and so i think there are a number of people here in williamsburg and doubtless elsewhere in virginia, and elsewhere in other colonies who
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probably kept their thoughts to themselves and decided to ride it out quietly and see what would happen. short answer is, it is kind of hard to say how many loyalists there were but in the big picture, historians are sort of of the mind that it was about 15% to 20%. greta: we will go to yonkers, new york, bob. >> good morning, thank you for taking my call. i had seen a documentary on williamsburg some years ago, pbs. there was an excavation of one of the large spaces that revealed foundations of 19th century buildings. one of them i think was a civil war hospital. basically two questions. i wondered if any follow-up has been done on that and the second part is related. there was a valid -- a battle of
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waynesburg in the civil war as well, and i'm curious to find williamsburgle of in the civil war as well, and i am curious to find out if your educational programs address that. joseph: i am not familiar with the excavation. i am trying to locate that excavation that you are referencing, and i do not want to at the wrong information and get off track. let me think on this for a second. your second question, we do not actively interpret the battle of williamsburg in the civil war. we really focus on the period up to about 1785. but we do have educational through our hero
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programs, electronic field trips, and our teacher professional development program that handles and teaches about the battle of winesburg. but that -- williamsburg. of that is not really one our core functions, even though it is just down the street. greta: we anticipate next we will hear from a historical interpreter that governor dunmore fled williamsburg in the middle of the night. why did he leave and what did the governor symbolize? could anyone have come in? joseph: dunmore fled in the middle of the night following the removal of the gunpowder from the magazine or amid the turmoil that erupted after that. ways, because he was i think rightly fearful for his hanover militia
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under the command of patrick henry was approaching the city, if not here already. though the things that heated up too much, the governor felt it in his best interest to leave. not everyone could enter the palace. it,our viewers have seen there is a wall around it, it is gated. visitors upon approaching the palace would have been allowed into the front room. thatof their business, at point, it would be determined if their business was allowed to enter into the residence in self. when you enter the front room,
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there was a room off to the right where business could be done right there in the lobby without allowing people into the rest of the governor's resident. as you step into the front room havee palace, you would seen, as you do today, and impressive display of arms and armaments. , things pistols, swords of this sort. it was a powerful display of force. the kind of force the governor had at his disposal if he chose to use it. palace was and still remains and impressive structure. the extension of the king's power in this part of the empire.
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for folks going to see the governor or just passing through town, it was a powerful symbol of royal authority. greta: that is coming up. a tour of that. thank you for feeling questions from our viewers. we appreciate it. joseph: thank you for having me. about 20is runs minutes. after that, we continue on with taking your questions and comments this morning about what is happening in virginia in the 1770's. live this morning on american history tv from colonial williamsburg. a tour of the governor's palace. >> i am one of the curators. i work with not only are textile, needlework collection, but with furnishing all of the exhibition sites at the foundation. right now, we are at the governor's palace.
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it would have been a symbol of power and authority and represented power to the colonists of virginia. of building was the home seven royal governors, including the first real governor who took office in 1710. it would have been the home to the first state governor, patrick henry and thomas jefferson. the house of missouri, an important part of the town of williamsburg. the town was very orderly, the palace would have been part of that design. it was the third largest building in town. it consisted not only of the building we are standing in, but to advanced buildings, extens gardens, a laundry, a
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kitchen, and even a seller. governor hadone almost 6000 bottles of wine stored in his cellar. today is a reconstructive building on the original archaeological site. it was finished and open to the public in 1934. since that time, it has undergone a number of the furnishings and reinterpretations. today, we furnish the building as if governor dunmore was living here with his family. his wife and six children arrived in virginia in 1774. year, ladyof that dunmore gave birth to their daughter whom name named virginia. sour,unately, things went the relationships with the governor and the virginians. in general 1775, they governor and his family fled the palace in darkness, never to return again.
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today, the curators furnish the building as accurately as we can, produce primary documents such as inventories taken when the governor died, and inventory would be taken on personal possessions. we use letters describing the palace, accounts. also, a floor plan that have been drawn by thomas jefferson when he was living here as governor. apparently, he had thought of remodeling the palace and you a detailed floor plan giving interior walls and staircase dimensions.ir cases the capital moved to richmond, virginia. thomas jefferson never had the opportunity to do that remodeling. the governor's palace was not only a symbol of power and authority, it was a fashion statement. colonistse that the did come to see the latest fashion from england. to see the latest forms of silver furniture, printed textiles. what we are going to do is give
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you a two are of the governor's palace with one of our costumed interpreters. >> welcome. i imagine you are impressed. most everyone is. that is what the century hall is for. to impress everyone coming to see the governor. to impress them with virginia. the best of these colonies. we don't want you to forget that anytime soon. the weapons -- i know you are looking at them, all of the men do, of course. are, i suppose, a tradition for our governors. you go to those big castles in england, i am told, there are weapons on the walls. these are not the governor's
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personal weapons. these are all a part of virginia store. they are all maintained by our militia. that way, when the empire comes in here, takes these down, use them in virginia's defense. they have several times. our governor, lord dunmore, took the weapons off the wall just last year when he went out west. ,e went to the ohio territory part of virginia. five the shawnee indians, and even return here to his house with a few young shawnee warriors. they are living here, awaiting for their peace treaty which .ight get very interesting i am not sure if you have heard the news yet. it would seem that our royal
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governor, lord dunmore, ran out the back door in the middle of the night last night. interesting times. you would think he would feel safe here in this house. apparently not. normally, he would attend to his business right here at the palace. a good bit in this parlor over here. you might notice there is a desk in the parlor for the secretary captain. wife left, he and his last night, as well. i think he has taken some of the servants with him, as well. , the professional english housekeeper, she would have never left the pantry door wide open like that. all of the valuable things in that pantry.
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of course, the governor would be coming back -- why would they leave all of these things behind? these?lly all of display.ns in the they are virginian weapons. i do not think the governor wants you having them right now. considering we do not have an official militia at the moment. our governor dissolved the government here. now, we have something different. our representatives decide to meet without the governor's approval. apparently, mr. patrick henry made quite the speech
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enrichment. something about liberty, death. companyhave independent . because of that speech, virginia now has a group of armed men in every county. that may have something to do with the governor leaving town. seeing as they're not here, what do you say we go upstairs and see the private chain -- embers of the family -- chambers of the family? right this way. here we are, quite a few stairs up to this floor. i suppose that is the trouble with high ceilings. so many stairs. this is the largest bedchamber
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in the house. it belongs to lady catherine and lady augusta. they are the oldest of the children. 15 and 14 years of age. hurryink they left in a last night? you see these young ladies have the large bedchamber because they also take their lessons here in the house. that that over there is for their governess. a french governess. french, butike the we do like their style. very important that these young ladies speak french. they will be presented to the royal court. their father has a seat in parliament. now, the governor has taken his entire family off to his majesty's ship.
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they are selling up the york river at the moment. that means they are sharing cabins on a ship. governessdren and the and their nursemaid, and the servants. i am sure they are wishing they had this much room again. chamber lady dunmore's is over this way. we will pass through a guest room on our way. i know, i knew you would like it.
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lord and lady dunmore share the bedchamber right over here. you want to take a look? it is not like they will not be different. -- they will know the difference. they share -- it is not unheard of, you know. they share this entire suite. lord dunmore has his own dressing room to the next doorway where you see the chamber stool. e.e chair with the hol here, lady dunmore's dressing room. much bigger, of course. i am told, the latest fashions to have the curtains match the walls to match the furniture. silk.all
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the covers are on the chairs right now. it is to protect the furniture ,rom the dust, insects children. poor lady dunmore, she only arrived here last year. joined england -- she joined her husband from england with her six children. she arrived here in february of 1974. a new member of the family. and their new baby daughter. they have named her lady virginia. after the colony. she has just turned six months old. imagine that ship last night with a six-month-old.
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this room here used to be the governor's office. a nice, big, private room for an office. his desk is now in the dining room downstairs. onwill see that dining room our way to the ballroom. exquisite, isn't it? paid out ofernor his own pocket to update these rooms with the latest styles. he was a bachelor. he loves to throw balls. he even had these warming machines put into the rooms back here. very ornate. coal burning. .ot many out here burn coal except for lord dunmore. lord dunmore owns his own coal
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mines. that helps. it is expected of our governors to hold these large celebrations, these balls, and honor of their majesties. king george the third and queen charlotte. our last of all was in january for the queen's birthnight. i doubt we will be having a ball in the king's honor anytime soon . you know what i mean. it is just that everyone is so angry at the governor's these days. it happened back in april. a group of british sailors went over to our magazine and made off in the middle of the night with the colony's gunpowder.
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everyone here is outraged. the governor has not given back that powder yet. apparently, he has run out in fear of his life. they run out of the house at 2:00 in the morning through the back door, right through here in the supper room. much better than that dining room you saw before. this is much better suited to the grand occasion. seat a dozen or so people in the dining room. of course, dinner is the largest meal of the day. usually served about 2:00, 3:00. your largest meal is in the
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afternoon and you have a light supper in the evening. we serve a separate turn the balls here on the china. the china even has the dunmore crest. he has seemed to have left a quite a bit behind. i don't mean just furniture. the governor has a large staff on this property. , a dozenaid servants indentured servants, and 57 slaves. servants, they have gone off with the family. the rest of those servants and slaves are still here. you, but ifw about i were one of the governor's slaves right now and i did not .now if he was ever coming back i might just take the
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opportunity of the governor being out of town. doesn't comeor back to this house, what are they going to do with the place? all of this fine furniture. my one to remember your favorite pieces in the house just in case. of course, there is a gardens here as well. i hope you have enjoyed seeing the governor's palace. >> today, our visitors see a mixture of reproduction antiques in the governor's palace. furnishings are based on the latest research are curators can provide. justovernor's palace is one of many exhibition buildings and trade shops that are available for the modern-day vehicle -- modern-day visitor in
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colonial williamsburg. thenother look at governor's palace as we are back live on american history tv today coming to you from colonial williamsburg. our bus is there a colonial williamsburg. ,board the bus, ted maris-wolf the vice president of interpretation that williamsburg. he will take your questions, texts, commentary about what is happening and how it works at colonial williamsburg. they begin to set this conversation up with what is the economy like at this time in colonial williamsburg? ted: thank you, greta. in 1775, we are looking at a complex society, a stressful time. those of us in 2015 like to think we invented both complexity and stress. those living in williamsburg
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and thehe revolution beginning and especially how it unfolded, were experiencing an economy and society that was changing rapidly. we are looking at a dynamic place. a place that was one of surplus at the beginning of the war and by 1780, the capital had moved to richmond. we are looking at a place of scarcity. we have an 18th urban space. this is where the country and the city connect. rural folks are producing grain, corn, tobacco. they are finding their way here to the market house. one of the buildings we have just reconstructed his the marketplace. in this market place, one would have encountered all of the products and people that brought the economy to life.
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we have rural people who have made the treck in for marketing. local people in town who have brought their wares, baked goods to sell. merchants who are discussing prices and shipping. this is a town that is landlocked but has two ports. it is tied in an interval way to the atlantic economy. -- integral way. it is a complex place. greta: how are people making their living at this time? who is successful at it? at: first, we should say least in 1775, more than half of the population were enslaved. these enslaved people are forging livelihoods within their conditions. improvising. themselvesrlds for
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and wealth for their owners. most of those living here who are free are middling folks, as we would say. trades people. at colonial williamsburg, we have more than 20 distort trades. makers,ths, basket shoemakers. brick makers. these are people who are making the stuff of 18th-century urban life. tavern keepers. this is a kind of maritime outpost, ship captains sailors, those sorts who are involved in the maritime trade are based here. economy ofplex of tradespeople, rural folks coming into the city, merchants, small entrepreneurs. greta: phone numbers are up on the screen for our viewers to start diving in. he will be taking your questions and comments, not only about
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what is happening in virginia in the 1770's include clone you williamsburg, but how they interpret it there every day. how do you go about showing trades? do you show them as they would have been in the 1770's? correct. is i will probably use the word magic quite a bit in our exchange. this is one of the places where we attempt to make magic everyday. our historic tradespeople are living these traits as one would have lived them in the 18th century. tradespersont as a here, you begin as an apprentice. you get your journeyman papers after 5, 6 years. it is an actual apprenticeship. you gain a certain mastery of your trade the way it was done in the 18th century during whether you are a joiner,
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cooper, brick maker. when you enter one of our spaces, historic trade spaces, you smell the smoke from the iron. fire smoldering in the corner of the shop. you can hear the pounding of the iron on the end though. -- on the anvil. it is right much a re-creation of an 18th-century experience. inta: the people who work williamsburg, they are interpreting blacksmithing and whatever traits, but this is also their job. they are making a wage doing this. ted: that is correct. there aren't many places in the united states, north america and where not only is a craft, a trait being preserved, but it is being done by individuals who are living the experience themselves.
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who can speak to that experience. memory thatof sense someone who has been working in a trade for 20, 25 years, 30 years in some cases. goods that fuel the economy of the 1770's. now, in 2015, we are moving back to a society that values the spoken goods. they make real things, they do it in a railway. it is authentic. greta: what happens to the goods that are produced? the goods to populate the city, for the city to function. as a destination for our guests. many of our tradespeople are producing goods for other institutions and people who place orders with us. -- brewere, a jewelry
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y might order casks from the cooper shop. they make it in an 18th-century way. that is part of the value of the ery willthat the brewwer use in the bucket. we use these objects, guests have the opportunity to purchase objects. we have an auction, a colonial colon that takes place -- onial auction. we fill orders internationally for people who are -- value authentic goods. greta: how does it help you run the daily activities and preserve colonial williamsburg? how much does that bring in? all, from my perspective, programmatic perspective, historians perspective, we are trying to reconstruct an 18th-century world in all of its senses.
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visually. we want our guests to smell what the 18th-century smelled like. to taste it in our historic foodways products in taverns. to feel the texture of the 18th-century. we want to re-create the path in its five senses. each historic trade, and its own way, does that. they help to bring this place a that isan authentic way magical and draws people here again and again. matter, i think this may be part of what you're asking. it generates a certain amount of revenue for us to help sustain our operation. not just the trade, but our educational mission. people that we are trying to convey to an ever-changing american audience. lets get to calls.
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victoria in charleston, s.c.. in williamsburg 15 years or so ago. one thing we like was the music played at the tavern when we had anner and also we talked to widow at the courthouse. my husband talks to thomas jefferson. aat strikes me as being person who lives in charleston, s.c., one of the senses most interesting to me is the music, the hearing. how much do you work with finding authentic music from calling all times? -- from colonial times? the singer in the tavern was singing songs from the times. could you work with the college of william and mary? do they have a music apartment that would create authentic using? -- music?
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we got the chance to hear an organ recital but it was not particularly colonial. it seems like you could do more or thatt for parties might be something that would generate revenue and entertain tourists in your town more. i will listen to your response. ted: thank you for your question. that experience in the tavern and hear that washed over the room while you eat an 18th-century meal, this is the experience that draws people here thought terry music is key. sound of 18th-century.
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valid years that populate our tavern and experience in the tavern. tavern witchery reimagined as an alehouse at the beginning of the year, and it is not only populated with musicians, but characters who are there. you may find a character menu, a out on the countertop with a mug in his ing sea shanty. tavern life, music, musician, sound is key. no doubt we could be doing more and we aim to do more. , thewith formal music kinds of music one would have andd in a colonial city
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less formal music. we have some musicians that we have brought on this year, and you never know where you will see them during your visit. you may encounter them at the market house, someone playing the pipes, fiddle. you may encounter them in the tavern. you may just encounter them on the streets and they are improvising, playing 18th-century tunes. of course, we have our iconic research and we have a number of partnerships with dollars around the country who form our library of music, but yes, absolutely, i love your idea of creating more partnerships with scholars around the country starting here . thank you. host: our viewers are asking to text questions to you.
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here are a couple. hi, i am loving see my favorite place on earth on tv. what is the requirement for becoming a historical interpreter and how can you get hired as an apprentice if you have prior experience? guest: thank you for your questions. requirements for being an interpreter here, you have to have passion, a passion for the subject and people. and connecting ideas with people. we hire passionate people, we hire scholarly people and let me be clear on that means. it is not necessarily mean academically but scholars who pursue knowledge because they are curious and because they , intellectualfire fire they attempt to satisfy. they are scholarly. at the same time, they are
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-- playful.e these rare people who have passion, our scholars but playful. ,hey can seek to improve adults visiting scholars about ideas and what happened here and how it is relevant to the country, but you could turn on a dime and speak to a seven or eight-year-old about why this place is important and the role of animals. they could use that as a window into everyday society, so passionate, playful scholars is what we are looking for. if that is you, apply for one of our 180 positions that we will be hiring for 2016. as far as becoming an apprentice tradesperson, i would say they are passionate, playful scholars . our tradespeople do things with their hands and they are masters that ties toabor
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ideas of the 800. again, for 2016, they will be hiring quite a few new apprentices. of expansion,riod a renaissance of historic trade and the goal is to continue expanding the trades program, so i encourage you to check out our jobs website and apply. thank you. host: how do you train these interpreters? you said about 180 positions for 2016. how do you train them and where does the clothing or costume come from? guest: we had a rigorous training program. my responsibility here are to oversee research and to marry rigorous historical research, archaeological research, architectural history research with interpretation.
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as one becomes an interpreter and tries to interpret the past year, we want to make sure that, one, you are focused on the guest and bringing the place to live in a magical compassionate way. there is quite a bit of training involved in that regard. the scholarly training, you need to be a master of the subject. understand not only williamsburg history but how that could next to our nation's history and how it is relevant today. to be able to connect the past with the present, depending on the particular interest of the person in front of you, and these are talents that require improvisation, creativity, topics, butstery of also public speaking skills and flexibility. much of this is what we work on and rigorous training program. typically, it takes place in january, the quieter time of
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year. host: and the clothing, sir? guest: an site, of course. one of the operations that i work with is the costume design center here. it is a center of approximately 25 people whose job it is to ,esearch a concentric clothing -- 18 centric clothing specific to the characters we bring to life, the scenes we are bring to that dissolution of the house of purchases that you the program, each one of those costumes was handmade. it was rigorously researched and produced in-house by the costume design center. these are some of our most gifted artists, people who can take, in some cases, a stretch or a fragment of the past from a logbook or receipt that is in
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our archives and bring it to life as a piece of clothing that then informs the story we are trying to tell. host: we will go to new jersey, jay, you are on the air. caller: yes, i am. thank you very much. i am an american historian and i am very interested in what theatre ino the first dat colonial williamsburg in 1752. the first professional company came over from england and played their in what was probably the first semipermanent theater in the united states or what came to be the united states. how long has the theater existed and has any attempt they made to reconstruct it? guest: thank you very much for your question. here.ue theater
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wing ofa theatrical our interpretive core. we hire actors who are interpreters. the first leader in williamsburg, among the first isaters in the hemisphere, located by the palace. next year, we are going to be bringing back to life will be called the theater, more or less on the location of the first theater. it does not quite look like the theater would to our 21st-century audiences who were not scholars of 18th-century role in but theaters city life cannot be underestimated. of course, this is a center for political activity, the place where extralegal government is created and that becomes the legal and legitimate government
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to wear these notions are born, but theater plays a key role. we know that by the 1770's, there are several theaters that come and go and 18th-century williamsburg. by the revolutionary era, washington, other young founders are going to the theater. there listening intently to the words and the language that finds its way into the political discourse in the debate that is going on, not just in the capital but in the coffeehouse, which is located on the other side of the capital from this later theater in the 1770's. the role of theater here is critical to the formation of the american political system and also to the complex society that
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was colonial williamsburg before the revolution. host: los angeles, caroline. you are on the air. caller: good afternoon. thank you partaken my questions. i would imagine that the racial dynamics and 18th-century in colonial williamsburg were pretty complex, and i am wondering how they are portrayed or demonstrated? is it something addressed at all, relationships between slaveowners or just day-to-day racial variations? guest: thank you for your question. it is absolutely something we tried to portray with great care and authenticity. safe in the way that is for our guests and encourages constructive conversations about these kinds of relationships.
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often, they relate to guest experiences in today's world. these of the experiences they are bringing here and there watching another time unfold, but the real meaning for them is the kind of reckoning with relationships in their own life. we do this in a variety of ways. i mentioned our actor and interpreters. we have a number of scenes researched scenes -- scenes, research scenes that are performed to bring to life everyday aspects of life, most of which, if they did not center upon these relationships, which several of them do, they bring out these relationships in a certain way. history is about people, and this is what is often lost at the k-12 level, at least. as a college professor with my first-year student, you could
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see the eyes rolling in the audience on day one in history class. they did not expect it to be about people. they expected dates and politics , or if it were about people, people who do not relate to them and could not relate to their world. history has everything to do with these complex relationships. how do you responsibly portray the relationship of an enslaved person to his or her owner? waydo this in a complex that reflects the complexity of the 18th century. why you are presenting what you are presenting, and evidence that rests behind it. this is what truly to colonial me tomsburg -- through colonial williamsburg. to be able to connect research with the realities of everyday life in the 18th century with the public that largely has not gotten it at the k-12 level or
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in college or beyond. if we can bring those relationships to life in the fight tradespeople can speak of the relationships that they have with a master,e and any of the characters that one might encounter on the street or in our many sites, we all try to speak of these relationships and to pick them visually and in the language that we use. host: we will hear from linda and washington, d.c. caller: i think you answered my question about employment. just to clarify, do you look for academic backgrounds for these interpreters or is a passion for history and knowledge of the time enough? secondly, how would you compare the visitor experience in williamsburg with that of jamestown? guest: thank you for your question. part of our vigorous training
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capacitys to develop to master material and convey the material to guest. we have people who join us at the variety of levels. we have those with phd's, not trainingistory and department has trainers, but many interpreters have advanced degrees, masters and phd's in history. academically -- they are academically trained, as a my, and i am proud of that. my primary interest in the primary interest of those individuals that we attract, who are academically trained, is how do we connect these ideas that we debated in the classroom or that we talked to our graduate students, how do we connect these ideas to the public in all the complexity? this really is the requirement.
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we have lots of folks who has an undergraduate degree in history and other subjects, but they are excellent interpreters. library, john d rockefeller junior library here, primarily a training library for our staff and it exists because we enter this place and a variety of levels. employees is to help develop the talent. host: she also asked about the experience of visiting williamsburg versus jamestown. guest: sure. we are so fortunate to be here in historic time go, as -- triangle, as it is called, we have colleagues in yorktown who bring to life the revolutionary , and we have
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colleagues on the other side of the colonial parkway at on historico jamestown and at the jamestown settlement museum, a state a state run-- museum for a construction of early jamestown. their complementary. and see where european virginia began in 1607, and you can stand at that site and contemplate the complexity of that moment and understand perspectiveeople's as they viewed europeans, and understand what trophies first englishman here. you can march or time during your visit. you can come to williamsburg, which became the capital in 1699 after jamestown, and you can see how the colony and american society evolved from its very
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english beginnings into the .omplex american society it was society in the making, a society not yet realized, and i would argue we are still realizing ourselves. you can travel through time. in that way, these experiences, jamestown, yorktown, williamsburg, their complementary. host: we will go to james in virginia. caller: what a fascinating program. thank you so very much for putting it on. my great-grandfather was richard bennett, colonial governor and wentin 1652, parliament, cromwell got rid of charles, they also got rid of the elected governor and the elected richard bennett.
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his daughter was anna bennett and she went on to marry theodore plant. i am told that theodore was the original surveyor of williamsburg. i have been to the virginia historical society enrichment, and i am trying to find an ofginal survey plot williamsburg, and i was wondering if you might have any suggestions. guest: thank you for your call. you have a fascinating family history. here, many such inquiries people trying to connect the past and tofamily's see how they intersect with williamsburg's history. the john d rockefeller library, i would direct you to one of our fine librarians there. we have a special collection department and the number of maps showing the evolution of williamsburg as a place from the very beginning to today.
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developinge people researched theve history of surveying in virginia and elsewhere. have folks who portray early surveyors, so you could speak to our librarians, who can work with you to identify any collections that might be of you may be able to speak to someone who portrays in a concentric surveyor to gain -- and 18th-century surveyor to gain greater appreciation of the trials into relations of their life in the 18th century, quite adventurous apparently. also colonial williamsburg has american indian initiative, can you talk about that and the stories of the native people there? guest: sure. thank you.
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you cannot relate american history, convey american history without conveying american indian history and native american history. several years ago, we started the american indian initiative at the foundation under the guidance of trained anthropologist. a number of programs have been developed over the course of the sears and we have hired several interpreters whose primary which is to depict american history and what happened in williamsburg from a native american perspective. i am excited to say that next year, we will be hiring several more interpreters and you will have the largest core of interpreters dedicated to conveying perspectives of american indians that we have
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never had before. these programs, some of which will continue to be special highlight aere we group of cherokee women and men who are trying to decide whether or not to side with the americans, whether their fate lies with the british, but we will also have a new kind of regular programming where native americans visit. there were many diplomatic missions to williamsburg, much interaction with a great many native american groups throughout the east in the midwest. and there were american indian students at the college of for human very -- college of william and mary which intersect the stories in williamsburg.
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people who have one foot in their native culture and in an american or european culture. they wrestle with this identity. it is a great interest to us because there is a story here for anyone, whether you are a first-generation american or a 10th generation american. there is a story that is being conveyed here and it tells your story. the native american story helps us get to complex issues of identity and being one in many. great question. host: c-span recently talked with three of the native american interpreters there are colonial williamsburg. i want to show our viewers what they had to say about the history and the roles they play. >> i am from apple cookie, new mexico, but i came to williamsburg by way of cherokee north carolina and their work with the american indian
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initiative and the actor interpreter department at the colonial williamsburg for native programming. from name is lauren taylor the monkey indian rest -- warren from the monkey indian reservation and i'm here as an actor and interpreter. my name is mike crow and i am from cherokee, north carolina. standard of much what you might see a cherokee person in the 1750's or 1790's, so there is a lot of intermixing fashion like shirts being taken and worn as out of garments, but now you see it with different patterns as opposed to just a plain white shirt and utilization of dyed yarn, glass beads, different fabrics,
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wool, leggings, things like that. wearing is actually in alliance with the colony of south carolina, that this is actually in the adaptation of a much more ancient style of accoutrements, the shells or called moons sometimes because they are shaped like a full moon, but on a more ancient time why, they were made from shells, usually they were milling shells and they would have some of our early icons inscribed on them. >> the type of programming that we do is focused on stories that involve native people in williamsburg. bring all of those stories. gold with everything that happened in williamsburg, being the capital for agenda during
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the colonial period involved a lot of people traveling here to do diplomatic as this and things like that. it was with the royal governor and later the americans. >> the relationship between the british colonies and native tribes in this area, like my it is pretty friendly relationships for the most part when they were certain land grabs happening, squatters, and local tribes around here were called tributary indians because they played tribute to the governor every single year -- they pay tribute to the governor every single year. it was part of our treaty obligations. >> how common would it have been for native people to be in williamsburg at the time? >> pretty common. there was an indian school less
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than half a mile from where we are standing now, so they were indian boy was going to that, but indians living intel, especially from the tributary tribes. -- indians living in town, especially from the tributary tribes. >> i know a lot of cherokee tribes would come to town to make decisions for everything involving cherokee. >> many other communities in addition to the cherokee, as well. >> most of the interactions are more political or was there a lot of commerce between the columnist and native peoples? >> i know for my tribe, monkey, there was a lot of commerce. the way i portray my primary characters usually comes into town to sell wild game to the local stores around here, so it would have been quite common to
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see them in any type of city and try to make a living. things are some of the [indiscernible] via current position or colonial history? >> we had a good established government and way of doing things because for the most part, any people believe civilization was brought to the americas with the colonization of europeans without realizing that there were established people who had ways of doing things, language and culture prior to european colonization. that we have gotten them interested enough that we want to learn more on their own besides snippets and not just on the street. host: our conversation earlier this year was three native american interpreters at
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colonial williamsburg. we are back live on c-span 3. lf is in charge of interpretation and historical research there. let's wrap up our conversation with the capital and the capital at colonial williamsburg. what is the symbolism of it? capital faces about of mile away to the college william and mary. the way the town was laid out, it was done so deliberately and you have the symbol of an enlightened populace on one end and on the other end, a symbol of where the allied populace governed -- where the enlightened populace governed itself and society.
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capital, the meaning of the capital changes as the meaning of government changes, and the notion of columnist relationship onistl relationships to the rules and law that changes. having the capital here allows us to convey in a dynamic fashion the changing notion of law and politics. it is also a place where we can bring the live important moments to our nations history -- nation's history and discuss our bill of rights came about and rightshored this bill of , how a 1st constitution of the land was drafted, i whom, why,
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how, so the capital like all of the buildings we have, nearly 600, contain within them little windows. these little windows lead to big ideas that connect a particular , george mason,n thomas jefferson to a big idea and that continues to be relevant to our everyday lives, particularly during an election year when these big ideas of who we are and what we stand for become part of our national discourse and exciting ways. talking appreciate you to our viewers about colonial williamsburg and the work that you do there. guest: thank you so much. host: that sets up nicely when you are going to see next. it is a tour of the capital with
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site supervisor tom hay. this runs about 25 minutes and when we come back, it will be your chance to talk to president thomas jefferson. we will talk to bill barker who were tracing, he has put trading for 22 years, and he will be a character and it will be your chance to ask him questions and give him comments. president thomas jefferson right after this toward the capital. tom: welcome to the capital building on williamsburg. the general assembly of the colony of virginia started in 1619 in jamestown. they would meet in jamestown for 80 years, finally moving to what was then there was -- then known as little plantation and renamed for the king, king william as waynesburg.
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by 1704, the capital building had been built on this spot. this is a reconstruction of the first capitol building, and it would be here from 1704 and then burning down in 1747 and rebuilt i-17 53 and you -- rebuild in 1753. it is on these spots like patrick henry, thomas jefferson, and george washington learned to be representatives of the people. while this building is a story itvirginia and its history, is, in a far greater sense, the history of the entire united states of america. it's story is part of our common heritage. this was the very first government building ever to be referred to as the capital. prior to this, down in jamestown, they called the government building the statehouse. isr thet fou statehouse
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in jamestown. when they came to williamsburg in 1699 and this building was built by 1704, it was determined that they would use the term capital based on capital tiny hill in which they thought about the time was the home of the ancient rome. the chamber that we are standing in is the chamber of the house of burgesses. it was the lower house in the 18th century. just like the house of commons in london, this is where all the money bills had to originate, so during the 18th century, there would be two burgesses for every county, one burgess or the college of william and mary and one for jamestown and williamsburg. this became the centerpiece or
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the birthplace of the american protests. before we get into that, let me quickly point out a few things. members ofd you have the house sitting here, but the speaker of the house back in this large ceremonial chair up here. this chair is the original speaker's chair by the commonwealth of virginia. we know what is here in the first capital in 1704 that breakdown in 1747 and as a reminder that, we know that the bottom of this chair is actually slightly charred when they moved it out during that fire. now, there was a second capital building built on this spot by the 1750's, and that building 1779 when here until richmond became the capital.
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was times like care where they would adopt ideas into law in that process worked the same way it works in any federal capital or stay capital today. the bill would be introduced, it would be red once and then it would go up to committee. after the committee would work on it, it came down here and the committee version was read and there would be a debate on the committee version and read a third time and there would be voting. it was not just that. other things could happen. this is where patrick henry introduced his resolutions against the stamp act. and encapsulated in that resolution, not to so many words, but there were clear thoughts that there could be no taxation without representation, toliament, and an attempt
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fan out the cost of war and the new empire they had run in the war, wanted his majesty's american subjects in this colony to pay what they considered to be a fair share of the cost of that war in administering this huge new empire. but the americans felt that they could not be taxed by the legislature that they had no representation and. -- representation in. so mr. henry introduced his resolutions. of the resolutions, they were introduced when the body met as a committee as a whole, but when they met again as the house, only five of his resolutions got past. however, the colonial newspapers up and down the east coast worked other -- or under the impression that seven had been passed and gave the virginia house of burgesses a far greater
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reputation for radicalism then it deserved at the time. as a matter of fact, throughout the debate, we would know that they caved portraits of various monarchs here. for instance, we have king george the second. perhaps the favorite monarch of colonial american if for no other reason then he left the americans alone. his longtime on the throne would end up being a period of benign neglect. ,ften, his queen caroline caroline county was named for her. she was very popular because she never fathered virginia. it was not only the stamp act that caused problems in virginia, but later, legislation would, too. as a matter of fact, during the towns and duty debate, as well as during the debate about the boston port rail, which happened as a part of a parliamentary answer to the boston tea party,
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as we call it nowadays, that would lead to this assembly being dismissed by the royal governor. the row governor had the power at that time. it turned out that the house determined they had to mark the port of boston, so they adopted something that seems mild nowadays. the date of resolution for a day of fasting, humiliation and prayer. governor said that only the king, the head of the church of england, or his or presented in the colony could do such a thing and he dismissed the house. which played into the hands of this virginia. shortly thereafter, they pointed out that the house had not passed the schedule that allowed the court or the militia legislation that allowed the militia to meet, and with the governor himself deciding that he personally had to go out to fight, virginians started meeting as conventions of the people of virginia.
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the first one that met on this spot would go ahead and send george washington and pendleton and patrick henry up to the first continental congress, or the speaker of this body, randolph, would be elected as the first president of the continental congress. they would continually, as convention of the people of virginia, and the second one met up in virginia -- in richmond. it would be the fifth virginia convention meeting on this spot. on may 15, 1776, they would adopt the virginia resolution or independence. -- for independence, and it stated that the people of virginia were now separate and independent of the crown and parliament of great britain. to thedissolved the ties old government, they went on to
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say that there must be and you constitution -- be a new constitution that would be the first written american constitution written after independence, and that if the purpose of government was to ensure right and liberties, they determined that they would also have to come up with a declaration of rights. that would be the first american bill of rights. that was worked on mainly in committee, so i would like to take you upstairs and show you the committee room where they would work on the virginia declaration. here we are in one of three committee rooms. they were standing committees of the house. just like today, most work goes on and committees. there was a committee of religion formed in 1772, the committee on trade, proposition
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and grievances, public claims, and there is also election and privileges. that committee is one of the most interesting because it was in elections and privileges that all the disputed elections would be adjudicated by the house. for anyone who thinks that disputed elections were something novel and you to america, well, they need to check out the records of that particular committee. disputes backmany then as we have today, but very few elections nowadays and up with fists being thrown or clubs being used, as happened on occasion. but a different committee was the committee and mentioned before. that was used to determine the virginia declaration of lights -- of rights. a declaration of rights is
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nothing new. to give you an idea, we have a portrait of king william. william the third or william of orange. will give came to the throne during the glorious revolution of 1688, and in 1689, it was his opinion that the people of england should be reassured that their rights and privileges would continue, and they came up with the english bill of rights of 1689. that served as an example for the virginia declaration of rights in 1776. both of these were broken up into various articles. what is very interesting is the english bill of rights contained articles expressly forbidding cruel and unusual punishment. that article appears almost word for word in the virginia declaration as well as in the american bill of rights.
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it was passed by the federal government in 1789. almost 100 years after the english bill of rights was passed. they passed the prologue and there is precedence to be found, but not everything on the virginia declaration of rights was taken from the english bill of rights. for instance, we will step across shortly and see where the upper house met. the upper house was the council of virginia. the council of virginia served a legislative function, being the upper house of the general assembly, but it was also the body of judges of the general court or high court with a judicial function. they were also executive advisory committee to the the executive function is today. that was represented in all three branches of the government. wes committee that met here,
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believe, determine there should be a change, a separation of virginia idea that was decided and adopted on this spot in june 1776. physically is in the middle part of the letter h that is shaped by this building. we were on the east side of the building where the lower house and this roomor, serves literally as the bridge in between what could be called the people side of the building and the king side. the purpose of the space before the revolution was a joint conference room. members toappoint sit here and hammer out differences between resolutions or ask before they could be
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passed and signed by the governor. let's walk through the king's side of the building, and i will show you where the council met in the 18th century. follow me, please. we are in the chamber of the of the colony of virginia, and this is where there would be meetings for various sorts of business. as a matter of fact, one thing that happened repeatedly is independent nations of indians, such as cherokee, would come here undiplomatic commissions. hopefully when they came here, they were here to prevent devices like this. this was determined to show that there be a bright and shining chain of friendship in between the virginians and the cherokee. belts like this were cap in this chamber -- were kept in this chamber to show there would be peace between the cherokee and
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the virginians. it did not always happen that way, but at one point, there was hope for peace between the peoples. however, they would also meet here to discuss other items as well. the 12 counselors were the creme de la creme of the society. they had oil appointments signed by the king himself and they served for life or good behavior. the governor would sit here in a chair much like this and other council members would sit to -- to either side and here's where they would pass legislation as the upper house. as a matter of fact, during the stamp act process, the members of this council agreed with the lower house. after that, every row of governor had standing instructions that if any member of the council of her song -- ever saw fit to go against parliament or the king's
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instructions, the governor could nearly dismiss them from the council and the governor's actions would be backed up by the crown. then they would place someone who is more confined. the council, unlike the house of her justice, grew more and more quiet. hoping that the storm of controversy would pass over them quietly. it did not happen that way. we also have other things that remind us. we have portraits of iroquois kings. it is the headman of their coronation that were sent -- who were sent to london themselves to show the world government in london of the concerns of the iroquois people. other things that would occur would be reactions to the lower house deciding to oppose the
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stamp act. we also know that the law library that belong to the government was in this building. as a matter of fact, down below, fasting,ed the day of humiliation and prayer. we know that thomas jefferson, patrick henry and others came up to this chamber. bookborrowed a history about the british civil war, one and by goingtleman through his commentaries, they found one time with parliament declared a day of fasting, humiliation and prayer and that will be to the virginia resolution and lead to the governor dissolving the house. >> i therefore dissolve the house of burgesses accordingly. god save the king. lastthat would be the
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confession of the house before the american revolution. in 1774, no one knew that. was atrican revolution that point still a tax protest. we would go downstairs and see where these men met at the high court and the general court of the colony of virginia. now in the general court room, and this is where in the people would be tried for various felonies and crimes, but also the general court would take care of other issues as well. probates of the states would occur here, and in addition, virginians would come here to sue and be sued. somehow, it is those cases that really grabbed our attention. we know for instance that there
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was one woman, susanna frazier, who was sent to virginia as a convict servant, tried for theft in england and sentenced to die and given the alternative of coming here to virginia and serving as a convict servant for 14 years. here, she, for some reason and we don't know the story, ended up murdering her mistress. that is the wife of the man who owned her 14 years. she was right here and tried for that murder. and in thend guilty courtroom, sentence to hang by the neck until she was dead. she was returned to the jail and she spent her last christmas on earth in the cells of our jail areing for the new year and execution. -- and her execution.
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when the court met, it was so important that the governor himself side appear as chief magistrate with his counselors from upstairs sitting to either side. here, they would ensure that his seat, when broken, was quickly repaired. earlier in the century, they were pirates who were tried here on this spot. 15 of them were brought here to williamsburg. one was acquitted, one was pardoned, and 13 were hanged. thereon, we note that were of course these, murderers tried here, as well as women accused of killing their pastor dren.ren -- bastard chil that was the only time there was no presumption of innocence. once the declaration of independence was passed, the men who sat here were no longer a of
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the administrative or legislative part of government. the judiciary was separate and independent. what happened in the old council of the genia was split. -- in the old council of virginia, was split. they still kept the name the general court, but they would add a chancery court with other judges. the council of virginia remained the council advising the governor but strictly an advisory body. what had been the legislative function of the body became the senate of virginia, a body that still exists today. the general assembly of virginia is said to be the oldest continuously meeting english-speaking legislative body on the planet. i might also leave you with good thought that it is our right as -- hasls that change
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changed little during the american revolution. the four, after and during, you have the right to a jury and trial, a right to file witnesses on your behalf and challenge those dropped against duke, and that worked so well that people were not interested in changing any of that. we still argue about the applications of principles to this day. two are for coming to the capital and to colonial williamsburg. we appreciate your time. -- two are for coming to the capital and to colonial williamsburg. we appreciate your time. we are back live on american history tv on c-span3. today, we are coming to you from colonial williamsburg. we are out today getting your questions and commentary about life was like for those in the
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virginia colony in the 1770's. joining us aboard the c-span bus today is president thomas jefferson. barker, who by bill has portrayed him for 22 years, and he is in character today. we will be taking your questions as president thomas jefferson reflects back on his life in 1770's.burg in the mr. president, what brought you to williamsburg? jensen: leftist -- edging -- thomas: education. inas my father's eldest son a family of 10 children and i had three younger brothers and six sisters, but my father passed away when he was 49 and i but 14. i cannot inherit and to my majority at the age of 21 years in 1764, but before that, i was
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able to benefit by the greatest that this legacy is, not property but an education, so i came to attend the college of our former majesties, king william and queen mary in the 1759 and 1760. i did not receive a degree that was baccalaureate at the time, but i left to read law with mr. george. host: how did that influence you, study law -- studying law? thomas: it was the finest i would ever know. i would put them against edward who, i was a gentleman understood the foundation of the law, of english law. there was a lot of the romans, he understood that law was living and leaving and a close as the people go, that is the essence of the english common law which i was taught and grew up. it is through the experience of the english speaking peoples and
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as we began to protest, we sought address of our grievances upon english law, that which i learned. upon?what did you draw what were your politics? was simplypolitics to rest upon english soil, the right of an englishman to petition and address grievances. else,more than anything was able to bring 13 individual nations together. we found amongst ourselves different, distant and dispense from one another, but the common bond through our english law. the fact that we were all considered englishman. it was that right of an englishman, whether he was in massachusetts, virginia, the carolinas, georgia to argue his concerns before his government. columnist dear fellow
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nists say to you? thomas: will we survive as englishman in the country that is america, north or south, as truly englishman or would we continue to evolve, to evolve as a people that which we have already come to refer to one and the others as americans? to realize it was not only the englishman but so many others seeking an asylum in the colonies of great britain. could the english law continue to substantiate our grievances and our right to argue on behalf of ourselves? could be as well be properly represented before the crown in the parliament. we were denied any representation in his majesty's parliament. host: what did you do next? thomas: it was in williamsburg
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that we began the protest with respect to the closure of the port of boston in the spring of 1774. the closure of the port of boston was the cause of that particular riot in boston harbor, the previous december, the destruction of over 356 cases of tea thrown overboard of the eastern company by a band of indians. so it was, with respect to that protest, that we talked an alliance somewhat with a pamphlet that was published, a proclamation for a day of fasting, humiliation, and prayer to show our allegiance with our sister colony, though she was 700 miles away. the earl of dunmore considered this an imposition upon his authority as executor of the crown, so it was his royal
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prerogative to dissolve the representative body of the people, dissolve the house of burgesses in williamsburg but we did not remain dissolved. we continue to represent those who had elected us to represent them. we to meet midway between the north colonies and the southern colonies, meet in the largest city in north america, philadelphia. we are talking to thomas jefferson on american history tv, but trade by bill paerker. coast,live on the east -- on the west coast out and had -- we are taking your text this morning. 71791864.
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you can also join the conversation on facebook, and witter, http://twitter.com/cspanwj. jefferson, let's talk about the reaction from britain. considereds impolite, unjustified, that all of the colonies should come together with the united american representation. us torliament desired remain separate. they worried that if we came together, and two heads is better than one, 12 or 13 heads collectively would be of a greater influence, a greater safety and defense amongst themselves. the reaction of the crown was to
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pursue as many of the petitions we put forth of our grievances. host: talk about the declaration of independence and how you came to this and the writing of it. say, that the greatest influence that brought me to be able to draft our i will promise of who we are and who we desire to be and i will promise to the rest of the world. it began to that privilege of an education. i have always said there is nothing new or original in our direct duration of american independence. all of it has been written and you can find it in the elementary books. john locke, those works, authors, many were not familiar with them, so it was my charge
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-- explain it in clear and simple terms so that everyone might comprehend it. particularly, in the diversity of our population. the place before the world, the common sense of the matter. waswar for independence being fought on behalf of the common man to provide the greatest good. just show the rest of the world that we understand the mass of mankind has not been born with saddles on their backs. right -- inherited burst forth from the chains of ignorance and the rains -- it is founded in the wisdom of the past. i consider it common sense but the profits of the future would be found in the wisdom of the past. ,ost: our first phone call
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christine from maryland. wondering if thomas jefferson could tell us that he journaled a lot about -- i think he had an earlier version of the koran. i think in our times today, maybe he could talk about what he journaled about that during that time, him and john adams. that iay i assure you, have always been a student of all of the world's religions. i was baptized in the church of england. on the --nstrumental church of england when the wall began to help form with became the american physical church. church.coble
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i have really missed a sunday. but i find that all religions are integral to our better understanding of the nature of man. i consider that the sum of all religions is simply to do unto others as you would desire to have done onto yourself. love your neighbor as you should love yourself. this is what i believe has protected and defended, as an inherent right, of the statute of virginia. this is not a statute of religious freedom, which might suggest separating religion from our lives. virginia --atute of freedom for religion. whenever there is a freedom for religion, you will see the greatest civilization. yes, i have studied the koran and the preachings of mohammed. -- because my so
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charge was to negotiate treaties from trade. that only with the kingdoms of york, france and england and spain and the italy's, but also algeria,oms of morocco, tripoli. i wanted to understand the people in those kingdoms on the north coast of africa. i wanted to understand their particular religion. the guarantee on to them, that our trade with them would remain open and free. we will respect them and hope that they would respect us as well. caller: i was just wondering, what made you decide to become president, instead of continuing to practice law? bill: i only practice law for seven years and that was in
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williamsburg, virginia. i gave up the practice of law once the monarchy of great britain closedown the courts of justice. that was 1774. i turned over most of my unfinished cases to my cousin. his father, my cousin, john randolph, was the last attorney general of the crown before the war began. edmund was the first attorney .eneral in our constitution i had long given up the practice of law and pursued more of my interests and legislation. being able to put forth arguments and debates that would ls and laws that would create greater opportunity. not only for my commonwealth, before the nation and for the world. so much the practice of law, but the call of the people
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to become the president of the united states. i was invited to stand for that office. inas invited the first time 1796. i had been retired from the office, a good three years, as you remember with my arguments with general hamilton. i finally decided not to continue. it would be wise as secretary of state if i resigned. the people dos, not desire me to remain retired. many found favor in what i had brought up in the president's cabin. they had read in the newspapers of my objection to general hamilton. therefore, i was invited to stand opposed to our vice president wants president washington retired. i had lost the presidential election in 1796.
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i suffered the office of vice president for four years. .he mind of man never came up the arguments did not end. they continued. they continued with my own president. in the next presidential election, 1800, i was invited by the anti-federalist platform to stand opposed to president adams. we were not alone. there were several others who sought that office, even the federalist platform was divided by the southern federalist. my own anti-federalist platform was divided by a former federalist from new york. he saw a political opportunity and changed his coat, colonel ehrenberg aaron burr.
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in fact, it was not between president adams, but rather , 73een who opposed electoral votes in each for urr and thomas jefferson. for many days, many do not know who would be the next president. could you imagine that happening? it was resolved and we follow the constitution. the election with into the house of representatives. they argued and debated. withouted 33 times breaking the time. finally, can you imagine? myentleman who had been nemesis and represented the complete opposite and political spectrum from me, general alexander hamilton suggested a compromise. that he suggested considered me to be the least
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dangerous of the two. if i were elected the third chief magistrate, i would not seek to cast out of office all federalist, but to provide equilibrium in the new administration. he would encourage his constituency in the state of new york. to enter into my political arena. wouldised them that we maintain the principles of our nations. maintain an open government. do you know that presidential election of 1800 i referred to as the second american revolution? it was as much an american revolution than that of 1776, never forget the difference between 1776 and 1800. we overthrew 12 years of federalism. said in thet
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peaceful transfer of office. , it: on american history tv is your chance to talk to president thomas jefferson as we come to you live from colonial williamsburg. we have a tweet from one of our viewers who asked, when did you meet benjamin franklin, and what was your impression of him? also who decided franklin would go to france? bill: i met dr. benjamin franklin for the first time in williamsburg. dr. franklin was postmaster of the crown. who better to survey the postal roads that brought all of the colonists together? to make sure that the postal offices were even efficient and properly managed? who better than a printer, an owner of a newspaper? williamsburg in his
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capacity as postmaster. i was a student at the overall college of william and mary. he elected to everyone on his experience with electricity. him inher -- i later met the conference of 1775. i was unable to attend the first conference of september 1774. dr. franklin was in england. returned and seated in the second congress, as i was there seated and we met one and the other and became fast friends. what impressed me was his open mind and extensive knowledge. particularly, his knowledge of human nature. his grasp of common sense. his ability to take concepts and bring them to a general understanding. a sage in many ways. friendship, it was
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natural that we proclaimed our independency -- dependency that as the two of us were on the drafttee of five men, to the declaration of american independence. dr. franklin had already been in britain, hereat would be an opportunity for him to return to england, but to france. i would be important -- ambassador. my home had become a new commonwealth, they called me to return and help draft our constitution. , iher than go to france returned to virginia. friend --ally, my accompanied dr. franklin to france. host: we will your next from bob in new york.
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welcome to the conversation. caller: hello, greetings to you from new amsterdam. it is a pleasure to speak with you. my question is, in light of your experience dealing with various royal family members, be they queens.d quitting -- how important do you feel the personal life of a candidate running for office being president or any other position, that would be able to provide guidance and direction for the people of your day? and even into the future. how important do you feel the personal life of that candidate should be when considering them for the role that they are running for? bill: thank you for that question.
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it is a question that has commanded the interest of political economy from time. someone's private life is that which is first and foremost, reviewed his constituency, by his neighbors, by his friends. they are the ones to suggest that he might stand or she might stand to represent them. -- a system of government where the women were the ones suggested who should be chief and provided the vote. as franklin considered that a study for american parliament. the nose better than men, then betteren -- who knows than men, then women? your life is no longer your home. you are called upon constantly by her constituency. it is thee also know greatest honor to receive that
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approbation from your neighbors, friends, and the public. privatee, never do in what you would not do in public. i wrote that to my grandson when he had interest and aspirations for public office. i think it will help guide you. it does not mean you will not suffer. that is one of the circumstances for standing for any public office. no matter what is said about you, you will be able to sleep more soundly, and walked more pathway ofgh the your family, friends, and constituency. lincoln town, north carolina, you are on the error by thomas jefferson. caller: thank you, i love your
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program. it has been said that mr. jefferson was invincible and invisible war. i just wondered how he answered his critics to discharge. this charge. bill: i would say one of my critics and also my closest compatriot, patrick henry. i met him when i was making my way through williamsburg to attend the overall college of william and mary. he had become well known as an attorney. we commenced to work together in our disagreements with government. with theorated proclamation for a day of fasting, humiliation, and prayer. as he would want to criticize me theng the time that i was second elected governor of the new commonwealth of virginia, he
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was the first. at a time that we had oversold the safety and protection of virginia, in the light of the invasions by general benedict arnold, let alone general cornwallis. we were hardly prepare for the invasion. , together as governor together for the general defense of virginia. militias appeared and disappeared with the seasons and the crops. i was chastised when we had to retreat. we had already retreated from williamsburg. were vulnerable on the high ground in williamsburg with the james river and the south and the york river to the north. we retreated to richmond town for much better defense. nevertheless, we were attacked and retreated to charlottesville. do you know the enemy discovered where we had retreated? and try to capture the members
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of the delegates and the governor of the commonwealth. i escaped with only moments of a warning, captain jack who broke thatight long to inform me the british were seeking my capture. do you know that as i continued to serve as governor, there were accusations hurled against me that i was a coward and resign from office? even in instant -- investigation was brought against me for cowardice. there were no facts. i continue to serve, continue to put forth commissions for the safety of our commonwealth. the other governor, who took charge after me, general nelson, did so legally as the election was held to do so. you might say that that 1781, i willar,
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never forget, perhaps one of the most lamentable in my public life. i am happy to say that our actions, the actions of our retaliate contest and against the insidious attacks made by those pirates who want to sneak up upon the high seas to our innocent voyagers. .hat they might not attack also, i would not tolerate that. takinga few weeks of my office as third president of our nation, i ordered a retaliation. i influenced congress to proclaim officially a warm against the kingdom of tripoli. they toured out our flag, the 15th day of may. atlaring war on us, we wore
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best -- the geopolitics warm, and the jeffersons war. repulsing the front insidious attacks upon our merchant vessels. never let us forget the extraordinary valor of stephen who sailed into the harbor of tripoli. read our sailors held as slaves. never let us forget the battle .- and our marines the very first time in our history that we commissioned our troops to fight on foreign soil. never let us forget their victory on the shores of tripoli. host: gary from california, you are next. caller: hello president jefferson. i was wondering what i should tell my grandson about if you
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believe in the golden prayer and that all men are created with equal rights? why you owned slaves? i have beens what indebted to tell my own children and the i hope they tell their grandchildren. that is very simply, never let us forget our history. never let us forget where we have been, that we might better understand where we are. thereby, continue to bind ourselves together more securely, that we might continue forward upon those principles in our declaration of american independence. , intoborn into a world society, as a owner of slayers -- slaves. my father was born into the same
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experience. my grandfather was born into the same experience. born, we had was gone several generations of only masters for those enslaved. how do you end a habit and custom? you cannot. am a bad customs that been carried on one generation after another, cannot be stopped abruptly. , isone thing you must do not remain silent upon what you know to be a bad habit. what you know denies an individual their opportunity to be everything they possibly can be. that is secured and what i wrote in our declaration. we are in doubt in our creator with -- i altered that to the pursuit of happiness. the revitalization of aristotle's statements years ago.
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, anpursuit of excellence individual under the laws of nature to fulfill their capacity of everything they can possibly be. that is not going to happen overnight to everyone. ,articularly when i was born when my father and grandfather were born. it can happen, so long as we bear hope and continue to voice our opinions freely that it is wrong to keep an individual down from having every opportunity to better themselves. it is wrong to continue to hold old habits that are not beneficial to the common good. collaborate and gathered together and assemble and make an effort to change the laws. if i were to free my people under the laws that i grew up in, i would be breaking the law. that would be the most detrimental that -- to them.
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it would not be mr. jefferson tarris family who would be ed and feathered, perhaps killed. it was -- it would be in the property of others that would be captured. we should continue to change the law. i think i have made certain progress in that effort. had i done as best as i possibly could? possibly not. i must live with continued accusations of not doing as much as i can. wonder, what will they about future generations the generations that were well before them? did they make every effort they possibly could? i think history is our greatest guide. host: what does the second
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amendment mean to you, and how should future generations interpret it? bill: one cannot deny that one of the inalienable rights is to protect and defend themselves. not a soul can take that away from another individual. it is not the purpose and duty of government to protect people from entry of another and that they might engage their own industry and improvement. , believe as dr. franklin did who realize that even an might not be protected in the dark alley, or at nighttime. dr. franklin encouraging a police force to be formed in philadelphia city. an individual still has the right to protect themselves. with good common sense, that ought to be protected and .efended and secured by society
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with good common sense, and individuals right to protect and defend themselves, does not mean they should be hostile with a weapon with another. that is not civilization. i think any individual who has been brought up with the responsibility of bearing arms nosy responsibility of safety with those arms. knows the responsibility of protecting the common good of their neighbor, let alone themselves. of course, a well regulated militia must be well regulated through its commission by the government. otherwise, it is illegal. it cannot exist without a commission. a -- and it will write to be protected by well-regulated militia. host: we have been talking to president thomas jefferson betrayed by bill barker.
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what goes into playing thomas jefferson? bill: thank you. into betraying anyone who is not here to speak for themselves, is an understanding of what they wrote ,nd eyewitness accounts particularly after so many years removed from their lifetime. that has been my effort to read jefferson, understand him and that as he grew older, he changed his opinions like we all do. -- we mightably understand that about him. if we choose to read him and care to read him. it is reading jefferson's history that remains the foundation of what i do and what we all do as historical interpreters in colonial williamsburg. get the facts right.
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host: you have been doing this for over 20 years. how often are you still to this day, stating thomas jefferson, to get into character? bill: almost every day. jeffersonianre than c-span, keeping the people in touch with the government and recent i wanted to make certain i was on the mark there. host: we appreciate you taking the phone calls this morning from our viewers. thank you very much. appreciate it. we will continue our c-span'sion here on american history tv. up next, we are going to be talking with colonial aboutmsburg' african-americans there.
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next, we will hear from one of the african-american interpreters talking about what life would have been like for an enslaved person in colonial america. we will take your phone calls and comments about this. my name is harold caldwell, african-american history interpreter. we are here at the rental house talking about the lives of and slave people. people.ved i've been working on a game board. we are carving these boards here ofshow people that some these and slave people, even though they came here empty-handed, they did not come here empty-handed. here withitions came them as traditions came over with english, the scotch irish. so did these africans who came
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here as enslaved people. we wanted to show that african people were trying to preserve their culture as best they can. they were talking about 90% of your africans that are here are born in america as enslaved people. the african traditions began to disappear. you find a handful of africans who are still here in virginia, in america that will remember their culture and this might be one of the ways that they show that culture, making a game like this. thatthis game means is said alllaved people the master benefits from my skills and my knowledge, a few times in my life, i want to make that skill work for me. i want to make what i know something that will be special
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to me and to my family. it's like saying the master will not take everything that is of me. this might be a way for them to do such a thing, to have something have meaning to them. most enslaved people, much of an enslavedy, person had a hand in constructing much of this household. we are carving these game boards here. we have simple tools. we are just carving out the cups. as you see here, this is what the game pretty much looks like when it is finished. using acorns from the tree to use as the pieces, the seeds for this game here. it is using your environment to make life work. when you think about the daily
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life of enslaved people, it is time-consuming, dirty, hot, sweaty. everything you can think of when you are talking about work, the or the, the scullery woodworking that requires you to be outside in the heat all day long, when you think about enslaved people on a property like this, when you think about , with then there randolph's, just for the three people who lived on the property here, it is five different dishes. if they are entertaining, 10 dishes, 12 dishes. all that work that went into plucking, scaling, boiling, frying, dealing with the heat in the kitchen, it is a lot of work. all day long, hauling water.
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on the young children that were enslaved, hauling water back and forth. 50, 60 buckets in a day just to cook, just to clean, to wash. you have enslaved people who are the scullery made to did all the laundry. they did all the clothing for the randolph's, changing the clothing they would have had in the day, the clothing of their family members and friends who stayed over and the 28 enslaved people on this property. that was a busy scullery. you had a dairy house where the reynolds had about four or five milking cows. -- randolph's had four or five milking cows. ofs is an everyday event activities going on on this property everyday. they had a gardener.
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gardeners making sure everything is nice and manicured and cut. an idle handle this property at all. the folks in the house, it's important to get an idea of what they are dealing with. a lot of folks don't know that enslaved people, some would sleep in the house. hallways,s in the right outside the bedchamber so they can be on call. they took care of all the personal needs. they were just in the house. that had a certain way about them -- educated often so communicate and they were adapted to working in the house. cottonvelvets, wolves, buttons, cotton, shiny
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made them look good because the people who work in the house reflected the people who lived in the house. they did everything you can think of having to do with a nice house, whether it was serving a meal or taking care of the personal needs of the owner. taking care of them when they are sick. they had to be on call, so they so they couldouse be close by if they needed them at anytime of the day or evening. if folks in the house had family out here, when they got to see them depended on the owner. depended on the master and when they wanted to allow them that time to see them. it could have been one hour a day, one hour a week. the masters decided when an enslaved person can leave. in this domestic setting, people did not get time to have a whole lot of time to themselves because these owner still had to eat, they had to be personally
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cared for, children had to be looked after. they did not get a lot of time to themselves like hands that got sunday as a day of rest. in this domestic setting, it was whenever the master gave them that time. >> can you talk about the experience during an leading up to the revolution? >> the population would be impacted pretty much around 1774-1775. when the colonists are moving forward toward freedom and independence. the governor got threatened so much, he wanted to get back at the colonists, he threatened to free enslaved people. not only free them, but possibly armed them. enslaved people got word of this
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, so before the government issued a proclamation, many were running to the governor offering their services and the governor would turn them back and send them back to their masters because he did not issue any such proclamation, he was just threatening. even before the revolution began, there was already situations showing themselves that enslaved people were moving forward to be agents of their own change. to try to change their lives and get that freedom by any means they can get it. did have anon impact on enslaved peoples lives, but they had to take that chance on their own accord. >> how are they finding out about the politics and proclamations at this time? >> at this house, the president of the continental congress, those folks in that dining room heard everything.
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anything they heard, they would share it with their family members and friends, next-door neighbors, they will talk to them. folks across the street, they talk to them. every is person in this house what many people in the 13 colonies are not privy to. the folks in this property, they heard everything. they had a good idea of what was going on. if you talk about the , everybody was talking about it. it was huge. it was offering freedom to the enslaved. it was big. there was no way they can keep freedom quiet. no way. we are back live on american history tv on c-span3 today. on your screen is the c-span bus at colonial williamsburg.
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we have been talking to curators , historians and interpreters all day on american history tv about what life was like back in the 1770's in williamsburg, virginia. you just heard from one of the african-american interpreters there. active interpretation of slavery began in 1979. care to talk more about that with us is stephen feels. he is the senior manager for african-american programming. tell us more about what life was like for the enslaved population. with williamsburg being more of an urban setting, you will find a lot more work happening within the home. closer to the slave master. what that tended to mean was that there was less of an opportunity to have time on your
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own. you are serving that master 24 hours a day, seven days a week. when they are not sleeping, you are tending to them. are sleeping, sometimes you are tending to the fires or making sure everything's going all right for them. you tended to have less time to yourself. ,ven having less of that time you still would find that time to be with your family, to be with your friends. they might have tried to take most of that time away from you. we find thoses, times to make those connections. their relationships are not much different than the relationships you have now. they were mothers and fathers and carpenters. they had their lives separate from the work they were doing. host: did they have their family units? people wouldaved
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one family -- the interpreter we were just showing was talking about the randolphs. haveany would one family as their slaves? within that enslaved community, did they have a family unit? guest: they would still have the family unit. , byuse of the fact that law, you could not be married anyway, you still have these units, you still had people marrying, you still had children being born. though those children were taken away, no matter how far they went, you would try to keep that connection, if you could. you still have people around you who did not have those connections, either. they would become your family. they were the ones that you would depend on, the ones you would lean on.
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when you need to find that family and you are in this station together, you find a way to be together. and to continue to be family units. that the family units just continue. they continue to be, whether they were truly by law family or by blood family units are not. host: we are talking about the enslaved population in colonial williamsburg. we are taking your questions and comments about this. we are also taking your texts this morning. textus at 202-717-9684. we've been talking all day here from colonial williamsburg with several guests. our discussion now turns to those that were enslaved in williamsburg. how big was the population?
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guest: the population of swellmsburg when it would was around 2000 people. think about the fact that, of the population, half of them were enslaved. there was no way that you could have walked through the streets or gone through a date in the the life of a citizen of williamsburg and not have slavery be part of your life. host: what sort of work were they doing? guest: all kinds of work. you still have fields, still had crops in the city area, even though it was a smaller area. will find plenty of housework, you will need people to take care of horses from a people to fix things, you will still need someone to address you, for someone to accompany you. you will need for someone to be your equipment, to drive your
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carriages for you. stoked the fires in the middle of the night to make sure that you are kept warm in the middle of the winter. done, andd be enslaved person at some point in time was probably doing it. host: how did the slave market come to williamsburg? as -- when, as far you are living in an area of commerce, and williamsburg was an area where people came -- it was the colonial capital of virginia. virginiae coming to and you need to do some business or you need to go to court or anything of that sort, you have to come to williamsburg. it is the capital.
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the market will need to be there. that is where the influx of people are coming. that is where they are needing to be. the market needs to be in williamsburg because that is where most of the people are coming. that is where you need to come to sell things, if you need to be able to vote if you have to. going to william and mary, there's some in the reasons you would need to be in williamsburg. -- so many reasons. host: how do you go about deciding how you are going to interpret life for the enslaved community? it is such a controversial, complicated thing. how did tourists react? with what's start stories to tell. i had to look very closely at myself and the type of history that i was taught as a child. as a child, i was not taught a
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whole lot about slavery, i was it was a was horrible, shameful time in american history. that is what i was told. a lot of the history being told about slavery was just about the horrors of slavery, the hopelessness of slavery. adult,enager and a young it made it very hard for me to feel positive about the contributions that my people made during the time of slavery. dealing with programming, that really bothered me. i want for blacks to come to williamsburg and whites to come to williamsburg to see the story and plight of the enslaved of their history, as their story. when i'm looking at the interpretation or history we it too tell them i want
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be one told from the point of view of the individuals who were enslaved. i want people to know what the enslaved person was going to. aboutat was being said them, that what people thought of them, but what they thought of themselves who they are as human beings. says that they were slaves, they were property, but in their minds, that is not who they saw themselves as. they saw themselves as people. i want guests to see them as people first as well. the guests come here and see programs about enslaved people where it's about their lives. it is still about slavery, but it's about them and their reactions tend to be, wow, i feel a connection to these people, i understand their history now. as much as times have changed, people don't.
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they have the same wants and dreams and hopes that i have. as an american come i see them as americans, i see them as me. to invite our viewers to start filing and -- dialing in. live in the eastern portion of the country -- we are getting texts today. steven will be taking your questions and comments. one viewer has text the us this -- what kept the enslaved persons not running? the question of to run or not to run is a very loaded
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question. back when i was in costume, the way i would handle that question is to put it to the guest. i will put it to the viewers to ask themselves the question and think about it on this level. you are an enslaved person. as a you are trained to coachman. if you were to run, the law says you are still property. even if you are to go somewhere else, you are still going to a place where everyone knows everyone. where are you going to run to where people don't know who you are? place wereun to a people don't know who you are, will they question who you are and whether you are free or not? you're going to a neighborhood and they don't know you. ask yourself the question of come if you are going to run, what if you have a wife or a husband or children? are they going to go with you?
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would you be able to for your self -- free yourself? will it be easier for you to hide as a runaway slave if you have your family with you? are you going to run without your family? if you become free and your family stays in bondage, what will happen to them? what will the slave master due to them to prevent them from running? there's so many questions the enslaved person had to ask themselves about how you will support your family when you end up somewhere else where you need to apply a trade and they don't know who you are. what are you going to do to support yourself and your family? so many questions you have to ask yourself as an enslaved person if you were to even be able to run off. would you be able to live, would you be able to have a life as a runaway slave?
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it was never an easy question as to whether to run or not to run. there are too many questions you had to think about. said,given what you've you were an interpreter at one time. how difficult is it to get african-americans to want to play this role, interpret this history, knowing what their ancestors went through and the questions they might get? guest: that is one of the best questions that has been asked. i can only answer it for the reason why i do it. long, the voices of the african in america were not represented in history. it just wasn't. interpreting able to
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is me getting a voice to the voiceless. humanizing the dehumanized. for me, i have come to realize , how theythey did endured, how they lived, how they had their relationships, the way in which they function and the way in which they survived and flourished made it so that i'm able to be here today to be in the position i'm in to tell the story that i'm telling. that is not ever a reason to feel ashamed. that is a reason to feel pride. i feel pride in what my people did, i feel pride in what my people endured. knowing that and knowing that every day i get to jump out of bed and get to tell that story to people means i'm one of the richest individuals on this planet. i try to say that to every
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interpreter that auditions for colonial williamsburg. it will be one of the hardest jobs you will ever have to do in life, but it will be one of the most fulfilling. what you get to do every day makes a difference. and what more can you ask for in life? host: is it hard to fill those positions? guest: it can be. it was hard for me to want to take the job. in america today, we still are , youngching young people black people or young white people to be proud of their history. the good, the bad and the ugly. ofn you have generations people, myself included, that have come up to feel like this is a time we should not talk about, this is a time to be ashamed of, it becomes difficult for people to step outside of areselves and what they
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feeling and what society has made us feel for so long about her history, to go this is something i need to do, not just something i should do or not something i can do to make a living, but something i should do. that is what i tried to convey to individuals that want to do this sort of work. it can be hard because you really do have to put your own feelings to the side to tell the story in a way that is honest. the honest story is ugly. it can get ugly at times, but it has amazing triumphs in it sometimes, too. host: dylan in pennsylvania. the question i have, i've watched several programs, that the slaves were able to buy , they had commerce and businesses.
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is that true of williamsburg? was there in denture servitude -- in denture servitude -- in ndentured servitude? guest: there were numerous black businesses and black business people in the area. commerce, williamsburg being the conduit of commerce in virginia, there would have been merchants of all different colors, all different creeds coming here to conduct business. everyone has to live and sell what they need to sell. there was indentured servitude. but, there was a point in the 17th century where the laws changed.
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when the laws changed, they became a distinction between white indentured servitude and black slavery. when the first blacks came here in 1619, there was not a mechanism of slavery set up for british north america. just got can hear here, they were not thought of 100% as slaves. there were some of them that ended up being kept in servitude for the rest of their lives. for the most part, many of them are treated as were treated as indentured servants. that process went on for a bit longer. that distinction ended up being made and you did still find white indentured servants, but not black indentured servants. you found black slaves. host: on facebook, jay has this question --
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guest: urban slavery definitely has his differences. it's interesting that a lot of people will come in going, well, how slavery -- house slavery must of been better. you are indoors, in a house, you get to have more time to yourself. that sort of thing. in actuality, as you might have heard earlier, that just was not the case. but, even in virginia, you still have a lot of field slavery, a lot of plantation slavery. as far as differences among the colonies, you are not going to more -- depending on
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what sort of crops you are planting, you will find different types of work being done. the fact that tobacco was the cash crop of virginia, tobacco is a very labor-intensive crop. you will not find the types of field slavery happening in less worko be any intensive. in a lot of ways, it was just as work intensive. in the northern colonies where there was a slavery as well. you will find there is a lot less agriculture. more familywas ore house m oriented, more that sort of work
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oriented. having to wait on your master 24 hours a day meant that that servitude was very much ruling as well. as well.ng you will find differences in terms of the societies you are in. the work tended to still be rather similar. host: mary is next in florida. --ler: my question is this i'm wondering if there's any historical records about what relationship there was between the slaves and native americans. i love the show. i can't tell you how much i'm enjoying this. thank you for your answer. it is appreciated to have to call in. i love that question because we have a program here called from freedom to slavery that deals with that.
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natives of north torica gave sanctuary enslaved individuals that ran to them. , the enslaved individuals would be brought into their society. they could marry into their society, have children, have jobs, have businesses. the particular program we do here now actually deals with a treaty that meant that many of those enslaved individuals that ran to the natives had to be brought back. when they were given back, they were brought back into slavery again. they went from bring free and a citizen within a society, a native society, to coming back again and being property once again. many of the native cultures did take an the enslaved and many of
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them did become a part of that culture. citizens of that culture, having a say within that culture. that actually did happen quite a bit we have records of that. host: kirk in abingdon, virginia. afternoon.d i'm really enjoying this discussion. during the colonial and revolutionary era's, was there any legal protection for enslaved persons against abuses of any kind? was there any hint of an abolitionist movement during those eras? >> wonderful question. goes, becauselaw you have to look at it on two levels. what is actually the written law and what was the actual in practice law. if you are looking at the written law, the enslaved have
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of if aon and respect slave was to be murdered, killed for lack of a better term, no reason whatsoever, that was considered murder. kill your slave in the manner of correction. if you are whipping them, punishing them and they happen correction,n that the law did not protect them. having said that, if someone was slaves,r one of their they would have to be reported to the law for that in order to be prosecuted. who will turn them in? the other slaves in the house cannot turn them in because it was against the law for slaves to be able to testify in court.
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who will be the witness? who will stand there and say this person was killed in cold blood? we want their killer to be brought to justice. that really did not happen and it could not happen because you would not have a witness. there were protections, but if you are talking about the actual way in which the law was set forth in the way in which it was actually used, you don't find a lot of records at all of people being prosecuted for killing a slave. linda in texas. welcome to the conversation. caller: thank you. i have a question. i was fortunate enough to get partial degree -- i'm trying to get some recognition of black
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history in the school system in texas. i've been working to no avail. the textbooks don't even mention slavery. togoes from 1791 and jumps the peanut guy and then rosa parks. there is no information about the inventions, the wars that we fought income of the things we in, the things that we built it i've been struggling to get the school system to at least recognize black history month. in the school system and i'm working hard, not just for black people, but for the cause of history. what can you recommend that i try to do to get this done? this -- that'say
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one of the reasons why living history museums, museums in general, are so important. no matter what is happening in society, no matter what choices are being made within a legislature as far as what is going to be taught, living history museums, museums use the actual documentation to tell the story in the way that it needs to be told. as far as what i would suggest to try to get that information out there is to go to those museums, to go online -- we live in a wonderful time when we can connect to someone who is only on the other side of the desk all the way on the other side of the earth and two seconds by pressing a button. i don't know what the
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possibility is upbringing guest speakers into your classroom through technology in a way that gets that story out there. another thing i would suggest, you have a lot of people who have learned the history, the history has been passed down through storytelling, one of the ways to get those stories out there to get things told and have them come in and tell the story. remembering slavery is a wonderful publication to get. it uses the library of congress recordings of actual next slaves -slaves talking about what it was like to be slaves. their actual voice talking about ast they had to go through slaves and what they had to go through once they were freed.
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something a textbook cannot take away. that is probably what i would suggest as far as to get that word out there and get it into your classroom. you do need to find a way to bring it into her classroom. host: more to come from colonial williamsburg one last phone call on this topic. pam in philadelphia. caller: i was calling to see wouldew directions interpreters be taking at colonial williamsburg? added storyline? where are we going with the current program today? guest: the short answer is, yes. the more accurate answer would be to say that where we are
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going and where we need to go is that when a guest comes here to colonial williamsburg, black, white, other, the one thing i want to make sure they leave understanding is that slavery was woven into the fabric of 18th-century british north american society. there is not a way you could have gone through a day in the 18th century without in some way, shape or form having it be part of your day. where programming is heading towards is that no matter what building you go into, no matter what program you go to, no matter what experience you have, you will learn within that experience history. you will learn about the contributions of the founding fathers and the founding mothers and those individuals that did the work for those founding fathers and founding mothers.
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house that has 31 people in it where 28 of them were enslaved, you will hear the stories of those 28 enslaved people just as much as you will hear the story of those three individuals who were waited upon. where we need to head towards an programming is not to have separate programs, to have the program be a whole. when you come to see history, when you come to be part of history, you become a part of all that history. the story of george washington eve of thery of rental house and the story of thomas jefferson or the story of jupiter of monticello are all american stories. eve of the randolph house. you see every single person who lived in the colonial times, no matter what their color was,
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whether they were native or woman, ithite, man or is your story as americans, as a member of the world. those stories need to be told everywhere. that is where we are heading. we will always have new programs that tell stories that tell about the enslaved. not as slaves, but as people. people that had lives just as rich as anyone else within the world of the 18th century. that is where we are going. that is the destination. host: a lot more to come from colonial williamsburg. i'm sure many of our viewers have been enticed today to visit. we thank you for the conversation and everyone there at the foundation for welcoming , helpinghe c-span bus us bring the sites and sounds of
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18th-century virginia today to american history tv. thank you. guest: my pleasure. thank you. host: our coverage of colonial atliamsburg re-airs tonight six ago p.m. and 11 a clock and on christmas at noon and 8:00 p.m. eastern. blackwe will visit the smith shop and public armory to learn about the role of the blacksmith and how they supported the militia. after that, you will get to go behind the scenes of williamsburg's costume design and see where the historic area costumes are researched and created. thank you for joining us here on american history tv today. [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2015] >> i'm the master blacksmith here at the anderson's blacksmith shop and colonial armory. part of the historic trace program. , wein colonial williamsburg
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preserve the number of trades from the 18th-century. 20 trades practiced in the historic area. i run the blacksmith shop. we work with iron and steel. those are raw materials made aso finished products such construction hardware, tools, household accessories, agricultural implements, parts for wagons and carriages. here at the armory, we expand into even more work. of historic trades, our mission is to re-create the work environment and activities you would find in these sorts of workshops and colonial america. handwork, there is no machine process here. it also involves the study of early documentary evidence to
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teach us about the history of these trades and the technologies we are practicing. the documentary we research tells us about the operation of these businesses. what sorts of work they were doing and how they were paid. we rely on input from archaeologists who have studied the remains within the ground that help us to define the outline, the footprint of the building. architectural historians help to understand common chesapeake construction so that we can re-create the building in three dimensions. we are responsible for operating the buildings and bringing them to life. we are producing iron and steel goods used within the historic .rea we provide the parts to put together a building, we provide tools for the hands of other workmen in town.
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we help to construct the wagons and carriages used within the historic area. all the time we are open to the public. guests come into the building and they are able to watch what we do and interact with the tradesmen while we produce these things. this particular site is operated by a man named james anderson. he was born in virginia in 1740. probably trained by one of his uncles who was a blacksmith here in town. he comes to williamsburg in the 1760's shortly after finishing an apprenticeship. he established a workshop here as a blacksmith. on the adjoining lot and operated that successfully. as his success grew, it is typical for a government to appoint a blacksmith or gunsmith to serve in the role of armorer.
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their responsibility is to maintain the government owned weapons kept in the powder magazine a block from here. in peacetime, that is not an overwhelming task. it is a task that goes to somebody who has had the commercial success in operating that has conducted their affairs in the committee in a socially acceptable way and that has the political and social connections to warrant a political patronage appointment. the government does not advertise for armorers. the government selects from the community the person they walk in that role. the armorer is on call, he receives a stipend to cover his expenses of being on call. is involved in repair or cleaning up weapons, he charges for that. the government relies on the armorer for other sort of
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maintenance work. duplicate keys for the capital building, did repairs for architectural features at the governor's palace. he was responsible or shackling and on shackling prisoners at the jail. he was responsible for winding the clock in the capital building. it comes with these additional responsibilities that allow him to charge on top of the stipend that he gets every year. when the war began, suddenly this becomes the key position. mederson takes on the sa role for the state of virginia. one interesting element about the american revolution, it is not an overthrow of the local authority. it is separation from an empire. james anderson switched from serving the colony of virginia to the state of virginia. he is working for the same
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people. it is largely a switch and title or political philosophy in this new independent nation. , his demandsr increase, weapons are getting used, exposed to the weather, broken in combat. they have to be shipped back here. as the demand increased, the number of workmen had to be enlarged to keep up with demand. ultimately, a larger facility had to be built. the armory building was built at the expense of the state in order to accommodate the additional workmen. 1775, the workshop employed five workmen. by 1780, it employed 40 workmen. you get the sense of as the demand increases, you employ more hands. during the british occupation,
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the site had been built up as the public armory. it was funded by the state of virginia. the armory is a public building the same way the governor's palace or the capital or magazine our public buildings. it was funded by the state and the output of the workshop was to the benefit of the state. when the british occupied williamsburg am of the capital had already been relocated to richmond because the government was the primary customer of james anderson, he moved to richmond as well. the site was abandoned but the structures were still here when the british occupation occurred. part of military tactics includes disrupting your enemy's operations. the public buildings that were part of the war effort were destroyed by the british. the barracks on the north end of town was burned to the ground.
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the armory here did not get burned because of the urban center. the british tour down the forges to make the shop inoperable. they may have broken out windows and doors and things like that. after the war when james anderson returned, he had to put significant investment into getting the shot back up and running. 1790's, it's and became a vibrant workshop again. the british did not tear down the building completely. ist tradesmen, your workday defined by the available daylight here. summertime, you have more sunlight than wintertime. you have no cheap artificial light. when the sun comes up, you are able to work. when the sun sets, you have to stop what you are doing. in the summertime, it could be a
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12 or 14 hour workday. in the wintertime, you might only have eight or 10 hours of these light. -- decent light. your daily routine would begin with opening up the shop. that means starting a fire every morning. we keep our iron with a coal fire. fire anda small wood then adding the cold to that in order to build up the heat. -- the coal. , the physical day work of heating up iron and hammering it into usable shapes rs ofstart with ba iron, materials we purchase from somebody in the business of refining iron or making art bar. our role is to convert those bars into the usable shapes that consumers here in the town or
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soldiers in the field need to get their work done. on the armory site, to keep the workmen focused on their work, there was a cook employed who pulled military rations and that at aeals so certain hour, a bell would be wrong and the workmen would take a break for a meal early afternoon and again late in the evening. workingeantime, you are , creating the shapes under the hammer. we do finishing an assembly, polishing work with a file device it would have been quite a lively workshop. you can imagine the noise, the heat, people hammering, filing. doing the woodwork to restock weapons. there was work produced for the cavalry, things like bits and spurs and stirrups. -- a great being
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variety of work. on this site, we have a great cultural event. among the workforce in the time period, there were three whites and soldiers employed in the shop -- there were enslaved african-americans who were skilled in the work. there were some scotts highland prisoners of war put to work in the shop. there were 10 french gunsmiths here under a secret contract that the french had with congress to help unite states in building armories. you begin to see the cultural mix that the united states is known for all coming together with the same goal of seeing their soldiers in the field outfitted. you pass by a house that was
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.wned by james anderson he did not live in this house, he had a second house at the residence. this house he used to house his workmen. part of employment in the time period included pay but also room and board. when the site was employing 40 workmen, the logical place to put them was in this second house that he had. they were not luxurious quarters. it wasn't that each workmen got a house or each workmen got a room in a house. or even a bed in a room. workmen were sharing the bed's, you may found a room with half a dozen workmen in it am assuring the living and sleeping space. -- sharing the living and sleeping space. there were mealtimes. , you aressed the house faced with a facade of three
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buildings that all related to the operation here. on the far right is a tin shop. tinsmith thing was added to the mix during the revolution to provide soldiers things with things like saucers, coffee pots, cups and containers like boxk canisters, cartridge tubes, speaking trumpets, equipment like that. the center building is the armory building. the blacksmith shop. to the left of the armory building is a kitchen. the kitchen and tin shop were both buildings that preexisted the armory. the armory was built in between them to create this facade. , youu go onto the property come to the main entrance of the armory, the blacksmith shop. to the south of the blacksmith shop, there is another workshop artisans working on
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clothing or restocking muskets. thatumber of activities pertain to weapons maintenance. there's a couple of storage buildings. the entire site was fenced for security. there is a sentry box out front because entries were posted here. everybody knew that the site would be a target of british interest. was a way toies keep an eye on the building. there may have been guard dogs on the property. one interesting thing that came up in the archaeology were a number of burials of dogs on the site. not presumably could have been guard dogs within the compound. a blacksmith is a service industry. we don't have a product line, we
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don't have a showroom. you don't come to a blacksmith, to shop for things. you come to a blacksmith shop with a need. you look elsewhere for a piece of hardware or a tool. you come to us and we can custom make objects like that. we are involved in the service and of the work. custom manufacturing and repair. once you own something made out of iron and steel, if it breaks, it will be cheaper to fix it. if it is wearing out, it will be cheaper to fix it then to replace it. that is where we come in. it is all workshop and it is a service industry. custom manufacturing and repair. the work of a blacksmith can vary depending on your location. this shop being in the center of , there are aunity
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lot of household goods, fireplace equipment, cooking tools, lighting devices. workshops --sed in if you visit any other workshop, you will see that all the other workers in the community use iron and steel tools to get their work done. we are involved in the production and maintenance of those. biggestut virginia, the industry is farming. there are more farmers than any other kind of workers within the region. implements are part of the work, even in an urban setting like this. there is work to be done on wheeled vehicles. there is work -- you see some shops specializing in horseshoe ing or work on firearms. calling williamsburg -- colonial williamsburg has a guns shop.
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there were colors in the town -- cutlers in the town. we combine those activities on our site today. just about anything made out of iron or steel might have come into the >> the last job we know that james anderson undertook was repairing an umbrella. even those sorts of activities were going on. i think our site here in williamsburg has some important things to offer a modern audience. one of the most important things is the fact that we are preserving these hand skills. this is sort of work is something that is rarely experienced in modern life and. simple hand tool use was something talk to every school kid.
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the thought being that if you knew how to use a hammer, a so, i chisel, a screwdriver, you could did maintenance on your own automobile or house or lawnmower but that is being lost. schools do not teach hand skills any longer. for a lot of young people, this is an environment where you can immerse yourself in this technology. in the present day, there is also a shift in interest with a whole generation that has been raised in the digital world, ,here is a response to that looking for this sort of handwork -- veal production work. you can see it in the present day in the makers movement. artisan foods, artisan trades that istisan clothing,
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all coming back. colonial williamsburg is at the forefront of that. i hope that our guests leave here with an understanding that the source of industries, hand work in modern industrial production is an important part of american success. best summed up by richard henry lee, who was writing to thomas jefferson in 1776 when he said, let us have small arms, canon, and industry, and we will be secured. it is in vain to have a good government if you are subject to the sword without a means of resisting. i think that is a lesson for today. if we do not maintain a home industry and we don't maintain the ability to supply our own needs, then it makes the country vulnerable. in the revolutionary war, this
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the armoryernment, site does our government's response to that need for security. colonial williamsburg is the only surviving 18th century capital city of the colonial thatd, we were fortunate the geographic location of williamsburg made it difficult to develop large-scale industry. or on aot on the water river, so williamsburg was never a port city or huge industrial center. the armory was one of the larger industries founded. the importance of this city was that it was the seat of government here the other importance with the ideals defined here, the ideals that define american liberty and american independence. the museum seeks to preserve
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that along with this environment . the museum offers not only political ideals but architectural splendor. you can see some of the best colonial architecture of the chesapeake preserved here. you have all of these variety of trades up in the town to life. town plan,e original the city of williamsburg was laid out in 1699 and the streets are largely unchanged. it is a great place to visit the past, to touch the past, to understand how the past influences the present, to enjoy the architecture and the splendor of the georgian. period. announcer: we continue our look at colonial williamsburg with a
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behind-the-scenes tour of a costume design center for historical clothing. he can watch today's program from williamsburg tonight starting at 6:00 eastern. this is american history tv, all weekend, every weekend. my name is brenda russo and i managed the costume design center in colonial williamsburg. we maintain items for the 900 people we have in costume. about 1400 different positions. room, ande operations this is the largest section of our facility. in here, the division of labor is one supervisor, to pattern makers, to first hands, and the rest of the people are tailors.
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we build and maintain all the garments for all the historic employees with the exception of those who work in taverns. includes laundering and dry cleaning for them. is forck right here pickup. generally, when you come to work it, you get an allotment based on what it is you do. 60-65 articles of clothing. we clothe you from head to toe. the average allotment is worth about $4000, so it is quite an investment. here, we have two outfits manufactured in this building. drume right is a five fan uniform.
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-- a fife and drum uniform. the colors are reversed. you have a red regimental with blue facings. these were redesigned in 2008 for the 50th anniversary of the corps in this is based on an antique. here we have a digitally reproduced painted silk, the origin was probably china. the original garment was in our collection and is made into account. we had it photographed -- the antique photographed in we sent it to new york to be digitally printed onto this silk. this is a garment that we made for special events. we had somebody portraying lady dunmore for a day and we built this for her. you tell us about how
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clothing would have been different for the different classes? brenda: business attire in the 18th century wood has been a three-piece suit. 1660-1960ue from in the only thing that changes is the length of the components. the waistcoat got shorter and the breaches got longer. these components would have been available to all strata of society in colonial williamsburg but in different qualities and fabrics. >> how about for women? brenda: the division of labor is interesting. generally, men's garments are flat patterned in manufactured by taylor's. women's garments are draped onto a form. and then sewn to fit the
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specific body. again, the forms would have been very similar. it would have been probably a constructive or tight upper body garment. she would have been stayed with the basic undergarment, cohasset -- a corset. there was a petticoat. the ideal women's silhouette was a cone perched on an . ellipse. the dress is based on a number of things, region hallet he, occupation, and personal choice. a variety of textiles and fabrics would have been available to the residents of williamsburg, both domestic manufacturing and imported from england. >> how would somebody have gone about getting these clothes? 4 and there are a number of ways. we know that there is a lot of
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remaking of items. you can purchase things ready-made, there is a huge they-to-wear dizziness in 18th century. generally, things like shirts, things that are multi-side here you can have something custom-made for you or there are -- we know -- and other in southern colonies, in south carolina, there is -- we assume that takes place in virginia, as with the documentation is not as readily available. >> can you show us some of the other parts of the shop? brenda: let's take a look at our warehouse. warehouse in our which is where all things are initiated. we have three reproduced textiles. silk that ipainted showed you downstairs, which is
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actually the design was from a french fashion plate. the textile is again one that is in our collection. this is also a digitally reproduced textile, a linen that was photographed onto the -- the in then washed backing is washed off. and this is actually a reproduction of a garment that survived at the national museum of american history, the smithsonian. it is from a coat that was originally owned by benjamin franklin that he purchased in paris. this is a silk. there are a lot of buttons on men's attire, not so much women's. what you see are a series of reproduction buttons that we have. this particular button is for british regimental's.
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cast by actually company in rhode island. these are delivery buttons. delivery is the attire of servants. you couldh century, display your wealth on her back and show how wealthy whereby dressing your servant in matching livery and generally the cover is based on some thing in your armorial crest. lord dunmore, who was the last world governor of virginia -- when we did the livery for this service. these are probably wrong. because there have been no -- after we get this in we got gift money to do these, i discover that there are no armorial crest
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buttons discovered archaeologically in virginia. we know that dunmore ordered blue cloth, brown cloth, and buns silpe and summer -- we know the material arrivedv we doe not know who made ther more essentially what it looked like after it was made up butto. these buttonsns are interesting. these buttons go. on a general officers code. a cast button, made by a vendor in the united kingdom. itis interesting because kind of copies with buttons look like in the 18th century. andh would have been cast crimped overblown like this. .- crimped over bone this is a polymer. they would have been a drillable in there and the shank would have been cap
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-- it is a beautiful reproduction and they are outrageously expensive. now he's buttons -- these buttons are actually perfect for , in18th century in these current times for manufacturers, a company in colorado, but they are dead on perfect for buttons that we matched up to a garment that we re-created that is currently in the metro -- currently in the metropolitan museum of art. then for embroidered buttons, and embroidered waistcoat, this is all done by machine, and then they would be covered by -- so this a be the result. they would would -- they would go over a wooden form. all of our stuff materials are in this room. materialsour stock
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are in this room. his very, very, very difficult to find items -- i can tell you -- that are appropriate to the 18th century. this up here we can from a manufacturer in the united kingdom. and ese are all for fife drum uniforms and they have to match and we order quite a few yards so we only have to do a lot every 5-6 years. prince have will hear, here, pi are popularn int 18th century. we use natural fibers appropriate for thes time, will, hemp, cotton, and silk. that is what we are limited to. we do use a semblance but it is a very slight blend, less than 5%. we do use -- we do use some blend but it is a very slight blend, but it is
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less than 5%. ok, this is excess or this room is responsible for adding all this isle pieces -- ok, excess raise. -- this is accessories. these are traditional 18th century menswear. all of the little pieces that make up a wardrobe. the majority of things you see on this table are actually built in this room. this is a market on it. .e call that a market bonnet here, you can see a depiction. have one of the few surviving examples of these. they are depicted -- you see lots of depictions of them in few18th century but very survive here it we have the only surviving example in collection. so what we did was we took a pattern off of it -- i say we --
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it was done before i got here -- they took a pattern off of it and then a date or reproduction. now, it is not terribly accessible because it is permanently mounted so we can uncheck our measurements to make sure it is pretty close. thes pretty close to depiction. this is based on a pair in the nature politician. -- this is aets pair that is based on the metropolitan. this would have been worn underneath a women's account and it is essentially storage. it is a large purse. this is the hat that was made in this room by melissa sitting right over here. it is based on a depiction from an english fashion, this is the one that was worn by the lady that played lady dunmore. this jewelry was made for us by a jewelry maker who does reproduction jewelry in
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marblehead, massachusetts, based on a surviving example in massachusetts and was actually last by the wife of the royal governor of massachusetts. this is a reproduction worn on the upper body and it would be pinned. in ourroduction collection -- and then, we have shoes. thence shoes -- men's shoes. these are made here -- not in the built in, but by colonial williamsburg shoemakers. women's shoes were made in the united kingdom. these are a new adaptation for a stunt by a company out of las vegas. they call this the dunmore and they are for sale in our shop. is itt is supposed to do is supposed to look like a cal
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omanco shoe. washington ordered them for martha yearly. at least 5-6 pairs usually. we know they are being warned by all strata of society. this is a reproduction of a set go on what arech now shoulder boards in the modern military. rank.ey are a sign of these are reproductions of ones that are currently held by the yorktown victory center which is right down the road. we have a large portion of our programming has to do with the military in with the revolution so within the past 20 years, we have really increased our military presence and our knowledge of military history
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and military dress. hats. it would just be a flat -- do you have one? not unlike this. this has been -- which has been cut down. thank you. which would've had a larger brain in that it is -- a imuld've had a larger br just like in the 18th century. here is one. perfect. these are the raw materials in have8th century it would been made from a -- this is a primarily a wall -- an 18th century it could've of been made from both rabbit and/or beaver fur and a mixture of will. -- wool. our curator of costume and textile started a project where doubt she had most of thomas
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surviving clothing come to colonial williamsburg where it was studied sent back to its respective museums. here, we have a bobcat lined hat here it is a reproduction of one owned by thomas jefferson that somehow ended up in a los angeles county museum of natural history. jefferson -- we know from jefferson -- a lot of his clothing survived, which is wonderful. you can study at your jefferson, from what i discovered, was not a natty dresser. there are a couple of things that survived at monticello that .ere repaired something that you would not on items owned by the president of the united states. he also suffered from cold his entire life. at monticello, there are several waistcoats that are lined
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because he complained -- he was always cold. but that -- this is a virginia bobcat that -- i think, we got it through the state -- i think it was roadkill, actually, and now they lies our reproduction. this is research in deciding what happens years we develop items for use in the historic area. generally, when you develop a garment, you like to have three things and the majority of our garments have been through this process. first, you like to have an andque that you can study pattern in that has some kind of attachment to the chesapeake. then, he would like to have a depiction of somebody in that antique and finally, ideally, you have some kind of written documentation at talks about the antique, either in invoice or a letter that describes it for a
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bill. ideally, it would be a letter or a diary entry. that says, i bought this garment . that absolutely never happens, unless you are the 2% of society, in less you are a washington original first and you're there is a lot of documentation of their clothing and a lot of his clothing survived. what is difficult to get is common attire. or the other half. i mentioned earlier in the interview that we are doing a lot more military programming. there are -- there is a garment overalls or gator trousers that we could not find a surviving example loves so -- prior to finding this particular garment which will is at the metropolitan museum of art, we used to just extend our breaches pattern to make it longer into the fitting that way.
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this is a depiction of four gentleman in a rhode island trousers orgator overalls and so what is this garment? fortunately, we were able to find a surviving parent. at the metropolitan museum and aat you see on your right is reproduction of that particular pair of gator trousers that are at the metropolitan. we went up there. we studied them. we patterned them. this is all -- and photographed them, copious photographed then and this is a schematic of what it is we found in what we find today are notes on here on how it went together, the stitches, how many stitches per inch, the , thele, the constriction order of construction to it all of that is copied on here. then we came back and did a reproduction of the garment and that is a reproduction using .and techniques
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it is all done by hand in the 18th century manner. then we digitize it on that digitizing board which is our finally, built a prototype by machine. i would love to the it a buttice it all by hand unfortunately, we do need to use modern construction method because of the volume that we have to create. this is the prototype. we fitted on a number of people and it works really well. it's amazing how it solves in some problems -- originally what we have been doing indexes -- and this is -- what we had been doing is shaping it in the back of the ankle with talks. we found that in the 18th century one of the related really ingenious is at the actually -- all of the shaping is done in the inseam because the out scene is straight and that answered a lot
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of questions. here we have a british general officer's uniform. this was actually, the buttons on this are the buttons that i showed him upstairs, the ones that are cast very similar to the antique. all of this embroidery is machine embroidered on that machine over there. there are several of these that survived. they are easy to study. but they were constructed in house and then we have the epaulets which i am not going to be but a get off -- new york. there we go. these were actually embroidered in pakistan but we do have the ability to do this here now and again it was all by machine. is an adaptation of a court suit we have in the collection. this would have been very formal attire. they are called court suits and
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would have been worn at court. this particular one is generally worn by the person who portrays dunmore. we know that there are surviving american court suits in south carolina. there was one that was owned by a native survived in the charleston museum of art so it is not that they are not being worn, they just don't seem to survive. this is another one of the jefferson project, this is a that is now in the collection of the los angeles county museum of natural history . this was done in 1991, machine embroidered. it is great because it fits our current thomas jefferson. when people come here for a tour, i think they are really surprised by the complexity of the operation, the fact that we use modern equipment but we are trying to give the impression of is aast because clothing
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strong cultural marker, you know? is only is it regional, it very personal, as well. it is an indication of who you are, now and in the 18th century. >> how has the clothing changed during the time that colonial williamsburg has existed? is an: originally, that interesting question. the first cost him his here was in 1934 for the dedication of the two go cluster street -- street.gloucester people in costamare the six hostesses. the -- the people in costumes were the six hostesses. 5, james koger andpenn the restoration architects decided that all the hostesses
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and all the exhibition buildings should be in period attire and , 81 years, with the exception of six months during world war ii when rationing prohibited the use of every production of clothing, we have had people in historic dress. the way it has changed is we now view -- view these items as material culture and a something , ratherches, that tells than just to create on the ounces so i think that is a major shift in that happens in the 70's and 80's, long before i got here. that is the nature change, that it is now a way to teach about the past. announcer: and that concludes our programming today from colonial williamsburg. tonight at 6:00, we will re-air
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of her coverage from the historic area including behind-the-scenes tour is of the custom-designed center. all is american history tv, we can, every weekend, on c-span3. beginning october 19, 1965 and continuing for five weeks, the battle of ia drang was in the words of walter concord, the biggest, the costliest, the most insignificant phot by american troops in vietnam. a cd is new special report on the battle, originally broadcast on november 30, 1965. ♪ walter: three months ago, the first air division shipped off from north carolina.

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