tv C-SPAN Cities Tour in Charlottesville Virginia Part 2 CSPAN May 26, 2017 7:02pm-8:01pm EDT
the f.b.i., with president trump, he has made clear that that was unacceptable. the metropolitan police as i understand it have received assurance from the f.b.i. and have restarted the process of sharing information with them. announcer: c-span where history unfolds daily. in 1979, c-span was created as a public service by america's cable television companies. and is brought to you by your cable or satellite provider. for the next 55 minutes, an american history tv exclusive. our cities tour visits charlottesville, virginia, to learn more about its unique history. for six years now, we have traveled the cities across the u.s. to explore their literary and historic sites. you can watch more of our visit t c-span.org/citiestour.
>> we ought to get that tax bell out of the committee and that civil rights bill passed through the house. and we ought to get started in the senate. and we ought to just have a minimum of time. >> lyndon johnson really captured it very well. the promise of the first year which is you're elected and you have a mandate working with the congress. you the president, the executive branch. but as lyndon johnson said when he became president, no matter how big your majorities you get one year before they the congress stops thinking about you, the president, and starts thinking about themselves, their own re-election. and at about january of your second year, after you've done your first year, all the members of congress are thinking about their mid-term elections. and they're really cautious about taking any risk to help you get your mandate and your agenda through. >> which is why presidents
early on in their administration are so eager to get things done. because they feel this is the moment they'll never have again. but they're also learning the ropes and not as experienced as they will be in four or five years and sometimes they make mistakes. so this is why that first year, the first few months, really, is so important in setting the agenda for later presidents. or for their later effectiveness. >> the lobbyists and the law firms and the news media an ers and others, such important element of government in washington. and i underestimated that. >> how did jimmy carter who was like donald trump an outsider to washington and in fact that's why jimmy carter was elected, that in the post-watergate period he was able to say, i am not of washington. i'm from georgia. i was the governor of georgia. i am -- i'm never going to lie to you.
i'm a born again christian. and so he was able to separate himself out of the muck and mire of washington and watergate much as donald trump presented himself to the american people to say i'm not even a politician. i've never served in government before. so what jimmy carter told us in his oral history was that he thought he would be fine in terms of his experiences as chief executive of a state. he had been in atlanta as the governor of georgia. but he said when i got to washington, it was very different from what i expected. >> i didn't have any obligations much to the people in washington for my election. they didn't play a role in my election. so there wasn't that campaign relationship that normally would have kurd had i not been able to win this nomination by michael.
-- myself. i didn't have that sort of potential. and i think they felt that they were on the outside. >> so it's a cautionary tale both for outsiders coming into the white house, but it's also a cautionary tale for thinking that you know enough to get by in those first few months and then realizing that you don't. >> first-year project is an effort we've been working on for almost three years. since my -- since my arrival in january of 2015 and even before then when i started talking to the miller center about how we take our historical assets, the archives that we've built through oral history and through transcribing the secret oval office recordings, our network of scholars, our network of practitioners that we're in touch with, and take the lessons of all -- of all of that history and project it forward to the current president when we were designing and building it, the next president's first year in
office. so it's essentially a series of case studies but also a series of directed interviews with those people about the challenge of taking over the most important and hardest job in the world. >> even when george h.w. bush took over from ronald reagan it was a hostile takeover. this is not an easy thing to do. they fired all the senior people because they wanted to put their own stamp on the president and executive branch. that provides some opportunities. you bring in a new set of people, a fresh perspective, a new set of voices. but also challenges. no matter how experienced a team is, working together as a team, they're not very experienced. they haven't been in that position before. so there's promise in a first year and there's peril in a first year. and we were trying to capture what those lessons of history are for the new team coming in. >> so the first thing that they have to do is they have to rely
upon trusted advisors. presidents are human beings. they don't know everything. they have to learn from people around them. they have to find trusted advisors. but this is a trap because the most trusted advisor of a new president is usually someone that helped them on the campaign. someone who got them elected. someone who's politically super skilled. but not necessarily a national security expert. so this is the tension, the new president has to let go of the political advisors that got him elected and find a team of very smart, savvy, experienced people to bring into the white house to educate him on what are the main issues that i'm going to face? so the choice of your advisors is the most important thing a new president can do. one of the key things about building a team is to make sure that -- that they work together. george w. bush had a very experienced group of people around him. in fact, it was an all-star team in many ways. colin powell, don rumsfeld,
condi rice. these were astonishingly experienced, smart people with a great deal of knowledge of how the government worked. one problem, they hated each other. well, that's not going to serve the president well if his team doesn't function well as a group. and those differences of opinion, of style, personality, only got greater and wider, they became exposed in the midst of the crisis post 9-11. so finding a team that not only serves the president well but that works well together, extremely difficult to do. >> there is an inevitable first year crisis. almost always something on the national security -- national security side of the ledger. >> last night, i ordered u.s. military forces to panama. no president takes such action lightly. >> in george h.w. bush, the first president bush's administration, ned a crisis in october of their -- they had a crisis in october of their
first year. president bush said manuel noriega had to go from office. he was a dictator in panama who was connected to the drug trade. >> for nearly two years, the united states, nations of latin america and the caribbean, have worked together to resolve the crisis in panama. the goals of the united states have been to safeguard the lives of americans, to defend democracy in panama, to combat drug trafficking, and to prerkt the integrity of the panama canal treaty. >> this was aiest consistent refrain from president bush, that he was going to see noriega go. they end up hearing about a coup plot from some junior military officers in the noriega regime. and there are different cabinet secretaries in that administration had different reactions to whether or not they should get involved in that coup attempt.
the mixed signals ended up leading to a failed coup in panama. so now we got a crisis. we have a coup rising up against somebody that president bush said should go. different members of the cabinet responding differently, the coup fails. and president bush appears to have egg on his face. >> and recently we were out in wyoming, and we were talking to dick cheney, the former vice president, former secretary of defense, former member of the house of representatives. so someone with lots of washington experience in different areas of washington and two different branches of government and this is what vice president cheney was pointing out to us. and he said then think of the people who were surrounding george h.w. bush. you had brent scowcroft. a retired general. you had colin powell. you had cheney himself. and he said we had the a-team, maybe the a-plus team in foreign affairs. and yet their first foreign affairs crisis was a coup in
panama and ultimately our invasion of panama to remove manuel noriega. and cheney knitted while we were a great group of individuals with a lot of experience in foreign policy and defense policy we hadn't worked foth as team yet. he said that took some time for us to get going as a team. and he said we made some mistakes. >> we learned a lot as a team and to function with the issues we had to deal with. one of the real problems you have with any new administration, even one as experienced as ours was, we weren't a bunch of amateurs and been around there before, it's hard. there is no training ground for senior civilian political leaders in an administration. >> so our view now is if that team made mistakes, think of how much harder it is for a president who has no washington experience, no foreign policy experience, no defense policy
experience, and no work in washington with the levers of power and with the centers of power in the nation's capital. >> we find ourselves groping to know the full sense and meaning of these times in which we live. our quest of understanding we beseech god's guidance and summon the past and we scan all signs of the future. we bring all our wit and all our will to meet the questions. how far have we come in man's long pilgrimage from darkness toward the light? >> since eisenhower was a soldier knew there was always a crisis you didn't anticipate about to happen. and a phrase and many people in washington have referred to this is plans are worthless. but planning is everything. well, what does that mean? it means that you don't know
what's coming. of course you can't see the future. but you have to anticipate a variety of scenarios and constantly plan around the possibility that five or six things may happen. and your team has to be in the habit of planning. they have to talk to each other. they have to meet regularly. they have to have a plan for how they take intelligence, read it, interpret it and then map out the possible consequences, the possible strategic choices. what will this mean for the budget? what will it mean for defense? what will it mean for our military deployments, our nuclear strategy? if x happens? the national security establishment must always be planning ahead for a variety of scenarios. so that if any one of them happens or something happens that looks a little bit like plan a, the president has at least the beginnings of a plan already in place. john kennedy. everybody loves john kennedy. we think of him as an admirable figure and a tragic figure. but in his first few months in office, he made a very serious mistake because he really wasn't sure how to handle this
grave problem of cuba. and he allowed a process that was already in place, the invasion of cuba, to unfold in april of 1961. >> but let the record show that our restraint is not inexhaustable. should it ever appear that the american doctrine of noninterference merely conceals or excuses a policy of nonaction, if the nations of this hemisphere should fail to meet their commitments against outside communist penetration, then i want it clearly understood that this government will not hesitate in meeting its primary obligation which are the security of our nation. >> what should he have done differently? what he didn't do was he didn't subject that plan to sufficient rigor. he didn't go through the
scenarios. he didn't go through a long period of thoughtful analysis of that plan. it was just in the first few months of his presidency. he felt he needed to act bold. he felt he needed to show that he was a hawk. that he was going to be an activist president. he had criticized eisenhower for being asleep at the wheel. and so he said invading cuba, that sounds like a bold plan. that will demonstrate that i'm a -- demonstrate real change. and it was a fiasco. it was a disaster. as anyone looking at the plans could have predicted. but kennedy learned from that mistake. and he then ratcheted back his activism and became more restrained. he became much more wary of a pre-existing plan that hadn't gone through sufficient rigorous analysis. >> he had had such a disaster in his first year with the bay of pigs that he decided in the midst of the cuban missile crisis i better make a record of this. because i need to have my side. and i need to have what i said to my advisors.
and so he recorded himself in -- in his telephone conversations and particularly in his meetings. so the secret behind closed doors, executive committee meetings, and cabinet meetings that kennedy had in real time in the midst of the cuban missile crisis, you can hear. one of my favorites is a phone conversation that he had with former president eisenhower. he calls him in the midst of the cuban missile crisis to say in effect what should i do? m i doing the right thing? >> do not be quick. they take any responsibility in the world. they don't care where it is. and just the question is are you in such a place you can ither can't or won't resist?
can't do obe when you anything and they go ahead. >> he was hawkish. he pushed kennedy. the roles were reversed and kennedy was arguing for more restraint and eisenhower the old soldier was saying you got to go for it. you got to invade cuba. a wonderful moment of presidents talking and learning from each other. it doesn't happen as often as it should. but in part because of the party politics which get in the way and the personalities.
but as all previous presidents have said, nobody knows what the job is really like except another president. and so they can learn from one another. >> i think a president has to be thinking of the first year in the campaign. and the most successful presidents are those who have taken two or three major points of policy, could be domestic, it could be foreign. it could be a combination of the two. and out on the campaign stump, they make that case over and over again. and then as soon as they get into the white house, they hit the ground running. and they begin working on those two or three points of domestic or foreign policy. >> for instance, bill clinton was elected. and he got elected on the mantra it's the economy, stupid. he happened to kind of forget about it in his first few weeks in office. and i say this with great affection because he was the president i worked for and still think he was a terrific president. but his first weeks in office the military became the press -- the gays in the military
became the press. there isn't a question of homosexuals military. they are. the question is whether those who served with distinction should be excluded from military service solely on the basis of their status. and i believe they should not. >> but because he wasn't prepared for the politics of that, and the governing challenges of that priority, it came up offhand in a press conference. he talked about it in the campaign. it came up in a press conference. he ended up losing three months to that controversy and ended up with a policy that was very different than the one that he wanted. >> ronald reagan is another good example. we associate him now with a major moment in american and world history because he presided over the beginnings of the end of the cold war. >> mr. gorbachev, tear down this wall!
>> but reagan was elected, you know, sure to increase defense spending. but he was elected principally on an argument that government should be shrunk. that welfare should be transformed. that the budget should be balanced. that he was going to be a conservative in the white house. and that was going to be -- that was his ticket to victory. so he wanted to be a president that focused on domestic affairs as well. and of course the contrast with the carter years was dramatic. and reagan wanted to say i can do much better than jimmy carter on the homefront. well, in fact, he sat out a goal at the beginning to try to end the wold war, build up defense spending enormously. build up nuclear weapons and he did all those things and those are the things that defined his presidency in many ways. >> but i promise you as our president i will raise the bar. i will insist upon accountability systems that refuse to leave children
behind. we'll put in place programs that will say in head start we're going to give our children the building blocks to learn to read. we will challenge people to meet the high expectations and you mark my words what leadership can provide. it will provide an education system that says we're not going to leave anybody behind and america will be better off for it. >> bush 43 or george w. bush also had a very successful first year, also following the pattern of ronald reagan. be very specific in your campaign about two or three things that you want to do. and bush 43's case, it was wer taxes, education reform, stand strong in the world, but don't try to do regime change. these were several of the things he said in the campaign. he gets into office, and what does he do? he reaches out to ted kennedy of all people, on the other side of the aisle, and then the other side of the political spectrum. a liberal in the most liberal
sense of the term as opposed to george w. bush. and what did george bush do? he invited ted kennedy and his family to the white house after the inauguration and he said, the new movie "13 days" has come out about the cuban myself crisis and your brother and john f. kennedy and his presidency would you like to watch it in the white house theater? >> so all of these things in that particular week were about this trust developing, this mating dance, this relationship, this common cause of can we get something big done? they both had their own equities obviously politically and otherwise. but they both believed that we ought to do a better job of educating poor kids. >> you can just imagine the brother of president kennedy sitting there with the new president, president bush, watching a film in the white house movie theater. and then they started talking in that night about how they wanted to work together on some big issues. it's going to be health care. was it going to be education reform? but he started reefing out
right across party lines from the early days of the administration. remember, president george w. bush was elected as a compassionate conservative. and school reform was going to be the one issue where he's going to make that mark. so on september 10, the day before september 11, they had a white house summit on education policy. then the next day, he gets on an airplane and flies down to florida and he's doing an event in a school in florida reading to students. so that iconic picture of andy card whispering into george w. bush's ear, america is under attack, people remember that for 9-11, what they don't remember that was in a school on behalf of trying to move legislation forward. in a bipartisan way on education reform. that very day, laura bush was back at the capital with senator kennedy talking about the same exact issue. so while the president is down in florida in a school, laura
bush and senator kennedy are working together on this legislation. the capital locks down because the airplanes are scrambling or hitting buildings and one might be coming to the capital. but that's what they were trying to accomplish. and sure enough in the 11th month of that administration, they were able to pass that piece of legislation. and sign it into law. so that's a great example of a president reaching across party lines knowing from the first weeks in office that this was something he wanted to do. even in a moment of crisis sticking with it while they're planning the war in afghanistan to respond to the 9-11 attacks, they're still moving forward that piece of domestic legislation in a bipartisan way. >> linden johnson remarkably had two first years. he had the first year of his presidency as an accidental president after the assassination of president kennedy and once he helped the country get through the sadness and the grief over that, he began moving forward very quickly and by that next summer, so president kennedy
was assassinated in november of 1963, by july of 1964, lyndon johnson had passed through the house and the senate the 1964 civil rights bill. then re-elected by a landslide in his own right in november of 1964, takes his official oath of office to become a president in his own right in 1965. and passes the voting rights act. medicaid. medicare. the great society is up and running within that first year of his official presidency to which he was elected. >> every candidate feels, boy, if only i could be in the oval office. and have my hands on the lever of power i could turn this country around. and constitutionally the presidency is limited and designed that way. it's designed so that the president cannot instantly put into place a dramatic change of governance. sure the personnel will change
and the ideologies will change but the relationship with congress and the relationship with the courts, these things constrain presidential power. and they do it very effectively. add on to that a very large bureaucracy through which you have to drive your policy choices and you fooned that the president's power is constrained. so there are moments, there are moments that a presidential early in a presidential term where you may feel that you have a great opportunity. president obama passing the health care bill focusing on that in the first couple of years of his presidency is a -- is a textbook example. why? because he had a significant majority in the congress. he had the mandate of the people. he had a lot of popularity. and he pushed through a health care bill that he felt was going to be his legacy. >> today after almost a century over a , today, after year of debate, today, after
all the votes have been tallied , health insurance reform becomes law in the united states of america. >> whether you like the bill or not, it's a great moment of presidential leadership because after he did that, his power began to weaken as it always does. >> we are done. >> one of the major pitfalls it seems to me in that first year is inexperience. again, we've had a number of presidents in recent years reacting to washington and presenting themselves to the people as not part of the evil washington. not part of the muck and myer -- mire of daily politics. so we've had people coming from governorships. we've had reagan. we've had carter. we've had clen ton. we've had trump and no political experience in any city in the country or any state. so that this person is coming
in with a fresh start. that's the good news for the american people who tend to view washington as -- if not evil, then corrupt. so that's a good thing for a person to be elected and to run on that kind of platform. it's more problematic for governance. and how quickly a president pitchots from running for office, politicking, to governing, can make all the difference in the world. can they grasp the levers of power? can they get what washington is about? can they understand working with washington media? can they understand working with capitol hill? and how that actually will carry itself out. >> the first year is an especially vulnerable moment for new presidents. all presidents face crises all the time. it's nonstop crises one after the other when you're president. but when you're right in the first year, you're at your most vulnerable. what happens if something goes
wrong in the first few months or in their first year, and they may not yet have clear answers. they may not have very clear goals or they may not have a great team around them to deal with it. so the first year is -- is a moment when -- if something goes wrong, it can expose a new president's weaknesses or insecurity or inexperience. and so the miller center has focused on this first-year moment as a way to gauge what can go wrong and what do you need to do to anticipate those problems? >> the other five things that i would say to president trump is focus on your five p's. personnel. process. your priorities. the politics of getting your priorities done. and how you communicate as a person. how you carry yourself as a person. every president fails in all five of those things. so don't be too flustered by any particular failure. this is like the game of baseball. a .300 batting average will get
you in the hall of fame. learn from your failures. and work with others to succeed. >> i would say that the problems are more difficult than i imagined them to be. the responsibilities faced in the united states are greater than i imagined them to be. and there are greater limitations upon our ability to bring about a favorable result than i had imagined them to be. and i think that's probably true of anyone who becomes president. because there's such a difference between those who advise or speak or legislate and -- and between the man who must make -- select from the various alternatives proposed and say that this shall be the policy of the united states. it's much easier to make the speeches than it is to finally make the judgments because unfortunately, your advisors are frequently divided. if you take the wrong course, and on occasion, i have, president bears the burden, the
responsibility, quite rightly. the advisors may move on to new dvice. >> jefferson is the founder of u.v.a. he worked for many, many years to develop a system of education in virginia. u.v.a. was -- he said it was his last great project which he did after he left the white house. he designed the buildings. he designed the curriculum. he served as the first rector or chair of the board of visitors. he was intimately involved as you will see in a lot of the details about building the buildings. so pretty much everything you can think of. >> his vision was -- it's a term that got thrown around a lot today called an academical village. and if you look at his plans for the university, at the time, a lot of yufertse basically consisted of one very big building where classes were
held and there were dormitory rooms and things like that. and jefferson's idea was to essentially make a village out of it with the students living near the professors and classes being given in the professor's homes and -- so there is always this constant interaction of student and faculty. plus it's in charlottesville, in the 1820's, which is a very small town, a village really, and so if you think about these amazing buildings that went up in the early 1820's sitting out essentially in the middle of nowhere in virginia, you know, it was part of his ideal of the united states is an agrarian society. and the elite becoming leaders of the country and all that sort of thing. >> well, the university archives are the official historical records of the
university. and they go back to actually long before the university was chartered by the state. that was in 1819. and records go back to 1814 to the two institutions that preceded u.v.a., the archives as i said are about four million items. it's the records of the board of visitors. it's the records of the president. the deans, the provosts, the library, every facet of the university. it's paper. it's sound recording. it's video recording. it's digital materials. it's email. it's websites. anything that's historic record of the university, we try to capture. these are some of the very early records. some that go back to 1817. this is a letter that jefferson wrote in 1817 to william thornton who was the man he assigned to work on the united
states capitol building when he was president. so they were very good friends. and jefferson wrote to thornton about his ideas for the university. and you'll see in the middle he included a little sketch of what he was thinking. a sort of open-ended rectangle with pavilions interspersed with dormitory rooms. very regularly. and then an open area that he says is grass and trees. no more detail than that. and so that's one of his very first conceptions for the university. it's a basic part of the idea. but it changed dramatically between the time he drew that sketch and the university actually completed. it was about nine years after this sketch, this was 1817. and the university was essentially complete in 1826. each of the 10 pavilions were inhabited by a professor. and they taught -- they actually taught their classes there in the pavilion.
and so they lived among the students. and the students lived adjacent to the faculty. and that was one of jefferson's idea that the proximity would result in, you know, all kinds of educational and intellectual exchange. so this is pavilion seven. it's the first building that was constructed at the university. it's now the col made club which is -- col made club which is a faculty club. this was constructed before the university was charted in 1819 and this is one of jefferson's architectural drawings. he did a drawing like this with an elevation and floor plans for each of the 10 pavel yons. get an see he didn't quite his scale right. and had to glue on a small piece of paper to complete the chimney stack. i kind of like that. it makes him a little more human, i think, that he could actually make a mistake like
that. and so this is an example. the ground floor of the pavilion here two large rooms. the upstairs and the cellar, this is the cellar and this is the upstairs. the upstares would be the living room. for the family and the lower floor, the cellar was where the cooking happened. and where some of the slaves who worked for the professors would have lived. obviously you can see it's neo-classical and he was very much interested in classical architecture. one of his big source books was the four books of architecture by andrea piladio in english that came out i believe in 1721. nd he used those to draw inspiration, especially for the pavilion, for the various pavilions, each one is different. he wanted the university to be an open air classroom. even in its buildings. so you can walk around and see
examples of classical architecture and the different orders of architecture and different styles and features. and that was very much a part of what he wanted to have happen. the university got off the ground officially in 1819 when the general assembly gave the university a charter. and gave the university funding to continue building buildings. that was very critical. as it always is. and this is a ledger that was maintained by the proctor who was essentially the chief operating officer of the university. it's called a day book. and in 18th century, 19th century accounting essentially this is where you wrote down incoming and outgoing funds every day. and you would eventually transfer them officially to a ledger, under the various funds, you had established the balances. you'd see all of that sort of
thing. the great thing about this is the proctor actually made notes to himself about what some of these expenses were for. and so it goes from things like a00 pounds nails to of flour to x number of board feet of lumber to hauling bricks and hauling earth. and most importantly for u.v.a., it shows you the source of the labor that was used to actually build the buildings. and here on this page, the proctor, arthur brockenbro has recorded payments that were made to individuals for the hire of their slaves. and the slaves are actually named. you can see here is payment for his -- here's tom. the name of a slave. and then barrett. and george. so we know who the individuals
were. and what the name of the slave was who was hired to work here at u.v.a. and this goes on and on and on throughout the years of construction. it's been identified that probably overall, there was somewhere in the neighborhood named 75 uniquely slaves. and sometimes when we're not sure if the same slave with the same name is the same person, and of course not every slave as hired for the duration. it was common that a slache hire was done for a year. and that on the new year, a new contract would be offered to the owner. and it would be renegotiated. i suspect a lot of this was done on a monthly or a daily or even a weekly basis. with the owners. if you finished moving earth for the terraces you don't need as much labor so you can send them back to their owner to work. on the other hand, if you have
someone who's a skilled carpenter, perhaps, or skilled at making bricks, you might need them for much longer. of course, this is the rotunda and probably the most iconic building of the university. i think it's what everybody thinks about when they think of u.v.a. it is based on the model of the pantheon in rome. and it's a model that jefferson adapted from the piladio volumes i mentioned. we always like to point out that in the lower corner, he says it's the library. which of course it was. and it was the library from when it opened in 1826 until 1938. and we're always very proud of that. it served as the library and a classroom building. there was a chemistry lab in the basement. there were classrooms. there were meeting rooms. it was the center of the university life.
it's changed dramatically in the 20th century. as i said it was the library until 1938. and then a new main library alderman library which is adjacent to this building was built. and the rotunda was then used as an event space and for offices. and essentially from about world war ii until very recently, there was not a lot of assigned activity to the rotunda. it was more of a ceremonial space. and students could actually go here their four years without having to go into the rotunda which didn't really seem like quite the right thing. and so recently, the rotunda has undergone about two years' worth of repair and renovation. and with an eye specifically to making it more accessible and more appealing to students to
use, to study in the dome room, to study in the other rooms and have it open later at night. have spaces that more classes can meet. so they're trying really hard, and i think it's a great idea, to bring it back to the center of academic life. and not just have it as a big monument sitting at the head of the lawn. there's no question that jefferson would be astonished about u.v.a. today. sheerly from size alone. of u think about the size the original buildings versus what exists now at u.v.a., it's immense. the student body is enormous. before the civil war, i believe the highest enrollment u.v.a. had was something like 800 students. now we're in the tens of thousands of students. obviously other things that would astonnish him are the fact that women are being
educated at u.v.a. and african-americans are being educated at u.v.a. and students from all around the world from being educated at u.v.a. and yet there's still a great al about his original vision that has survived. and i think that is probably as astonishing as anything. >> we hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. in the declaration gallery in the albert and shirley small collection library at the university of virginia this gallery houses what we consider the best collection e. tant of documents and printings
relating to the american declaration of independence. it's the founding document of the united states of america. written by the founder of the university of virginia, thomas jefferson. this is a collection formed by albert h. small of the university -- university alineup in us and property developer in washington, d.c. as you enter the gallery, you'll see the key item in the collection, something that took mr. small quite a few years before he had the chance to acquire it and this is one of 26 known copies of the very first printing of the declaration of independence printed on the evening of july 4, 1776, in philadelphia, by printer john dunlap. it really is the key printing for american history. the first printing of america's founding documents. we're not quite sure how many copies were printed. perhaps upward of 400 single sheet broad sides.
26 survive. and interestingly enough, two of the 26 copies are here in the albert and shirley small special collection library. mr. small's copy is one of the finest known. and has a very interesting provenance and we can trace the ownership back to the early 19th century and owned by a name of tobias lear, george washington's last personal secretary. and there's a fairly good chance that earlier it had belonged to george washington. the purpose of the dunlap broad side printed on the evening of july 4 was to disseminate the news as quickly as possible throughout the 13 colonies. so copies were sent on horseback far and wide to government representatives in each colony so the news could be read aloud and reprinted and spread by any means possible. once the news arrived in various cities in the now united states, the text of the
declaration was reprinted in various forms. as separate broad sides like the dunlap broad side or in nugent-hopkins, also in period -- or in newspapers also in periodicals and in great britain. this broad side was printed in salem, massachusetts, after the news arrived there later in july of 1776. and here in a newspaper issued an extraordinary issue that is a special stop press edition of the new hampshire gazette printed in exeter, new hampshire, dated july 16, 1776, is the text of the declaration. so important that it could not wait for the next issue of the paper to be published. and of course the news was sent to great britain and arrived there in early august of 1776. and the first printing of the text in london was in the -- this magazine, issue of the
gentleman's magazine published in august, 1776. the english response to american independence is quite interesting. because of course the issue had developed over more than a decade's time. and in england, there are a great many preliminary pamphlets had been published already. and the dates have been held and the views presented in nugent-hopkins and other forms. so many -- in newspapers and other forms. so many english supported the cause and the reaction could be described as say mixed. now i would like to show a few of the most significant manuscripts in albert small's collection on the declaration of independence. perhaps the most significant e was is this letter here by dillard cesar rodney, a delegate from delaware. and it's the only letter that i know of signed by a delegate who attended the convention and
signed the declaration, a letter that's actually dated from philadelphia on july 4, 1776, and yes, it does discuss the declaration of independence. rodney played a key role in the decision to approve american independence. he was summoned on very short notice from delaware. he went through a driving rainstorm. the 80 miles to philadelphia. he got there just in time to cast his vote which was to approve independence. and then at this letter, he's writing the evening of july 4, where he describes what he's done and then goes on to say that the news will now be printed and disseminated in what he calls hand bills. that is broadsides. nd he's referring to the broadside. here we have a facsimile of the writing desk, the portable writing desk that thomas jefferson used in philadelphia in june and july of 1776 to
write his draft of the text of the declaration of independence. now, we do not have the original desk. you can see that in the smithsonian institution in washington. but we do have a very interesting letter that tells us what jefferson did with the desk. and this letter is here. a letter that he wrote to his granddaughter in 1825. she's recently married. she's moved to boston. unfortunately, on the way there, some of their furniture was lost in a shipwreck. jefferson is writing his granddaughter to console her on the loss and saying perhaps i can help replace your furniture by offering you the desk on which i wrote the declaration of independence. so he sent that to her and she kept it in the family for a while before donating it to the people of the united states.
this imposing volume is one of several in albert small's collection that contains sets of documents signed by the 56 men who signed the original declaration of independence. it's long been a goal of collectors of menora to assemble complete sets -- of americana to assemble complete sets of documents from the all 56 signers of the declaration. about 40 such sets exist and most of them in institutions. albert small was able to collect one of the finest existing sets of these documents which he has presented to us. so here in this opening we can see on the left-hand side an original document from 1778 signed by john penn who is one of the signers of the declaration. and then a typed transcript of the document. i think it's important to realize that after signing the declaration in 1776, the
delegates in fact many americans were by no means safe. they still had to fight a war to ratify that decision and achieve their independence. and not only were british troops present and fighting in some of the colonies, but many of the patriots' friends and neighbors moved to the loyalist cause and became bitter enemies. and the delegates who signed the declaration were basically committing treason. and some of their lives were really in danger. and let me take you into the next room in the declaration gallery. and i think it's important also to realize that in the late 18th century the declaration did not have quite the significance that we place on it today. really wasn't until the early 19th century when a new generation was beginning to
reflect on the achievements of the previous generation in forming the united states that interested e more in the declaration of independence. more reverent of the achievement of their ancestors. and more willing to commemorate that achievement. for example, it wasn't until 1818 that the first facsimile reproduction of the declaration of independence was created. this is an engraving done in 1818. it's not an exact facsimile. but it contains the text of the declaration. nd also facsimiles of the 56th signatures added to the document. and mr. small's collection, we have not only this 1818 engraving, we also have the subscription book that the publisher of the engraving carried with him as he toured
the united states seeking subscriptions to his print. in planning his subscription campaign, he did a very shrewd thing. he started by approaching who else but thomas jefferson. thomas jefferson is the first person to sign this book, to pledge to purchase a copy of the print. the next signature is james madison. the third signature, john consequencey adams. who was president of the united states at that time. and so on. so as the publisher carried this subscription book around the united states, he could show people who it already subscribed to the print and encourage them therefore to purchase the wrong copy. almost immediately another publisher got the idea to prepare a competing print of the declaration of independence. so this one was issued also in
1818 by john vins. and here he has made it a bit fancier and added illustrations. also with more exact facsimile of the original document. one interesting feature of this print is you can see george washington is at the top. john hancock, to the left. and then thomas jefferson. washington was the first president of the united states, jefferson was the third. where is president number two? john adams? he's not here. that was a mistake for mr. bens. here's the letter in albert small's collection. the original letter written by john adams to john bens complaining about adams' absence from this print. and sent a copy of his print to john adams who when he received it was horrified to find that his portrait was missing from
the print. therefore, he returned it to john bens along with this letter, saying i'm returning this. please do not send another copy. in 1823, perhaps the most important facsimile reproduction of the declaration of independence was issued. this is the so-called stone broadside. this print was actually taken directly from the original manuscript in -- and now on display in the national archives. as you know if you've seen the original it's quite faded. one of the reasons that it is faded is that the treatment received at the time that this print was prepared, the original manuscript was dampened and then it was pressed against a metal plate to transfer some of the ink from the original to that plate. that ink then became the template that the engraver used to engrache the print being
plate from which this copy was printed. therefore, unfortunately, damaging the original. but here this print is in the end a true exact facsimile of the original. mr. small's copy is a very important copy of this facsimile. this is a copy that was given to general lafayette during his 1824 tour of the united states. throughout the 19th century, many print sellers prepared and sold prints related to the declaration of independence. either reproductions of paintings of the scene of the signing such as the famous john trumble painting of the signing of the declaration. this would -- should really be taken with a grain of salt if we read the accounts of the continental congress as they're debating the declaration. some of the members who eventually signed the document in early august of 1776 were
not in fact present in the room. they hadn't even been elected to the continental congress at that time. so this is in some respects a actual ion but not an representation of the scene. if you see broadsides or prints that appear to be the declaration of independence, it's a good idea to look a little more carefully because there are a number of examples that are using the theme of the declaration of independence in a different way. this is a declaration printed in charleston, south carolina, late in 1860. it's really a declaration of secession. a declaration of independence from the american union. here we have the text of the ordinance of secession and also the secession convention, the names of the delegates who
signed it. we're extremely grateful to albert small for donating his very important collection to the university of virginia. it's of great persons to us. because thomas jefferson was the founder of our university. on his tombstone he mentioned three great achievements that he wanted to be known for. university of virginia was one of them. the declaration of independence was another. so here we're able to present another side of jefferson here in the university that he founded. announcer: our visit to charlottesville, virginia, is an american history tv exclusive. and we showed it to you today to introduce you to c-span's cities tour. for six years now we've traveled the cities across the u.s. to explore their literary and historic sites. you can watch more of our visit t c-span.org/citiestour.
announcer: next president president trump attends -- 1057 summit in sicily. secretary of state tillerson in london. after that a college commencement speech by hillary clinton. later, vice president pence the u.s. naval academy commencement. president trump is in sicily for the g-7 summit meeting. the gathered an official photo. the group of seven members include united in france, germany, italy, canada, and united kingdom.