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The Thomas Jefferson Hour

The Thomas Jefferson Hour features conversations with Thomas Jefferson, the third President of the United States, as portrayed by the award-winning humanities scholar and author, Clay Jenkinson. The weekly discussion features Mr. Jefferson’s views on events of his time, contemporary issues facing America and answers to questions submitted by his many listeners. To ask President Jefferson a question visit his website at www.jeffersonhour.com
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Now displaying: March, 2017
Mar 28, 2017

"[Meriwether Lewis] kept promising copy and he never sent a single page. We don't know what, if anything, became of his manuscript. We have nothing. He wouldn't communicate with us."

— Thomas Jefferson, as portrayed by Clay S. Jenkinson

President Jefferson talks about the Lewis & Clark expedition and America's role as an “Empire of liberty". Jefferson, that Type A keeper of records, was disappointed that Meriwether Lewis failed to complete his book about the journey. Lewis was Jefferson's neighbor, his protégé, his private secretary in the White House, and he led the most successful expedition in American history — a voyage Clay & David have spent many years discussing, and one that Clay revisits by foot and by canoe each summer with Odyssey Tours.

Find this episode, along with further recommended reading, on the blog.

Clay will be performing as Thomas Jefferson at the Ferguson Center for the Arts in Newport News, VA on April 19th. Find more info and buy tickets here.

Learn more about Odyssey Tours and the summer 2017 Lewis & Clark adventure on odytours.net.

Mar 21, 2017

"You can't understand Jefferson without understanding slavery; you can't understand the paradox of his life and the words that he wrote in the Declaration of Independence without understanding this historical connection with Sally Hemings and with the enslaved people in general at Monticello."

— Niya Bates, Public Historian of Slavery and African American Life at the Thomas Jefferson Foundation

A variety of subjects are covered on the Thomas Jefferson Hour this week, including a discussion about Benjamin Franklin Bache's newspaper the Philadelphia Aurora, the effect negative press had on politicians during Jefferson’s time and an interview with Niya Bates about restoration work ongoing at Monticello.

You can find a full transcript of our conversation with Niya Bates here.

Find this episode, along with further recommended reading, on the blog.

Learn more about Odyssey Tours and the summer 2017 Lewis & Clark adventure on odytours.net.

Mar 14, 2017

Our conversation this week is with the scholar, Charles Slack. Slack is the author of Liberty's First Crisis: Adams, Jefferson, and the Misfits Who Saved Free Speech. His book chronicles the tumultuous early years of the United States when dissent was so feared that those who dared to criticize the government were put in prison or deported through the Alien and Sedition Acts.

Our discussion focuses on three individuals: Matthew Lyon, the congressman from Vermont; Benjamin Franklin Bache, the grandson of the famous Dr. Franklin; and James Thomson Callender, the notorious Scottish journalist who helped break the Sally Hemings story in 1802. Once again, we find out how little some things have changed over the years. Sometimes the less-than-wholly-respectable journalists wind up doing a very important service to democracy.

Find this episode, along with further recommended reading, on the blog.

Read Clay's essay, "Ranking American Presidents."

Learn more about Odyssey Tours and the summer 2017 Lewis & Clark adventure on odytours.net.

Mar 7, 2017

 

Today, listeners call us and ask questions directly to President Jefferson. The inquiries cover a broad collection of topics: Jefferson's relationship with the press, postage costs during his time, President Andrew Jackson, patents, banking, and a request for advice on getting involved with local government.

Interested in appearing on a future call-in episode? Please submit your questions!

Find this episode, and further recommended reading, on the blog.

Learn more about Odyssey Tours and the summer 2017 Lewis & Clark adventure on odytours.net.

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