Additional Historical Figures Portrayed by Clay Jenkinson
Clay began doing a first-person characterization of Meriwether Lewis in the early 1980s as a Chautauquan for the North Dakota Humanities Council, the birthplace of the modern Chautauqua movement. Since then, Clay has continued to present historical figures in a format which has become among the most successful in the nation. A teaching format, that is bringing the humanities and history to citizens of all ages. In 1988, Clay was recognized for his groundbreaking work in the format with one of the first five National Endowment for the Humanities awards for excellence by President George H. W. Bush.
Jenkinson’s presentations of Thomas Jefferson have become the national model for scholars interpreting historical figures in the Chautauqua format. Clay appeared as Thomas Jefferson in the White House for President Clinton and distinguished guests on the occasion of the 250th anniversary of the third president's birth in April 1994. This was the first public program in the humanities featured in a White House event. Clay has been heard throughout the nation as Jefferson on the weekly Thomas Jefferson Hour®. Jenkinson has first presented Jefferson in character and then visited with audiences as a public scholar of Jefferson’s ideas and views in thousands of programs throughout the United States. These programs have included:
* Supreme Court justices
* State legislative assemblies
* Gatherings of U.S. Representatives and Senators
* Maximum security prisoners
* University students
* Encampments of survivalists
* Groups numbering several thousand who came together in major cities during a tour for the Library of Congress
Jenkinson’s Chautauqua work over the last two decades has included new historical figures each year for the Great Basin Chautauqua, including Sir Francis Bacon, Jonathan Swift, J. Robert Oppenheimer, John Wesley Powell, and Jean-Jacques Rosseau. Jenkinson has presented both Thomas Jefferson and Meriwether Lewis for the North Dakota Humanities Council in a statewide tour and on several other occasions.
The late Everett C. Albers, past-executive director of the North Dakota Humanities Council, where the modern Chautauqua movement began, said of Clay, “The North Dakota Humanities Council had an idea. Jenkinson made it work.”
Clay Jenkinson Began Presenting Jefferson in Character in 1984 for a Regional Chautauqua Program.
Since then, he has made presentations in nearly every state to thousands of gatherings, including school children, supreme court justices, a gala celebration of the 250th anniversary of Jefferson’s birth at a White House event hosted by President and Mrs. Clinton, and many assemblies of state legistures.
Known by historians of Jefferson as a scholar who has read most completely in both the writings of Jefferson, much of which Mr. Jenkinson has committed to memory, and in critical sources about Jefferson, Clay Jenkinson has made presentations at Monticello, appeared as a major contributor to Ken Burns’ series, Thomas Jefferson, and works toward completion of his own biography of Jefferson. This is your gateway to Jenkinson on Jefferson.
If you want to book Clay Jenkinson for an event, or contact him for any
professionally related reason, it is best to call or write:
For more details vist the Dakota Sky Education website