Marking the start of a new year, Clay begins a series of biographical shows about the life of Thomas Jefferson, in order to help understand how Jefferson became who he was.
Jefferson's young life is discussed, including his early education and the formation of his character.
We discuss Jefferson's romantic life as a young man and, as Clay puts it, "Jefferson's agonizing attempt to find a wife."
This episode is about Jefferson the builder: "Architecture is my delight, and putting up and pulling down, one of my favorite amusements."
This episode explores Jefferson as "the reluctant revolutionary."
This episode explores Jefferson as the author of the Declaration of Independence.
Clay and David discuss the text of the Declaration of Independence.
Clay and David consider Jefferson's experiences as the wartime governor of Virginia.
Clay and David present part one of a discussion about Jefferson’s Notes on the State of Virginia, often called the greatest book written in America before 1800. In this episode, Jefferson’s positions on race are discussed at length.
Clay and David present part two of a discussion about Jefferson’s book, Notes on the State of Virginia, and how some of the things he wrote came back to haunt him politically.
This is the first of three shows devoted to Jefferson's time in Paris from 1784 to 1789.
This is the second of three shows devoted to Jefferson's time in Paris from 1784 to 1789.
#1196 Jefferson 113
This is the third of three shows devoted to Jefferson's time in Paris from 1784 to 1789.
This is the first of two shows discussing Jefferson’s time as the first Secretary of State. It begins with the story of Jefferson’s return from Europe and the effect his time in France had on his own political sentiments.
In this episode, the second of two shows discussing Jefferson’s time as the first Secretary of State, we learn more about Jefferson’s vision of America and the strong disagreements he had with Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton.
We discuss the period from 1794 to 1797 and Jefferson’s return to Monticello after his tenure as Secretary of State.
We return with a continued discussion about Jefferson’s period of retirement after his term as Secretary of State ended in 1793 and he returned to Monticello. Subjects include Jefferson’s reasons for leaving Washington, the Jay treaty, slavery and a revealing letter Jefferson wrote to his daughter Maria.
Reluctantly, Jefferson came out of retirement to serve as vice president for four years under his old friend John Adams. They were of different political persuasions and they, in a sense, became the heads of different political parties. Adams & Jefferson were friends when Jefferson's vice presidency began but there was a long period afterwards when they couldn't really abide each other; in the end, in 1812, their friendship was restored and it became one of the great reconciliations of American history. During his vice presidency, Jefferson contributed a rule book to the Senate: A Manual of Parliamentary Practice for the Use of the Senate of the United States. Jefferson meant it: He preferred the happiness of Monticello to the burdens of power — but he loved this country more than he loved his own happiness.
We return to our Jefferson 101 series this week with an episode about Jefferson’s road to the White House. Over the past few months, we've carried Jefferson from his birth in Virginia in 1743 right up to the brink of the time when he became the third president of the United States. We take for granted how our elections work. Back then, they didn't really have a blueprint: no conventions, no caucuses, no primaries, no debates. It was an informal system and we try to sort out how a reluctant person like Jefferson winds up being the president.
We discuss Jefferson’s first term as President. In particular, we discuss the Barbary pirates, the Louisiana Purchase and the Lewis & Clark expedition.
We explore Jefferson’s second term as President, and discuss the many difficulties he had, including the Burr conspiracy and the Embargo Act of 1807 to 1809.
We discuss Jefferson’s years in retirement at Monticello.
We continue our discussion of Jefferson’s final years in retirement at Monticello.
We conclude our Jefferson 101 biographical series by discussing his final days at Monticello, his legacy, and the deaths of both Jefferson and John Adams on July 4th, 1826 — the 50th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence.