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Washington: A Life in New Jersey
Wednesday, September 14, 2022 at 7:00 pm
One event on Wednesday, October 5, 2022 at 7:00 pm
One event on Friday, September 2, 2022 at 7:00 pm
Examine George Washington’s life and legacy in New Jersey, reading along in Ron Chernow, Washington: A Life with a State Park Service historian in a series of virtual monthly meetings.
Reading in advance is NOT required. Although offered as a series, each lecture stands on its own and assumes no prior knowledge. New participants are always welcome.
Wednesday, September 14, 2022 online at 7pm: Cincinnatus in Caesarea
George Washington weathers the worst winter of the Revolutionary War from headquarters in Morristown in 1779-80 and then travels a revolutionary route through New Jersey with Gen. Rochambeau in the summer of 1781 that will culminate in victory at Yorktown. Rockingham, near Princeton, serves as George Washington’s final wartime headquarters in 1783 as the Treaty of Paris is signed and the Commander-in-Chief issues his Farewell Orders to the Armies of the United States.
Suggested Reading: Ron Chernow, Washington: A Life Part Three: The General, Chapter 31: The Traitor – Chapter 37: Cincinnatus
Wednesday, October 5, 2022 online at 7pm: New Jersey Plans
George Washington’s retirement from public life is short-lived as the crises of the new republic keep him in correspondence with a New Jersey woman and draw him back to Philadelphia to serve as president of a Constitutional Convention featuring dueling arguments from the New Jersey delegation and a Virginian educated in New Jersey at Princeton, James Madison.
Suggested reading: Ron Chernow, Washington: A Life Part Four: The Statesman
Wednesday, November 2, 2022 online at 7pm: Triumphal President
George Washington enjoys a triumphal procession across the Assunpink Creek in Trenton where he earlier fended off the British during the Ten Crucial Days of 1776-77. Gen. Washington visits Boxwood Hall before his final entry into New York for inauguration as the first President of the United States. After the capital relocates to Philadelphia, George and Martha Washington use visits to New Jersey to defy the manumission laws of Pennsylvania, continuing to hold in slavery their servants from Mount Vernon even while presiding over a republic purportedly rooted in liberty.
Suggested reading: Ron Chernow, Washington: A Life Part Five: The President, Chapter 46: The Place of Execution – Chapter 54: Running into Extremes