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Society & Culture
History

Virginia Historical Society Podcasts

Updated 8 days ago

Society & Culture
History
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Recordings of public lectures and events held at the Virginia Historical Society.

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Recordings of public lectures and events held at the Virginia Historical Society.

iTunes Ratings

42 Ratings
Average Ratings
34
5
2
0
1

Audio quality

By G OL REB - Jul 30 2019
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Subjects, speakers great...audio quality usually poor, please remedy.

Yes!

By History liker - Jun 27 2018
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Man I love listening to this podcast.

iTunes Ratings

42 Ratings
Average Ratings
34
5
2
0
1

Audio quality

By G OL REB - Jul 30 2019
Read more
Subjects, speakers great...audio quality usually poor, please remedy.

Yes!

By History liker - Jun 27 2018
Read more
Man I love listening to this podcast.
Cover image of Virginia Historical Society Podcasts

Virginia Historical Society Podcasts

Latest release on Jun 05, 2019

The Best Episodes Ranked Using User Listens

Updated by OwlTail 8 days ago

Rank #1: Thanksgiving in American History

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On November 21, 2011, internationally renowned historians and hosts Edward Ayers, Brian Balogh, and Peter Onuf presented "Thanksgiving in American History." Exploring competing myths surrounding Thanksgiving’s origins, the American History Guys peeled back layers of tradition that have created the celebration that we know today. From Pilgrims, to turkey, to football games, to parade floats, the Guys offered surprising perspectives on the shaping of one our nation’s most beloved holidays. A special guest—who made a case for Virginia’s claim on Thanksgiving’s roots— also joined the Guys.(Introduction by Paul A. Levengood)

Dec 14 2011

1hr 3mins

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Rank #2: More Important Than Gettysburg: The Seven Days Campaign as a Turning Point by Gary W. Gallagher

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On July 11, 2012, Gary W. Gallagher delivered a Banner Lecture entitled "More Important Than Gettysburg: The Seven Days Campaign as a Turning Point". Ever since the Civil War ended, it has been a popular pastime to look for dramatic turning points in that conflict. For many, the battle of Gettysburg represents the great event that tipped the balance toward the North. Key political, diplomatic, social, and military issues, however, were at stake in the summer of 1862 as Robert E. Lee and George B. McClellan faced off in the Seven Days Battles. Gary W. Gallagher argues that Lee's victory had a profound effect on the conflict and that perhaps the series of battles waged on the Virginia Peninsula should be regarded as a major turning point of the war. Dr. Gallagher is a professor of history at the University of Virginia. His most recent book is "The Union War." This lecture is cosponsored with the Richmond National Battlefield Park and The American Civil War Center at Historic Tredegar. (Introduction by Paul Levengood and Dave Ruth)

Jul 30 2012

1hr 8mins

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Rank #3: The Great Influenza: The Story of the Deadliest Pandemic in History

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A century ago—at the height of World War I—history’s most lethal influenza virus erupted in an army camp in Kansas, moved east with American troops, then exploded, killing as many as 100 million people worldwide. The disease claimed more lives in twenty-four weeks than AIDS has claimed in thirty-seven years, and more than the Black Death killed in a century. But this was not the Middle Ages, and 1918 marked the first collision between modern science and epidemic disease.

KEYNOTE SPEAKER:

John M. Barry is an award-winning and New York Times best-selling author whose book The Great Influenza: The Story of the Deadliest Pandemic in History was named the year’s outstanding book on science or medicine by The National Academies of Science’s in 2004.

After weaving together a dramatic story of triumph amid tragedy in the face of a global pandemic, Barry will join a panel of specialists from the VCU School of Medicine who will discuss the role they are playing today in the research, treatment, and prevention of infectious diseases.

MODERATOR:

Peter Buckley, M.D. – Dean, VCU School of Medicine, Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs, VCU Health System

PANEL MEMBERS:

John M. Barry – Distinguished Scholar at Tulane's Bywater Institute and adjunct professor at the Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine

Gonzalo Martin Llorens Bearman, M.D., M.P.H., F.A.C.P., F.S.H.E.A., F.I.D.S.A. – Chair, Division of Infectious Diseases, VCU School of Medicine, Richard P. Wenzel Professor of Internal Medicine Hospital Epidemiologist, VCU Health System

Michael Donnenberg, M.D. – Senior Associate Dean for Research and Research Training, VCU School of Medicine, Professor of Internal Medicine and of Microbiology and Immunology

This program is made possible by a generous grant from the Virginia Sargeant Reynolds Foundation and is cosponsored with the MCV Foundation.

Oct 16 2018

1hr 36mins

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Rank #4: Hampton Roads Murder and Mayhem: The Darker Side of the Tidewater

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On March 14, 2019, Nancy E. Sheppard delivered the Banner Lecture, “Hampton Roads Murder and Mayhem: The Darker Side of the Tidewater.”

Join two-time, award-nominated author and historian, Nancy Sheppard, as she discusses some of the darker tales from southeastern Virginia.

Dive into true stories of:

survival cannibalism at Jamestowne

the bravery of Grace Sherwood, known as “The Witch of Pungo”

stories of riots, murders, lynchings,

and Charles Lindbergh’s visit to Hampton Roads to find his son.

Come and experience some of the more nefarious moments in the vibrant history of Hampton Roads, Virginia.

Nancy E. Sheppard, a writer and historian of her native Hampton Roads, Virginia, is the author of The Airship ROMA Disaster in Hampton Roads and Hampton Roads Murder: & Mayhem.

Mar 14 2019

50mins

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Rank #5: Tobacco, Mosquito, Slave: Colonial Virginia and the Dawn of Globalization

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On April 10, 2008, Charles C. Mann delivered the 2008 Stuart G. Christian, Jr., Trustees Lecture. In his recent best-selling book, 1491, a groundbreaking work of science, history, and archaeology, Mr. Mann radically altered our understanding of the Americas before the arrival of Columbus in 1492. In 'Tobacco, Mosquito, Slave,' Mann gave VHS members a preview of his next book, which will describe the creation of the first truly global network of trade and ideas—from the triangular trade linking Europe, West Africa, and the New World to the first trans-Pacific ties between the New World and East Asia.
(Introduction by Charles F. Bryan, Jr.)

May 04 2010

28mins

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Rank #6: Lincoln: President-Elect

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On December 4, 2008, Mr. Holzer delivered a talk on his newest Lincoln book, Lincoln: President-Elect. In the winter of 1860–61, the crisis that erupted with the election of Abraham Lincoln threatened to split the nation. In his newest Lincoln book, Lincoln: President-Elect, Harold Holzer examines the perilous interregnum before the president-elect's inauguration and recounts Lincoln's public and private struggle to preserve the Union. Mr. Holzer is co-chairman of the U.S. Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission and senior vice president for external affairs at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
(Introduction by Paul A. Levengood)

Apr 30 2010

42mins

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Rank #7: Secretariat

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On Thursday, October 13, 2010, Kate Chenery Tweedy discussed her book Secretariat's Meadow. Secretariat, the great red stallion who became the 1973 Triple Crown winner, was born on March 30, 1970, at The Meadow, a historic farm in Caroline County. The new book, Secretariat's Meadow, celebrates the farm, the family—especially Chris Chenery and his daughter, Penny—and Secretariat. The story is told by Penny Chenery's daughter, Kate Chenery Tweedy, with the assistance of her coauthor, Leeanne Ladin. More than 300 photos, most of which have never been seen, offer a magnificent visual journey to complement this special story in one of America's greatest sports moments.(Introduction by Paul A. Levengood)

Oct 14 2010

57mins

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Rank #8: The Civil War at a Crossroads: The Seven Days by Ed Ayers

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On June 19, 2012, Edward Ayers delivered a Banner Lecture entitled "The Civil War at a Crossroads: The Seven Days." In the spring of 1862, Virginia's civilians faced a different kind of war than they had the year before. Advancing Union armies now occupied large amounts of territory in western Virginia and in Tidewater, and their presence had a dramatic effect on local populations. Pro-Confederate white Virginians became refugees as they left their homes, and enslaved Virginians began to flee to the safety of Union lines. In this lecture, Edward L. Ayers analyzed the impact of the Civil War on Virginia's civilians up through the first half of 1862. He is president of the University of Richmond and the author of In the Presence of Mine Enemies: The Civil War in the Heart of America, 1859–1863. This lecture was cosponsored with the Richmond National Battlefield Park. (Introduction by Paul Levengood, Dave Ruth, and Cheryl Magazine)

Jun 28 2012

1hr 20mins

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Rank #9: Lee and Grant

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On November 1, 2007, William M. S. Rasmussen delivered a lecture in conjunction with exhibition Lee and Grant. The two great opposing military commanders of the Civil War, Robert E. Lee and Ulysses S. Grant, towered over their contemporaries. In a major exhibition and book created in the 200th anniversary year of Lee's birth, the VHS explored the parallel lives of these two American heroes. In an illustrated lecture, co-curator and co-author William M. S. Rasmussen examined Lee and Grant and their influence on our history. Dr. Rasmussen is Lora M. Robins Curator at the VHS and curator of the exhibition.
(Introduction by James C. Kelly)

Apr 30 2010

1hr

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Rank #10: A Kingdom Strange: The Brief and Tragic History of the Lost Colony of Roanoke

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On May 27, 2010, James Horn discussed his book "A Kingdom Strange: The Brief and Tragic History of the Lost Colony of Roanoke". In 1587, a small band of men, women, and children put down the first tentative roots of English settlement on the sandy soil of Roanoke Island along the North Carolina coast, in what was then considered part of Virginia. In the face of dwindling supplies and hostile Indians, the English leader, John White, left his family and friends and re-crossed the Atlantic in a desperate attempt to assemble ships to rescue the failing colony. However, the threat from the Spanish Armada delayed his return until 1590, and when he did, the colonists had completely disappeared. In his dramatic new account, master historian James Horn revisits the tragedy of this first, failed effort at English colonization in the New World. He offers new evidence about what happened to the Lost Colony and its people. The author of five books on early American history, James Horn is vice president of research and historical interpretation and director of the John D. Rockefeller Jr. Library at Colonial Williamsburg. "This lecture was cosponsored with the Society of Colonial Wars in Virginia."
(Introduction by Paul A. Levengood)

Jun 09 2010

59mins

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Rank #11: Werowocomoco and Fairfield Plantation: Rediscovering the Forgotten Landscapes of Gloucester County

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On April 2, 2009, David Brown and Thane Harpole delivered this lecture entitled 'Werowocomoco and Fairfield Plantation: Rediscovering the Forgotten Landscapes of Gloucester County.' The excitement of discovering lost landscapes, including the Burwell family's ancestral home and the nearby village of Powhatan and Pocahontas, has resulted in the resurgence of support for historic preservation in the Middle Peninsula. David Brown and Thane Harpole described these activities to illustrate everyday life in colonial Virginia and to show how our interpretations of it influence our own day. Brown and Harpole are archaeologists, co-directors of the Fairfield Foundation, and founding members of the Werowocomoco Research Group.
(Introduction by Paul A. Levengood)

Apr 30 2010

1hr 8mins

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Rank #12: The Shipwreck That Saved Jamestown: The Sea Venture Castaways and the Fate of America

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On April 16, 2009, Lorri Glover delivered a Banner Lecture entitled The Shipwreck That Saved Jamestown: The Sea Venture Castaways and the Fate of America. The wreck of the Sea Venture on Bermuda in 1609 and the role its survivors played in the eventual rescue of the failing colony at Jamestown are dramatic tales from the founding years of the nation. In a new book, authors Lorri Glover and Daniel Blake Smith retell this account of shipwreck, courage, mutiny, and deliverance. The authors make a forceful case that the Sea Venture bears no small part in the ultimate survival of English colonization in America. Dr. Glover teaches American history at the University of Tennessee. This lecture was cosponsored with the Society of Colonial Wars in Virginia.
(Introduction by Paul A. Levengood)

Apr 30 2010

39mins

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Rank #13: General Lee's Army: From Victory to Collapse

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On March 21, 2008, Dr. Glatthaar delivered a talk on his new book, General Lee's Army: From Victory to Collapse. In this lecture, based on his new book General Lee's Army, Dr. Glatthaar used the story of Robert E. Lee's army as a powerful lens for viewing the entire Civil War, from the early springtime of southern hopes to final crushing defeat, from the homefront to the heart of the most famous battles of the war. Dr. Glatthaar teaches history at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. (Introduction by Charles F. Bryan, Jr.)

Apr 30 2010

51mins

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Rank #14: Reading the Man: A Portrait of Robert E. Lee Through his Private Letters

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On May 24, 2007, Ms. Pryor delivered this lecture on her book, Reading the Man: A Portrait of Robert E. Lee Through his Private Letters.
Since his death, researchers have lamented that Robert E. Lee never wrote a memoir. But, as author Elizabeth Brown Pryor revealed during her Banner Lecture at the VHS, this collection contains numerous letters and notes in the hand of Robert E. Lee reflecting on his long career. Pryor, who was granted access to selected portions of the collection found at Burke and Herbert Bank before processing at the Society began, spoke about her recently published book, Reading the Man: A Portrait of Robert E. Lee Through his Private Letters. In her book, Pryor explores the thoughts and actions of Robert E. Lee largely through his own words—some of which were derived from the newly released papers at the VHS—focusing on Lee's religious beliefs, his views on slavery, his father, his days at West Point, and his decision to join the South during the Civil War. (Introduction by Nelson D. Lankford)

Apr 30 2010

39mins

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Rank #15: Thomas Jefferson, Revered and Reviled by Robert M. S. McDonald

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On December 1, Robert M. S. McDonald delivered a Banner Lecture entitled “Thomas Jefferson, Revered and Reviled.”
Of all the founding fathers, Thomas Jefferson stood out as the most controversial and confounding. Loved and hated, revered and reviled, during his lifetime he served as a lightning rod for dispute. Few major figures in American history provoked such a polarization of public opinion. While Jefferson’s supporters organized festivals in his honor where they praised him in speeches and songs, his detractors portrayed him as a dilettante and demagogue, double-faced and dangerously radical, an atheist hostile to Christianity. Characterizing his beliefs as un-American, they tarred him with the extremism of the French Revolution. Yet his allies cheered his contributions to the American Revolution, unmasking him as the now formerly anonymous author of the words that had helped to define America in the Declaration of Independence. Jefferson’s bifurcated image took shape both as a product of his own creation and in response to factors beyond his control. In the first fifty years of independence, Americans’ views of Jefferson revealed much about their conflicting views of the purpose and promise of America.
Robert M. S. McDonald is a professor of history at the United States Military Academy. He is the author and editor of several books on Jefferson, including Thomas Jefferson’s Military Academy: Founding West Point (2004), Light and Liberty: Thomas Jefferson and the Power of Knowledge (2012), and Confounding Father: Thomas Jefferson's Image in His Own Time (2016).

Dec 02 2016

1hr 17mins

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Rank #16: Martha Jefferson Randolph, Daughter of Monticello by Cynthia A. Kierner

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On January 17, 2013, Cynthia A. Kierner delivered a Banner Lecture entitled "Martha Jefferson Randolph, Daughter of Monticello." As the oldest and favorite daughter of Thomas Jefferson, Martha "Patsy" Jefferson Randolph was extremely well educated, traveled in the circles of presidents and aristocrats, and was known on two continents for her particular grace and sincerity. Yet, as mistress of a large household, she was not spared the tedium, frustration, and great sorrow that most women of her time faced. Though Patsy's name is familiar because of her famous father, Cynthia Kierner is the first historian to place Patsy at the center of her own story, taking readers into the largely ignored private spaces of the founding era. Kierner is professor of history and director of the Ph.D. program in history and art history at George Mason University. (Introduction by Paul Levengood and Nicole McMullin)

Jan 29 2013

1hr 2mins

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Rank #17: Tracking Down a Confederate Deserter after Gettysburg by Peter S. Carmichael

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On February 21, 2019, Peter S. Carmichael delivered the Banner Lecture, “Tracking Down a Confederate Deserter after Gettysburg.”

On August 20, 1863, thirteen veteran soldiers from the 3rd North Carolina Infantry decided that they'd had enough of war. That evening, in the blackness of night, they picked up their rifles, slung on their cartridge belts, and escaped into the woods. From that point on there was no turning back. Our guest speaker, Professor Peter S. Carmichael, will focus on the words of John Futch, one of the thirteen deserters. Though he was illiterate, Futch left a remarkable set of letters that he dictated to his comrades. Futch’s powerful story puts us in the shoes of a deserter, enabling us to see his world after the devastating defeat in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

Dr. Carmichael, one of the nation’s foremost authorities on the American Civil War, is the Robert C. Fluhrer Professor of Civil War Studies and the director of the Civil War Institute, Gettysburg College. He is the author of numerous scholarly and popular articles and several books, including Lee's Young Artillerist: William R. J. Pegram; The Last Generation: Young Virginians in Peace, War, and Reunion; and The War for the Common Soldier: How Men Thought, Fought, and Survived in Civil War Armies.

Mar 06 2019

1hr 3mins

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Rank #18: Keep It a Holy Thing’: Lee Chapel’s Greatest Challenge

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On August 2, 2018, David Cox delivered a banner lecture, “‘Keep It a Holy Thing’: Lee Chapel’s Greatest Challenge.”

The chapel that Robert E. Lee built on the campus of what was then Washington College in Lexington, Virginia, almost did not survive to its 150th anniversary this year. In the early 1920s, an energetic president wanted to tear it down to create a vast monumental building to honor his famous predecessor. An unlikely combination of “a little group of willful women,” a crusading newspaper editor, alumni, and Lee aficionados from around the country managed to save it for posterity, even as they redefined its meaning in ways that abide today.

David Cox, a visiting professor of history at Southern Virginia University, teaches American and religious history. An Episcopal priest, he lives in Lexington, where, from 1987 to 2000, he was rector of R. E. Lee Memorial Church. He is the author of The Religious Life of Robert E. Lee and Lee Chapel at 150: A History.

Oct 16 2018

47mins

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Rank #19: Civil War Medicine by Dr. Adrian Wheat

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On October 27, 2011, Dr. Adrian Wheat delivered a lecture entitled "Civil War Medicine." Staggering numbers of sick and wounded soldiers placed unprecedented demands on the practice of medicine on both sides during the Civil War. This lecture will describe the state of medical science in the 1860s and its application in Virginia during the war, mostly on the Confederate side. It will assess the complicated issue of care on the battlefield, transportation of patients to fixed general hospitals, and the role of sanitation. Dr. Adrian Wheat practiced medicine for many years as an army surgeon and helped found the Society of Civil War Surgeons. Most recently he advised the VHS on surgical topics for the exhibition "An American Turning Point: The Civil War in Virginia". This lecture is cosponsored with the Richmond National Battlefield Park.(Introduction by Paul Levengood).

Oct 18 2011

59mins

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Rank #20: The Ascent of George Washington: The Hidden Political Genius of an American Icon

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On May 28, 2009, John Ferling delivered a talk on his book, The Ascent of George Washington: The Hidden Political Genius of an American Icon. In 2007 John Ferling spoke at the VHS on his history of the Revolutionary War, Almost a Miracle. Now he has drawn on his unsurpassed knowledge of that era to provide a fresh and provocative new portrait of the greatest of the Founders in The Ascent of George Washington. Dr. Ferling is the author of an earlier biography of George Washington and numerous books on the American Revolution. This lecture was cosponsored with the Society of Colonial Wars in the State of Virginia.
(Introduction by Paul A. Levengood)

Apr 30 2010

1hr 5mins

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