J. L. BELL is a Massachusetts writer who specializes in (among other things) the start of the American Revolution in and around Boston. He is particularly interested in the experiences of children in 1765-75. He has published scholarly papers and popular articles for both children and adults. He was consultant for an episode of History Detectives, and contributed to a display at Minute Man National Historic Park.

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Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Gentlemen at the Shirley-Eustis House, 24 Mar.

Here’s one more history event for the busy night of Thursday, 24 March.

The Shirley-Eustis House in Roxbury will play host to “The League of Most Interesting Gentlemen,” or at least to professional men portraying them.

These gentlemen consist of Benjamin Franklin, President James Madison, President Thomas Jefferson, and a Natural Philosopher with unorthodox medical ideas. They will share “commentary on political and social issues of their times, and give their personal remarks regarding the intellectual spirit of the Enlightenment.”

William Shirley, the Massachusetts governor who built that house, “had much conversation” with Franklin in the winter of 1755 over the “Albany Plan” to unite the colonies. A later owner of the mansion, Dr. William Eustis (shown here), was Secretary of War under Madison and did just fine until there was, you know, a war. So those visiting gentlemen will surely have things to say about their hosts.

The doors will open at 5:30 P.M., and the presentations are scheduled to begin at 6:00. The League of Most Interesting Gentlemen will remain to have further conversation and answer further questions afterward. Refreshments will be served. Admission is $10 per person. To reserve spaces, call 617-442-2275.

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