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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Sunday, October 22, 2017

“Washington Slept Here” Symposium at Mount Vernon, 3-4 Nov.

On 3-4 November, Mount Vernon will host the 2017 symposium of the Washington Library, which has the theme of “George Washington Slept Here: Travel, Rest, and Memory of the First President.”

The speakers include:
  • Philip Levy, “Where George Washington Slept: The Early Years”
  • John Maass, “Soldier and Surveyor: George Washington on Virginia’s Frontier”
  • Ed Redmond, “George Washington’s Manuscript Maps and Surveys, 1747-1799”
  • Joseph Stoltz, “Washington’s World Interactive Map”
  • Warren Bingham, “The People and Places of George Washington’s Southern Tour”
  • Natalie Larson, “Battlefield to Bed Chamber: Exploring George Washington’s Beds
  • Karl Watson, “‘Hospitality and a Genteel behaviour is shown to every gentleman stranger’: George Washington’s Impressions of Barbados and Barbadians in 1751”
  • Thomas Reinhart, “‘Got into Annapolis between five & Six Oclock’: George Washington among Maryland’s Architectural Trendsetters”
And toward the end of the two days I’ll speak about “General Washington’s First Headquarters and What He Learned There.” Here’s the description of that talk:
George Washington took command of the Continental Army in Cambridge, Massachusetts in July 1775. Soon he moved into a mansion that served as his headquarters for nine months – longer than any other site until Newburgh, New York. This talk explores why the general chose that house, now a National Park Service site; how he used it; and what he learned about leading the Continental cause while inside those walls. It will also discuss how later owners – the poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and his family – helped to preserve the public memory of the Revolution and Mount Vernon in particular.
This is, of course, quite an honor. It grows out of a historic resource study I wrote a few years back for the National Park Service. I’ll try to speak about the Longfellow House–Washington’s Headquarters National Historic Site as enthusiastically as the N.P.S. staff there does.

Registration for the 2017 Washington Symposium is available starting here.

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