Lectures & Events

On Wednesday, October 17 at 7:30 PM at the Washington Crossing Historic Park Visitor’s Center, the David Library of the American Revolution and the Washington Crossing Historic Park will co-present “An Evening With Nathaniel Philbrick.” The New York Times best-selling author, hailed by the Wall Street Journal as “one of America's foremost practitioners of narrative nonfiction," will give a talk about his newest book, In the Hurricane’s Eye:  The Genius of George Washington and the Victory at Yorktown.  Proceeds benefit the David Library and the Friends of Washington Crossing Historic Park. Admission price includes an autographed copy of In the Hurricane’s Eye. Tickets are $50 for a single seat, and $80 for two (couples get a single copy of the book).  Limited seating. 

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Fall 2018 David Library Lectures

This fall, the David Library will present eight lectures, including profiles of some fascinating characters in America’s founding story, along with accounts of the Revolutionary War itself and how it was fought.  David Library lectures are admission free, but registration is required. Call 215.493.6776 x 100 or email rsvp@dlar.org to reserve your seat(s). Lectures are held in the Feinstone Conference Center at the David Library of the American Revolution, 1201 River Road (Rt. 32), Washington Crossing, PA 18977.  

Thursday, September 20 at 7:30 PM –  John Oller: "A Patriot (But Not THE Patriot)." The author of The Swamp Fox: How Francis Marion Saved the American Revolution will explore the life and military campaigns of Francis Marion.  Like Robin Hood of legend, Marion and his men attacked from secret hideaways before melting back into the forest or swamp, confounding the British.  Although Marion bore little resemblance to the fictionalized portrayals in television and film, his exploits were no less heroic.  He and his band of militia freedom fighters kept hope alive for the patriot cause in one of its darkest hours, and helped win the Revolution. 
Thursday, October 4 at 7:30 PM – Bob Drury: "The Existential Moment: How The Valley Forge Winter Saved the Revolution, Created the United States, and Changed the World.” Bob Drury is co-author (with Tom Clavin) of the new book Valley Forge.  In his talk, he will outline how George Washington and his closest advisers spent six months on a barren plateau 23 miles from enemy-held Philadelphia fighting a war on two fronts -- militarily against the British, and politically against a Continental faction attempting to depose him as Commander in Chief of the Continental Army. How he deftly prevailed on both of these fronts shaped the world as we know it today.
Sunday, October 7 at 3:00 PM – Robert Selig: “The Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route National Historic Trail in the State of Pennsylvania.” In 2008, President Obama signed legislation establishing the land and water routes that were traveled by the allied French and American armies to and from Yorktown in the summer of 1781 as a National Historic Trail. That trail stretches from Newport, RI, and Newburgh, NY, and includes Pennsylvania from Trenton south to Marcus Hook.  Yet the very existence of this trail is still largely unknown.  Robert Selig, Ph. D. serves as project historian to the National Park Service for the Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route National Historic Trail Project.  His lecture will introduce the trail and its historic significance, showing contemporary and modern maps, and important sites he has identified in his research, some of which was conducted at the David Library!
Thursday, October 25, 2018 at 7:30 PM – Stephen Fried: “Reclaiming Dr. Benjamin Rush, Our ‘Lost’ Founding Father.”   Bestselling author Stephen Fried, whose latest book is Rush: Revolution, Madness, and Benjamin Rush, the Visionary Doctor Who Became a Founding Father, will help us see the American Revolution, the Federal Period and the human saga of the entire birth of our nation from the unique, fascinating perspective of founding father, physician, philosopher and confidante Benjamin Rush.
Thursday, November 1 at 7:30 PM – Ricardo A. Herrera: “American Citizens, American Soldiers: Civic Identity and Military Service from the War of Independence to the Civil War.” From 1775 through 1861, American soldiers defined and demonstrated their beliefs about the nature of the American re-public and how they, as citizens and soldiers, were part of the republican experiment. Despite uniquely martial customs, organizations, and behaviors, the United States Army, the states’ militias, and the war-time volunteers were the products of their parent society. Understanding American soldiers of all ranks, in war and in peace, helps us understand more about American society writ large and how that society shaped its armed forces in the years of the Early Republic. A former David Library Fellow, and currently Professor of Military History at the School of Advanced Military Studies in Kansas, Ricardo A. Herrera, Ph. D. is the author of For Liberty and the Republic: The American Citizen as Soldier, 1775-1861.
Thursday, November 8 at 7:30 PM – Christopher S. Wren: “Vermont: The Most Rebellious Race." Before Vermont was Vermont, it was a British territory fought over by such figures as Ethan Allen, who helped form the American Revolutionary War militia known as the Green Mountain Boys. This lecture, by the author of Those Turbulent Sons of Freedom: Ethan Allen's Green Mountain Boys and the American Revolution, will consider the story of the tough, brave, and wild crew of characters who faced some of the harshest combat in the American Revolution, and made their own rules to create an independent Vermont.  
Sunday, November 18 at 3:00 PM – Tilar J. Mazzeo: “The Private Lives and Loves of the Schuyler Sisters.” Tilar J. Mazzeo, Ph. D. is the author of the new biography Eliza Hamilton: The Extraordinary Life and Times of the Wife of Alexander Hamilton.  Her lecturewill take a lively look into the lives of Eliza, Angelica and Peggy, the daughters of Philip Schuyler, and the context of colonial and early national women's lives in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. The lecture will draw on information from private family letters and documents, and will cover everything from Eliza Hamilton's first crushes to the Schuyler family wedding cake recipe to how colonial women leveraged coterie networks to support spy rings in the Revolution. 
Thursday, December 6 at 7:30 PM – Christian di Spigna: “’The Greatest Incendiary in all America’: The Rise and Fall of Dr. Joseph Warren.”  Joseph Warren was the Boston physician who played a prominent role in the earliest days of the Revolution.  As president of the revolutionary Massachusetts Provincial Congress, it was he who enlisted Paul Revere and William Dawes on April 18, 1775, to leave Boston and spread the alarm that the British garrison in Boston was setting out to raid the town of Concord and arrest rebel leaders John Hancock and Samuel Adams. Christian di Spigna is the author of Founding Martyr: The Life and Death of Dr. Joseph Warren, the American Revolution's Lost Hero. His lecture will trace Warren’s rise from humble beginnings to his bloody death at Bunker Hill, and examine Warren’s postmortem journey over the years from Revolutionary hero to relative obscurity.

David Library/Lower Makefield Historical Society Event

Sunday, October 14 at 3:00 PM – The David Library and the Lower Makefield Historical will co-present “Button, Button, Who Has the Button?  The Fun and Fascinating History of Buttons,” a presentation and exhibition by Bobbie Michael, Professional Personal Property Appraiser specializing in fine arts, antique furniture, silver, china and glass. Reservations required: rsvp@dlar.org or 215.493.6776 x 100.