Constitution Daily

Smart conversation from the National Constitution Center

Podcast: Experts talk about the Founders on a personal level

July 10, 2014 by NCC Staff


What were George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams and James Madison really like? Four noted authorities discuss these essential Founders in detail, in discussions held at America’s Town Hall at the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia.

Adams and Jefferson in 1776

In our first selection, historian Richard Brookheiser discusses James Madison‘s close relationship with George Washington and how Madison got Washington to attend the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia.

In June 2013, National Constitution Center president Jeffrey Rosen spoke with historian and Center trustee Richard Beeman about the events that led up to the Declaration of Independence and why he thinks Benjamin Franklin was the best of the Founding Fathers.

Next, in May 2012, historian Joseph J. Ellis tells Rick Beeman about John Adams’ legacy as a conservative Revolutionary and Abigail Adams’ role in the Alien and Sedition Acts.

Best-selling author Ron Chernow appeared at the Center in October 2012 to discuss his acclaimed biography of George Washington. Chernow spoke about Washington’s disagreements with Thomas Jefferson, and about how Martha Washington really felt about Jefferson.

And finally, Rosen asked Rick Beeman last June about how the Founders would have dealt with values and issues that have become important in the 21st century. For example, how the Founders would have felt about drone surveillance? Beeman had a very enlightening response.

To listen to the full podcast, use the player below or click the following link: Download this episode (right click and save)

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