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Conflict, Fortresses, and Threat Environments in the Ancient Maya World

Stephen Houston is the Library of Congress Kislak Chair for the Study of the History and Cultures of the Early Americas, as well as Dupee Family Professor of Social Science at Brown University. In the lead-up to Professor Houston’s April 25 event at the Library, titled “Flint, Shield, and Fire: Exploring Ancient Maya Warfare,” I […]

Making Black History Accessible, Through the Library of Congress

Jesse J. Holland joined Adam Rothman, former Kluge Center Distinguished Visiting Scholar, for “African American Passages: Black Lives in the 19th Century,” hosted by the John W. Kluge Center in the Thomas Jefferson Building of the Library of Congress on February 21 this year. Holland and Rothman discussed their experiences using the Library’s collections to […]

The Puzzle of Weak Parties and Strong Partisanship

The following is a guest post by Julia Azari, a professor in the Department of Political Science at the Marquette University and 2019 Distinguished Visiting Scholar at the John W. Kluge Center. Partisanship shapes American politics, and, indeed, many parts of everyday life. Americans are increasingly negative about the possibility of their children marrying someone […]

African American Passages Episode 4: In Search of Adeline Henson

In the fourth episode of our African American Passages podcast, former John W. Kluge Center Distinguished Visiting Scholar and Georgetown University history professor Adam Rothman goes in search of Adeline Henson, an African-American woman who makes an ephemeral appearance in the Library of Congress’s Manuscript Collections, through two photographs, a bill of sale, and a […]

African American Passages Episode 2: The Long Journey of Omar Ibn Said

In the second episode of African American Passages: Black Lives in the 19th Century, John W. Kluge Center Distinguished Visiting Scholar and Georgetown University history professor Adam Rothman looks at the story of Omar Ibn Said. Rothman is joined on the podcast by Mary-Jane Deeb, the Chief of the Library of Congress’s African and Middle […]

Introducing African-American Passages: Black Lives in the 19th Century

During his time as a Distinguished Visiting Scholar here at the John W. Kluge Center, Georgetown University history professor Adam Rothman recorded an extraordinary series of podcasts. In the podcasts, Rothman examines documents from the Library of Congress’ manuscript collection relating to the lives of African-Americans in the 19th century. He found a number of […]

“My Dear Master”: An Enslaved Blacksmith’s Letters to a President

An unusual letter arrived in the mail for the Tennessee planter James K. Polk shortly after he won the 1844 presidential election. Written from Carrollton, Mississippi, and dated November 28, 1844, the letter began “My Dear Master” and was signed by “Blacksmith Harry.” Here’s what Harry wrote: Suffer your faithful survant Harry to say a […]