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Presidencies of the United States

03 - Thomas Jefferson Episodes

The intro and outro music for the first four Thomas Jefferson episodes is from “Yankee Doodle Variations” as performed by Carrie Rehkopf. The full recording can be found at Wikipedia. Subsequent episodes feature selections from “Jefferson and Liberty” as performed by The Itinerant Band. Check out their website for information on upcoming appearances and to purchase CDs or digital downloads of their music.

February 23, 2020

3.13 – Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes

Year(s) Discussed: 1801-1803, 1807 As James Monroe began his special mission to Europe in early 1803, he would come to find that the situation on the continent was rapidly changing as the Peace of Amiens was proving to be a shaky one. Meanwhile, President Jefferson had to deal with some staffing changes at home and abroad.

03 - Thomas Jefferson

February 08, 2020

3.12 – And the Beat Goes On

Year(s) Discussed: 1801-1803 As a new state joined the Union, state and federal leaders in the US worked to redefine the nation’s governmental institutions and its approach to foreign affairs. Jefferson put some plans into motion to stretch American influence through an expedition across western North America. Meanwhile, as Democratic-Republicans sought to wrest control of the judiciary from Federalists, the Supreme Court delivered a pivotal ruling.

03 - Thomas Jefferson

January 20, 2020

3.11 – Making Plans for Monroe

Year(s) Discussed: 1801-1803 As continued resistance in Saint-Domingue threatens French First Consul Napoléon Bonaparte’s plans to take control of Louisiana, President Jefferson works to keep tempers cool on the domestic front while turning to a trusted ally, James Monroe, to find a permanent solution to the New Orleans situation.

03 - Thomas Jefferson

December 30, 2019

3.10 – We Need to Talk

Year(s) Discussed: 1801-1803 As French First Consul Napoléon Bonaparte begins to shift the balance of power in the Western Hemisphere in his favor, President Jefferson works to counter these ambitions through diplomatic efforts in both Washington and Paris. Meanwhile, a Mediterranean power declares war on the US, and Jefferson’s powers of persuasion are put to the test when dealing with family matters.

03 - Thomas Jefferson

December 15, 2019

3.09 – Yazoo to You Too

Year(s) Discussed: 1795-1802 While the Jefferson administration made a breakthrough in settling a long-standing dispute with the state of Georgia over its western land claims in 1802, the new US Minister to France, Robert Livingston, began his mission trying to get answers on the situation with the colony of Louisiana. Meanwhile, peace in Europe and a new phase of the conflict in Saint-Domingue threaten to upend Jefferson’s vision for the west.

03 - Thomas Jefferson

December 01, 2019

3.08 – The Enabler-in-Chief

Year(s) Discussed: 1801-1802 The Democratic-Republican reform agenda moved beyond appointments as the Seventh Congress began its session. From the federal judiciary to the organization of the west, Jefferson wielded the soft power of the presidency in order to move ideas along. However, he would not be the only one working to shape the future of the government and the nation, and there was no guarantee as to whose vision would prevail.

03 - Thomas Jefferson

November 17, 2019

3.07 – The Door to the West

Year(s) Discussed: 1798-1801 Jefferson and his administration early on focused their attention on the civilian and military operations in the western frontier of the US and worked through the year leading up to the convening of the first session of the Seventh Congress to determine who would stay and who would go. Meanwhile, despite his concerns about a standing army and navy, Jefferson also worked in his first year in office to establish two key supports for the US military establishment: a military academy and a dry dock.

03 - Thomas Jefferson

November 03, 2019

3.06 – To Limited Arms

Year(s) Discussed: 1795-1801 Jefferson managed to get a permanent Secretary of the Navy just in time for Commodore Dale’s naval squadron to engage in combat in the Mediterranean. In addition to that key post being filled, the administration was able to make some additional structural decisions during the final months of 1801 in time for the new congressional session in December. Meanwhile, a new opposition was organized by a key Federalist leader to ensure that Jefferson’s first annual message would not go unquestioned.

03 - Thomas Jefferson

October 13, 2019

3.05 – Affairs, Foreign and Domestic

Year(s) Discussed: 1799-1801 The beginning of Jefferson’s administration coincided with changes in other parts of the world including France, Great Britain, Spain, and Saint-Domingue that would ultimately come to impact the United States. Meanwhile, as Jefferson continued to assemble his Cabinet, he and his administration also had to deal with a new round of negotiation with Napoléon’s government and appeasing an irate office seeker who threatened to expose the President to public scandal.

03 - Thomas Jefferson

September 29, 2019

3.04 – A Deadly Revenge

Year(s) Discussed: 1801 Literally and figuratively, the new President worked to get his house in order following his inauguration. With a limited number of positions available and plans to shrink the size of the federal government even further, Jefferson set ground rules for his new administration to determine whether to retain Federalist office holders or oust them in favor of Democratic-Republicans. Despite a nod towards non-partisanship, Jefferson’s decisions were criticized by members of both parties.

03 - Thomas Jefferson

September 15, 2019

3.03 – The Revolution of 1800

Year(s) Discussed: 1800-1801 As Jefferson assumed office and Democratic-Republicans took control of the federal government in March 1801, new leaders emerged while others exited the stage or moved to the periphery. The new administration would get its start still dealing with the aftermath of the recent contentious election, and the new President had to weigh, with his words and his first decisions, how to balance his obligations to his party and the best interests of the nation.

03 - Thomas Jefferson

September 01, 2019

3.02 – Jefferson Pre-Presidency Part Two

Year(s) Discussed: 1774-1801 Between the publication of “Summary View of the Rights of British America” and his assuming the presidency, Jefferson made a name for himself by drafting the Declaration of Independence, struggled to see his home state of Virginia through the Revolution as governor, experienced a devastating personal loss, and served the new nation at home and abroad. Though his rise in national prominence as the leader of the opposition would ultimately lead to him becoming the third President, not only his public record but also various facets of Jefferson’s personal life would pose challenges for the new administration before it even began.

03 - Thomas Jefferson

August 17, 2019

3.01 – Jefferson Pre-Presidency Part One

Year(s) Discussed: 1612-1774 From his birth in Albemarle County, VA, Thomas Jefferson’s personality and public career began to take shape through his education at William and Mary, and his introduction to the world of politics in colonial Virginia. Along the way, he would be influenced by family members and mentors and would in turn start to impact his own young family, his neighbors, those individuals he enslaved, and the course of events in British North America.

03 - Thomas Jefferson