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Edward L. Ayers

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    Historians as Leaders

    University and nonprofit presidents who were historians by training talked about their transitions into leadership positions and how their history backgrounds helped them in their roles as executives.…

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    Civil War and Reconstruction

    Edward Ayers talked about the end of the Civil War and the dawn of the Reconstruction era. He contended that Reconstruction began as early as the summer and fall of 1864. Mr. Ayers pointed to the Republican party expanding to…

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    The Birth of a Nation at 100

    The Smithsonian Institution hosted the “BackStory with the American History Guys” radio program as they examined D.W. Griffith’s film The Birth of a Nation, originally released in 1915…

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    Surrender at Appomattox 150th Anniversary

    American History TV was LIVE from Appomattox Court House National Historical Park for a ceremony marking the exact time on April 9, 1865, that Generals Grant and Lee met at the McLean House to discuss…

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    Confederate Views of the Civil War

    Panelists talked about the pro-Confederate “Lost Cause” view of the Civil War and its legacy in postwar American politics and culture “The Lost Cause” was a panel discussion at “Causes Won and…

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    Morning Panelists at Civil War Symposium

    Panelists from the morning sessions of a symposium on the end of the Civil War responded to questions submitted from the audience. “Causes Won and Lost: The End of the Civil War” was a…

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    A Spy in the Confederate White House

    Panelists talked about Mary Elizabeth Bowser, a former slave who became a Union spy in the Confederate capital of Richmond, Virginia. She was part of a pro-Union spy ring run by Elizabeth…

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    Person of the Year 1863

    Each year, Time magazine selects a single person who had the most influence on events during the previous twelve months. If the same question had been posed in the year 1863, who would Time have selected as the Person of the…

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    Freedom National

    James Oakes talked about his book, Freedom National: The Destruction of Slavery in the United States, 1861-1865, in which he examines the efforts, ranging from the militaristic to the…

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    History in the Digital Age

    Panelists at the American Historical Association’s annual conference in New Orleans talked about how the Internet, YouTube, and Twitter have changed the way historians present their…

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    Inaugurations in American History

    Historians Brian Balogh, Ed Ayers, and Peter Onuf recorded their weekly radio program, BackStory with the American History Guys, sin the Flag Hall of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of…

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    Civil War Historians Discuss the Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation

    Duke University History Professor Thavolia Glymph and University of Richmond President Edward Ayers were among the historians who explored the circumstances, outcomes, and ongoing considerations…

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    Race and the Civil War

    Three historians held a discussion on race and the role it played leading up to and during the Civil War and how the persistence of resentment and unhealed wounds from the war’s outcome and immediate…

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    History of Alcohol in America

    Historians Ed Ayers, Peter Onuf and Brian Balogh host the public radio show and podcast “BackStory with the American History Guys.” This weekend, we’ll simulcast the show live from…

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    Battle of Bull Run 150th Anniversary Commemorative Ceremony

    Edward Ayers gave the keynote address at a commemorative ceremony for the 150th anniversary of the First Battle of Bull Run, also known as First Manassas. The ceremony was held at Henry…

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    Thanksgiving in American History

    The BackStory Guys, Ed Ayers, Brian Balogh, and Peter Onuf, talked about the history and mythos of the Thanksgiving holiday.

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    American Leaders and the Issues of 1861

    The evening before the 150th anniversary of the attack on Fort Sumter, historians spoke about leadership and the troubling issues of 1861. Edward Ayres projected some graphics as he talked about “The Logic of Secession.”…

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    1861 Secession Debate

    An episode of the radio program “BackStory with the American History Guys” focused on Secession and the Civil War and its reverberations through history. The hosts discussed the secession…

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    Making the Civil War New

    Edward Ayers gave a talk “Making the Civil War New.” He included pictures from a celebration in Richmond, Virginia, for the centennial of the Civil War and views from University of Richmond Web sites as he talked…

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    International Implications of the Civil War

    Edward Ayers moderated a roundtable discussion on the international implications of the Civil War, including diplomatic negotiations and naval conflicts. The panelists also responded to questions from members of the audience.…

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