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David Reads at Corner Bookstore

History fans in the New York area are invited to the Corner Bookstore on Tuesday, August 13, to hear James Corbett David read from his new book Dunmore's New World.

Bradburn Heads New Library at Mount Vernon

Our congratulations go out to Douglas Bradburn, whom the Mount Vernon Ladies' Association has named the founding director of the Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington. As library director, he will oversee Mount Vernon's efforts to safeguard original Washington books and manuscripts and to foster new scholarly research about George Washington and the Founding Era.

Mark Saunders Named Director of UVa Press

Mark H. Saunders has been named the new director of the University of Virginia Press, succeeding Penelope Kaiserlian, who served as director from 2001 until her retirement in 2012. Saunders assumes his new position immediately. "Mark has a deep understanding of both the substantive and technical sides of publishing, outstanding leadership skills, and an exciting vision for the Press in a fast-changing industry," says David Klein, Chair of the Board of Directors of UVa Press and Associate Professor of Politics at the University of Virginia. "He is a wonderful choice for Director."

Edmund S. Morgan: "History Does Not Repeat"

Edmund S. Morgan, a Pulitzer- and Bancroft-Prize-winning author and one of America's great historians, has passed away at the age of 91. His more than fifteen books display his ability to see how unique combinations of personalities and events make history. "No matter what anyone says," he once remarked, "history does not repeat itself."

'People of the Founding Era' Launches

UVa Press announces the release this week of a powerful new online resource, People of the Founding Era, a  digital biographical dictionary that will be open to the public during its beta release. This new resource provides biographical information for thousands of individuals active during a crucial period in American history. Beginning with 12,000 but eventually expanding to over 60,000 people born between 1713 and 1815, the subjects include members of many of the most important families of the era, as well as individuals—such as artisans, merchants, slaves, and Native Americans—whose lives are not typically documented in historical archives.

Famine Foods Workshopping

American in Paris Jeffrey Greene recently contributed a piece to our blog about his pursuit of an elusive oyster known as the pied de cheval. In this latest piece, Greene—who is currently at work on a book about wild edibles—travels to the Polish Carpathians to learn the finer points of foraging. Jeff writes, "The first time I learned of Lukasz Luczaj was in a message sent from a log cabin in the Polish Carpathians.  At the time, I was writing The Golden-Bristled Boar: Last Ferocious Beast of the Forest, a book about the astonishing world of wild boars, highly intelligent and elusive animals that have played a significant role in human civilization.  A friend had written, 'I am sitting on the porch with a bunch of people drinking beer, dusk falling, and we've been talking about two fires on the far hill that we've seen burning almost every night.  Lukasz just told us that one of the village drunks—a woman who meets her lovers in the woods—is burning tires because someone pays her to sleep up there and keep the wild boars out of the potato field.'"

New Rotunda content: Jefferson, Madison, Washington

We have added new content to our Rotunda Founding Era collection representing a total of nearly 20,000 documents, from the papers of Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and George Washington.

Founders Online Launches

The University of Virginia Press announces this week the launch of Founders Online, a website offering free access to the papers of six of the most important figures from America's founding era. The site, developed by the Press’s electronic imprint, Rotunda, will be officially launched at a ceremony at the National Archives in Washington, D.C. on June 13. University of Virginia President Teresa A. Sullivan will offer remarks on this unique collaboration between the Archives and the University. This new resource will provide free public access to nearly 120,000 documents from the papers of George Washington, John Adams (and family), Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, and Benjamin Franklin.

Jamestown: The "Starving Time"

She was only fourteen years old when she died at James Fort, part of the Jamestown settlement, during the winter of 1609-10. That winter has been called the "starving time" because of its particular brutality. The settlers dared not stray far from the fort, for fear of being preyed on by the Powhatans, and so they had been driven to eat rats and snakes in order to survive. Until now, the possibility that human flesh was also devoured had been just speculation. Recent excavation at the former site of Jamestown, however, confirms that during the "starving time" the fort's inhabitants did indeed resort to cannibalism.

What Would Jefferson Do?

May 2 is National Prayer Day. John Ragosta, author of Religious Freedom: Jefferson’s Legacy, America’s Creed, penned the following thoughts at the outset of the day and has shared them with us. Writes Ragosta, "I inevitably come back to the following question: What would Jefferson do? How would he react to a National Day of Prayer mandated by Congress and proclaimed by the President?"