The Washington Library's Digital Book Talk series features LIVE conversations with leading historians and scholars of early America. Please join us for fascinating discussions about the past and for your opportunity to ask our guests questions about their work.

Approximately one week before each lecture, YouTube links will be posted to this page for free events. You can also join us live on Facebook and Twitter. All times are shown in Eastern Time.

Digital Talks from 2020 can be found here.

Upcoming Talks

2021 Michelle Smith Lecture Series

During this series of online lectures, learn about early American presidents and their leadership. Tickets are required and include an autographed copy of the book. The lectures will be aired online. This series is supported by an endowment established by a generous grant from Robert H. and Clarice Smith.

Tuesday, March 16 at 7 pm ET: Lynne Cheney

The Virginia Dynasty: Four Presidents and the Creation of the American Nation

Tuesday, April 6 at 7 pm ET: Thomas E. Ricks

First Principles: What America's Founders Learned from the Greeks and Romans and How That Shaped Our Country

Wednesday, May 19 at 7 pm ET: R. B. Bernstein

The Education of John Adams 

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Monday, May 17 at 7 pm ET: Patrick O'Donnell

Join Mount Vernon for a digital Ford Evening Book Talk with Patrick O'Donnell to discuss his new book, The Indispensables: The Diverse Soldier-Marines Who Shaped the Country, Formed the Navy, and Rowed Washington Across the Delaware.

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Tuesday, May 25 at 7 pm ET: Peter Cozzens

Join Mount Vernon for a virtual book talk with historian Peter Cozzens where we will discuss his latest book, Tecumseh and the Prophet: The Shawnee Brothers Who Defied a Nation.

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Patrick O'Donnell


During this Ford Evening Book Talk Patrick O'Donnell will discuss his new book, The Indispensables: The Diverse Soldier-Marines Who Shaped the Country, Formed the Navy, and Rowed Washington Across the Delaware.

Peter Cozzens


Peter Cozzens will explore his latest book, Tecumseh and the Prophet: The Shawnee Brothers Who Defied a Nation.

Past Talks

Stephen H. Browne


Join Mount Vernon for a digital Ford Evening Book Talk with Dr. Stephen H. Browne to discuss his new book, The First Inauguration: George Washington and the Invention of the Republic.

Michael Hattem


Dr. Michael D. Hattem will discuss his book, Past and Prologue: Politics and Memory in the American Revolution.

David Head


Dr. David Head will explore his new book, A Crisis of Peace: George Washington, the Newburgh Conspiracy, and the Fate of the American Revolution, which was a finalist for the 2020 George Washington Prize.

The Final Founder


Join the Washington Library, the John Marshall Center for Constitutional History & Civics, and Preservation Virginia's John Marshall House for a virtual talk with Robert Strauss about his new book, John Marshall: The Final Founder.

Tamika Nunley


Dr. Tamika Y. Nunley will discuss her new book, At the Threshold of Liberty: Women, Slavery, and Shifting Identities in Washington, D.C.

Marcus Nevius


Marcus P. Nevius will discuss his latest book, City of Refuge: Slavery and Petit Marronage in the Great Dismal Swamp, 1763-1856.

Elaine A. Peña


We will discuss Elaine A. Peña's new book, ¡Viva George! Celebrating Washington's Birthday at the US-Mexico Border.

Donald Johnson


Donald F. Johnson will explore his new book Occupied America: British Military Rule and the Experience of Revolution.

Nathaniel Green


Nathaniel C. Green will discuss his new book, The Man of the People: Political Dissent and the Making of the American Presidency.

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