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George Washington and the Supreme Court: His Enduring Legacy

The Supreme Court Historical Society and The Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington at Mount Vernon have joined together to present two lectures, one at the Supreme Court and the other at Mount Vernon, which will examine George Washington’s essential role in shaping the judicial branch of our nation’s government.






Supreme Court of the United States

"...I have always been persuaded that the stability and success of the national Government, and consequently the happiness of the People of the United States, would depend in a considerable degree on the Interpretation and Execution of its Laws."

-George Washington to the Chief Justice and the Associate Justices of the United States Supreme Court, April 3, 1790






April 14th, 2016

Location: Mount Vernon Mansion, 3200 Mount Vernon Memorial Highway and Rubenstein Leadership Hall, Fred W. Smith National Library, 3600 Mount Vernon Memorial Highway, Mount Vernon, VA 22121

6:00 PM: Reception on the Piazza (Weather Permitting)

7:00 PM: Lecture by David O. Stewart

Madison’s Gift: Five Partnerships That Built America

David O. Stewart practiced law for more than 25 years before turning to writing history. His books include The Summer of 1787: The Men Who Invented the Constitution, which was a Washington Post bestseller; and Madison’s Gift: Five Partnerships That Built America – which examines the often-overlooked Madison’s amazing achievements: his work on the Constitution, writing the Federalist Papers, creating the Bill of Rights, and founding America’s first political party.  

Please Note: Shuttle buses will provide guests transportation from the Mansion reception to the Library for the lecture. 


April 28th, 2016

Location: Supreme Court of the United States, One First Street NE, Washington, DC 20543

6:00 PM: Lecture by Professor Edward J. Larson

7:00 PM: Reception

George Washington's Role at the Constitutional Convention

EDWARD J. LARSON is a University Professor of history and holds the Hugh & Hazel Darling Chair in Law at Pepperdine University. He is a Senior Fellow of the University of Georgia’s Institute of Higher Education, and a visiting professor at Stanford Law School. He received the 1998 Pulitzer Prize for History for his book Summer for the Gods: The Scopes Trial and America’s Continuing Debate Over Science and Religion. He is the author of ten books and nearly one hundred published articles, including The Return of George Washington. Larson was a member of the 2013–14 inaugural class of fellows at The Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington at Mount Vernon.

Please note: Due to security requirements at the Court, government-issued photo identification such as a driver's license or passport must be presented for admittance to the lecture.