Tag Archives: William Branch Giles

3.40 – Jefferson Post-Presidency



Year(s) Discussed: 1809-1826

After leaving the presidency, Thomas Jefferson found himself kept quite busy with both public business and personal matters. While striving to be a doting grandfather and fretting over his family’s life struggles, the former president worked in vain to escape the vicious cycle of debt in which he had become trapped. Meanwhile, he used his retirement to take on the task of improving public education in Virginia which inevitably landed him in the middle of political struggles once more. Sources used for this episode can be found at http://presidencies.blubrry.com.

Featured Image: “Thomas Jefferson” by Thomas Sully [c. 1821], courtesy of Wikipedia

Intro and Outro Music: Selections from “Jefferson and Liberty” as performed by The Itinerant Band


3.39 – Sunset and Sunrise



Year(s) Discussed: 1807-1809

As the end of Jefferson’s second term neared, the Embargo Act came under increasing criticism at home, Napoleon’s plans for conquest continued apace in Europe, and the nation chose the man who would become the fourth President of the United States. Though the clock had not struck on his presidency, his last months in office would find the man who had been a leader for decades take a step back as his thoughts turned increasingly to his life once he left the President’s House. Sources used for this episode can be found at http://presidencies.blubrry.com.

Featured Image: “Thomas Jefferson, third president of the United States” by Pendleton’s Lithography [c. 1828], courtesy of Wikipedia

Intro and Outro Music: Selections from “Jefferson and Liberty” as performed by The Itinerant Band


3.38 – Electioneering



Year(s) Discussed: 1806-1808

As the 1808 presidential election neared, the infighting in the Democratic-Republican faction was exacerbated by not one but two challengers to Secretary of State James Madison’s candidacy – Vice President George Clinton and former US Minister to Britain James Monroe. Meanwhile, Napoleon’s constant wars in Europe continued to impact US foreign policy, and the Jefferson administration began a new round of negotiations with British envoy George Rose to seek a resolution to the crisis precipitated by the Chesapeake-Leopard incident while working out how to effectively enforce the Embargo Act. Sources used for this episode can be found at http://presidencies.blubrry.com.

Featured Image: “James Madison” by Gilbert Stuart [c. 1805-1807], courtesy of Wikipedia

Intro and Outro Music: Selections from “Jefferson and Liberty” as performed by The Itinerant Band


3.36 – Trial



Year(s) Discussed: 1806-1807

Little did the Jefferson administration, while preparing to prosecute the former Vice President of the United States, Aaron Burr, for treason, that they would be faced at the same time with an external challenge that threatened to plunge the nation into war. In mid-1807, the President, his Cabinet, and the nation were all anxious for the latest information from the Burr trial in Richmond as well as whether Great Britain was truly declaring war on the US following the attack on an American naval vessel off the coast of Virginia. Sources used for this episode can be found at http://presidencies.blubrry.com.

Featured Image: “John Marshall” by Rembrandt Peale [c. 1834], courtesy of Wikipedia

Intro and Outro Music: Selections from “Jefferson and Liberty” as performed by The Itinerant Band


SATT 001 – Alexander Hamilton



Tenure of Office: 11 September 1789 – 31 January 1795 (Secretary of the Treasury)

We begin our new special series with the first Cabinet member to assume office under the constitutional government – Alexander Hamilton! You may have seen the musical, but there are a few more parts of his history that didn’t make it into that production.

Thanks so much to my special guest for this episode – Alycia from the Civics & Coffee Podcast!

Featured Image: “Alexander Hamilton” by John Trumbull [c. 1805], courtesy of Wikipedia


3.18 – The Boys Are Back in Town



Year(s) Discussed: 1801-1803

Though the Louisiana Purchase Treaty had been concluded, President Jefferson understood that didn’t mean it was a done deal, and he and his administration got to work in the latter half of 1803 on getting the treaty ratified by the Senate and in pushing through legislation to carry through the purchase. However, they also had to contend with increased criticism in the press and with a gnawing concern in many minds, including that of the President, that there was nothing in the Constitution that said the United States could in fact acquire new territory. Sources used for this episode can be found at http://presidencies.blubrry.com.

Featured Image: “William Plumer, head-and-shoulders portrait, right profile” by Charles Balthazar Julien Févret de Saint-Mémin [c. 1806], courtesy of Wikipedia

Intro and Outro Music: Selections from “Jefferson and Liberty” as performed by The Itinerant Band


"Evacuation day" and Washington's triumphal entry in New York City, Nov. 25th, 1783

1.34 – The Final(ish) Curtain Call



Year(s) Discussed: 1794-1797

After President Washington releases his Farewell Address, informing the nation that he would not seek another term, the 1796 election is carried out though, both domestically and abroad, there is much confusion about how exactly the United States would decide upon its next president. Meanwhile, the French plot to interfere with the election, the public attacks on Washington continue, and a military leader meets his untimely end. Source information for this episode can be found at http://presidencies.blubrry.com.

Featured Image: “”Evacuation day” and Washington’s triumphal entry in New York City, Nov. 25th, 1783,” Edmund Restein and Ludwig Restein, c. 1879, courtesy of the Library of Congress


1.30 – Under Pressure, Near and Far



Year(s) Discussed: c. 16th century-1795

Diplomatic representatives of the Washington administration navigate new waters as they seek a peaceful resolution to conflicts with the Barbary States and Spain while the President continues his frustrating search to find candidates willing to fill his vacant Cabinet offices. Meanwhile, the Senate throws the President a curve ball by rejecting one of Washington’s appointments. Source information for this episode can be found at http://presidencies.blubrry.com.

Featured Image: “A Sea Fight with Barbary Corsairs,” Lorenzo A Castro [c. post-1681], courtesy of Wikipedia


1.16 – Don’t Mess With Washington



Edmond-Charles Genêt, courtesy of Wikipedia

Year(s) Discussed: 1793

The new French Minister to the US arrives in Philadelphia and begins causing a stir both within the Washington administration and out in the streets. Meanwhile, Washington has another bout of ill health but recovers just in time to have to rush back to Mount Vernon despite being in the midst of diplomatic tensions. Party politics are taken to the next level with partisans beginning to organize their efforts just as both Jefferson and Hamilton contemplate their respective exits from the Cabinet to be free to pursue their own aims. Source information for this episode can be found at http://presidencies.blubrry.com.


1.14 – The Second Inaugural



Washington’s Inauguration at Philadelphia by Jean Leon Gerome Ferris, courtesy of Wikipedia

Year(s) Discussed: 1791-1793

The lead up to Washington’s second inaugural ended up being much more dramatic than anyone could have imagined as personal conflicts threatened the construction of the Federal City, Hamilton’s affair with Maria Reynolds threatened to be made public knowledge, and Representative William Branch Giles filed resolutions against Hamilton accusing him of official misconduct and calling for his dismissal. In the middle of all this, a reluctant president turns to his family for support as he prepares himself for what already appears will be a more turbulent four years ahead than his first term had been. Source information can be found at http://presidencies.blubrry.com.