Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture

Uncommon Sense—the blog

The Pennsylvania Committee of Safety and the War at Home

· September 26th, 2017 · No Comments

Today’s post accompanies “Revolutionary Committees and Congresses,” episode 153 of Ben Franklin’s World and part of the Doing History 2: To the Revolution! series. You can find supplementary materials for the episode on the OI Reader app, available through iTunes or Google Play. by William Huntting Howell Ask any revolutionary: there’s an enormous gap between… Read More »

The Histories of the Revolution

· September 12th, 2017 · No Comments

What was the American Revolution? When did it start, why did it start, and did it end with the Treaty of Paris… or the Constitution, or is it still unfolding?  These seem like simple questions, but Americans have been debating the answers since the Continental and British armies were still on the battlefield. Over the… Read More »

Framing Early American Scholarship

· September 6th, 2017 · 2 Comments

In today’s post, Jeffrey Glover, author of “Witnessing African War: Slavery, the Laws of War, and Anglo-American Abolitionism” in the July 2017 edition of the William and Mary Quarterly, reflects on what it means to frame an article.  By Jeffrey Glover I was surprised by the readers’ and editor’s reports on my submission to William and Mary… Read More »

Emotional Subjects, Big and Small

· August 30th, 2017 · No Comments

Today’s post comes from Matthew Kruer, author of “Bloody Minds and Peoples Undone: Emotion, Family, and Political Order in the Susquehannock–Virginia War” in the July issue of the William and Mary Quarterly.  by Matthew Kruer Early Americanists are thinking big these days. When, in early 2016, Karin Wulf introduced[1] the twitter hashtag #VastEarlyAmerica and Josh Piker… Read More »

Money matters

· August 23rd, 2017 · No Comments

Today’s post is from Katherine Smoak, author of “The Weight of Necessity: Counterfeit Coins in the British Atlantic World, 1760-1800” (William and Mary Quarterly, July 2017). by Katherine Smoak When I started the research for the larger project from which my recent WMQ article is drawn—a history of the practices and politics of counterfeiting in the… Read More »

Teaching with Ben Franklin’s World

· August 15th, 2017 · 1 Comment

Among many other things, the advent of history podcasts has opened new possibilities for engagement both inside and outside of the classroom at all levels. The first Doing History series, which outlines the process that historians use to develop and create historical research projects, was designed in part for exactly that purpose. Over the past… Read More »

Summer Reading at the Institute

· August 9th, 2017 · 1 Comment

Today’s post is by Nadine Zimmerli, Associate Editor of Books When I was in college, I remember wandering into my local bookstore—Four Seasons Books, a gem of a place in Shepherdstown, West Virginia—and asking the owner for a good recommendation for summer reading. She suggested I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith. This book was… Read More »