How to buy the book

You can order at History Press as well as Amazon, Barnes and Noble and other on-line retailers. I will send you a signed copy for $23, a little extra to cover shipping. I will send you both Slave Labor in the Capital and Through a Fiery Trial for $40. Send a check to me at PO Box 63, Wellesley Island, NY 13640-0063.

My lectures at Sotterley Plantation in St. Mary's County, Maryland, on September 23, 2015, and the DAR Library on December 5 are now blog posts below listed under book talks. The talk I gave
at the Politics and Prose Bookstore on February 28, 2015, along with Heather Butts, author African American Medicine in Washington, was taped by the bookstore. Take a listen.

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Capitol wall falls down 1795

Much to their embarrassment, the president thought the commissioners shared in the blame for the debacle. He authorized a $1,600 a year salary for the commissioners on the condition that they would live in the city and keep a close eye on the work. However, the new commissioners lived in or near Georgetown. Secretary of State Edmund Randolph reminded them of that and implied that the bad work at the Capitol could have been prevented if they had been paying attention. The commissioners fired back implying that the workers were too rude to be supervised by gentlemen. “Those not acquainted with the motley set we found here, and can form no adequate idea of the irksome scenes we are too frequently compelled to engage in.”
One might describe slaves each with a different shade of dark skin as “motley,” but the commissioners singled out Collen Williamson as especially irksome for always boasting about his “building castles” in Scotland.

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