“To Save This Country” The Boston Tea Party in History

TUE, JAN 10, 2023

Revolutionary Spaces cover the event that became known as “The Boston Tea Party.” Kicking off the 250th anniversary year of this iconic moment in history, this virtual panel provides a nuanced basis for which to understand the The Boston Tea Party.

Moderated by Revolutionary Spaces President & CEO Nat Sheidley, acclaimed historians explore how the events preceding the Boston Tea Party led to this historic occasion. We then move, moment by moment, through the meeting and the destruction of the tea, providing commentary and insight. We also discuss the aftermath of December 16, 1773 and its legacy.

This program is made possible through the generous support of the Lowell Institute.

+ BIO: J.L. Bell

J. L. Bell is a writer specializing in the history of Revolutionary New England. He contributed a chapter on how Boston youth became involved in politics in the New York University Press volume Children in Colonial America, and had published articles on colonial boys’ journal-writing, town watchmen at the Boston Massacre, and how Boston celebrated the 5th of November. He is heading a historic resource study for the National Park Service on Gen. George Washington’s command of the Continental Army during the siege of Boston in 1775-76. Bell has given talks about the American Revolution at many historic sites, including the Old State House, Old South Meeting-House, Minute Man National Historical Park, Boston National Historical Park, Paul Revere House, and Longfellow National Historic Site (Washington’s Headquarters). He was historical consultant for an episode of History Detectives which led to a new display at Minute Man National Historical Park. and is preparing a book about what the British troops were searching for in Concord. He is the author of “The Road to Concord: How Four Stolen Cannon Ignited the Revolutionary War.”

+ BIO: Professor Sarah Purcell

Professor Sarah Purcell is the L.F. Parker Professor of History at Grinnell College and previously taught at Central Michigan University. She is author of Sealed with Blood: War, Sacrifice, and Memory in Revolutionary America, published by the University of Pennsylvania Press, and E_yewitness History: The Early American Republic_. She is co-author of The Encyclopedia of Battles in North America, 1517-1915 (which won a 2000 Best of Reference award from the New York Public Library) and C_ritical Lives: The Life and Work of Eleanor Roosevelt_. She recently released a new book, S_pectacle of Grief: The Politics of Mourning and the U.S. Civil War_.

+ BIO: Prof. Benjamin Carp

Professor Benjamin Carp focuses particularly on urban politics, society, and culture in eighteenth-century America. His books include Defiance of the Patriots: The Boston Tea Party and the Making of America, which won the triennial Society of the Cincinnati Cox Book Prize in 2013; and Rebels Rising: Cities and the American Revolution. He has also written articles for Colonial Williamsburg, the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post. His desire to pursue a Ph.D. in history began with an article by Alfred F. Young on George Robert Twelves Hewes. Since then, he has written scholarly articles about firefighters and the American Revolution, nationalism during the Revolution and the Civil War, leadership in the work of Edmund S. Morgan, and Quaker merchants in Charleston. He received the Leverhulme Research Fellowship (2005), the Charlotte W. Newcombe Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship (2003) and the Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship in Humanistic Studies (1998). Prior to joining Brooklyn College and the Graduate Center, he taught at the University of Edinburgh and Tufts University.

+ BIO: Prof. Joseph Ellis

Professor Joseph J. Ellis is one of the nation’s leading scholars of American history. The author of eleven books, Ellis was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Founding Brothers: the Revolutionary Generation and won the National Book Award for American Sphinx, a biography of Thomas Jefferson. His essays and book reviews appear regularly in national publications, such as The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Chicago Tribune, The New Republic, and The New Yorker. His commentaries have been featured on CBS, CSPAN, CNN, and the PBS’s The News Hour with Jim Lehrer and he has appeared in several PBS documentaries on early America. Professor Ellis has taught in the Leadership Studies program at Williams College, Commonwealth Honors College at the University of Massachusetts, Mount Holyoke College, and United States Military Academy at West Point.

+ BIO: Dr. Nathaniel Sheidley

Nat Sheidley is the President and CEO of Revolutionary Spaces, an organization that stewards Boston’s Old State House and Old South Meeting House. He was formerly Executive Director of the Bostonian Society and Assistant Professor of American and Native American History at Wellesley College. He is a graduate of Stanford University and holds a Ph.D. in American History from Princeton University.

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