I finally cleared out my reading queue and refilled with Washington’s Spies: The Story of America’s First Spy Ring. What most likely prompted this was the opportunity to meet the author, Alexander Rose, except I hadn’t read his book at the time of the opportunity, so I avoided him in shame.
To belatedly remedy this egregious faux pas, I went to the library specifically for this book. Perhaps the next time I encounter Mr. Rose, I will be able to engage in witty and engaging discussion on his work, but for now I get to share my review of the book with you, Dear Reader(s).
In my previous post on the MoAR, I had included a picture of some life sized figures, one of whom was solicitously wrapping another in a blanket or jacket. It was a depiction of Charles Willson Peale belatedly recognizing his own brother, and the picture’s caption was something about how much I adore Mr. Peale (hereafter known as CWP).
From the MoAR
Why do I like CWP so much? That is an excellent question. Perhaps it was because I was thrilled when I could consistently put a name to the artist behind all those portraits, which are done in a style I find generally attractive.
If you’re at all into history, you’ve probably heard that a new museum opened last week in Philadelphia – the Museum of the American Revolution. If you’re not into history, you’ve probably heard about this new museum. It’s kind of a big deal. Me? I’ve only been counting down the days to its opening since probably last…May.
Apparently this museum has been in the works for a long time. From all the television coverage, it sounded like some people have been trying to get a museum dedicated solely to the American Revolution for at least twenty years, maybe since the 80’s, or even earlier. I find it quite impressive that with all of the politics involved in the museum world, they were able to create this at all.
What a museum it is!
A side effect of this current colonial kick was the desire to watch The Patriot, a story where two Australians get jealous of America’s origin story and act out on said jealousy. Sadly, Netflix doesn’t have it but suggested similar shows, one of which was TURN: Washington’s Spies. The series is an AMC/Netflix collaboration and is about the Culper Spy Ring, a network of patriot spies operating around New York that provided George Washington with vital information. While it’s set in colonial New England, it’s a full on spy thriller, with aliases, disguises, and back alley murders. But in hose and powdered wigs.
I’m a sucker for political intrigue, and I’m a sucker for period drama so it took me all of the first 15 minutes of the first episode to become totally and completely hooked.
This makes the graphic designer in me very happy. Three colors used boldly and sums up the entire series. If Washington has spies, they’re obviously working against the British but they have to be inocuous. Leaving the coats red is also powerful because the majority of Americans know, I hope, that the Redcoats were the enemy. He’s the main character going against the redcoats. It’s a really modern design for a ye-olde show. Loves.
It was either the Fort Lyons Preservation Society guy that my Civil War discussion group met on a tour of the DC forts, or it was all the history things I follow on facebook posting things. Or quite possibly, Big Brother has caught on to my search history and offered notice of this event as a paid ad on Google. Whatever it was, I was given ample notice of a reenactment at Mount Vernon.
Colonial history was my first love, long before I ever met Col. Chamberlain of the 20th Maine. When I was young, this series of books called American Girl were popular (years before the company sold out to Mattel, btw), and my favorite was Felicity, and she lived in Colonial Williamsburg. She had a horse and the dress and red hair – everything I wanted when I was that age. I read the Felicity books over and over again, but it never really went anywhere serious. (I did get to see Monticello, which was far cooler than I expected-can I say I love Jefferson?)
The pantheon of American gods
… What a good tagline.
I had some real time off over the holidays, like real time and not Christmas Day and calling out for a couple of days, which is something I totally would never do ever. After a nice trip home for some of Mom’s annual Christmas treats, I still had a whole week left. So, I found myself killing that awkward week between Christmas and New Year’s in Philadelphia. On the surface, I was visiting a college friend. But mostly –> Valley Forge at Christmastime.
When I told my sister I wanted to visit Valley Forge during the winter because of history reasons, she laughed at me. Like, I hadn’t heard her laugh like that in a long time. Whatever, sister, I’m still cool.