Event — Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington

2017 Gay Hart Gaines Distinguished Visiting Lecturer of American History

The Lasting Consequences of the American Revolution

Where: Robert H. and Clarice Smith Theater, George Washington’s Mount Vernon

3200 Mount Vernon Memorial Hwy. Mount Vernon, VA 22121

When: Tuesday, November 14th, 2017 | 7:00 pm

The Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association is proud to present this educational series delivered by the Gay Hart Gaines Distinguished Visiting Lecturer in American History, a position established to honor the Association’s 18th Regent through the generosity of Lewis E. Lehrman, co-founder of the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History. This series is designed to provide a deeper understanding of, and expertise in, a particular subject related to George Washington.

The American Revolution is the most important event in American history, bar none; and it is one of the most important events in world history. In 1784 the English radical and Unitarian minister, Richard Price, went so far as to declare that the American Revolution, next to the introduction of Christianity, may prove to be “the most important step in the progressive course of human improvement” in all of history. Such a monumental event was bound to have immense consequences for Americans and for the world.

The Origins of Capitalism

The American Revolution was the most important event in turning the United States into a capitalist powerhouse. Not only did the Revolutionary War bring many Americans who had scarcely ever traded outside of their neighborhoods into larger and more impersonal markets, it also stimulated a great increase in agricultural productivity. While the slave-holding plantations in the South continued as they had in the past to produce staples for overseas markets, more and more northern farmers began engaging in manufacturing for expanding domestic markets; but unlike the pattern of industrialization set by Great Britain they did so without leaving their farms. As northern America became increasingly commercialized and capitalistic, it nevertheless remained predominantly rural and agricultural. And although Americans borrowed heavily from abroad, much of their capital was self-created through the chartering of hundreds of banks that issued the paper money that financed their extraordinary commercial development.

Members register here. Non-members register here.

Cost: Members $175; Non-members $200. Includes all three lectures.

Click here for more information.