The 1776 Problem in U.S. History

Solicited by the Omohundro Institute of Early American History & Culture

Saturday, April 2, 2022, 3:30 PM - 5:00 PM

Type: Roundtable Discussion

Tags: Nationalism and Transnationalism; Politics; Public History and Memory


At least since the end of the war for American independence, 1776 has been re-interpreted and mis-interpreted in ways that speak to issues of equity and access, ways that are explicitly political and polemical. Conversations about the meaning of 1776 bridge the scholarly and the civic in an especially urgent way.  Those conversations will only become more urgent as we approach 2026 and the 250th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence.  This roundtable draws together scholars whose expertise spans the whole of U.S. history to explore the various uses and interpretations of 1776 at different junctures in U.S. history

Session Participants

Chair: Catherine E. Kelly, Omohundro Institute

Panelist: Barbara Ann Gannon, University of Central Florida

Panelist: Robert G. Parkinson, Binghamton University

Panelist: Brian Joseph Purnell, Bowdoin College

Panelist: Jimmy Sweet, Rutgers University

Panelist: Karin Wulf, John Carter Brown Library & Brown University