Episode Nine - Thomas Jefferson and Charles Willson Peale In Conversation

Thomas Jefferson and Charles Willson Peale In ConversationBorn two years apart, almost to the day, Peale and Jefferson shared interest in many topics and activities. Both were patriots, archaeologists, scientists, and inventors. They were fascinated with agricultural innovations, science and natural history. Many of the specimens Jefferson received from the Lewis and Clark westward expedition were exhibited in Peale's natural history and art museum in Philadelphia (founded in 1802), including two live magpies, a live prairie dog and the Mandan buffalo robe.

In 1801 as Jefferson begins his first term in the Presidency, Peale conducts the first scientific exploration in the United States, unearthing the bones of a mastodon. Peale is perhaps best known as an artist, having painted the founding fathers -- Jefferson, George Washington, John Hancock, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Alexander Hamilton and others. Close to 1,100 paintings are credited to the talent of Peale.

Jefferson and Peale will engage in conversation prompted by eighth grade students from Woodrow Wilson Middle school. Interview questions will range from science, art, archaeology, natural history, inventions and gadgets, music, politics, family, public education and American Independence. Students and teachers are invited to join this conversation and learn more about these two talented individuals.