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New Meetup: Benjamin Carp, About Boston Tea Party (Part I) @ Old South Meeting House

From: T.J. M.
Sent on: Friday, November 6, 2009 10:13 AM
Announcing a new Meetup for Nerd Fun - Boston!

What: Benjamin Carp, About Boston Tea Party (Part I) @ Old South Meeting House

When: December 3,[masked]:00 PM

Where:
Old South Meeting House
310 Washington St
Boston, MA 02108
(617)[masked]

Join us as we explore this lunchtime lecture series, this time regarding the Boston Tea Party!

From the Old South Meeting House site:
http://www.oldsouthmeetinghouse.org/osmh123456789_1773L/Calendar/DispForm.aspx?ID=244&Source=http%3A%2F%2Fwww%2Eoldsouthmeetinghouse%2Eorg%2Fosmh%5F123456789files%2Fcalender%2Easpx

Teapot in a Tempest: The Boston Tea Party of 1773, Part I

"The Boston Tea Party was part of a movement that was larger than Boston. Tufts University Professor Benjamin Carp, author of the forthcoming book Teapot in a Tempest, discusses what led to American outrage in 1773, who became politically active in protesting the Tea Act, and why it ended with the destruction of the tea in Boston harbor. Learn about the global forces of trade and empire that influenced the colonies and why Boston became the site for this grassroots protest".


Event Begins: 12/3/[masked]:15 PM
Event Ends: 12/3/2009 1:00 PM

Price: $5; Free for members

Where to Meet:
T.J. Maher will get there a bit before noon to save half a pew or so for the group up near the podium, placing a red MEETUP sign on the aisle. T.J. is 5 foot 7, with short brown hair, blue eyes, and a "Hello My Name is T.J." nametag. The Old South Meeting House is in Downtown Crossing across from the large Borders Bookstore.


About Benjamin Carp's research:
http://tuftsjournal.tufts.edu/2009/01_1/features/02/

Tufts Journal, 1/14/2009:

"Every school child learns the story of the Boston Tea Party: how the colonists, dressed as Indians, boarded ships in the dead of night and threw huge chests of tea overboard into the Boston Harbor. 'Taxation without representation' was the battle cry?or so we?re told.

"The Tea Party took place 235 years ago on December 16, not in the dead of night, as the stories say, but early in the evening, says Benjamin Carp, an assistant professor of history. Carp is writing a book, Teapot in a Tempest: The Boston Tea Party of 1773, to be published by Yale University Press next year. Carp hopes his book will provide a fuller and richer account than is taught to most school children, while putting the event into a larger context.

"Teaching at Tufts?a subway ride from where the event occurred?Carp wants to give the Tea Party its due as a local incident, while showing how it fits into a larger worldwide picture.

" 'I?m at a university and a department that takes the idea of studying things globally very seriously, and it?s actually shaped the way I?ve thought about this book,' he says. 'During the period when the Tea Party took place, everything was being knit together in an exchange of goods, people and ideas, and the Boston Tea Party was part of that'.

"The myth-making may have started with the name. The phrase 'Boston Tea Party' wasn?t used until after 1820, says Carp, and it may not have been intended to denote a celebration at all, but merely a way of describing a group of people, as in 'a party of men who boarded the ship'.

"Some accounts suggest that as few as 20 to 30 people dumped the tea overboard, Carp says, though many more are claimed by their distant relatives today. ?Some people may have witnessed the Tea Party, and their families say they participated,? says Carp. ?In some cases, though, the person wasn?t even in Boston at the time. It?s like Woodstock?more people say they were there than actually were.?

"In his effort to make his history even more thorough, Carp is bringing the Tea Party to the classroom, assigning his Tufts students to do original research to document who actually participated in the raid, which he will reference in the book. He gave his students the names of people who supposedly boarded the ships and has them scouring 18th-century newspapers, town records and other manuscripts at the Massachusetts Historical Society and the Boston Public Library. [...] [ MORE: http://tuftsjournal.tufts.edu/2009/01_1/features/02/ ]

About Benjamin Carp:
http://ase.tufts.edu/history/faculty/carp.asp

"Assistant Professor of History, Tufts University
"Colonial, Revolutionary, and Early America

"Biography
"My research is on the history of early America, particularly the American Revolution. I teach classes introducing students to the colonial period, the Revolutionary period, the Early Republic, antebellum America, the Civil War, and Reconstruction. I also teach courses that focus on the history of Revolutionary Massachusetts, on the Revolutionary experience in American cities, and on American military history before 1900.

"Beginning with my undergraduate work at Yale University, I've been interested in how political movements developed in the eighteenth-century urban setting. My first book, based on my graduate work at the University of Virginia, is entitled Rebels Rising: Cities and the American Revolution (2007; paperback 2009). In it, I explore five sites where revolutionary political activity took place, focusing on the five largest British American cities as case studies for those sites: the Boston waterfront, New York City taverns, Newport churches and congregations, Charleston households, and the Philadelphia State House (now Independence Hall) and State House Yard. I also look at how the Revolutionary War robbed these cities of their political importance, which is one reason we've forgotten much of their contribution to the revolutionary movement.

"I am currently at work on a second project, tentatively called Teapot in a Tempest: The Boston Tea Party of 1773. This book has several aims, among them to tell a global and local history of the Boston Tea Party. The Tea Party was local in the sense that it was a product of Boston and its people. Yet the Tea Party was also global in that it involved Chinese tea, usually mixed with Caribbean sugar, a shipping company that had just become a territorial power in South Asia, the British government, its colonists, and Native American disguises. This book will also answer complex questions about the causes of the Tea Party and about its uncertain legacy".

About the Old South Meeting House, Wikipedia:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Old_South_Meeting_House

"The Old South Meeting House, in the Downtown Crossing area of Boston, Massachusetts, gained fame as the organizing point for the Boston Tea Party on December 16, 1773. 5,000 colonists gathered at the Meeting House, the largest building in Boston at the time.

"The church, with its 56 m (183 ft) steeple, was completed in 1729. The congregation was gathered in 1669 when it broke off from First Church of Boston, a Congregationalist church founded by John Winthrop in 1630. The site was a gift of Mrs. Norton, widow of John Norton, pastor of the First Church in Boston.[3] The church's first pastor was Rev Thomas Thatcher, a native of Salisbury, England. Thatcher was also a physician and is known for publishing the first medical tract in Massachusetts.

"After the Boston Massacre in 1770, yearly anniversary meetings were held at the church until 1775 featuring speakers such as John Hancock and Dr. Joseph Warren. In[masked],000 people met in the Meeting House to debate British taxation, and after the meeting a group raided a nearby tea ship in what became known as the Boston Tea Party.

"In 1775 the British occupied the Meeting House due to its association with the Revolutionary cause. The British gutted the building, filled it with dirt and then used the interior to practice horse riding. They destroyed much of the interior and stole various items including William Bradford's Of Plymouth Plantation (1620), a rare Pilgrim manuscript, hidden in Old South's tower.

"Old South Meeting House was almost destroyed in the Great Boston Fire of 1872, and the congregation then built a new church (the 'New' Old South Church at Copley Square) which remains its home to this day. Once twice a year, on the Sunday before Thanksgiving, the Old South congregation returns to Old South Meeting House for services in its ancestral home".

Learn more here:
http://www.meetup.com/NerdFunBoston/calendar/11811465/

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