I had never heard of Paul Jennings until we encountered him on a Nerd Trip to Montpelier, home to our fourth president James Madison. Jennings was a slave who served as Madison’s personal assistant during the White House years and afterward. Jennings is a fascinating witness to history, writing the first White House memoir, called “A Colored Man’s Reminiscence of James Madison,” published in 1865. I bought a copy at the Montpelier gift shop.Read More
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