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Dr. Cassandra Good explores President George Washington’s legacy through the lives of his step-grandchildren--Eliza, Patty, Nelly and Wash Custis--and their complicated roles in American History in her latest book First Family: George Washington’s Heirs and the Making of America.

 

As Dr. Good writes, “The Custises used Washington as a means to enhance their own power and status. As enslavers committed to the American empire, the Custis family embodied the failures of the American experiment that finally exploded into civil war—all the while being celebrities in a soap opera of their own making.”

 

Dr. Cassandra Good is a historian and writer who has taught at Marymount University, George Washington University, and University of Mary Washington. She received her PhD in history from the University of Pennsylvania. She is also experienced in museums, new media, and public history through her work at the Smithsonian Institution. 

 

History Happy Hour series is made possible in part by a generous contribution from Rob and Cheryl Crim.

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