Omohundro Institute of Early American History & Culture

Leading Early American Scholarship Since 1943


Doing History

What is the history of the American Revolution? The answer is not simple.

While season 1 looked at how historians work, the mission of season 2, Doing History: To the Revolution, is to ask how different historians interpret the events and people at the center of the American Revolution and to help listeners see the connections—and possible disconnects—between the different approaches.

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Episode 88: Michael McDonnell, The History of History Writing

Episode 163: The American Revolution in North America

Episode 162: David, Dunmore's New World: The Revolution and the British Empire

Episode 161: Smuggling and the American Revolution

Episode 160: The Politics of Tea

Episode 159: The Revolutionary Economy

Episode 158: The Revolutionaries' Army

Episode 157: The Revolution's African American Soldiers

Episode 156: Information and Communications

Episode 155: Pauline Maier's American Revolution

Episode 154: Barbara Clark Smith, The Freedoms We Lost

Episode 153: Committees and Congresses: Governments of the American Revolution

Episode 152: Origins of the American Revolution

Episode 151: Defining the Revolution

Episode 141: A Declaration in Draft

Episode 130: Paul Revere's Ride Through History

Episode 123: Revolutionary Allegiances

Episode 112: Mary Beth Norton, To the Revolution

Bonus Episode: History and Historians in the Public

Episode 114: Karin Wulf, The History of Genealogy

Episode 110: Joshua Taylor, How Genealogists Research

Episode 105: Joshua Piker, How Historians Work

Episode 101: John Demos, How Historians Write

Episode 97: Billy Smith, How to Organize Your Research

Episode 92: Sharon Block, How to Research History Online

Episode 88: Michael McDonnell, The History of History Writing

Episode 84: Zara Anishanslin, How Historians Read Historical Sources

Episode 79: James Horn, What is a Historical Source

Episode 75: Peter Drummey, How Archives Work

Episode 70: Jennifer Morgan, How Historians Research

Episode 66: Simon Newman, How Historians Find Their Research Topics

Bonus Episode: Why Historians Study History

Historians rely on secondary historical sources almost as much as they rely on primary historical sources.

But what are secondary historical sources and how do they help historians know what they know about the past?

Michael McDonnell, an Associate Professor of History at the University of Sydney, guides us through how he used secondary historical sources to investigate the pivotal role Native Americans played in the history of the Great Lakes region and early North America.

Episodes and supplemental content available on

Supporting this series helps to meet one of the chief aims of the Lapidus Initiative: to make more transparent the intensive and collaborative processes of developing and producing high-quality scholarship. It also offers us a new and exciting opportunity for public outreach.