My favorite period of American history is the Founding era, 1780-1800. I love reading biographies of the American founders and historical accounts of the Constitutional Convention and the early American republic. I make Katie listen to me recite the preamble to the Constitution every September 17th and the first paragraph of the Declaration of Independence every July 4th. We named our first daughter after Abigail Adams.
So one can imagine my excitement this weekend when I took a break from the APSA conference to visit the National Archives building in Washington, D.C. I waited in line for an hour for the privilege of seeing the original Declaration of Independence, Constitution, and Bill of Rights. It was fantastic. I got the chills. :-) It was a unique and memorable experience to stand in the National Archives rotunda and see for the first time with my own eyes the documents that not only serve as the foundation for what I study and teach as a career, but that also helped lay the groundwork for who I am as a person and what type of lifestyle that I live and the comforts and privileges that I currently enjoy.