Thursday, June 11, 2009

The Peasant Prince

Last year we mentioned the will of Thaddeus Kosciuszko, the great Polish-American patriot, and his unfaithful executor, Thomas Jefferson. Alex Storozynski has written a new biography of Kosciuszko, The Peasant Prince. Judging from Storozynski's appearance on the Diane Rehm show this morning, he spins a fascinating story of the man who believed everyone, including American slaves and European serfs, should live free.

Despite Jefferson's eventual refusal to use Kosciuszko's U.S. estate to fund freedom for slaves, he and Kosciuszko remained friends for life. Guess who gave Jefferson his sable coat.

Thomas Jefferson by Rembrant Peale, 1805

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