C-SPAN Videos

C-SPAN, the cable television network, has visited the Library to record events for Book TV and other series. Click the icon to go to the C-SPAN Video Library to watch these events (requires Adobe Flash Player).

  • Political scientist Carolyn N. Long examines the Warren Court decision that decided evidence obtained in violation of the Fourth Amendment could not be used in state criminal law prosecutions.
    Thursday, August 29, 2013

    When police in Ohio raided Dollree Mapp’s home looking for evidence in a bombing, all they found were some “lascivious books.” Mapp appealed her pornography conviction, leading the Supreme Court under Earl Warren to address not only the search-and-seizure question but also the “exclusionary rule” concerning the use of evidence not specified in a search warrant.

    Carolyn N. Long is associate professor of political science at Washington State University – Vancouver.

  • On the 150th anniversary of Quantrill’s raid on Lawrence, Kansas, historian Tony R. Mullis of the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth examines the notorious massacre and the years of back-and-forth atrocities that led up to it.
    Wednesday, August 21, 2013

    On the 150th anniversary of William Clarke Quantrill’s raid on Lawrence, Tony R. Mullis of the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, examines the notorious massacre and the years of back-and-forth atrocities by Confederate bushwackers and pro-Union Jayhawkers that led up to it.

    Mullis is a retired lieutenant colonel in the United States Air Force and the author of Peacekeeping on the Plains: Army Operations in Bleeding Kansas.

  • Lawyer and author James P. Muehlberger digs into the 1869 killing of a bank cashier by the James brothers - long thought to be part of their first robbery - and finds it was actually an assassination attempt meant to avenge the death of Confederate guerrilla “Bloody Bill” Anderson.
    Thursday, August 15, 2013

    The 1869 killing of a bank cashier in Gallatin, Missouri, has long been considered the first in a long line of robberies by Jesse and Frank James. But in a discussion of his new book, lawyer and author James P. Muehlberger maintains that it wasn’t a robbery attempt at all. Rather, as documents that Muehlberger discovered show, it was a carefully planned execution meant to avenge the death of Confederate guerrilla leader “Bloody Bill” Anderson during the Civil War.

  • Historian Rachel St. John shows how the U.S.-Mexico border has gone from a line on a map to a clearly marked and heavily regulated divide between two nations.
    Tuesday, August 6, 2013

    Following the conclusion of the Mexican-American War in 1848, the border between the two countries remained in flux, a flexible barrier that restricted the movement of some people, goods, and animals without impeding others. In a discussion of her new book, historian Rachel St. John shows how government officials, Native American raiders, ranchers, railroad builders, miners, investors, immigrants, and smugglers contributed to the rise of state power along the border and developed strategies to navigate the increasingly regulated landscape.

  • Seton Hall’s Williamjames Hull Hoffer examines the repercussions of the controversial 1896 Supreme Court decision that legitimized the segregation of Jim Crow America and ushered in a half-century of “separate but equal.”
    Tuesday, July 23, 2013

    Homer Plessy—a man of seven-eighths Caucasian descent and one-eighth African descent who was nevertheless considered black under Louisiana law—boarded a train car reserved for whites and was promptly arrested. Hearing the appeal of his conviction, the U.S. Supreme Court in 1896 upheld the Louisiana statute, thus ushering in a half-century of legally sanctioned segregation under the "separate but equal" doctrine.

    Williamjames Hull Hoffer examines that controversial decision and its repercussions in a discussion of his book about the landmark case. Hoffer is associate professor of history at Seton Hall University.

  • Rutgers University Distinguished Professor of Law Earl M. Maltz examines the controversial 1856 Supreme Court decision that found blacks were not citizens of the United States.
    Wednesday, June 26, 2013

    The slave Dred Scott claimed that his residence in a free state transformed him into a free man. When the Court decided otherwise, the ruling sent shock waves through the nation and helped lead to the Civil War.

    Earl M. Maltz discusses his book Dred Scott and the Politics of Slavery and argues that the case revealed a political climate that had grown so threatening to the South that overturning the Missouri Compromise was considered essential.

  • Historian Andrew Jackson O’Shaughnessy looks at the British leaders who lost the American colonies and finds not incompetence but able and even brilliant men undone by political complexities at home and the fervency of their American opponents.
    Tuesday, June 18, 2013

    The loss of America was an unexpected defeat for the powerful British Empire. Common wisdom has held that incompetent military commanders and political leaders were to blame.

    But Andrew Jackson O’Shaughnessy argues in his book The Men Who Lost America: British Leadership, the American Revolution, and the Fate of the Empire that British troops were led ably and even brilliantly. The effort was undone by political complexities at home and the fervency of their American opponents.

  • In 1886 four anarchists were hanged for bombing a Chicago labor rally and for 125 years their convictions have been seen as a miscarriage of justice. Now historian Timothy Messer-Kruse argues that the prosecution was solid, but the defense chose grandstanding over substance.
    Wednesday, May 1, 2013

    On May 4, 1886, a peaceful labor rally in Haymarket Square in Chicago erupted in violence. Four anarchists were convicted and hanged for their purported role in a bombing that resulted in the death of seven police officers and at least four civilians.

    For much of a century the executions of the anarchists were widely viewed as a miscarraige of justice. But in a discussion of his book The Trial of the Haymarket Anarchists: Terrorism and Justice in the Gilded Age, Timothy Messer-Kruse argues that the prosecution was solid. It was the anarchists’ lawyers who chose to ignore a sound defense and instead use the trial for political grandstanding.

  • Television newsman Jim Lehrer and author Lee Banville join Library director Crosby Kemper III for a public conversation that provides insight into the presidential debate moments that shaped history.
    Monday, April 22, 2013

    Television newsman Jim Lehrer has presided over 12 presidential and vice-presidential debates and written about them in his 2011 memoir Tension City. Now, MacNeil/Lehrer Production has published Debating Our Destiny, a multimedia-enhanced ebook by University of Montana journalism professor Lee Banville on the history of presidential debates.

  • Military historian Gregory S. Hospodor examines the year-long effort by a Union army – under the command of Ulysses S. Grant – to take Vicksburg, the Mississippi River stronghold that Jefferson Davis called “the nail head that holds the South’s two halves together.”
    Thursday, April 18, 2013

    Military historian Gregory S. Hospodor examines the year-long effort by a Union army -- under the command of Ulysses S. Grant -- to take Vicksburg, the Mississippi River stronghold that Jefferson Davis called “the nail head that holds the South’s two halves together.”