An historic look at the Declaration of Independence – KCST’s Our Town for July 2012


Historian, social commentator and writer Clay Jenkinson (l.) in character as Thomas Jefferson, poses with The Jefferson Hour host David Swenson in the New Enlightenment Barn where their weekly program is recorded.

What better way to spend the Fourth of July than by hearing from the man who was the principal author of the Declaration of Independence.  That’s how Bob Sneddon, the host of KCST’s Our Town spent his holiday.

“It was definitely one of the high points in my 17-year broadcasting career” said Sneddon.  “I’ve spoken with one former president, three U.S. Senators, a handful of Congressmen and many, many state and local elected officials” he said, “But the author of the Declaration of Independence and the man who put together the Louisiana Purchase?  Definitely a thrill.”

Below is the player with all nine segments of the two hour program that aired Wednesday, July 4th, 2012.  Part one is the show’s introduction with Sneddon and writer, historian and social commentator Clay Jenkinson.  The next five segments contain Sneddon’s conversation with the 3rd President of the United States, Thomas Jefferson (actually Jenkinson in character).

The final four segments are the conversation that Sneddon and Jenkinson had following the presidential conversation.  Jenkinson is based in Bismark, North Dakota and is an active student and teacher of history.  He says Jefferson is his favorite, but he also portrays several other historical figures, including the man who held the office exactly 100 years after the Virginia Planter, Theodore Roosevelt.  Jenkinson enjoys the roles, and finds them very important.  “I try to take on characters who really raise the questions of what it is to be an American, what we value, how we’re different from other people, why the American experiment is so important.”

As Jefferson, Jenkinson has a conversation with Grammy nominee David Swenson each week in the New Enlightenment Barn in Bismark during The Jefferson Hour.

Jenkinson is the author of 9 books, his latest is "The Character of Meriwether Lewis, Explorer in the Wilderness."

Jenkinson is also an author, his latest work is “The Character of Meriwether Lewis” about the explorer’s ultimately unsuccessful efforts to reintegrate into society after the monumental journey to explore the Louisiana Purchase and beyond.

Our Town airs in Florence on FM 106.8 KCST the first Wednesday of each month between 4:00 and 6:00 PM.  It’s sponsored by Andy Baber of Edward Jones Investments; Holloway and Associates CPA’s; and PeaceHealth Siuslaw Region.

Download and share the entire July 4th edition of KCST’s Our Town.

Listen to individual segments (give it a few seconds to start)…