News and Events

Thomas Jefferson in Paris in 1785 March 04 2014

April 21, 7pm - 8pm

Crozet Library 2020 Library Ave, Crozet, Virginia 22932

Solving a Mystery in American History November 22 2013

When Thomas Jefferson authored the Declaration of Independence, he chose to open the document with an explanation. He wrote that revolution was justified by a Law of Nature that demanded governments provide for certain rights or cease to exist. Therefore, King George, who had violated these rights over and over, was no longer fit to govern them.

This thought was actually first introduced into American history by another Declaration committee member, John Adams. In 1774, Adams represented Massachusetts to the First Continental Congress. At the Congress, he lobbied—unsuccessfully—for the acceptance of a Natural Law as a colonial right. He and his supporters knew that the adoption of such a principle would pave the way for revolution. Joseph Galloway of Pennsylvania and his supporters argued vociferously against it because they too knew the outcome.

In The Dubious Achievement of the First Continental Congress, a groundbreaking book by our book publisher, James Thompson, the devious arrangement that resulted in Adam's Natural Law's inclusion into the minutes of the meeting is revealed. Charles Thomson, Secretary of the Congress and devoted Patriot, inserted the suggestion into the minutes after the meeting had already adjourned. Thomson fought with other representatives over accusations of similar behavior, but this devious act would have far reaching consequences two years later. 

Thomas Jefferson: A Philosopher in American History October 02 2013

The first of the three figures who so succinctly conveys Commonwealth Book Publishers of Virginia's approach to history is the famous statesman Thomas Jefferson. He played a pivotal role in American history for his authorship of the Declaration of Independence and subsequent introduction of the concept of inherent rights into the American political vernacular.

Jefferson went on to serve as Minister to France, Secretary of State, Vice President, and President. He was responsible for the Louisiana Purchase and the expedition of Lewis and Clark into the new land. Jefferson also played a significant role in the design and formation of the University of Virginia.

Many biographies fail to adequately account for the sources of Jefferson's inspiration. His educational background exposed him to the work of British philosopher John Locke whose thoughts on government and society likely had a major impact on a young Jefferson.

Through his actions, Jefferson brought philosophical thought into the framework of history, thereby intertwining the depth of human thought with the march of human events.

Commonwealth Book Publishers of Virginia is a book retailer and book publishing service with a particular yen for works that reveal the interdependence of history, philosophy, and art. We invite authors to submit works for review and possible inclusion into our specialized book list.