Groundbreaking New Exhibition and Seminar on France and the American Revolution: At War and at Peace

Washington DC, April 8th, 2019 – The French-American Cultural Foundation, the French Embassy, and The National Museum of American History have joined forces to produce an insightful seminar with leading experts and a groundbreaking new exhibition on the American Revolution. The seminar entitled ‘France and the American Revolution: At War and at Peace’ is being held at the Embassy of France – La Maison Française on April 11th. The exhibition runs until June 2019 at the National Museum of American History.

The seminar, exhibition, and a companion book of the same name, highlights the degree to which the American Revolution became a global war, in which the Americans relied heavily on support from other nations, most notably France and Spain.

French-American Cultural Foundation Executive Director, Debra Dunn, said “we are delighted to be a part of this important seminar and exhibition which will inform and entertain audiences. The seminal moment in our history was a Global event which few American’s truly appreciate. Central to the success of the Revolution was the role played by France.”

The war to secure American independence was fought across five continents and three oceans, with over 200,000 French and Spanish combatants fighting against Britain, almost as many as the Americans. Over 90% of all the arms used by the Americans came from overseas, as well as $30 billion in foreign aid.

In a panel discussion at La Maison Française — Embassy of France on April 11, four scholars who authored essays in the book will discuss how the American alliance with France shaped both the conduct of the war both in North America and around the world, as well as the complex peace negotiations that ultimately ended it. Scholars will include Olivier Chaline, Professor of Early Modern History at Sorbonne Université (Paris), David J. Hancock, Professor of History at the University of Michigan, David K. Allison, Senior Scholar at the National Museum of American History, and Larrie D. Ferreiro, Professor of History and Engineering at George Mason University.

Running in conjunction with the seminar is The American Revolution: A World War, which examines the 1781 victory at Yorktown and the Franco-American partnership that made it possible. This exhibition includes two paintings created by Louis-Nicolas van Blarenberghe as copies of those presented to King Louis XVI. The exhibition features The Siege of Yorktown and The Surrender of Yorktown, both painted in 1786, and George Washington’s early 1780s portrait by Charles Willson Peale, united for the first time in a national museum since their display together in the 1700s.

Tickets for the seminar are still available online through website Evenbrite.