Spies, Schemes, and the Sons of Liberty: The Shadier Side of East and West Florida during the American Revolution

Presented By Roger Smith

Did you know that the British royal governor of East Florida accused prominent men in the colony of holding a Sons of Liberty meeting? Or that during the American Revolution the British put plans in motion to literally steal the Mississippi River? These and other wild escapades of treason, revolutionary land schemes, spies, and espionage fill the annals of East and West Florida history throughout the Revolutionary War period. This discussion will introduce you to the shadier side of British occupation in Florida and how those instances impacted the nation’s fight for independence.

Dr. Smith received his Bachelor’s Degree in History in 2006, a Master’s Degree in American History in 2008, and a Ph.D. in Early American History and Atlantic World Studies, with a certificate of scholarship in Museum Studies, in 2011 – all from the University of Florida. His work on the American Revolution in the South has received the Aschoff Fellowship Dissertation Award and the Jack and Celia Proctor Award in Southern History. Dr. Smith’s upcoming book, The Last Union Jack, discusses the little-told story of British intention and military activity in the southern colonies from 1775 – 1780, as recorded from a British perspective.

Dr. Smith now represents the firm of Colonial Research Associates, Inc., and speaks across the South on his Revolutionary War research. His current projects include the new AMC television series Turn, a spy thriller set on Long Island, New York, in 1778. Dr. Smith provides historical research for Super Music Vision, the music production company for this and other AMC programs. You may also see Dr. Smith speak of Florida’s Revolutionary War history in the documentary, America: the Prequel, a four-part series on the 450-year history of the city of St. Augustine. Most recently, Dr. Smith is in the process of selecting several primary stories of interest from his 5 ½ years of research on this topic and reworking them into a series of six 32-page supplemental texts that are designed to reach a broad general audience and will include state standard requirements in the Humanities and Social Sciences for the State of Florida’s public school systems. The first two books in the series, “The 14th Colony: George Washington’s Planned Invasions of East Florida” and “Hope of Freedom: Southern Blacks and the American Revolution,” are available and may be found on the company website, www.ColonialRA.com. Book three, “Women of the American Revolution: Lost Voices of America’s First Generation,” is in production and will be available by spring 2016.

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Roger Smith