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Kate Clifford Larson

Historian and Author

Kate Clifford Larson

Kate Clifford Larson, PhD., is an historian and author of "The Assassin's Accomplice: Mary Surratt and the Plot to Kill Abraham Lincoln" (Basic Books, June 2008). With degrees from Simmons College and Northeastern University, and a doctorate in history from the University of New Hampshire, Larson specializes in 19th and 20th century U.S. Women's and African American History.

Dr. Larson is also a leading Harriet Tubman scholar and the author of "Bound For the Promised Land: Harriet Tubman, Portrait of an American Hero" (Ballantine/One World, 2004), one of the first non-juvenile Tubman biographies published in six decades. She has been working as a consultant and interpretive specialist for numerous museum, community, and public history initiatives related to Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad in Maryland and New York, and also served as the consulting historian for the National Park Service's Harriet Tubman Special Resource Study, resulting in the introduction of the Harriet Tubman National Historical Park Act, now awaiting approval in Congress.

Dr. Larson has been a guest instructor at numerous professional development workshops for teachers, including National Endowment for the Humanities and Teaching American History programs, on the topics of American Slavery, the Underground Railroad, Abolition, and Harriet Tubman. She teaches at both Simmons College and Wheelock College in Boston. Her latest book, "Rosemary: An Interrupted Life," a biography of the profoundly disabled sister of President Kennedy, is due out from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in late 2011.

Discussions by this Expert

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“Mary Surratt - Guilty, Innocent, or does it matter?”

Apr 20, 2011 at 9:41pm | Filed Under “The Conspirator

Mary Surratt - Guilty, Innocent, or does it matter?
Less than three months after her arrest at her boarding house on H Street in Washington City, Mary Surratt would be hanged for her role in John Wilkes Booth's murderous plot.
from The Conspirator 57 comments

“Frederick Aiken: A Rookie Defender”

Mar 14, 2011 at 9:53pm | Filed Under “The Conspirator

Frederick Aiken: A Rookie Defender
Historian Kate Larson suggests that Frederick Aiken (James McAvoy) failed in his defense of Mary Surratt due to his general inexperience as a lawyer.
from The Conspirator 21 comments

“The Private Life of Mary Surratt”

Feb 14, 2011 at 8:36pm | Filed Under “The Conspirator

The Private Life of Mary Surratt
When audiences first meet Mary Surratt in the film THE CONSPIRATOR, the only thing they will know about her is that she is the mother of John Surratt, Jr., a Booth cohort...
from The Conspirator 27 comments
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Other Activity by this Expert

  • Gave a thumbs down to this comment on July 25, 2011 at 3:37pm

    Mary Surratt - Guilty, Innocent, or does it matter?

    Bonjo121, I have to disagree that Aiken and Clampitt provided Mary with an excellent defense, but I have argued that already. However, the rules of trials were different then. If she were to be... More

    from The Conspirator
  • Gave a thumbs up to this comment on June 27, 2011 at 2:05pm

    Frederick Aiken: A Rookie Defender

    The press coverage for the trial was quite sensational, and all of the defendants were characterized rather poorly in the papers. They all suffered from the the media frenzy that wanted and needed... More

    from The Conspirator
  • Gave a thumbs up to this comment on June 27, 2011 at 2:05pm

    Frederick Aiken: A Rookie Defender

    Mary chose her attorneys. They were not chosen, per se, for her. She asked Reverdy Johnson to be the lead in her case. He, or she, brought on Frederick Aiken and John Clampitt. The court did not... More

    from The Conspirator
1 2 3 ... 8 Next


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