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Download A Slave in the White House: Paul Jennings and the Madisons Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample A Slave in the White House: Paul Jennings and the Madisons Audiobook, by Elizabeth Dowling Taylor Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.31 out of 53.31 out of 53.31 out of 53.31 out of 53.31 out of 5 3.31 (16 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Elizabeth Dowling Taylor Narrator: Judith West, Kevin Kenerly Publisher: Highbridge Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: April 2012 ISBN: 9781611748604
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Paul Jennings was born into slavery on the Virginia plantation of James and Dolley Madison, later becoming part of the Madison staff at the White House. This amazing portrait of the times reveals the mores and attitudes toward slavery of the 19th century. Download and start listening now!

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Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Alisa | 2/16/2014

    " Well-researched but not captivating. Necessary read yo understand a bit on how some families failed and thrived in antebellum DC. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Janet Dahl | 2/13/2014

    " Found this book to be very interesting but I love books about this time period. Learned some intesting facts about the Madison's and was impressed how Paul Jenning's was able to succeed and to take care of his family. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Susan | 2/13/2014

    " Very interesting -a good insight into race relations in Wash DC in the early 1800s. Writing is a bit laborious with footnotes, but it is a fascinating look at the history during Madiso's presidency. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Gail | 2/3/2014

    " I did not finish the book because it started to bore me. After 91 pages, I was tired of the mass jumble of names and the plodding style of the writing. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Joanne | 1/23/2014

    " Elizabeth Dowling Taylor succeeds at bringing not only Paul Jennings to life, but also the earliest days of Washington City. Muddy streets, cows, and all! Paul, and so many accomplished men like him, have long deserved a moment in the sun. Now, thanks to Elizabeth Dowling Taylor, he has it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Dan | 1/13/2014

    " What I appreciated most about this book was it's in-depth research and the author's mastery of of the material. The author weaves a story of a man who was born as property, property of our fourth president, Paul Jennings. The detail on the man's life, much of it from the letters of James and Dolley Madison, is amazing. The book is more scholarly than narrative in its approach but the subject matter is fascinating. Who knew that a former slave wrote the first White House memoir? I definitely didn't and I am glad that I now know and that I have read a great biography on the man as well as his memoir (which is included as an appendix to this book). Definitely give this one a read. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 marcali | 1/10/2014

    " a narrative of facts & details but ultimately don't really gain insight into the relationship (as with Washington & Billy Lee, Jefferson & James-- so perhaps inevitable & thus, unfair criticism) "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Jennifer | 12/28/2013

    " Reads like a term paper. Very anti-climactic and is more about chronicalling relatives and insignificant daily social events than about the actual life of a Slave in the House House (Paul Jennings). Boring. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Linda | 12/18/2013

    " This is a well written and researched book. The first half was more about Madison and Jefferson, with supposition of Jennings early life. By the time Jennings married and president Madison died the book begins to flow with the page turning intensity of a great novel you do not want to end. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Ann | 9/26/2013

    " Way too dry. I just don't care what the first lady had for breakfast. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mary Ognibene | 6/22/2013

    " A great historical novel providing the view of behind the scenes of the Madison years. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 June Volz | 5/28/2013

    " Eye opening, thought provoking. A book that reveals the hypocrisy of politicians and the courage and perseverance of a smart and determined man. We've come a long way but not far enough. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Maeve | 1/8/2013

    " This book was awesome. I highly recommend. Wonderfully researched. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Edward Sullivan | 11/4/2012

    " A remarkable story that offers fascinating insight into slavery from the perspectives of Paul Jennings, the enslaved, and his enslavers, the Madisons. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Amatullah Richard | 5/14/2012

    " Amazing true story of a man born into slavery who was President James Madison's servant/slave in the White House. Jennings journey, and that of his contemporaries and family should dispel many of the stereotypes of those held in bondage and black people. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jeremy | 4/24/2012

    " Great insights into slavery and the Founding Fathers--particularly Madison. Also great insights into living as a freed slave in DC up to and just past the Civil War. Good book. "

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About the Narrator

Kevin Kenerly earned a BA at Olivet College. A longtime member of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, he has acted in fifteen seasons, playing dozens of roles. His audiobook narration has earned him several AudioFile Earphones Awards.