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Up To Date

An Unconventional First Lady


Thomas Jefferson's eldest and favorite daughter, Martha Jefferson Randolph, would often assume the role of First Lady after her mother died.

On Wednesday's Up to Date, biographer Cynthia A. Kierner talks with Steve Kraske about her book Martha Jefferson Randolph, Daughter of Monticello. We look at how, after her mother's early death, Martha charmed the world with her personality, ran the household and stayed calm during financial woes.

We also examine her close relationship with her father, and how she reacted to gossip about his relationship with his slave, Sally Hemings. 

HEAR MORE: Cynthia Kierner will speak at 6:30 p.m. June 5 at the Plaza Branch of the Kansas City Public Library. KCUR is a co-sponsor of the event.

When I host Up To Date each morning at 9, my aim is to engage the community in conversations about the Kansas City area’s challenges, hopes and opportunities. I try to ask the questions that listeners want answered about the day’s most pressing issues and provide a place for residents to engage directly with newsmakers. Reach me at steve@kcur.org or on Twitter @stevekraske.