Oct 16th, 2013 @ 8:39 am | Author: Greg Vanney
President Thomas Jefferson, portrayed by humanities scholar Clay Jenkinson, visited Valley City State University on Tuesday evening, Oct. 15. Speaking to a crowd of 500 assembled in Vangstad Auditorium, the costumed Jenkinson presented Jefferson’s views on the U.S. Constitution, answered questions from the audience as Jefferson and described his portrayal of Jefferson and other historical figures.
Among his other comments, Jenkinson as Jefferson presented North Dakota’s agrarian society—combined with the opportunities afforded by public education—as the American ideal. He also extolled the virtue of the dome in VCSU’s historic Vangstad Auditorium.
The director of the Dakota Institute of the Lewis & Clark Fort Mandan Foundation, Jenkinson co-hosts public radio’s The Jefferson Hour and creates documentary films, symposiums and literary projects. He serves as primary advisor to the Theodore Roosevelt Center at Dickinson State University and is Distinguished Humanities Scholar at Bismarck State College. Jenkinson also writes a Sunday column for the Bismarck Tribune.
Jenkinson’s Jefferson appearance was sponsored by VCSU, Valley City’s “What in the World is Going On?” organization, the Valley City Public Schools and the Barnes County Historical Society.
Additional support for Jenkinson’s visit was received from Alliance Pipeline, Dacotah Bank, First Community Credit Union, Pizza Corner and Frozen Pizza Factory Mfg., Dakota Plains Cooperative, Valley City Kiwanis Club, Valley City Optimists Club, Bridges Arts Council, Ingstad Family Media, Thrivent Financial (Dave Bjornson, financial associate), Grotberg Electric, James and Sharon Buhr, Madeline Luke and Gary Krapu, John Deere Seeding Group, and Kadrmas Lee & Jackson, Inc.