I was born and raised in Iowa (or Heaven, if you prefer) and moved to Washington, DC in 2009. My day job is policy. What makes me want to do my day job my deep love for this country, her people, and her unique history.

Adventures in Independence…

This blog is about stories: My stories, the stories of my family, and the stories of the people who built America.

In particular, here you will find the foibles of my adult life. And, much like my adult life, I’m not exactly sure what that means. In general, there will be a lot of American history (mostly early American history through the Civil War), travel, genealogy, and a smattering of coming-of-age nonsense.

My pen name…

Dolley Madison was more than a First Lady who saved a famous painting in the White House. She was, arguably, one of the first prominent female figures in American politics.

With more conscious effort than either of her two predecessors, and with an enthusiasm for public life that neither of them had, Dolley Madison forged the highly public role as a President’s wife, believing that the citizenry was her constituency as well as that of her husband’s. This would establish her as the standard against which all her successors would be held, well into the mid-20th century. This persona was specifically created to serve the political fortunes of not only the President, but also of the United States. She would steer conversation with political figures, including their spouses, in a way that revealed their positions on issues facing the Madison Administration, or sought to convince them to consider the viewpoint of her husband. (from The National First Ladies Library

There have been many women throughout American history whom I’ve found admirable, and to be sure there have been many women who have done much to advance the role of women in politics beyond the home. But Dolley was there in the beginning. As a woman in politics today, I can’t help but want to strive to be a little bit like her.


Legal Disclaimer: All opinions expressed by Dolly and those submitting comments are theirs only. They do not reflect the views of Dolly’s current employer, previous employers, Dolly’s family, or her friends. Dolly exercises sole editorial control over the content of Adventures in Independence. 


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