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The Betty Strong Encounter Center will present “James Monroe: Expansion, Defense and the Art of Compromise” with Dr. Scott Culpepper at 2 p.m. Sunday, March 3. Admission will be free; a reception will follow.

“James Monroe’s service as the sixth president of the United States marked the end of an era as the first generation of American founders gave way to the next,” says Culpepper, a Dordt College History Professor.

Monroe served with the delegation that negotiated the Louisiana Purchase. During his presidency the boundaries of the United States were extended to the South in Florida as well as to the Pacific Northwest.

Monroe’s push to protect the young American republic from the ambitions of European powers included: service as James Madison’s Secretary of State; a number of treaties negotiated throughout his career; and his famous Monroe Doctrine which insisted on the independent sovereignty of the Americas.

“Monroe helped create the period known as the ‘era of good feelings’ by encouraging compromises to defuse party rivalries and sectional disputes. This was in a time when divisions in America culture threatened the future of the United States,” says Culpepper.

The Dordt College scholar’s teaching and research interests are the Atlantic world and American history, with particular emphasis on the intersection of faith, politics and popular culture. He is the author of “Francis Johnson and the English Separatist Influence: The Bishop of Brownism’s Life, Ministry, and Controversies” (Mercer University Press, 2011).