Day: September 17, 2008

Montpelier Restoration Celebrated Amid Praise for Madison

Chief Justice John Roberts (left) was the keynote speaker on Constitution Day at James Madison’s Montpelier in Orange, Virginia.  Under a beautiful late summer sky, several thousand people came together this morning on the front lawn to hear of Madison – the Father of the Constitution and one of the most under-appreciated Founding Fathers – and to celebrate the completion of the restoration of his home, Montpelier.  It was a wonderful day that, as National Trust for Historic Preservation President Richard Moe said, doesn’t get any better if you’re in this business. All the speakers rose to the occasion, but I found the remarks of Virginia Governor Tim Kaine especially thoughtful as he highlighted a Madison accomplishment, thought, and character trait.  The accomplishment was his role as Father of the Constitution.  To appreciate that accomplishment, Sir Christopher Wren’s epitaph at St. Paul’s Cathedral was recalled, “If you seek his monument, look around you.” Governor Kaine then referenced Federalist #10, which he described as one of the most influential political thoughts in American history.  This emphasis on the pluralism …