Your Most Obedient & Humble Servant

Your Most Obedient & Humble Servant

Your Most Obedient & Humble Servant is a podcast that showcases 18th and early 19th-century women’s letters that don’t always make it into the history books. Join historian Kathryn Gehred and her guests as they explore the lives of women and the world around them through their letters.

Recent Episodes

April 16, 2024

Episode 50: The Feathers are the only Tolerable Ones

Martha Washington to Eleanor Parke Custis, c. February 1797. In which Washington warns her granddaughter that her dress may not arrive from Philadelphia in time for a Virginia ball.  Featuring , Assistant Professor of Histor…
March 19, 2024

Episode 49: Deposition of Phillis Tatton

Deposition of Phillis Tatton, 3rd November 1837 In which Phillis Hinkley Saunders Tatton appeared before the County of Probate in the state of Connecticut in an attempt to secure a pension for her late husband’s service duri…
Feb. 21, 2024

Episode 48: Political Subjects are too often at Variance

Elizabeth Willing Powel to Elizabeth Parke Custis, February 28, 1816. In which Powel advises Martha Washington's pro-French granddaughter to avoid talking about politics with pro-British family members.
Jan. 16, 2024

Episode 47: To Persevere In Grace & Faith

Phillis Wheatley to Obour Tanner, October 30th, 1773 in which Wheatley discusses faith, her book, and a trip to England.
Dec. 19, 2023

Episode 46: The Ambassadress Is Nothing But Blunt

Abigail Adams to John Quincy Adams, 16 Febuary 1786. In which Abigail reports from London to her son on dining with wealthy South Carolinians and the tribulations of her daughter Nabby in matters of the heart.
Nov. 21, 2023

Episode 45: You Must Not Complain Of My Silence

Elizabeth Mason to Mary Barnes Mason, 3 March 1811. In which Elizabeth attempts to update her daughter Mary on the latest news from home while her family distracts her.
Oct. 17, 2023

Episode 44: I Am An Idiot About Play

Lady Georgiana Spencer and Caroline Howe, a series of correspondences. In which they discuss Lady Spencer’s gambling problem. Kathryn Gehred is joined by early American historian and Fellow of the Royal Historical Society of…
Sept. 19, 2023

Episode 43: That B**** Maria Goodwin

Sarah E. Nicholas to Jane H. Nicholas Randolph, March 30, 1821 In which Sarah E. Nicholas writes to her sister Jane H. Nicholas Randolph about an incident in the streets of Baltimore. Kathryn Gehred is joined by Amelia Golch…
Aug. 29, 2023

Season 3: A Season of Wit

We are excited to announce that on September 19 Your Most Obedient & Humble Servant will be back with a new season. We found some great letters to share with you this season that highlight the extraordinary wit of women in t…
Aug. 15, 2023

Episode 42: A Woman of Extraordinary Ability

The travel diary of Elizabeth House Trist, 1783.  In which Elizabeth House Trist records her journey down the Mississippi River in 1783.
July 25, 2023

Episode 41: Very Eccentric & I Think a Little Crazy

Phoebe Pemberton Morris to Rebecca Wistar Morris Nourse, 28 February 1812. In which Phoebe Pemberton Morris writes to her sister Rebecca Wistar Morris Nourse about the many social events she is attending in the Federal City,…
June 27, 2023

Episode 40: How Dare You Not Answer My Letter

Eliza Monroe Hay to King Louis Philippe of France, 1839. In which Eliza Monroe Hay, James Monroe's daughter, requests assistance from the King Louis Philippe of France because of the aid her parents provided his mother durin…

About the Hosts

Kathyrn GehredProfile Photo

Kathyrn Gehred


Kathryn Gehred has a master's degree in Women's History from Sarah Lawrence College and was part of a team of editors who completed The Papers of Martha Washington, a transcribed collection of all of Martha Washington's known correspondence published by UVA Press in 2022. She began releasing Your Most Obedient & Humble Servant in 2020 as a personal side project because she thought a podcast would be a great way to share some of her favorite 18th-century women's letters with the world

Jeanette PatrickProfile Photo

Jeanette Patrick

Head of Studio

Jeanette Patrick is the Head of R2 Studios. She is a public historian and has an M.A. in Public History from James Madison University. At R2 Studios, she oversees the development and production of all the studio’s podcasts including Your Most Obedient & Humble Servant, The Green Tunnel, Worlds Turned Upside Down, and Antisemitism U.S.A. Patrick previously worked in the museum industry where she played a pivotal role in creating digital public history projects. Prior to R2 Studios, Patrick worked for George Washington’s Mount Vernon, where she managed the history and preservation website content and built many digital exhibits. She also wrote scripts for audio and AR tours, live-action films, and animated videos. With Jim Ambuske, Patrick co-created and co-wrote the podcast Intertwined: The Enslaved Community at George Washington’s Mount Vernon.

Jim AmbuskeProfile Photo

Jim Ambuske

Co-Head of Studio

Jim Ambuske is Co-Head of R2 Studios. He is a historian of the American Revolution, Scotland, and the British Atlantic World. He received his Ph.D. in history from the University of Virginia in 2016 and he is the author and co-author of several publications on the American Revolution, transatlantic legal history, and King George III. At R2 Studios, Ambuske serves as the narrator, writer, and creator of the forthcoming series Worlds Turned Upside Down. He is also an executive producer of Your Most Obedient & Humble Servant, The Green Tunnel, and Antisemitism U.S.A. Before joining R2 Studios, Ambuske led the Center for Digital History at the Washington Library at George Washington’s Mount Vernon.

Hayley MadlProfile Photo

Hayley Madl

Audio Editor

Hayley Madl is a Ph.D. student at George Mason University. She currently works as a Graduate Research Assistant at the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media and as a Podcast Producer at R2 Studios whose credits include The Green Tunnel and Your Most Obedient & Humble Servant. Hayley’s past work has centered on Indigenous expressions of sovereignty in treaty councils during the eighteenth century, particularly among the Haudenosaunee (Six Nations). Her current research focuses on the applications of 3D modeling and digital reconstruction to community memory and lost landscapes, especially within Indigenous communities.

Rachel Bodily BirchProfile Photo

Rachel Bodily Birch

Rachel earned a Master’s degree in Public Administration from Brigham Young University and will complete a Master’s degree in History from George Mason University in 2024. Rachel's research focuses on nineteenth and twentieth century American religion, religious benevolence, and women’s history. She is especially interested in the importance of oral history. Rachel is a Graduate Student Affiliate at the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media.

Related Shows

Worlds Turned Upside Down

Worlds Turned Upside Down tells the story of the American Revolution as a transatlantic c…

Visit Page

Your Most Obedient & Humble Servant

Your Most Obedient & Humble Servant is a podcast that showcases 18th and early 19th-centu…

Visit Page

Antisemitism, U.S.A.

Antisemitism has deep roots in American history. Yet in the United States, we often talk …

Visit Page

The Green Tunnel

The Green Tunnel explores the history and culture of the United States’ most iconic long-…

Visit Page

Revolutions Reconsidered

A bi-weekly companion piece to the podcast Worlds Turned Upside Down. Join R2 Studios' Dr…

Visit Page

Consolation Prize

Consolation Prize is a podcast about the history of the United States in the world throug…

Visit Page