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Joseph J. Ellis is one of the nation's leading scholars of American history. The author of eight books, Ellis was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Founding Brothers: the Revolutionary Generation and won the National Book Award for American Sphinx, a biography of Thomas Jefferson. His

in-depth chronicle of the life of our first President, His Excellency: George Washington, was a New York Times bestseller.

Ellis' newest book, Revolutionary Summer: The Birth of American Independence is being released by Random House June 2013 and he will be conducting a national book tour during the summer. 

Ellis' essays and book reviews appear regularly in national publications, such as The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Chicago Tribune, The New Republic, and The New Yorker. Ellis’s commentaries have been featured on CBS, CSPAN, CNN, and the PBS’s The News Hour with Jim Lehrer, and he has appeared in several PBS documentaries on early America, including “John and Abigail [Adams]” for PBS’s The American Experience and a History Channel documentary on George Washington

Ellis currently teaches at the Commonwealth Honors College at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.  He previously taught at Mount Holyoke College and at the United States Military Academy at West Point.

He lives in Amherst, Massachusetts with his wife, Ellen Wilkins Ellis, two dogs and a stray cat. He is father of three sons. The youngest, Alex is a student at the University of Mississippi.


“Joseph J. Ellis has emerged as an eloquent champion and brilliant practitioner of the

old-fashioned art of biography.”

Forrest McDonald

The New York Times Book Review