Treacherous Beauty: A Scene of Sabotage and Deceit at America’s Founding
Thursday, May 25, 6:00-7:30 PM
with author Stephen H. Case and playwright Patrick Gabridge
A special conversation with reception to follow
Histories of the Revolutionary War have long honored heroines such as Betsy Ross, Abigail Adams, and Molly Pitcher. Yet few people know about one of the war’s most remarkable women, a beautiful Philadelphia society girl named Peggy Shippen. While war was raging between England and its rebellious colonists, Peggy befriended a suave British officer and then married a crippled revolutionary general twice her age. She brought the two men together in a treasonous plot that nearly turned George Washington into a prisoner and changed the course of the war. Peggy Shippen was Mrs. Benedict Arnold. The story of Peggy Shippen from the popular biography Treacherous Beauty has been adapted into a movie script. Join Stephen Case, co-author of Treacherous Beauty and playwright Patrick Gabridge, for a special evening featuring a conversation with the writers and a first look at scenes from this dramatic retelling.
Stephen H. Case, Vice Chair of the NEHGS Trustees, is managing director and general counsel of Emerald Development Managers LP. He is also chairman of the board of Motors Liquidation Company, the non-government-owned remnant of General Motors Corporation. Case has been an adjunct professor at Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, D.C. To satisfy his personal curiosity, Case has made himself an expert in the Peggy Shippen story, reading all available histories that examine her story and tracking down Peggy’s letters at various historical societies. He is a member of the board of the American Revolution Center in Philadelphia.
Patrick Gabridge (Playwright) has worked with more than 40 New England theatres, and has been a Playwriting Fellow with the Huntington Theatre Company and New Repertory Theatre. Gabridge's Blood on the Snow—which envisions the aftermath of the Boston Massacre—returns to Boston’s Old State House this summer, after last year's sold-out run. His other historical plays include work about the creation of the English Bible (Fire on Earth), the astronomers Kepler and Tycho (Reading the Mind of God), and 19th century Boston publisher Daniel Sharp Ford (None but the Best). His short plays have received more than 1,000 productions around the world. He’s the author of three novels, Steering to Freedom, Tornado Siren and Moving [a life in boxes]. Patrick helped start Boston’s Rhombus Playwrights’ group, theatre companies in Denver and New York, and the on-line Playwrights’ Submission Binge. He’s a member of the Dramatists Guild, StageSource, and is the co-founder and coordinator of the New England New Play Alliance.