The Heart of American History Tour #2 (October 19-23) has sold out, however, please consider joining us for the October 12-16 tour. Both tours are identical in content. As of July 28, there were 28 spots remaining on October 12-16 tour. If you would like to be added to the wait list for the October 19-23 tour, click the register button below and fill out the information. Should we receive a cancellation, we will contact you at that time.
lease join historian Bill Potter, Colonel John Eidsmoe and evangelist Bernie Beall for a tour that has been years in the planning and which will offer the most diverse, iconic, fascinating, provocative, educational, and entertaining historical sites imaginable. Even if you have been to the nation’s capitol city before, you have neither seen all the places of this expedition nor interpreted each of them in the light of God’s providence, as we will do together.
Iwo Jima Memorial
Library of Congress
Lincoln Memorial 9
Included in This Tour
Opening night welcome reception Monday, October 19
All venue admissions and guide gratuities throughout the tour
Transportation on top-of-the-line motor coaches
Unlimited Metro pass during the tour
Teaching from 2 professional historians/churchmen: John Eidsmoe & Bill Potter
Bag lunch, Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday
Closing dinner Friday, October 23
Access to deeply discounted rate at to-be-selected area hotel (hotel info TBA)
Rich fellowship with other brothers and sisters in Christ
Ticket Pricing Information
Child (4 and under):FREE*
* Applies to children 4 and under who ride in a lap.
The Antietam National Battlefield is the scene of the bloodiest single-day battle in American history. General Lee’s controversial first invasion of the North brought what many considered an undefeatable army fresh off a drubbing of the Yankees at Manassas, to Maryland and to bring the war to a conclusion in favor of the Confederacy. Providence intervened dramatically and the desperate battle that followed broke all boundaries for savagery in a hard war. From it issued the Emancipation Proclamation.
Antietam National Battlefield Memorial, Burnside’s Bridge 1
Arlington House in Arlington National Cemetery 2
The most revered cemetery in the United States lies just across the Potomac River from the capitol, in Arlington, Virginia. It is the final resting place of 400,000 soldiers, including the Tomb of the Unknown representatives of America’s military dead and the graves of 367 Medal of Honor recipients. This site will elicit a patriotic sigh and thankful acknowledgement to God for his Grace in giving our nation a sacrificial spirit to defend the Republic.
We will honor and remember several founders of our nation at Mt. Vernon — George Washington’s incredible plantation — and at the magnificent Thomas Jefferson Memorial. Both historic sites will remind us that God installs unique men to lead nations and accomplish his purposes at specific times in history. Singular in their character and attainments, both Washington and Jefferson changed history and guided the United States to conform to their view of the Constitutional founders.
We will visit the new World War II Memorial and the famous Marine Corps Monument in honor of our veterans of seventy years ago. We will discuss the biblical appropriateness of honoring war veterans and the nature of architectural memorial iconography in America.
World War 2 Memorial, Washington, D.C. 3
United States Marine Corps War Memorial 4
The greatest treasure troves of American material culture and historic remembrance are found in the Smithsonian Institution. We will visit the Air and Space Museum where the Spirit of St. Louis, the Enola Gay, and Apollo Space Capsules reside — machines flown by men who moved the history of the entire world in new directions. We will marvel at some of the 137 million historic and natural artifacts collected since the 1840s and analyze, in the light of Scripture, the evolutionary and humanistic presuppositions of their interpretative framework.
Smithsonian Institution Building 5
National Air and Space Museum Entrance 6
At the National Archives and the Library of Congress we will view documents of our national heritage and tell stories of the providential ways in which God has preserved our country. We will explore the galleries and learning center to see how our civil government in Washington interprets itself.
The news media of every generation exerts a powerful influence on the minds of Americans. Newspapers for hundreds of years were the dominant force of public information and the men who wrote and published served as political power brokers, promoters of scandal and popularizers of war and “reform”. The interactive, provocative, and educational Newseum displays the power and prejudices of mass media throughout American history and politics for all to see. We will analyze the propaganda machines of yesterday and today that have molded our thinking and that of our countrymen since colonial days.
Newseum, Washington, D.C. 7
International Spy Museum 8
Espionage began in biblical times and has continued unabated till today. The subject of television programs, movies, thousands of books, and spectacular court cases, spying captures everyone’s imagination. Spies have brought down governments, gotten secret agents arrested or killed and have helped steer the foreign policy of the nations of every continent. The Spy Museum shows espionage in all its aspects both comical and deadly serious. This is a visit to an unusual and unforgettable history museum where, from the first room to the gift shop, it will prove one of the most interesting places you will ever encounter.
No visit to Washington is complete without a visit to the looming giant of the Lincoln Memorial. Few men of history have generated so many admirers — the constitutional and war policies of the 16th President have been cited as precedent by Presidents Woodrow Wilson, FDR, George Bush and others. So many myths have developed over the years that Old Abe could give the ancient Greek deities a run. Not every historian admires the man from Illinois; should prove to be an interesting visit.
Lincoln Memorial, Washington, D.C. 9
United States Supreme Court Building 10
Scripture, biblical characters and allusions to the Christian faith abound throughout Washington D.C. on public buildings. We will be calling attention to the faith of the founders and many of the men who served in government through the centuries as they left their worldviews carved in stone. The antithesis between God’s Law and secular humanism, Christianity and paganism, the Sovereign Lord and wannabe-sovereign man are everywhere apparent if you know where to look. We will visit the Supreme Court Building and discuss the origins of law and the syncretism that has characterized our legal system.
Historian Bill Potter
An experienced historian and avid bibliophile, Bill Potter combines a lifelong study of American history with an uncommon ability to captivate audiences of all ages as he traces the providential acts of God throughout the ages. Mr. Potter has taught history in high schools and colleges, has led many tours of American and European historical sites and brings to each event a wealth of experience and knowledge. An experienced researcher and writer, Mr. Potter possesses a practical knowledge of antiquarian books, documents, and artifacts and has published several short books and has penned many articles and book reviews for publication. Bill has earned a well-deserved reputation as a man gifted in communicating the story of God’s providential hand in American history. As a father of eight children, he appreciates the necessity of passing on to the succeeding generations the richness of both our regional and national history. He and his wife, Leslie, reside in Virginia.
Col. John Eidsmoe
John Eidsmoe is a retired Air Force Lt. Colonel and Alabama State Defense Force Colonel, and a graduate of the Air Command & Staff College and the Air War College. He is Professor of Law at the Oak Brook College of Law and Government Policy and, in his various teaching assignments, his students have given him the Outstanding Professor Award or Professor of the Year Award five times. He has served as Senior Staff Attorney with the Alabama Supreme Court and is currently Legal Counsel for the Foundation for Moral Law. Eidsmoe also serves on the boards of Lutherans for Life, The Plymouth Rock Foundation, and the Gospel Martial Arts Union, and is a constitutional attorney who has defended homeschools, Christian schools, the right of students to study the Bible in public schools, and the right to display the Ten Commandments in the public arena. He has authored numerous books, including Historical & Theological Foundations of Law, Christianity & the Constitution, God & Caesar, and Columbus & Cortez, and has produced a variety of audio and video lecture albums including The Institute on the Constitution and Here I Stand: A Biblical Worldview for a New Millennium. He holds seven academic degrees in law, theology, history, and political science. He and his wife, Marlene, have been married since 1970, have three children, and live in rural Pike Road, Alabama.
Bernie and his wife Linda founded Great Commission Families in 2006 as a local family ministry helping families to “take steps of faith toward greater involvement in the Great Commission”. Prior to Great Commission Families, they were on staff with Campus Crusade for Christ for 23 years, including 8 years as the D.C. Metro Director, then on the National Team for CCC’s International Student Ministries. Today, a big part of their ministry is creating family-friendly evangelistic outings by giving Christian heritage tours in Washington, D.C. showing the evidence of our Christian heritage on display throughout our nation’s capital and surrounding region, including at the local major Civil War battlefields. Bernie and Linda met at Penn State University in 1979 where Bernie graduated in Agriculture and Linda in Nursing. Today, Bernie is an ordained minister with the Evangelical Church Alliance. Bernie and Linda have four grown children and live in Maryland not far from their seven grandchildren, and near the family dairy farm where Bernie grew up.
Note: Schedule days and venues subject to change.
Monday, October 19
Registration Opens — Hampton Inn
Tuesday, October 20
Meet in Lobby — Hampton Inn
Depart Hotel on Coach
Bus Departs Mount Vernon
Thomas Jefferson Memorial
George Mason Memorial
White House Photos — Lafayette Square
Depart for Hotel
After Dinner Discussion with Bill Potter — “Would George Washington Have Seceded with Robert E. Lee?”
Wednesday, October 21
Meet in Lobby — Hampton Inn
Depart Hotel for Metro Station (Silver Spring) — Red Line towards Shady Grove to Judiciary Square Metro Station
Newseum — 555 Pennsylvania Avenue Northwest
National Archives (Group Entrance) — 9th Street and Constitution Avenue NW
Library of Congress — 101 Independence Avenue SE
Return to Hotel: Union Station Metro — Red Line to Silver Spring Station
After Dinner Discussion with John Eidsmoe (Hampton Inn, Lower Level)— Q&A on Subjects of the Day
Thursday, October 22
Meet in Lobby — Hampton Inn
Depart Hotel on Coach
Depart Arlington Cemetery
Movie Night — The Conspirator (Hampton Inn, Lower Level)
Friday, October 23
Meet in the Lobby — Hampton Inn
Depart Hotel on Metro — Red Line towards Shady Grove to Gallery Place / Chinatown — Metro Station
Spy Museum — 800 F Street NW
World War II Memorial — 1750 Independence Ave SW
Vietnam Memorial — 5 Henry Bacon Dr NW
Smithsonian Museums, Smithsonian Castle — 1000 Jefferson Dr SW
Return to Hotel via Metro:
Smithsonian Station — Orange Line or Blue Line or Silver Line to Metro Center Station
Metro Center Station — Red Line towards Silver Spring to Silver Spring Station
For your convenience, a block of rooms has been reserved at the Hampton Inn Silver Spring (8728A Colesville Rd., Silver Spring, MD 20910).
Standard rooms are available at $139 per night and this rate includes hot buffet breakfast and Wi-Fi internet access throughout the hotel. This special rate is available from October 19 to 24.
Make Reservations by September 19 for Special Rate!
The special Landmark Events rate is only available for a limited time. Be sure to make your reservation by September 19 to receive the special discounted rate! You can make reservations online, or contact the toll-free Hilton Central Reservations Line (24 hours) at 1-800-HILTONS (1-800-445-8667) and quote the group code HAH.
Robert E. Lee
George B. McClellan
Dwight D. Eisenhower
John J. Pershing
Charles A. Lindbergh
Ratification of the Constitution
McCulloch v. Maryland
Roe v. Wade
War Between the States
War with Spain
Election of Thomas Jefferson (1800)
Election of Abraham Lincoln (1860)
The Second World War
Dropping of the Atomic Bomb
Solo Flight across the Atlantic
Spy Catching in the Cold War
How to interpret American History biblically
The nature of republican government
Patriotic iconography and memorial
The Atomic controversy
Competing law-words and worldviews
Espionage and legitimacy
The role of heroes in our history
Does the mass media create popular culture or reflect it?
Uses of the “Great Man” theories
How can we best fight for God’s Kingdom in a pagan land?
The historic works connected with the subjects we will teach and discuss is vast and impossible to cover in a few or even short books. Nonetheless, there are some books that will be helpful in both the short and long run for study of the historical artifacts of our tour, both intellectual and material. As usual, there is much on the internet that is very helpful for learning about the actual monuments and memorials we will visit, but their meaning, purpose, and relevance is at the real heart of our tour.
God and Government, by Gary DeMar
The Christian Life and Character of the Civil Institutions of the United States, by Benjamin F. Morris
The Theme is Freedom: Religion, Politics, and the American Tradition, by M. Stanton Evans
George Washington’s Sacred Fire, by Peter Lillback
George Washington, Indispensable Man, by Thomas Flexner
George Washington, Founding Father, by Richard Brookhiser
Landscape Turned Red: The Battle of Antietam, by Stephen Sears
The Real Lincoln, by Thomas DiLorenzo
Abraham Lincoln, by David Donald
The Jefferson Image in the American Mind, by Merrill Peterson
Presence of the Past: A History of the Preservation Movement in the United States before Williamsburg, by Charles B. Hosmer
The Enola Gay, by Paul Tibbets
Lindbergh, by A. Scott Berg
Spying in America: From the Revolutionary War to the Beginning of the Cold War, by Michael J. Sulick
Encyclopedia of Cold War Espionage, Spies and Secret Operations, by Trahair and Miller