Born in Kansas City, Missouri, Colin Rafferty grew up on the Kansas side (which makes a difference). In third grade, he unhesitatingly told an autograph dealer that the label on a Lincoln autograph was wrong—he was the sixteenth president, not the seventeenth. Later, Rafferty attended land grant universities (Kansas State, Iowa State) and eventually got an MFA from the University of Alabama. He writes about monuments and memorials (Hallow This Ground, Break Away Books, 2016), presidents, and more generally public and private histories. In doing research for Execute the Office, he visited the graves of twenty-eight presidents, toured the homes of another sixteen, and, for reasons still unbeknownst to him, was allowed to handle a four-page letter written by George Washington. Rafferty has taught nonfiction writing at the University of Mary Washington since 2008, developing classes on nonfiction of place, the lyric essay, and writing for multimedia. Since 2012, he has lived in Richmond, Virginia, with his wife, Elizabeth, and their dog in the same neighborhood where Patrick Henry gave the “give me liberty or give me death” speech in the presence of two future presidents. Colin is surrounded by history.