America has Hamilton-mania. The lyrics, hip-hop tunes, and bold story have rejuvenated interest in the real lives and true histories that Hamilton: An American Musical puts center stage. Examine this musical phenomenon to reveal what its success tells us about the marriage of history and show business. Learn what this amazing musical gets right and gets wrong about Alexander Hamilton, the American Revolution, and the birth of the United States — and why all of this matters.

Richard Bell is a professor of history at the University of Maryland. He is the author of the new book Stolen: Five Free Boys Kidnapped into Slavery and Their Astonishing Odyssey Home. He is the recipient of more than a dozen teaching awards and the National Endowment for the Humanities Public Scholar Award. He is a fellow of the Royal Historical Society.