A portrait of a man with his arms crossed against his chest in front of a wall of shelves filled with books
Jacques Moore, a history graduate student and author, is a Marine Corps veteran and operated a local automobile dealership for decades. (Contributed photo)

History buff and VCU graduate student Jacques Moore is fascinated with the British monarchy

His interest led him to co-author a book that celebrated the 70th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth’s reign.

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Virginia Commonwealth University student Jacques Moore is fascinated by the past.

“History just seems to be in my blood,” said Moore, who is working on his Master of Arts in history at VCU.

Moore grew up as an eager reader of history. His fascination deepened when he read Lady Antonia Fraser’s biography, “Mary, Queen of Scots,” in 1969. Moore took a deep dive of his own into the history of the British monarchy when he began research for “The Queen and the U.S.A.” (Platinum Jubilee Edition), which he co-authored with H. Edward Mann, Ellen LeCompte and the Lord Watson of Richmond to celebrate the 70th anniversary of Elizabeth’s reign. The coffee-table book, which was published by Dementi Milestone Publishing, was released in June.

“I wanted to work on the book because of my admiration for Queen Elizabeth, which flows from her leadership across national boundaries for 70 years,” Moore said. “I have also had the honor of being presented to both Prince William and Prince Harry as well as the queen and Prince Philip.”

The London launch of the book was tied to the formal festivities for the Jubilee in London that ran over four days.

“We had lodgings at the Naval and Military Club on St. James Square so we were almost literally in the thick of things,” said Moore, who was saddened to learn of the queen’s death in September.

“Queen Elizabeth II’s passing after a reign of more than 70 years is literally a once-in-forever event. No other British monarch has ever had a reign that long,” Moore said.

In her final years, Elizabeth polished Prince Charles III’s preparation for his role as King. She also took his wife, Camilla, under her wing, Moore said.

“I predict his reign will be energetic (within the bounds of his and Camilla’s health) but more quietly transformative than dramatic,” he said. “He succeeds a remarkably popular, grandmotherly figure who refashioned the role of the monarch in her image. King Charles III must walk gently to take advantage of that, yet still remain his own man.”

A military veteran, Moore graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1975.

The book cover of \"The Queen and the USA\" by Jacques Moore
Jacques Moore, a history graduate student and author, is a Marine Corps veteran and operated a local automobile dealership for decades. (Contributed photo)

“I had always admired the Marines (my dad served in the Marine Corps Reserve and retired as a major), and I had developed some skill in military wargaming. Attending the academy was a proving ground, and I learned that I had no desire to be a sailor but loved the Marine Corps, so upon graduation I was commissioned as a lieutenant of Marines. I had an interesting career with a lot of operational time over my 16 years of active duty followed by another 10 in the reserves. I retired as a colonel after 26 years of service in 2001,” Moore said.

Moore joined the family automobile business in 1990 and headed Moore Cadillac and Moore Subaru in Richmond.

Operating the dealership “opened so many doors for me personally and professionally it’s hard to articulate how big a change it has meant,” he said.

In September 2019, Moore received a liver transplant at the Hume-Lee Transplant Center in the VCU Health System. He had been suffering from liver failure for years, and the transplant became necessary when his condition grew acute.

“It was a night-into-day experience since I did not realize how sick I was until after the liver was replaced,” said Moore, who said he was grateful for VCU Health’s “world-class treatment.” “I felt like a new man.”

Moore wanted to go to a graduate school close to his home in Richmond and eventually decided on VCU, given its Department of History in the College of Humanities and Sciences.

“The choice came down to faculty with expertise in the time and place that I wanted to study, which was Tudor England,” he said.

Moore had always thought that, if the chance presented itself, he would pursue an advanced degree in the study of Tudor England. The liver transplant and the approach of retirement convinced him to take that step.

“It was obvious that the time was now and the place was VCU for me to scratch what was essentially a 50-year-old itch,” he said.