History

“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”

George Santayana (1905), The Life of Reason
  • Historical Events 1902 – Aleksandr Skriabin's 2nd Symphony in C premieres in St Petersburg 1987 – 75th Australian Open Men's Tennis: Stefan Edberg of Sweden wins 2nd career Grand Slam title and 2nd Australian title; beats home town favourite Pat Cash 6-3, 6-4, 3-6, 5-7, 6-3 1998 – Pope John Paul II visits Cuba and demands the release of political prisoners; he also condemns US moves to isolate the country 1998 – Super Bowl XXXII, Qualcomm Stadium, San Diego, CA: Denver Broncos beat Green Bay Packers, 31-24; MVP: Terrell Davis, Denver RB 2011 – Egyptian Revolution of 2011 begins with […]
  • Following a rapid spread from its origin in Wuhan, China, the first U.S. case of the 2019 novel coronavirus, which causes a disease known as COVID-19, is confirmed in a man from Washington state.  The virus, which would spark a pandemic, was first reported in China on December 31, 2019. …
  • On April 3, 1963, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., his Southern Christian Leadership Conference and their partners in the Alabama Christian Movement for Human Rights led a campaign of protests, marches and sit-ins against segregation in Birmingham, Alabama. By April 12, King was in prison …
  • 2020 was a tumultuous year that saw the onset of a deadly pandemic, widespread protests over systemic racism—and a deeply contentious election.
  • On January 26, 2020, a helicopter carrying former pro basketball player Kobe Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and seven others crashed in Calabasas, California, roughly 30 miles north of Los Angeles; everyone onboard died. Bryant’s death sent shockwaves through the American sporting world. …
  • On December 17, 1892, Arthur Baldwin Turnure first publishes a new magazine, dedicated to “the ceremonial side of life” and targeted at “the sage as well as the debutante, men of affairs as well as the belle.” A product of the Gilded Age, Vogue has chronicled and influenced high society, fashion …
  • On September 24, 1968, CBS airs the first episode of 60 Minutes, a show that would become a staple of the American media landscape. A pioneer of the “newsmagazine” format, 60 Minutes is the longest-running primetime show in American television history. The show was similar in tone and style to W5, …
  • By 2013, Netflix had already fundamentally changed the way Americans consumed movies and television. The service offered unlimited DVD rentals—and, starting in 2007, direct streaming of many of its titles—for a flat monthly fee, a wildly popular model that almost single-handedly drove Blockbuster …
  • After more than five years of fundraising, shooting, and editing, the documentary Paris is Burning debuts in New York City on March 13, 1991. The groundbreaking look at the culture and characters surrounding the city’s drag ball culture changed the way many people thought about drag, queerness and …
  • After enduring a brief but grueling stint as a Bunny in Manhattan's Playboy Club, feminist writer Gloria Steinem published the first half of her landmark account, "A Bunny's Tale," in SHOW magazine on this day in 1963. Steinem's undercover reporting increased her profile and stripped back …
  • Dr. Jill Biden is a longtime educator, the wife of the 46th U.S. president and former vice president, Joe Biden, and the future first lady of the United States. From 2009-17, as second lady of the United States, she advocated for greater support of military families and breast cancer research, …
  • As a little girl, Jessica Govea had become accustomed to rising early and making her way to the fields with her family. During the cotton season, you could find her family dragging sacks of cotton along the long rows of fields in Kern County, California. Her father had travelled a long way from Mexico. He […]
  • For many high school students in the United States, prom is considered one of the most highly anticipated events of the school year. Teenagers plan months in advance on what to wear to the event, and magazines have devoted entire issues to prom fashion. Typically held in the spring, the annual dance serves as an […]
  • While the iconic egg-shaped Beautyblender sponge is wildly popular and used by makeup professionals and everyday people from all backgrounds all over the world, few people know the story behind the company and how it got its start. The history and development of Beautyblender, as well as the life story of its founder, Rea Ann […]
  • When he reflected later in life on why, as a young man, he chose to enlist during wartime, Carlos Martinez said that avoiding service was never an option, not for his community and not for himself. In the mid-1960s, the United States had begun fighting the Soviet-supported North Vietnamese as part of its Cold War […]
  • Within a gallery stands a rifle once presented to Theodore Roosevelt. It is perhaps an odd gift, considering that it was given to him with a note remarking on “his services on behalf of the preservation of species.” How do you preserve a species, and what does a gun have to do with it?Elephants and […]
  • After the end of World War I, Germany was in economic crisis and was unable to provide enough currency for its citizens. In response, cities and towns under German control created their own form of emergency currency, called notgeld, to supplement the limited national currency in circulation. The locally-issued notgeld were highly illustrated, colorful, and […]
  • Custom Baret bat, Woodbridge, Virginia, 2018Gift of Juan Baret Bate Baret personalizado, Woodbridge, Virginia, 2018Donación de Juan BaretIn baseball, it all comes down to the batter. Will they be the hero, or be faulted for the team’s loss? Will they hit a home run or strike out? We think about the person behind the plate, but […]
  • Until the successes of the United Farm Workers (UFW) in the 1960s, agriculture was one of the last industries to hold out on unionization due to social and legal obstacles. Workers and organizers faced uneven legal protection; isolation; prejudice; reliance on imported, exploitable workers; and opposition from state and federal officials who either represented agribusiness […]
  • In October 1792, the United States of America was still a new country, not even a decade old, fresh from a complete government overhaul just four years earlier. With only one federal election by that point, and one president, it was a nation long on ambition, but short on history. There were heroes, of course, […]
  • Presidential debates first became part of the campaign landscape when John Kennedy and Richard Nixon sat across from each other in 1960. It took a few years for them to become standardized, but now debates are one of the most anticipated events of every campaign.Are you planning to tune in? Even if you’ve already decided […]
  • The American “western,” in the novels of Owen Wister, the stories of Zane Grey, and numerous films of the 1950s and early 1960s, enshrines an American folk understanding of the way political life arises from a state of nature. The western depicts wary cowboys, farmers and ranchers trying their luck on a frontier where law […]
  • The Library of Congress has created a fascinating online resource guide: U.S. Presidential Inaugurations: "I Do Solemnly Swear…" showcasing the development of the inauguration day ceremonies. For each president, you can view a selection of primary materials illustrating what made their inauguration(s) unique: descriptions of the ceremonies written by attendees (sometimes by the president himself), […]
  • Ida B. Wells was a journalist, educator, and early Civil Rights leader, making her mark in the late 19th and early 20th Centuries. Born into slavery (and freed by the Emancipation Proclamation at only a few months' age), she went on to co-own a newspaper for which she also wrote, investigating and spotlighting racial violence […]
  • This day, in a sense, marks the anniversary of the beginning of American independence. While the American Revolution ended with the surrender of Lord Cornwallis to General George Washington at Yorktown, on October 19, 1781, the treaty that settled the new relationship between Britain and its former colonies was ratified by the Confederation Congress on […]
  • Join us for another DiD webinar, on 17 FEB 2021 at 7pm ET, focusing on Alexander Stephens' "Cornerstone" Speech, in which he laid out the reasons for Southern secession and the role of slavery in the creation of the (rogue) government.  All attendees of the live program will receive a certificate for two hours of […]
  • President George Washington and Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton stepped into a carriage on Market Street on September 30, 1794, to begin a journey west of Philadelphia, then the new nation's seat of government. They were not embarked on a sightseeing tour of the countryside, nor were they on a mere political fence-mending mission. Indeed, in […]
  • Each January, as the holiday parties end and the decorations are stored away, millions of Americans resolve to lose weight, eat healthier, and exercise more vigorously. If this is your plan for 2021, you are not alone. According to one poll, nearly half of all Americans resolve to embrace a healthier lifestyle in the new […]
  • This year, 2021, marks major anniversaries of several milestone documents in American history. Some—like the “Long Telegram” that for decades framed American policymakers' understanding of the Cold War—you’ve often read about. Others—like the report by a commission of the Democratic Party that led to our current process for nominating presidential candidates—may be new to you. […]
  •  Join us for another DiD webinar, on 20 JAN 21 at 7pm ET, focusing on Andrew Jackson's message on his 1832 veto of the bank bill. The post Documents in Detail: Andrew Jackson’s Bank Veto Message appeared first on Teaching American History.
  • Although we remember the Pilgrims most commonly in November, it was actually in December of 1620 that they first set foot on the shore of Massachusetts. Although no actual stone is mentioned in any of the contemporary accounts, oral tradition in the area tells us the first steps on New England’s shores were made onto […]
  • by Kate Mosse The television series The Crown, written by Peter Morgan, inspired by the history of the reign of Queen Elizabeth II from 1947 to the present day, is hugely popular on both sides of the Atlantic. Fantastic … Read the article The post The History Behind the Mystery: The St. Bartholomew’s Day Massacre appeared first on The History Reader.
  • by Michael Walsh In the following excerpt from his book Last Stands, author Michael Walsh discusses the rising dominance of the Roman military and the shocking outcome of the Battle of Cannae that left historians wondering: how could the best-outfitted … Read the article The post Death Over Dishonor: The Battle of Cannae (216 B.C.) appeared first on The History Reader.
  • by Keith Lowe Years ago, when I was first starting out as a WWII historian, I spent a day with a senior special forces officer who gave me a piece of advice I have never forgotten. Archives are great, he … Read the article The post Monuments, and Why You Really Have to See Them In Person appeared first on The History Reader.
  • by Judith Flanders While Christmas has transformed itself over the centuries, from a time for the nobility to display their wealth to their dependents, to a time for adults to enjoy what little extra they could gather, to a festival … Read the article The post The Transformation of Christmas appeared first on The History Reader.
  • by William K. Klingaman In the midst of World War II, department stores across America were anticipating the biggest commercial Christmas rush in United States history. Fur coats, silk dinner pajamas, and ostrich capes became all the rage. But what … Read the article The post A Tip From Uncle Sam with Christmas Greetings appeared first on The History Reader.
  • by Michael A. Bellesiles One of my favorite stories from the long struggle for equality concerns the scientist Helen Hamilton Gardener. In 1889, she challenged the leading male exponent of female mental inferiority to examine a human brain and determine … Read the article The post Do We Believe in Equality? appeared first on The History Reader.
  • by Michael Wood Author Michael Wood has traveled the length and breadth of China, the world’s oldest civilization and longest lasting state, to tell a thrilling story of intense drama, fabulous creativity, and deep humanity that stretches back thousands of … Read the article The post The First Emperor and the Unification of China appeared first on The History Reader.
  • by Erin Lindsey “I do not believe there ever was any life more attractive to a vigorous young fellow than life on a cattle ranch in those days.” –Theodore Roosevelt Theodore Roosevelt circa 1885, posing in an outfit that would… Read the article The post Roosevelt the Rancher appeared first on The History Reader.
  • From the unbreakable family bonds and funding that fueled the War to the treacherous murder plots and extreme starvation in the Continental Army, here are five books about the American Revolution you might have missed. Revolutionary Brothers by Tom Chaffin … Read the article The post Remarkable Revolutionaries: Five Books You May Have Missed appeared first on The History Reader.
  • by Nev March My novel Murder in Old Bombay is set in the late 1800s, a period of enormous technological advancement not unlike our own. In this time of contrasts, great progress and terrible recessions, great wealth and terrible poverty, … Read the article The post Indian Maharajas and their American Counterparts: Heroes or Villains? appeared first on The History Reader.
  • Most members of the American Antiquarian Society are aware of the enormous contributions made by the Salisbury family of Worcester County, Massachusetts. Stephen Salisbury II served as president of the Society from 1854 until his death in 1884, and his son, Stephen Salisbury III, served as president from 1887 until his death in 1905. (A […]
  • Birthday and Autograph Album. Bethlehem [Pa.]: Henry T. Clauder, 1874. Partially printed books that were meant to be filled in by their owners have been of particular interest to AAS’s curators over many years. AAS’s online catalog already has more than 200 records with the genre term: Partly printed, partly blank books. One example is […]
  • The gallery doors that opened, closed, and then reopened on the 2019-2020 traveling exhibition Beyond Midnight: Paul Revere have now closed for the final time. In recent weeks, the exhibition’s many rare prints, paintings, and decorative arts objects were condition checked, packed, and shipped via art handlers safely back to their respective homes. Split between […]
  • Cuffe Lawton (b. 1789) was a free black man who was born in Newport, Rhode Island, and lived in New Bedford, Massachusetts. His son, Francis Lawton (1822-1885) was born in New Bedford  and became a whale man, who eventually rose to the rank of mate and traveled to Hawaii. By the 1850s Francis was married […]
  • This month AAS produced four short videos introducing collections related to gravestones and cemeteries in the United States. Old burial grounds are treasure houses of American sculpture and of historical and genealogical information. Documenting gravestones through rubbings and photographs became popular at the end of the nineteenth century, and the Society preserves several collections of […]
  • Curators look far and wide trying to find materials for their institution’s collection.  Despite this, sometimes the most amazing items show up locally.  AAS photographer, Nathan Fiske, brought to my attention a local estate auction that had two newspapers in it.  As it turned out, both were newspapers published by Frederick Douglass.  The first one […]
  • On August 28, 2020, author Amy Hildreth Chen was a featured guest at the Virtual Book Talk series sponsored by the Program in the History of the Book in American Culture (PHBAC).  Amy spoke about her recent publication, Placing Papers: The American Literary Archives Market, published in June 2020 by the University of Massachusetts Press.  […]
  • We love the moments when an artist fellow discovers something totally unique and profound relating to their research. Whether finding an outline of a pressed dandelion in handwritten poem, a children’s book on natural philosophy, the diary of a freed slave who in 1822 sailed to Hawaii as a missionary, or early photographs taken in Yellowstone National Park, these “ah-ha” moments often lead to an unfoldment of […]
  • The Society’s collection of photographs of working print shops continues to expand (see blog posts on this topic from 2014 and 2017). Most of the photographs feature businesses in New England, New York, or Pennsylvania. This newly acquired photo, showing a tidy shop with a ca. 1882 Hoe flatbed newspaper press, was taken in Nebraska. […]
  • In advance of my summer work placement at the American Antiquarian Society, I discussed a slate of proposed activities with Chief Conservator Babette Gehnrich while in New York City. On their list was a housing project for manuscripts, standardized treatments of broadsides, and an introduction to digitization workflows for the Society’s collections. “Also,” she mentioned […]
Influenza victims crowd into an emergency hospital near Fort Riley, Kansas in this 1918 file photo. The 1918 Spanish flu pandemic killed at least 20 million people worldwide and officials say that if the next pandemic resemblers the birdlike 1918 Spanish flu, to 1.9 million Americans could die. (AP Photo/National Museum of Health)
  • by Kate Mosse The television series The Crown, written by Peter Morgan, inspired by the history of the reign of Queen Elizabeth II from 1947 to the present day, is hugely popular on both sides of the Atlantic. Fantastic … Read the article The post The History Behind the Mystery: The St. Bartholomew’s Day Massacre […]
  • by Michael Walsh In the following excerpt from his book Last Stands, author Michael Walsh discusses the rising dominance of the Roman military and the shocking outcome of the Battle of Cannae that left historians wondering: how could the best-outfitted … Read the article The post Death Over Dishonor: The Battle of Cannae (216 B.C.) […]
  • by Keith Lowe Years ago, when I was first starting out as a WWII historian, I spent a day with a senior special forces officer who gave me a piece of advice I have never forgotten. Archives are great, he … Read the article The post Monuments, and Why You Really Have to See Them […]
  • by Judith Flanders While Christmas has transformed itself over the centuries, from a time for the nobility to display their wealth to their dependents, to a time for adults to enjoy what little extra they could gather, to a festival … Read the article The post The Transformation of Christmas appeared first on The History […]
  • by William K. Klingaman In the midst of World War II, department stores across America were anticipating the biggest commercial Christmas rush in United States history. Fur coats, silk dinner pajamas, and ostrich capes became all the rage. But what … Read the article The post A Tip From Uncle Sam with Christmas Greetings appeared […]
  • by Michael A. Bellesiles One of my favorite stories from the long struggle for equality concerns the scientist Helen Hamilton Gardener. In 1889, she challenged the leading male exponent of female mental inferiority to examine a human brain and determine … Read the article The post Do We Believe in Equality? appeared first on The […]
  • by Michael Wood Author Michael Wood has traveled the length and breadth of China, the world’s oldest civilization and longest lasting state, to tell a thrilling story of intense drama, fabulous creativity, and deep humanity that stretches back thousands of … Read the article The post The First Emperor and the Unification of China appeared […]
  • by Erin Lindsey “I do not believe there ever was any life more attractive to a vigorous young fellow than life on a cattle ranch in those days.” –Theodore Roosevelt Theodore Roosevelt circa 1885, posing in an outfit that would… Read the article The post Roosevelt the Rancher appeared first on The History Reader.
  • From the unbreakable family bonds and funding that fueled the War to the treacherous murder plots and extreme starvation in the Continental Army, here are five books about the American Revolution you might have missed. Revolutionary Brothers by Tom Chaffin … Read the article The post Remarkable Revolutionaries: Five Books You May Have Missed appeared […]
  • by Nev March My novel Murder in Old Bombay is set in the late 1800s, a period of enormous technological advancement not unlike our own. In this time of contrasts, great progress and terrible recessions, great wealth and terrible poverty, … Read the article The post Indian Maharajas and their American Counterparts: Heroes or Villains? […]
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Reliving History Magazine: Summer 2018 Issue

Reliving History Magazine

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