I have accepted a seat in the [Massachusetts] House of Representatives, and thereby have consented to my own ruin, to your ruin, and to the ruin of our children. I give you this warning that you may prepare your mind for your fate.
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posted on Colonial Sense: 10/21/2014 -- Followup USS Constitution Takes Trip Before 3-year Restoration
October 18, 2014, The Associated Press by Staff The USS Constitution took one last spin in Boston Harbor before it heads to dry dock for a three-year restoration project.
The world’s oldest commissioned warship still afloat left its berth at the Charlestown Navy Yard with about 500 invited guests Friday morning.
But as anyone old enough to remember what it’s like to rewind a VHS tape knows, it wasn’t always that way.
The Cruise of Mr. Christopher Columbus: A Really Truly Story, by Sadyebeth & Anson Lowitz, was first published in 1932, and remained popular for decades.
posted on Colonial Sense: 10/19/2014 Panic over Ebola echoes the 19th-century fear of cholera October 17, 2014, The Conversation by Sally Sheard On October 19 an inspector sent north from London to Sunderland reported a long-awaited arrival: the first British case of cholera. It was 1831 and as part of a second pandemic cholera had again progressed from its Bengal heartland through Europe, before reaching the Baltic ports. It was only a matter of time.
The British public, informed by newspaper reports, were acquainted with the symptoms: profuse watery diarrhoea, severe abdominal pain and often death within a matter of hours. In advance of its arrival in Russia thousands fled from the cities. In Poland it was killing one in two victims. And unlike today, where oral rehydration solution can prevent dehydration and shock, there was no effective treatment.
posted on Colonial Sense: 10/19/2014 The (Still) Mysterious Death of Edgar Allan Poe October 07, 2014, Smithsonian Magazine by Natasha Geiling It was raining in Baltimore on October 3, 1849, but that didn't stop Joseph W. Walker, a compositor for the Baltimore Sun, from heading out to Gunner's Hall, a public house bustling with activity. It was Election Day, and Gunner's Hall served as a pop-up polling location for the 4th Ward polls. When Walker arrived at Gunner's Hall, he found a man, delirious and dressed in shabby second-hand clothes, lying in the gutter. The man was semi-conscious, and unable to move, but as Walker approached the him, he discovered something unexpected: the man was Edgar Allan Poe. Worried about the health of the addled poet, Walker stopped and asked Poe if he had any acquaintances in Baltimore that might be able to help him. Poe gave Walker the name of Joseph E. Snodgrass, a magazine editor with some medical training. Immediately, Walker penned Snodgrass a letter asking for help.
posted on Colonial Sense: 10/09/2014 -- Followup U.N. experts say Haiti wreck is not Columbus' flagship, Santa Maria October 07, 2014, CNN by Laura Smith-Spark An American explorer's claim to have found the long-lost Santa Maria, Christopher Columbus' flagship from his first voyage to the Americas, has been dismissed by a group of U.N. experts.
Underwater explorer Barry Clifford made headlines when he said in May that he believed a shipwreck on a reef off Haiti's northern coast could be the fabled ship, which went down in 1492.
posted on Colonial Sense: 10/09/2014 AMC Revolutionary War Drama 'Turn: Washington's Spies' Begins Production on Season Two in Colonial Williamsburg
October 01, 2014, TV by the Numbers by Sara Bibel The second season of AMC’s Revolutionary War drama “TURN: Washington’s Spies” began production this week in and around Richmond, Virginia, including at two historic locations in Williamsburg; Colonial Williamsburg’s Historic Area and on the campus of the College of William & Mary. The filming in Colonial Williamsburg’s Historic Area will take place at the Governor’s Palace, which was the official residence for the Royal Governors of the Colony of Virginia, as well as home to two of Virginia’s post-colonial governors, Patrick Henry and Thomas Jefferson, and marks only the second time a large-scale production has been allowed to film in the historic location, which previously hosted the filming of “John Adams.” The scenes taking place at the College of William & Mary will be filmed in the Sir Christopher Wren Building, which is the oldest college building in the United States and the oldest of the restored public buildings in Williamsburg. Additional production locations in Virginia for the second season include Tuckahoe, the Old Town area of City of Petersburg which will double for New York and Philadelphia; as well as various historic sites and parks in Hanover County, Henrico County, and Charles City County.
posted on Colonial Sense: 09/22/2014 Fantastically Wrong: Magellan’s Strange Encounter With the 10-Foot Giants of Patagonia September 17, 2014, Wired by Matt Simon In 1520, Ferdinand Magellan took time out of his busy schedule of sailing around the world to stop in what is now Patagonia, where he found a naked giant dancing and singing on the shore. Magellan ordered one of his men to make contact (the unwitting emissary’s no doubt hilarious reaction to this sadly has been lost to history), and to be sure to reciprocate the dancing and singing to demonstrate friendship.
posted on Colonial Sense: 09/22/2014 Castaways September 15, 2014, Archaeology.org by Samir S. Patel On the night of July 31, 1761, Jean de Lafargue, captain of the French East India Company ship L’Utile (“Useful”), was likely thinking of riches. In the ship’s hold were approximately 160 slaves purchased in Madagascar just days before and bound for Île de France, known today as Mauritius. It had been 80 years since the dodo had gone extinct on that Indian Ocean island, and the thriving French colony had a plantation economy in need of labor. However, though slavery was legal at the time, de Lafargue was not authorized by colonial authorities to trade in slaves.
According to the detailed account of the ship’s écrivain, or purser, as L’Utile approached the vicinity of an islet then called Île des Sables, or Sandy Island, winds kicked up to 15 or 20 knots. The ship’s two maps did not agree on the small island’s precise location, and a more prudent captain probably would have slowed and waited for daylight. But de Lafargue was in a hurry to reap his bounty. That night L’Utile struck the reef off the islet’s north end, shattering the hull. Most of the slaves, trapped in the cargo holds, drowned, though some escaped as the ship broke apart. The next morning, 123 of the 140 members of the French crew and somewhere between 60 and 80 Malagasy slaves found themselves stranded on Île des Sables—shaken and injured, but alive.
posted on Colonial Sense: 09/21/2014 How to Reassemble a 300-Year-Old Lost Ship September 17, 2014, Popular Mechanics by Jacqueline Detwiler In a winter storm in 1686 a 54-foot French frigate carrying a skeleton crew on an exploratory mission off the Texas coast sank in Matagorda Bay, halfway between Galveston and Corpus Christi. For more than 300 years it sat and decomposed, but portions of its keel and hull were mummified in 6 feet of mud. When those diminished but very important remains were raised in 1996, preservationists had an astonishing piece of good luck almost unheard of in the world of shipwreck rescue: Every important plank of wood had been marked with a Roman numeral, like a model in a box. Jim Bruseth, one of the research archaeologists leading the $17 million effort to recover and rebuild the frigate's remains—which are currently in some 600 pieces—calls it a ship kit.
posted on Colonial Sense: 09/21/2014 Uncovering Hidden Text on a 500-Year-Old Map That Guided Columbus September 15, 2014, Wired by Greg Miller Christopher Columbus probably used the map above as he planned his first voyage across the Atlantic in 1492. It represents much of what Europeans knew about geography on the verge discovering the New World, and it’s packed with text historians would love to read—if only the faded paint and five centuries of wear and tear hadn’t rendered most of it illegible.
But that’s about to change. A team of researchers is using a technique called multispectral imaging to uncover the hidden text. They scanned the map last month at Yale University and expect to start extracting readable text in the next few months, says Chet Van Duzer, an independent map scholar who’s leading the project, which was funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.