|NC, SC Politely Fight Over Presidential Birthplace|
March 06, 2011, The Associated Press by Staff
South Carolina claims Andrew Jackson as its only president. But wait — on the grounds of the North Carolina capitol, a bronze statue of Jackson sits with two others as "Presidents North Carolina Gave the Nation."
For a century, the two Carolinas have quarreled over which can claim to be the birthplace of the seventh American president.
Dueling monuments sit within miles of each other south of Charlotte, N.C. For decades, one high school in Lancaster County, S.C., and another in Union County, N.C., played a football game in which the winner got to claim Jackson for the next year. And don't look to the White House for the answer: its website lists Jackson's birthplace a "backwoods settlement in the Carolinas."
|17th Century Witch Chronicles put Online|
March 04, 2011, Reuters by Michelle Martin
A 350-year-old notebook which documents the trials of women convicted of witchcraft in England during the 17th century has been published online.
The notebook written by Nehemiah Wallington, an English Puritan, recounts the fate of women accused of having relationships with the devil at a time when England was embroiled in a bitter civil war.
|Michelangelo's David 'Could Collapse Due to High-Speed Train Building'|
March 04, 2011, The Telegraph (UK) by Nick Squires
Michelangelo’s statue of David is at risk of being toppled by the construction of a high-speed railway line beneath Florence because of his flimsy ankles.
The statue is riddled with tiny cracks, particularly in the ankles of the boy warrior, and could collapse as a result of vibrations from the 1.4 billion euro project, which is due to start in the summer.
|Rare Anti-Slavery Booklet Acquired by U.Va.|
March 03, 2011, The Associated Press by Zinie Chen Sampson
The University of Virginia has acquired a rare first edition of an 1829 anti-slavery manifesto that was considered a rallying cry for black Americans and a major threat to Southern leaders, who worked vigorously to ban it.
The copy of abolitionist David Walker's "Appeal in Four Articles; Together With a Preamble to the Coloured Citizens of the World, But in Particular, and Very Expressly to Those of the United States of America" is one of seven known to still exist. The pamphlet is on display at U.Va.'s Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library.
|Thieves Offered to Sell £1.2 Million Stradivarius Violin for £100, Court Told|
March 03, 2011, The Telegraph (UK) by Murray Wardrop
Irish traveller John Maughan snatched the 313-year-old instrument from South Korean-born violinist Min-Jin Kym as she stopped to buy a sandwich at London’s Euston railway station.
Despite researching the violin online, Maughan, 40, and his two teenage accomplices were so ignorant of its value that they offered it to a stranger in an internet café for just £100.
|Captain Morgan's Lost Cannon Recovered in Panama's Waters|
March 02, 2011, The Independent (UK) by David Usborne
An international team of marine archaeologists has recovered six iron cannon from a reef in shallow waters not far from the mouth of the Panama Canal. They believe the weapons were lost during one of the less glorious chapters of British adventurism in the 17th-century featuring Captain Henry Morgan.
The cannon were prised from the reef a week ago amid fears that they might be plundered by treasure-hunters and could be the only physical evidence tying Capt Morgan to the region upon which he had such an impact more than 300 years ago. He remains a legend thanks to the brand of rum named after him. "Every school kid learns about Morgan's activities, but we have never seen any of his materials," said archaeologist Tomas Mendizibal, of Patronato Panama Viejo, a government agency that is overseeing excavation of the original site of Panama City. "If these are indeed his cannon, it would be a first."
|Plymouth Clubs Fear Closure of Drake's Bowling Green|
March 02, 2011, BBC (UK) by Staff
The historic green where Sir Francis Drake played bowls before defeating the Spanish Armada is under threat.
...Drake, who was born in Tavistock, Devon, is said to have insisted on finishing his game of bowls, before setting off to defeat the Spanish Armada in In 1588.
|Stirling Castle's 16th Century Defences Unearthed|
March 02, 2011, BBC (UK) by Staff
Archaeologists have found fragments of Stirling Castle's 16th Century outer defences.
The discovery was made during work to extend the castle's main shop and ticket office.
Historic Scotland said the find would help establish exactly where the defences stood.
|Loyola Professor: I Stole New Mexico Artifacts|
March 01, 2011, The Chicago Tribune by Erin Meyer
A Loyola University Chicago professor will serve a year's probation for his part in a scheme to plunder artifacts from an archaeological site in New Mexico, the U.S. attorney's office there said in a statement Tuesday.
...The U.S. attorney's office in New Mexico declined to give details about the other men implicated in the investigation, but they were identified in court documents as Scott Clendenin and Donald Musser. Clendenin, an arrowhead hunter who lived in Truth or Consequences, N.M., made regular trips to Jornada Del Muerto, a long stretch of desert where Spanish settlers died fleeing the Pueblo Revolt in the 17th century, the documents said.
|Cracked Mayan Code may Pave Way to Lost Gold|
March 01, 2011, Fox News Latino by Staff
Led by Joachim Rittsteig, an expert in Mayan writing, a group of scientists and journalists left Germany Tuesday, on a mission to Guatemala in search of a lost Maya treasure allegedly submerged under Lake Izabal.
..."The Dresden Codex leads to a giant treasure of eight tons of pure gold," said Rittsteig, who has spent more than 40 years studying the document, to Bild.
...The code was discovered in 1739 in the possession of a wealthy man in Vienna, though no one knows how he got a hold of it. He then donated it to the Dresden Library, where it is kept under bullet-proof glass in a room with other treasured documents.
|U-Va. Rotunda Waits in Line for Repairs|
March 01, 2011, The Washington Post by Daniel de Vise
Thomas Jefferson's Rotunda, the historic heart of the University of Virginia, is among the most iconic structures in higher education. Yet a close inspection reveals that the proud Corinthian capitals above its entrance are crumbling. The elevator jams at inopportune moments. The roof leaks.
Coming up with the money to fix a building of such gravitas might seem a simple affair. Jefferson's university is a storied "public Ivy," with a $5 billion endowment. Someone could, presumably, write a check.
|Shropshire Medieval Coin Finds Declared Treasure Trove|
March 01, 2011, Shropshire Star (UK) by Staff
Three hoards of medieval coins found in Shropshire have been declared as treasure by a coroner.
The coins – dating from the 13th to 17th centuries – were discovered in Baschurch and near Oswestry.
|Texas State Helps Recover Cannons from Capt. Morgan’s Lost Fleet|
February 28, 2011, Texas State News Service by Brad Rollins
In the shallow waters surrounding Lajas Reef at the mouth of the Chagres River in Panama, a team of archaeologists — including members from Texas State University — has recovered cannons from the site where infamous privateer Captain Henry Morgan’s ships wrecked in 1671 while carrying Morgan and his men to raid Panama City.
Six iron cannons recovered from the reef are now undergoing study and preservation treatment by Panamanian researchers in cooperation with a team that has been studying the Chagres River with the permission of Panama’s Instituto Nacional de Cultura (INAC).
|Rare Atlases Provide Intimate Picture of History|
February 28, 2011, ArchNews (UK) by Staff
everal hundred rare and beautiful images, some dating back as far as the 16th century and recording a graphic account of everything from the anatomy of the human body to a CIA record of Soviet-bloc military installations, are being brought together in a new digital exhibition.
More than 300 images, many of them never seen outside of the University of Bristol’s Special Collections library, have been identified by a team of geographical scientists and specialists who hope to open up part of the archive to a wider audience.
|The Cherokees vs. Andrew Jackson|
February 25, 2011, Smithsonian Magazine by Brian Hicks
John Ross made an unlikely looking Cherokee chief. Born in 1790 to a Scottish trader and a woman of Indian and European heritage, he was only one-eighth Cherokee by blood. Short, slight and reserved, he wore a suit and tie instead of deerskin leggings and a beaver-skin hat. His trading post made him more prosperous than most Indians—or white men. But his mother and grandmother raised him in a traditional household, teaching him the tribe’s customs and legends. When the Cherokees embraced formal education—they were adapting quickly to a world they knew was changing—he attended school with their children. After his mother died, in 1808, Ross worked at his grandfather’s trading post near present-day Chattanooga, an important way station on the road to the West. There he encountered white settlers moving onto Cherokee land.
|What the Luddites Really Fought Against|
February 25, 2011, Smithsonian Magazine by Richard Conniff
In an essay in 1984—at the dawn of the personal computer era—the novelist Thomas Pynchon wondered if it was “O.K. to be a Luddite,” meaning someone who opposes technological progress. A better question today is whether it’s even possible. Technology is everywhere, and a recent headline at an Internet hu-mor site perfectly captured how difficult it is to resist: “Luddite invents machine to destroy technology quicker.”
...he Luddite disturbances started in circumstances at least superficially similar to our own. British working families at the start of the 19th century were enduring economic upheaval and widespread unemployment. A seemingly endless war against Napoleon’s France had brought “the hard pinch of poverty,” wrote Yorkshire historian Frank Peel, to homes “where it had hitherto been a stranger.” Food was scarce and rapidly becoming more costly. Then, on March 11, 1811, in Nottingham, a textile manufacturing center, British troops broke up a crowd of protesters demanding more work and better wages.
|Polygamy Hurt 19th Century Mormon Wives' Evolutionary Fitness |
February 25, 2011, Genetic Archaeology by Staff
Polygamy practiced by some 19th century Mormon men had the curious effect of suppressing the overall offspring numbers of Mormon women in plural marriages, say scientists from Indiana University Bloomington and three other institutions in the March 2011 issue of Evolution and Human Behavior.
Simply put, the more sister-wives a Mormon woman had, the fewer children she was likely to produce.
The researchers' survey of birth, marriage and death records from the Utah Population Database covers nearly 186,000 Utah adults and their 630,000 children who lived or died between 1830 and 1894. This period marked an important transition for the nascent Mormon Church, as polygamy began to be phased out in deference to U.S. laws banning the practice but also via internal pressure from the Mormons themselves.
|European Image of Mount Everest Dates to 1848|
February 25, 2011, OurAmazingPlanet by Andrea Mustain
What may be the earliest European representation of Mount Everest has been unearthed in the archives of Kew Gardens, just outside London.
The spidery sketch of the storied peak was done in 1848 by Joseph Hooker, a world-traveling botanist, who served as Kew's director from 1865 to 1885, and was one of Charles Darwin's closest friends.
|Older Mistresses are so Grateful!! |
February 24, 2011, Letters of Note by Benjamin Franklin
From the pen of Benjamin Franklin in 1745 comes a once-scandalous letter to an unnamed recipient (very possibly fictitious but rumoured to be Cadwallader Colden) in which he begins by suggesting marriage as the best remedy for the young man's sexual urges. In the event of marriage being out of the question for his friend however, Franklin then goes on to write an eight-strong list detailing the advantages of an older mistress which, due to its "obscene" nature, resulted in its being omitted from published collections of his writings during the 19th Century.
|Battle over Health-Care Reform: Vital Lessons from America's Founding Fathers|
February 24, 2011, The Christian Science Monitor by Len M. Nichols
History lights a path out of partisan morass, if we will but see. The new Republican House has read the Constitution, reverently, voted to repeal and defund health-care reform, defiantly, and listened to the president’s views on health care and our union, dutifully.
As a next step, I highly recommend they read Pauline Maier’s masterful “Ratification: The People Debate the Constitution, 1787-88,” before plunging back into business as usual. Two lessons in particular speak to our recent health-reform debate: 1) Complex proposals may be best worked out in secret, but must be made clear before too long; 2) State-level debates can play essential roles in the acceptance of fundamental change in our country, if debaters are honest with one another.
|Campaign to Preserve London's 'Oliver Twist' Workhouse|
February 23, 2011, BBC (UK) by Staff
Campaigners are celebrating a "major milestone" in the fight to save a London workhouse thought to have inspired the work of Charles Dickens.
The Cleveland Street Workhouse Group (CSWG) wants the 18th Century building in Fitzrovia - earmarked for demolition - to be given listed status.
It claims a positive English Heritage report acknowledges its "historical and architectural" contribution to London.
|Unearthed: 17th Century Shopping Centre that Drew the Bargain-Hunters to Dunluce|
February 23, 2011, The Belfast Telegraph (Ireland) by Linda Stewart
A trove of 17th century treasure has been uncovered which sheds new light on how people once shopped in the lost town of Dunluce.
The settlement near the north coast castle’s walls was once destined to be the region’s great commercial centre — but fell into decline after the 1641 Rebellion.
|Resolution Could Honor Little-Known Revolutionary War History|
February 23, 2011, News & Messenger (VA) by Kipp Hanley
The average American might not know that a teenaged James Monroe participated in the Battle of Trenton in the Revolutionary War – more than 40 years before he became president.
Probably even fewer know that a biracial man from Prince William County named John Sidebottom helped carry the injured Monroe from the battlefield, likely saving his life.
Bravery like this from the black populace in the Revolutionary War has largely gone unnoticed until recent years. Former Manassas area resident Maurice Barboza hopes that some of these folks that called Prince William their home are recognized for their efforts in the nation’s struggle for independence from England.
|National Park Service Records Castle Pinckney with High-Tech Equipment|
February 23, 2011, The Post and Courier (SC) by Robert Behre
The toaster-oven-size machine whirred quietly atop the tripod as its laser recorded up to 40,000 data points a second.
National Park Service architects brought it here Tuesday, and by Thursday, they expect to have collected between 150 million and 200 million electronic measurements of one of Charleston's most neglected historic sites.
Castle Pinckney has stood guard on this island for two centuries -- and the brick fortification looks every year its age.
|Jefferson's Books Found in U.S. University Library|
February 22, 2011, The Associated Press by Staff
Dozens of Thomas Jefferson's books have been found in the rare books collection at Washington University in St. Louis.
Scholars are now poring through the 28 titles and 74 volumes, searching for the occasional handwritten note from the nation's third president. And librarians say it's possible more of Jefferson's books will be found in the school's collection.