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The Great River-to-River, Vine to Pine, Rain or Shine Walking Tour of Philadelphia: Or Why My Feet Hurt

When I heard about the annual Great River-to-River, Vine to Pine, Rain or Shine Walking Tour of Philadelphia I knew I had to skip a day of schoolwork to go. Even though my feet still hurt days later, it was definitely worth a twelve-hour urban trek for the chance to see several experienced guides in action, to learn about innumerable city sites, to run through a range of small but fascinating museums, and even to listen to costumed interpreters portraying key historical figures including founder William Penn, patriot Dr. Benjamin Rush, and political martyr Octavius Catto.

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Through a Lens, Clearly: The Civil Rights Movement in the Camera’s Eye

By Gail Friedman It has been more than 50 years since television news and picture magazines began bringing into American living rooms a spate of searing images from Little Rock, Birmingham, Montgomery, Selma, and Washington, D.C., heightening the visibility and

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A Sad Summer

In the past month and a half, we studiers and practitioners of historic preservation and historic trades lost two important people who contributed immeasurably to our understanding of the past. At the end of July, suddenly and without warning, Jay

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Summer Fruits of the Humanities

Recent observances around the on-going 150th anniversary of the Civil War have highlighted the great popular interest in how war affected the lives of everyday people. New Jersey now has a window into everyday lives during the American Revolution, thanks to the good work of the Crossroads of the American Revolution National Heritage Area.

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Pinterest for Public History

Pinterest is a virtual bulletin board to which users “pin” images. With 25 million users and the ability to drive more clicks than any other social media site, including Facebook, Pinterest is an alluring platform for public history. In June I offered a workshop at MARCH aimed at small- to medium-sized organizations with new users who have limited time to devote to social media.

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Star-Spangled Tourism: Nineteenth Century History and Twenty-First Century Heritage at Fort McHenry

Like World War I and the Korean War, the War of 1812 is sometimes termed a ‘forgotten war.’  At the Price of Freedom exhibit in the Smithsonian Museum of American History it is grouped alongside the Mexican War, Spanish-American War,

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Home Before The Leaves Fall

“Home Before the Leaves Fall: The Great War 1914-1918,” a collaborative commemoration of World War I by heritage and educational institutions through the City of Philadelphia, kicked off at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania on June 26. Peter John Williams, author of a pictorial history, Philadelphia The War Years delivered a talk that highlighted Philadelphia’s importance as the third largest city in the United States at the start of World War I and as a manufacturing powerhouse known as the “workshop of the world.” Nearly 60, 000 Philadelphia men and 2,000 Philadelphia women served in World War I and thousands more worked in factories and shipyards supporting the war effort. A large naval yard, munitions manufacturing, and an aviation training facility transformed Philadelphia during the years of the Great War into fully mobilized war time economy more commonly associated with the World War II home front.

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The Guns of August and The Dogs of War: Remembering and Forgetting America’s Great War

At the time no one knew to call it World War One. In the mid-1910s it was widely termed the ‘Great War’ and later the ‘War To End All Wars,’ an especially ironic name given the role contemporary historians have argued WWI played in precipitating WWII. In fact the History Channel recently aired a three-part series treating the period from the mid-1910s through the mid-1940s as single era of warfare. This way of remembering World War I, as but a small part of a larger history, is common throughout the United States, although in sharp contrast to much of the rest of the English-speaking world.

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Searching for a usable past in the Hudson Valley

I passed a wonderful late June week traveling the Hudson River Valley from the Vanderbilt estate in Hyde Park, New York, south along alternating banks of the Hudson to the Edward Hopper house and museum in Nyack. In addition to the 3rd generation Vanderbilts with their (inherited) railroad fortune, my husband and I explored the architectural and material legacy of FDR and Eleanor Roosevelt, financial speculator Jay Gould, West Point, the Loyalist and slaveholding Philips family, 3 generations of Rockefellers, artist/inventor Samuel F. B. Morse, the writer Washington Irving, and artists Edward and Josephine N. Hopper.

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5 steps to a successful digital history project

In a recent post for Public History Commons, Lara Kelland highlighted “the potential for the democratization of historical knowledge made possible by digital tools and the role of public historians in this process.” Like Kelland, I find the marriage of

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THE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF GREATER PHILADELPHIA

Based at MARCH, with numerous community partners, The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia is a civic project to increase understanding of one of America’s greatest cities. From abolition and the American Revolution to yellow fever and zoos (with cheesesteaks, rowhouses, and hundreds of other topics in between), the digital Encyclopedia and print volume will offer the most comprehensive, authoritative reference source ever created for the Philadelphia region.

CONFERENCE CALENDAR

Oct
22
Wed
3:15 pm Mid-Atlantic Association of Muse...
Mid-Atlantic Association of Muse...
Oct 22 @ 3:15 pm – Oct 24 @ 4:15 pm
From the Mid-Atlantic Association of Museums: Join MAAM in Washington DC this October as we explore Museums in Transition and Transitions in Museums. The museum world is constantly undergoing change and transformation, whether in response to economics, cultural trends or
Oct
23
Thu
all-day Creating, Displaying, and Revisi... @ West Chester University
Creating, Displaying, and Revisi... @ West Chester University
Oct 23 all-day
West Chester University (West Chester, Pennsylvania) will hold its 2nd Annual One-Day History Conference on Thursday, October 23, 2014: Creating, Displaying, and Revising American Identity.  The inspiration for this year’s theme is the 200th anniversary of the national anthem and the
Oct
24
Fri
1:45 pm The World’s Fair Since ’64 @ Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation of the Smithsonian Institution
The World’s Fair Since ’64 @ Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation of the Smithsonian Institution
Oct 24 @ 1:45 pm – Oct 25 @ 2:45 pm
From H-Urban: This workshop proposes to examine world’s fairs since (and including) 1964, a period marked by tremendous variability in the location and impact of the genre.  Participants may cover any of the fairs from 1964 to the present, as
Oct
27
Mon
8:30 am Meant to Last? Preserving the Mo...
Meant to Last? Preserving the Mo...
Oct 27 @ 8:30 am – Oct 28 @ 5:00 pm
From the Conservation Center for Art & Historic Artifacts: The twentieth and twenty-first centuries brought into the world a bewildering array of new materials, used to design a broad range of objects now collected in museums, libraries, and archives.   Many
Oct
30
Thu
4:30 pm Conference: Green Capitalism? Ex... @ Hagley Library and Museum
Conference: Green Capitalism? Ex... @ Hagley Library and Museum
Oct 30 @ 4:30 pm – Oct 31 @ 5:30 pm
More information to follow.  View the 2013 conference schedule at http://www.hagley.org/hagley-conferences.

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