Hopefully your summer includes a little vacation time. To aid you in planning where to visit, we start this post off with some links about museums: 12 history trips from the New York Times, simulations in natural history museums, how the National Archives preserves the Declaration of Independence, and a new exhibit review blog from the National Council on Public History. Then, while the noise of fireworks is still ringing in your ears, read about why July 5th is a day to be celebrated too, and NPR clears up some myths about the 4th. Summer is also a good time for reading as EDSITEment delves into To Kill a Mockingbird while the New Books in History podcast notes Jerry Muller’s new book. Finally, get acquainted with the U.S. House of Representatives historian, remember the Newport Jazz Festival riot, learn of EDSITEment’s award from the AASL, read about preserving churches in Britain, and grab your laptop and some coffee because Starbucks now has free wifi.
- 12 Unexpected History Trips
With summer in full-swing, you may want to check out one of the New York Times’ 12 unexpected history trips (from museums, to walking tours, to garages) that allow you to “to experience our geeky, gaudy, mystical, majestic, tough and tragic roots.”
- Getting Real at Natural-History Museums
Thomas Benton at the Chronicle laments the use of simulations in museums over real artifacts.
- Inside the Vaults – The Declaration of Independence
The National Archives recently posted a new video on YouTube on preserving the Declaration of Independence.
- Off The Wall
The National Council on Public History has launched a new exhibit review blog, "Off the Wall.” The blog will explore the many possibilities for exhibiting history in the digital age. The first post reviewed Britain’s web portal to museums, archives, and heritage sites, Culture 24, which currently features a temporary exhibit on the history of the World Cup.
Fourth of July
- Fifth of July Is Also a Day to Celebrate
Don’t stop celebrating just because July 4th is over. A few notable achievements on the 5th? The birth of spam (1937), first cloned sheep (1996), and the introduction of the Bikini (1946).
- The Fourth Of July And Other Myths Of Independence
In his new book, Founding Myths: Stories That Hide Our Patriotic Past, Ray Raphael corrects some of the historical inaccuracies of popular 4th of July traditions. Listen to the story from NPR’s All Things Considered.
- Summertime Favorites
Head over to EDSITEment’s online monthly feature to peruse lesson plans on some of the NEH’s favorite summer reading selections and take a closer look at To Kill a Mockingbird.
- Jerry Muller, “Capitalism and the Jews”
The New Books in History podcast notes Jerry Muller’s new book, “Capitalism and the Jews.”
- As a historian in the House, Fred Beuttler puts current events in perspective
U.S. House of Representatives historian Fred Beuttler helps put events in historical perspective.
- Goodbye Newport Blues
Last week the Wall Street Journal took a look at the Newport Jazz Festival riot, which took place fifty years ago on July 2nd. Muddy Waters’ legendary "At Newport 1960" was recorded live at the festival, and the disturbances inspired Langston Hughes to write "Goodbye Newport Blues."
- EDSITEment honored by the American Association of School Librarians as "best of the best" website for teaching and learning
EDSITEment, whose resources are often mentioned on AHA Today, has been recognized by the AASL as one of twenty-five “Best Websites for Teaching and Learning.”
- Saving churches for their history – not religion
Changing religious traditions in England threatens some of the country’s oldest and most ornate architecture: churches. Despite a decline in regular church attendance, residents in small villages are grappling with how best to preserve these historic landmarks, many of which are pushing 1,000-years-old.
- Free Wi-Fi at Starbucks
Whether you’re on a research trip, at the annual meeting, or just out of the house, having access to free wireless internet is always appreciated. Starting on July 1, Starbucks announced that all of its coffee shops now offer free and unlimited wireless internet. No registration required.
Contributors: David Darlington, Debbie Ann Doyle, Elisabeth Grant, Vernon Horn, Matthew Keough, Jessica Pritchard, and Robert B. Townsend