“Being in the funeral business . . . You hear things that you should never acknowledge. You hold history in your hands. You watch history buried. And you realize that people depend on you to keep their true history alive. So when it’s your own story, you don’t want to hear it. Especially when you’re young. Especially when you’re trying to run away from what you are told is your family legacy.”—Isaac in Charles Randolph-Wright’s “Being Wright”
In an effort to highlight the diverse range of scholarship at the upcoming annual meeting, we’re highlighting different sessions on the blog each week.
Last Wednesday, the National Park Service announced the launch of its new Civil War website, and the stories, timelines, featured places, and educational resources now available there. We noted the new site in last week’s “What We’re Reading” post, and today we take a closer look at all it offers.
The National Park Service’s mission is to conserve and maintain natural and historic sites, like Civil War battlefields, and provide history education to the visitors who stop by.
On April 12, 1861, 150 years ago today, the first shots of the Civil War rang out at Fort Sumter in South Carolina. See the History Channel’s brief description of the events on April 12, 1861, as well as the following day, April 13, 1861, when “after a 33-hour bombardment by Confederate cannons, Union forces surrender Fort Sumter in South Carolina’s Charleston Harbor,” the first victory of the Civil War going to the South.
Two years ago on AHA Today we put together a number of Civil War Resources for teachers, historians, and anyone interested in this critical time in our nation’s history. We noted Perspectives on History articles on the Civil War, like James McPherson discussing why he became a Civil War historian and Gary Gallagher looking at how the Civil War is portrayed in the movies. We also put together a list of Civil War podcasts, web sites, lesson plans, maps, and more.
The National Archives‘ new “Discovering the Civil War” exhibit reexamines this well-visited topic through primary documents presented in new ways, like through videos and interactive touch-screens.
The exhibit at the Lawrence F. O’Brien Gallery of National Archives has been split in two parts: part one, titled “Beginnings” will be on display from April 30 through September 6, 2010, and part two, “Consequences” opens November 10, 2010, and closes on April 17, 2011. Both parts will then travel as one exhibit to eight locations across the country.
We start off this week with a selection of articles on history and new media. First up, Slate magazine looks at how historians may use the Twitter archive in the future. Then, listen to a Digital Campus podcast on “social history,” read Sharon Leon’s series on "21st Century Public History,” and check out a new document on the National Library of Medicine’s Turning the Pages site. Following this are a number of American history related articles: K.C. Johnson looks at what’s “deemphasized” in the teaching of U.S.
This past Monday actor Robert Duvall sent news agencies buzzing when he said “he will help preservationists in ‘chasing out’ [Wal-mart] from a site near the Wilderness Battlefield” where they are planning on building a 138,000 square-foot supercenter (a fight that began last year).
Preserving Civil War history is an important, and sometimes contentious topic. In this post we bring you a host of Civil War related resources online, for use in the classroom, in research, or in one’s free time.