November 27, 2008
This Thanksgiving edition of What We’re Reading starts off with a number of useful links to Turkey Day related pages and posts. Take a look back to Thanksgiving in the 1700s with the Library of Congress, find out what was served at the first Thanksgiving with the help of a historian at the National History Education Clearinghouse site, and see all of the features the History Channel has to offer for this holiday. Then, in non-Thanksgiving news, read about the opening of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History, learn the background of President-elect Obama’s economic adviser choice Christian Romer, find out "What’s So Special About a Team of Rivals?", and finally, hear about a forum set up to examine misunderstandings in history.
- Thanksgiving Day
The Library of Congress celebrates Thanksgiving with a collection of links to Thanksgiving related documents like A Proclamation For a Publick Thanksgiving from 1721, George Washington’s proclamation of the first Thanksgiving under the Constitution, The President’s Hymn for Thanksgiving, and more.
- Was Corn Served at the First Thanksgiving?
From the National History Education Clearinghouse, the Ask a Historian section responds to a question about the first Thanksgiving.
- The History of Thanksgiving
The History Channel presents features, facts, and resources on the history of Thanksgiving.
What Else We’re Reading
- America’s Attic Is Ready for Its Public
After more than 5 years and $80 million, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History reopened on Friday, November 21st. Although architectural redesign may be the most noticeable change, there are also now more than 5,000 objects on display, as well as more displays highlighting the role of immigrants. Resources on the opening include: webcasts from NMAH, and coverage and photos from the blog DCist, and an article from the New York Times.
- Who Is Christina Romer?
The Wall Street Journal profiles Christina Romer, President-elect Obama’s pick for head of the Council of Economic Advisers. The article explains that, “Much of Ms. Romer’s work has been on macroeconomic history – studying, for example, the causes of the Great Depression…” Also see the Chronicle’s coverage.
- What’s So Special About a Team of Rivals?
Historian James Oakes asks, "What’s So Special About a Team of Rivals?" in this NY Times editorial. Turns out, not so much.
- Histories of Misunderstanding
Dan Ernst at the Legal History Blog notes an upcoming History Graduate Students Conference at UVA that “will provide a forum for graduate students of history and related fields at all levels to discuss misunderstandings in history.” Also, see the call for papers on H-Net.
Contributors: Elisabeth Grant, Vernon Horn, and Lee White