Name of source: Gulf News
Seoul: South Korean women forced into wartime sexual slavery held their 1,000th weekly protest outside Japan's embassy yesterday, demanding compensation and an apology from Tokyo as they have since 1992.
"Apologise!" shouted five women in their 80s or 90s and an estimated 500 supporters, waving banners reading "Compensate" and "Admit the war crime".
Demonstrators campaigning to publicise Second World War crimes braved near-freezing temperatures to unveil a "peace monument" across the street from the mission, despite protests from the Japanese government over the statue....
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 18:09
Name of source: Live Science
Nearly 450 years ago, when England was tearing itself apart over religion, a Catholic woman named Lady Elizabeth Dacre wrote an elegant but at times erotic Latin love poem to Sir Anthony Cooke, a Protestant and tutor to King Edward VI, the successor of Henry VIII.
That poem was rediscovered recently in the West Virginia University library, inside a 1561 copy of Chaucer. It hints at a love affair that was not to be.
"It's a very beautiful piece and I think for her it was quite a prized possession, because it's been so very carefully copied out and looked after," Elaine Treharne, a professor at Florida State University, told LiveScience.
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 18:07
An ancient piece of wood found at the bottom of Lake Huron hints at time, about 8,900 years ago, when this area was dry land where ancient hunters may have lived.
The piece of wood measures about 5-feet, 6-inches (1.7 meters) and seems to have been a tool of some kind....
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 18:05
Name of source: Discovery News
The most complete and best-preserved ancient example of the Ten Commandments, a 2,00- year-old leather parchment scroll discovered in a cave at the Dead Sea in 1952, will go on display on Friday in New York's Discovery Times Square Exposition. The scroll is an important, although brief, addition to the show "Dead Sea Scrolls: Life and Faith in Biblical Times."
The largest collection of biblical artifacts ever displayed outside Israel, the exhibit, which opened October 28 and will run through April 15, is already featuring 20 Dead Sea Scrolls, with sections from the biblical books of Genesis, Psalms, Exodus, Isaiah, and others.
The Ten Commandments scroll will be added to the show from Dec. 16 through Jan. 2....
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 18:03
On the evening of Dec. 13, 1911, Robert Falcon Scott's journal entry revealed the despair he felt at what was becoming an increasingly fraught and seemingly interminable attempt to reach the South Pole. "A most damnably dismal day," it began, before cataloging the trials and ordeals he and his companions had endured over the previous 24 hours in their attempt to push south. "We were soaked with perspiration and thoroughly breathless with our efforts ... I suppose we have advanced a bare 4 miles today ... We can but toil on, but it is woefully disheartening."
A couple hundred miles to the south, the observations of Roald Amundsen were a study in contrast. "Lovely weather," he wrote on the 12th; "we have done our usual 17 nautical miles." The following day: "Our best day up here." By the evening of the 13th, Amundsen and his companions camped 15 miles from the Pole, and that night, he wrote later, "I was awake several times ... and had the same feeling that I can remember as a little boy on the night before Christmas."
The next morning, he continued, "I believe we despatched our breakfast rather more quickly than usual and were out of the tent sooner." They marched onward in silence, their dogs straining at their harnesses. The men feared to the last that Scott had beaten them and they peered keenly ahead for signs of the Englishman's presence, Amundsen observing that "Hanssen's neck grew twice as long as before in his endeavour to see a few inches farther."...
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 18:01
A hoard of silver found by a metal detector has provided intriguing new clues to a previously unknown Viking king, the British Museum announced on Wednesday.
Found some 16 inches beneath the surface of a field in Silverdale, a village in north Lancashire, UK, the hoard materialized as Darren Webster, a 39-year-old stonemason, lifted a lead box signalled by his detector.
A shower of 201 pieces of silver revealed an abundance of arm-rings, brooch fragments, ingots and coins.
"I had a very good idea what it was. The coins, the bracelets, I knew it was possibly Viking, more than likely Viking," Webster told the Lancashire Evening Post....
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 17:27
Will the mystery over the Great Pyramid's secret doors be solved in 2012?
I dare say yes. After almost two decades of failed attempts, chances are now strong that researchers will reveal next year what lies behind the secret doors at the heart of Egypt's most magnificent pyramid.
New revelations on the enduring mystery were already expected this year, following a robot exploration of the 4,500-year-old pharaonic mausoleum....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 12:45
Name of source: Daily Mail (UK)
When the Viking warrior buried his hoard of silver coins and jewellery in a lead container, he doubtless expected to be back for them after his next battle.
But thanks to those pesky Anglo Saxons, they remained undisturbed for more than 1,000 years... until Darren Webster discovered them with a metal detector during his lunch break.
Found just 18 inches beneath the surface of a field in Silverdale, Lancashire, the 201 objects were yesterday hailed by the British Museum as one of the most important Viking discoveries of recent times.
Based on previous finds, they could be worth as much as £500,000....
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 17:59
A team of historians believe they have unearthed evidence of a 4,000-year-old Stone Age camp - thanks to a dog walker.
Roger Hall was walking his pet at Cannock Wood in Staffordshire, when he discovered a handful of strange-shaped rocks.
Experts later identified the rocks as flint 'flakes', which are the off-cuts from tools crafted by Stone Age Man 4,000 years ago.
If the discovery is confirmed, it could mark the spot of the only Neolithic camp known in the Midlands.
Roger Knowles, a member of the Council for British Archaeology, is convinced the camp could identify a link from the time when mankind changed from nomadic hunter-gatherer to village dweller....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 12:54
It was the setting for one of England’s most infamous witches’ covens.
So the discovery of a mummified cat sealed into the walls of a 17th century cottage was yesterday described by historians as ‘spellbinding’.
The unfortunate animal – associated with witches for centuries – was apparently buried alive to protect the inhabitants from evil spirits....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 12:31
Name of source: Researchers puzzled as grave did not hold remains of medieval Swedish king
Earlier this year, researchers in Sweden excavated what they believe was the tomb of King Magnus Ladulås (1240-1290) at Riddarholmen Church in Stockholm, hoping to learn more about the medieval Swedish ruler and his family. But DNA tests have revealed that the bodies of nine people buried in the tomb actually died sometime between 1430 and 1520.
Records show that the King Magnus wished to have his remains buried in the church, and in 1573 the Swedish King, Johan III erected a sarcophagus with an effigy on top of what he believed was the location of the tomb.
The researchers said on their blog: “It is a fantastic story that is rolled up in front of our eyes. Johan II had the impressive tomb put up above the wrong grave and this historical hoax has been unchallenged for 400 years! On good grounds we believe instead that Magnus Ladulås was placed in the southern tomb in front of the choir, i.e. the tomb in which King Karl Knutsson placed himself in the 15th century. With the knowledge we have today it is obvious that we have only done half the job. In order to make further progress in this project we need to open also the southern part of the choir-tombs (the tomb of Karl Knutsson) and investigate all individuals there.”
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 17:50
Name of source: Huffington Post
WASHINGTON (RNS) How would you feel about taking a razor blade to a Bible?
Thomas Jefferson, apparently, didn't have any qualms about it.
In his retirement, the nation's third president carried out a project he had contemplated for years: he literally cut and pasted passages from the four Gospels into one integrated narrative of Jesus' life -- minus the miracles and supernatural events.
The result, he said, was "the most sublime and benevolent code of morals which has ever been offered to man." Judging by the wear and tear on the book, it appears Jefferson read it regularly.
Known as "The Jefferson Bible," the 84-page patchwork book is on display at the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History here through May 28, 2012. Smithsonian Books has released a commemorative full-color edition, and Tarcher/Penguin is publishing a pocket-size version in January....
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 17:29
WASHINGTON -- Though Wednesday marked the 70th anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, speeches by a series of U.S. presidential candidates at the Republican Jewish Coalition rang strongly with rhetoric that applied more to the European theater in the years before the outbreak of World War II.
In speech after speech, five of the six invited GOP candidates invoked the specter of "appeasement," the pre-WWII policy that many historians say emboldened Adolf Hitler to conquer Europe and carry out a full-scale genocide of its Jewish population. U.S. President Barack Obama, the Republicans said, was making a comparable mistake by "appeasing" Iran, "appeasing" Islamist extremists, even "appeasing" other countries who want to take America's place in the world.
Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum accused the Obama administration of the kind of "appeasement" of Iran that allowed Hitler to invade neighboring countries with impunity.
Michele Bachmann said, in reference to Iran President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, that "again a madman is speaking, and it seems the world is again not listening."...
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 13:48
NEW YORK -- John Brennan turned 91 in May. Today he lives in relatively good health on Long Island, his mortgage paid off. When he was growing up in Manhattan during the Depression, though, times were tough.
"I was two weeks old when my father died, leaving my mother with five kids," he told HuffPost, his voice still marked by a craggy 1920s Hell's Kitchen accent. "Them days the women didn't have too much education, so my mother was out working most of the time, and we were free kids."
"She worked in all these different factories," he said. "Making candy, then a paint factory."
Under such desperate circumstances, Brennan himself had a hard time finding work during the Great Depression. So in 1937 he followed his older brother Peter into the Civilian Conservation Corps. He joined on his 17th birthday, the first day he was eligible.
The pay was only a dollar a day, but between 1933 and 1941, the program gave some 3 million young men employment. The CCC planted 3 billion trees, stemming the deforestation that caused the Dust Bowl, and built modest public works like park trails across the country.
As required by the program, Brennan sent $25 home a month, "which paid my mother's rent all the time." She was then able to use her extra money on other goods and services.
The experience of Brennan and those millions of other Americans who passed through the "alphabet soup" of New Deal agencies, from the WPA to the CWA to the PWA, may point to one possible solution for today's dragging economy: direct government employment on public works programs.
Joblessness increased from 3.3 percent in 1929 to 24.9 percent in 1933. For the millions out of work, President Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal jobs programs, like the CCC, offered hope in an otherwise bleak economic climate....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 13:06
Name of source: London Evening Standard
The Romans founded London as a centre of trade and business in about AD 50 - or so archaeologists have long believed.
But new evidence suggests the capital has a more chilling history, built as a military base by slaves who were then slaughtered. Hundreds of skulls discovered along the course of the "lost" river Walbrook suggest London may have been built by forced labour.
Dominic Perring, director of the Centre for Applied Archaeology at University College London, says the skulls could be those of Queen Boudica's rebel Iceni tribesmen who were brought to London to build a new military base.
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 17:28
Name of source: UA News
Arizona State Museum archaeologists are looking through historic table scraps in an effort to find out more about the kitchen of America's fourth president and author of the U.S. Constitution.
For about a decade, Barnet Pavao-Zuckerman and her students from the University of Arizona have been part of ongoing excavations at Montpelier, the home of James and Dolley Madison. The archaeology of Montpelier's grounds offer some light on what day-to-day life was like from the pre-Revolutionary War era to well into the 18th century.
She is collaborating with the Montpelier Foundation on analysis of animal remains – mostly bones – excavated at the estate. These artifacts offer clues about what the Madisons, their guests and their slaves dined on at the time.
Madison's grandfather, Ambrose Madison, built Mount Pleasant, the first family cabin on a few thousand remote acres at the foot of the Blue Ridge Mountains in northern Virginia in 1723. That was left behind in the 1760s when James Madison Sr. started constructing what would become Montpelier....
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 17:25
Name of source: Lee White at the National Coalition for History
On December 1, the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) announced $21 million in grants for 215 humanities projects.
This funding will support a wide variety of projects, including research fellowships and awards for scholars, the preservation of humanities collections at smaller institutions, traveling exhibitions, and humanities initiatives at historically black colleges, institutions with high Hispanic enrollment, and tribal colleges and universities. The grants awarded will also support training for museum and archive staff to preserve and enhance access to their collections, while NEH Challenge Grants provide support for long-term humanities activities.
As part of the agency’s Bridging Cultures initiative — which encourages projects that explore the ways in which cultures from around the globe, as well as the myriad subcultures within America’s borders, have influenced American society— NEH announced awards in three special grant programs: Bridging Cultures Through Film, Bridging Cultures at Community Colleges, and Bridging Cultures Implementation Grants for Public Programs. Projects receiving funding through these programs include the production of a film on the experiences of the Cambodian actor Haing Ngor during the Cambodian genocide and his life in America afterwards, a two-year professional and curriculum development project for faculty and administrators from eighteen community colleges to improve introductory humanities courses at two-year institutions, and the implementation of library programming and a companion website on the poetry of the Muslim world.
Also among the grants announced are a research fellowship to examine reading habits in the antebellum South and their relationship to slavery and an emerging market economy, and a challenge grant to provide tuition-free introductory college level courses in American history, literature, and writing to low income students in Massachusetts. Funding will also support workshops for cultural heritage conservators on preventative conservation methods and the conservation of digital prints, and provide climate monitoring equipment to protect a collection of 1,000 artifacts documenting the lives of Chinese immigrants in Lewiston, Idaho, in the late 19th century.
This award cycle, institutions and independent scholars in 43 states and the District of Columbia will receive NEH support. Complete state-by-state listings of grants are available here (45-page PDF).
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 17:17
On November 17, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee approved, by voice vote, H.R. 3071, the “Presidential Records Act Amendments of 2011.” The version as adopted embodied a manager’s amendment offered by Committee Chairman Darrell Issa, R-Calif. that added federal records management provisions to the original bill which only addressed presidential records.
The bill amends the Presidential Records Act to require the Archivist of the United States, upon determining to make available any presidential record not previously made available publicly, to:
- (1) Provide written notice of such determination to the former President during whose term of office the record was created and to the incumbent President, and (2) Make the notice available to the public.
- Requires a presidential record to be made available to the public 60 days after the Archivist gives notice, unless the Archivist receives notification from a former or incumbent President of a claim of constitutionally based privilege against disclosure. The incumbent President has the authority to decide whether to uphold the former President’s invocation of executive privilege.
- Prohibits the Archivist from making a record that is subject to a privilege claim asserted by the incumbent President publicly available unless:
(1) The incumbent President (on behalf of themselves or the former President) withdraws the claim; or (2) the Archivist is otherwise directed to do so by a final court order that is not subject to appeal.
- Prohibits the Archivist from making available any original presidential records to anyone claiming access to them as a designated representative of a President or former President if that individual has been convicted of a crime relating to the review, removal, or destruction of the Archives’ records.
Federal Records Management
The manager’s amendment also included provisions giving the National Archives increased ability to streamline the records preservation process and improve the oversight of records management by federal agencies. The bill as amended:
- Encourages agencies to turn over records to NARA “as soon as practicable, but no later than 30 years after the records were created or received by the agency.
- Allows NARA to accept for deposit the records of the Congress, the Architect of the Capitol, or the Supreme Court, in addition to those of federal agencies.
- Directs the Archivist to promulgate regulations within 18 months of enactment of the bill requiring all Federal agencies to transfer all digital or electronic records to NARA in digital form “to the greatest extent possible.” The regulations must include timelines for Federal agencies to comply “as soon as practicable,” but no later than four years after enactment. Agencies must submit a report to the Archivist a report on the agency’s progress with compliance.
- Directs the Archivist to annually certify whether the records management controls established by the incumbent President for the preservation of his or her records are being met.
The Committee also adopted an amendment offered by Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-N.C., that would prohibit the president, vice president and any employee in the Executive Office of the President or the Office of the Vice President from using any unofficial electronic mail or systems of communication for official businesses.
Floor action on the bill has not been scheduled and no comparable legislation has been introduced in the Senate.
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 17:15
The National Archives Office of Government Information Services (OGIS) – the federal Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Ombudsman – launched a new online case management system on November 28.
The new OGIS Access System (OAS) will manage the requests for assistance that FOIA requesters and agencies bring to OGIS. This tool will both streamline OGIS’s work and increase transparency of its operations.
More than 1,200 FOIA requesters from 48 states and 13 foreign countries turned to OGIS for assistance in its first two years as FOIA Ombudsman. The service that OGIS provides ranges from checking the status of delayed FOIA requests to facilitating resolutions of disputes involving complex database requests. While OGIS has successfully resolved hundreds of cases, the Office recognizes the need for greater collaboration with agencies and a more systematic way of collecting information about its work. The OAS – which is supported by and integrated into a re-launched and expanded OGIS website – will help the Office achieve these goals.
“OGIS was created to resolve disputes between FOIA requesters and federal agencies,” said OGIS Director Miriam Nisbet. “As we began our work, we realized that we needed an increased web presence to both manage our cases and educate requesters about the FOIA process. Our new OGIS Access System will help us achieve these goals.”
OAS is among the first generation of federal government online services operating in “the cloud.” This approach allows OGIS to launch a number of scalable online services, including:
- A searchable library of FOIA terms and concepts;
- An online submission process for those requesting OGIS’s assistance;
- The ability to review the status of a case with OGIS and communicate directly with OGIS staff; and
- The capability to engage with the public on ways to improve FOIA, which also is within the OGIS mission.
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 17:14
On November 28, President Obama issued a memorandum to the heads of Executive Departments and Agencies on Managing Government Records. This memorandum marks the start of an executive branch-wide effort to reform records management policies and practices.
“The National Archives and Records Administration strongly supports this memorandum from the President, which sends a very clear message to Federal agencies about the importance of managing electronic records. Records management must keep up with the technologies used to create records in the Federal government, and the President’s Memorandum underlines the critical nature of this responsibility. I am delighted that this is a priority of this Administration, and appreciate that the President reiterated what the National Archives has long noted: “good records management is the backbone of open government,” said Archivist of the United States David S. Ferriero.
The memorandum requires each agency to report to the Archivist the name of a senior agency official who will supervise an agency-wide evaluation of its records management programs. These evaluations, which are to be completed in 120 days, are to focus on electronic records, including email and social media, as well as those programs that may be deploying or developing cloud-based services.
After the senior agency officials have been named, the National Archives will schedule meetings to provide additional information on completing the requirements in the memorandum.
Once the evaluations have been submitted, the National Archives and the Office of Management and Budget will have an additional 120 days to issue a Records Management Directive to agencies that will provide specific steps to reform records management policies and practices.
For additional information on-line on the requirements laid out in the President’s Memorandum go to the National Archives National Records Management Program Blog, Records Express
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 17:13
Online registration for the 2012 National Humanities Alliance’s Humanities Advocacy Day is now open. Events will take place Monday, March 19 – Tuesday, March 20, 2012, in Washington, DC. Early-bird registration rates are in effect through December 31, 2011.
With increasing budgetary pressures on federal spending, your help is needed now more than ever to defend critical humanities programs. The National Coalition for History is a co-sponsor of the annual event.
For the preliminary program and other event information, visit www.nhalliance.org/events. To register online, click here.
Humanities Advocacy Day started in 2000 to provide an opportunity for the entire humanities community to convene, meet with their elected officials, and convey the importance of federal support for the humanities. Strong participation in Humanities Advocacy Day events is essential to our success in increasing public support for, and understanding of, the humanities.
The 2012 preliminary program includes:
- NHA annual membership meeting
- Presentations of current work in the humanities
- Panel discussions on the humanities role in research, education, public engagement and other policy areas
- Luncheon keynote address
- Humanities funding and policy briefing
- Capitol Hill reception
- Visits with Members of Congress
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 17:11
The National Archives and Records Administration recently announced it will place the entire 1940 Census – more than 18 terabytes of data – online, free of charge, for viewing and download by page or enumeration district beginning Monday, April 2, 2012, at 9 a.m. EDT.
Researchers will be able to search the 1940 Census using the public computers at National Archives facilities nationwide, or personal computers with Internet access. In addition, for customers with large data requirements, the National Archives Trust Fund is selling the 1940 Census data on hard-drives and hard-drive arrays. Microfilm copies of the 1940 Census data will be available for purchase from the Trust Fund, as well.
The National Archives Trust Fund will accept pre-orders for the 1940 Census data on hard-drives and hard-drive arrays. Digital copies will be available for purchase as a whole or by individual state.
Pre-orders for the entire 1940 Census and/or for individual states will be sent via overnight mail on April 2, 2012.
If you would prefer the data on microfilm, orders for 1940 Census microfilm can be placed on April 2, 2012.
To place an order or for more information, see the Trust Fund product page[http://estore.archives.gov/Category/105_1/1940_Census.aspx].
For researchers interested in the learning more about the 1940 Census see www.archives.gov/research/census/1940 or e-mail questions to 1940Census@nara.gov.
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 17:09
In 2010, President Obama signed Executive Order 13556, “Controlled Unclassified Information (CUI),” and designated the National Archives and Records Administration as the Executive Agent “to implement this order and oversee agency actions to ensure compliance with this order.”
On November 4, 2011, as required by this Executive Order, the National Archives Controlled Unclassified Information Office established a publically available registry reflecting the initial categories and subcategories of unclassified information that require dissemination or safeguarding controls consistent with and pursuant to law, regulation, and Government-wide policy. This registry, additional information and CUI training is online at www.archives.gov/cui/.
The CUI program will be implemented in phases based on compliance plans and target dates to be submitted by executive agencies and departments. When fully implemented, the CUI program will require executive departments and agencies to exclusively use these categories for controlling and marking such unclassified information. The National Archives will consult with the agencies and the Office of Management and Budget and then set implementation deadlines for CUI, to include for applying standardized CUI markings.
Currently, there are more than 100 different policies for such information across the Executive branch. This plethora of policies has created inefficiency and confusion, leading to a patchwork system that fails to adequately safeguard information requiring protection, and unnecessarily restricts information sharing by creating needless impediments.
Established in 2008, the National Archives Controlled Unclassified Information Office is responsible for overseeing and managing the implementation of the CUI framework. This office furthers the President’s goal of Open Government, while at the same time outlining standards to protect some information pursuant to and consistent with applicable law, regulations, and government-wide policies.
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 17:07
The National Park Service recently announced the award of more than $1.4 million in grants to help with land acquisition at five Civil War battlefields. Grant recipients include battlefields at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania ($217,000); Wilson’s Creek, Missouri ($400,000); Bentonville, North Carolina ($114,000); Cedar Creek, Virginia ($430,000); and Chancellorsville, Virginia ($246,425).
The grants were made from the National Park Service’s American Battlefield Protection Program (ABPP) to help states and local communities acquire and preserve threatened Civil War battlefield land outside the boundaries of National Park units. Priority was given to battlefields listed in the National Park Service’s Civil War Sites Advisory Commission Report on the Nation’s Civil War Battlefields (CWSAC Report). Funds were awarded based on the property’s location within CWSAC-defined core and/or study areas, the threat to the battlefield land to be acquired, and the availability of required non-Federal matching funds.
The grant funds were made available under the Department of Defense and Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act of 2011 (P.L. 112-10), which appropriated $8,982,000 for the Civil War battlefield land acquisition grants program. Applications for the balance of the funds are accepted at any time. Criteria to consider in the applying for the Civil War Battlefield Land Acquisition Grants include:
The LWCF Civil War Battlefield Land Acquisition Grants are awarded through a competitive process to units of state and local governments.
* Private non-profit groups may apply in partnership with state or local government sponsors;
* Each grant requires a dollar-for-dollar non-Federal match.
* Grants are available for the fee simple acquisition of land, or for the acquisition of permanent, protective interests in land at Civil War battlefields listed in the Civil War Sites Advisory Commission’s (CWSAC) 1993 Report on the Nation’s Civil War Battlefields.
* Higher consideration will be given to proposals for acquisition of endangered lands at battlefields defined as Priority I or II sites in the CWSAC report.
Complete guidelines for grant eligibility and application forms are available online at: www.nps.gov/history/hps/abpp
For further information, contact Kristen McMasters, Grants Manager, at 202-354-2037 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Grantee, State and Amount Awarded:
* Adams County, Pa. Gettysburg Battlefield, Bievenour Tract (Fee Simple)
* Adams County, Pa. Gettysburg Battlefield, Nguyen Tract (Fee Simple)
* Missouri Department of Natural Resources Wilson’s Creek, Keet Tract (Fee Simple)
* North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources, N.C. Bentonville Battlefield, Griffis Tract (Fee Simple)
* North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources, N.C. Bentonville Battlefield, Jackson Heirs Tract (Fee Simple)
* Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, Va. Cedar Creek Battlefield, Abel Tract (Fee Simple)
* Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, Va. Chancellorsville Battlefield, Partain Tract (Fee Simple)
Total = $1,407,425
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 17:06
The National Archives recently announced the launch of a special web site highlighting activities and documents related to the 2012 National History Day theme – Revolution, Reaction, and Reform in History. Inspiration for National History Day projects can be found in sample documents, suggested topics at www.DocsTeach.org/home/national-history-day.
These online records include photographs, maps, textual records, posters, patent drawings, and video and sound recordings that reflect the 2012 theme and can be incorporated into any of the five National History Day categories.
Teachers can introduce the 2012 National History Day theme with an activity that encourages students to define the terms revolution and reform, and then examine the differences between them by analyzing documents connected to the New Deal. Another activity, entitled Mrs. Jackson’s Letter, illustrates an emotional reaction to ‘Bloody Sunday’ in Selma, Alabama in 1964. In other activities, students can reflect on why some documents are more effective than others when creating a National History Day project.
Using the site’s seven interactive tools, teachers also have the option of creating, modifying, and sharing additional activities connected to the 2012 National History Day theme based upon the students’ skill level.
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 17:05
Name of source: Old West New West
Nearly a thousand visitors joined the staff of Palo Alto Battlefield National Historical Park on Nov. 19, 2011 for the official dedication of the Resaca de la Palma Battlefield as a new unit of the park, and to participate in the memorial illumination ceremony held annually at the site.
Palo Alto Battlefield NHP near Brownsville, Texas has the distinction of being the only unit in the National Park Service to preserve battle sites from the U.S. War with Mexico.
The dedication event marked the culmination of an effort extending back over a decade to preserve the site of the second battle of the U.S. War with Mexico....
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 11:44
Name of source: Gannett Times-Herald (MI)
FORT GRATIOT -- A community that lived through the deadly water tunnel explosion 40 years ago watched as their memories officially became a piece of history Sunday afternoon at Fort Gratiot County Park.
During the ceremony held at the memorial, Tom Truscott of the Michigan Historic Commission dedicated a new historical marker -- a sign that details how 22 men working on a water intake tunnel deep underneath Lake Huron died in a powerful methane gas explosion Dec. 11, 1971.
The Lake Huron Water Supply Project was started by the Detroit Metro Water Department in 1968 to build a new water intake for the then-growing cities of Detroit and Flint....
Thursday, December 15, 2011 - 11:42
Name of source: NYT
One hundred years ago, on Dec. 14, 1911, the Norwegian Roald Amundsen and four companions trudged through fog, bitter cold and lacerating wind to stand at the absolute bottom of the world, the South Pole. Nowhere was there a trace of their British rival, Robert Falcon Scott. No Union Jack mocked them, no ice cairn bespoke precedence. The Norwegians had won the race.
Amundsen and Scott were commanding forces driving early exploration of Antarctica, the ice-covered continent almost half again the size of the United States and unlike any other place on Earth. Both were driven by ambition to win fame by grabbing one of the few remaining unclaimed geographic prizes. Each was different, though, in temperament and approach to exploration, which may have been decisive in the success of one and the undoing of the other.
Earnest and methodical, Amundsen had previously wintered over with an expedition in Antarctica and succeeded in the first navigation of the Northwest Passage, north of Canada, as he learned well how to prepare for work on the planet’s coldest, most unforgiving continent....
Tuesday, December 13, 2011 - 10:57
On Monday, the Henry Hudson Bridge – that triumphalist crossing over the Harlem River, a steel archway slicing through a verdant vista of water, trees and cliffs – celebrates its diamond anniversary, the 75th. And like many older citizens of New York City, the bridge has had its share of wear-and-tear.
It is one of the least-used bridges in the region’s arsenal, but its operations have piled up over the years, closing lanes and upsetting commuters bound for the many gilded Westchester County suburbs it serves.
One Manhattan-bound lane was shut down for a 43-month period that ended in June 2010, during which the entire Depression-era lower deck was replaced. Eleven months later, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority began a new rehabilitation, this time to replace the steel support ropes, which will require a round-the-clock shutdown of a Bronx-bound lane for the next three years.
In fact, the bridge has been, more or less, continually under construction since 2000, at a cost of around $160 million, twice the inflation-adjusted price tag of the original bridge....
Tuesday, December 13, 2011 - 10:55
Name of source: MSNBC
It's never too late to solve a mystery, or to set the record straight. In the 70 years since the attack on Pearl Harbor, a dramatic photo of female firefighters has been published many times in magazines, history books and online as a depiction of action on Dec. 7, 1941. We published it this past week on msnbc.com. Now, with the help of our readers, we've located one of the women, who says the photo was definitely not taken on that day.
Tuesday, December 13, 2011 - 02:08
The Dead Sea nearly disappeared about 120,000 years ago, say researchers who drilled more than 1,500 feet below one of the deepest parts of the politically contentious body of water.
The discovery looms large at a time when the Dead Sea is shrinking rapidly, Middle Eastern nations are battling over water rights, and experts hotly debate whether the salt lake could ever dry up completely in the years to come....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 13:21
Name of source: Guardian (UK)
Palestinian officials have reacted with dismay after the Republican presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich said Palestinians were an "invented" people.
The Palestinian prime minister, Salam Fayyad, said Gingrich was denying "historical truths".
Gingrich said in an interview with The Jewish Channel that Palestinians were not a race of people because they had never had a state and because they were part of the Ottoman empire before the British mandate and Israel's creation.
"Remember, there was no Palestine as a state, [it was] part of the Ottoman empire," he said in a video excerpt posted online. "I think we have an invented Palestinian people who are in fact Arabs and historically part of the Arab community and they had the chance to go many places."...
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 14:08
Forlorn traces of England's most notorious pogrom against witches appear to have been unearthed by water engineers engaged in humdrum improvements to a Pennine reservoir.
A buried cottage with a sealed room and a mummified cat bricked up in a wall has been discovered in the heart of the "witching country" of Pendle in Lancashire.
The gruesome tomb had been hidden for at least a century under a grassy mound at Lower Black Moss, whose catchments provide water for homes and businesses across north-west England.
The site is close to the supposed location of Malkin Tower, a ruin whose name echoes the spectral witches' cat Graymalkin in Macbeth. Three wizards and 17 witches were alleged to have plotted there to blow up Lancaster castle in 1612, to free an 85-year-old woman and her daughter accused of selling themselves to the devil....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 12:48
Name of source: The Newnan Times-Herald
Although Japan was facing an oil and steel embargo from the United States in 1941 and "had to do something," ultimately the Japanese "made the wrong decision and paid for it royally" when they decided to attack Pearl Harbor that morning of Dec. 7, Dr. Walter Todd of the University of West Georgia told the Newnan Rotary Club on Friday.
Todd said there are many "misconceptions" about the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor. A new book by Dr. Alan Zimm, "The Attack on Pearl Harbor: Strategy, Combat, Myths, Deceptions," is helping to set the record straight, Todd said.
"There's been a huge amount of investigation about what actually happened during the raid," said Todd. "This is going to disprove a lot of misconceptions that Americans have about it....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 14:07
Name of source: Globe and Mail
The Japanese government is offering an apology to Canadian prisoners of war, a significant move for a country that historians say has long struggled to come to terms with its wartime past.
On Christmas Day in 1941, about 1,600 Canadians were captured by the Japanese in Hong Kong, after more than two weeks of battle. They were imprisoned for 3½ years, when they were beaten and forced to labour in mines, shipyards and on construction sites. By the time Japan surrendered in 1945, more than 250 of the Canadian prisoners had died of starvation, sickness or abuse, and many survivors remained ill or permanently disabled.
George MacDonell, who wrote a book about his capture in Hong Kong and his experiences as a prisoner of war, said he sees Thursday’s apology as a sign that Japan is willing to come to terms with its past.
“It will be a small comfort for us,” the 89-year-old Toronto resident said. “But it’s a tremendous step forward for the Japanese.… they will be the beneficiaries.”...
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 13:51
Name of source: Siam Daily News
KATHMANDU, Dec 12 (Bernama) -- What could well be compared to Shangri-La as envisioned by British author James Hilton in his 1933 novel Lost Horizon, recent findings of human history dating back to over 3,000 years in the caves of Upper Mustang in western Nepal have unraveled a significant portion, if not the whole of that virgin unknown, reports China's Xinhua news agency.
According to Monday's The Kathmandu Post, a team of national and international climbers, scientists, archaeologists, historians and anthropologists has found evidence of thousands of years of civilisation in this mystical land.
After beginning the first phase of its research in 2008, the team discovered human remains dating back to 3,000 years, bringing out untold stories of an " independent" civilisation....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 12:52
Name of source: The Metro West Daily News
Forget the da Vinci Code. There’s no Knight Templars or murderous albinos, but the life and death of Julien Hudson and the whereabouts of his paintings is a fascinating “art historical mystery’’ waiting to be solved.
The second-earliest documented painter of African descent in the U.S., Hudson was making his mark as a portraitist in New Orleans in the early 1800s before dying of unknown causes, leaving behind just six canvases.
Who was the man with searching eyes in one of his remaining paintings? Did he kill himself, as some suspect? With his sixth painting discovered by a New England collector, can more of Hudson’s valuable works be found in area shops, flea markets or your attic?
An intriguing exhibit, “In Search of Julien Hudson,’’ at the Worcester Art Museum, offers the first retrospective about the man and the artist whose enigmatic career casts light on the lives of free blacks and mixed race people in Louisiana before the Civil War?...
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 12:51
Name of source: DNA Info
LOWER MANHATTAN — Workers installing a new steam pipe on Fulton Street this fall stumbled across an archaeological treasure trove of more than 5,000 objects dating back to the turn of the 19th century.
Among the discoveries made in an old basement foundation at 40 Fulton St. were a bone toothbrush, a copper half-penny and hundreds of shards of pottery.
The range of bottles, goblets, gravy boats and dinner plates — including some imported Chinese porcelain — suggests that the home there belonged to a wealthy family with access to a wide variety of goods and foods, said Alyssa Loorya, the archaeologist who excavated the artifacts....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 12:49
Name of source: Spiegel Online
Using a hand hoe and working in dim light, geologist Otto Völzing burrowed into the earth deep inside the Stadel cave in the Schwäbische Alb mountains of southwestern Germany. His finds were interesting to be sure, but nothing world-shaking: flints and the remnants of food eaten by prehistoric human beings.
Suddenly he struck a hard object -- and splintered a small statuette.
It was 1939 and Völzing didn't have much time. He had just been called up to serve in the military and World War II was about to begin. He quickly packed the pieces into a box and the excavation, which was being financed by the SS, was terminated on the same day....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 12:46
Name of source: Courier Mail (AU)
Poisoning Japanese crops with chemical weapons during World War II was a "worthwhile" and justifiable tactic, according to newly declassified Australian military documents.
The documents also indicate authorities contemplated testing crop-destroying chemical weapons in central Queensland's Proserpine.
The thinking contrasts with Australian policy today - in 1993 Canberra signed a global ban on the use and development of chemical weapons.
The World War II details emerged on the eve of the 70th anniversary of Japan's attack of Pearl Harbour, which triggered the US to enter the conflict....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 12:44
Name of source: The Art Newspaper
Images documenting the Nazi-sponsored Grosse Deutsche Kunstausstellung (GDK) have been made available to the public for the first time in an online catalogue created by Munich’s Central Institute for Art History. More than 100,000 photographs, categorised by artist, genre, theme and, remarkably, buyer, have shed new light on the annual art exhibition, giving an insight into officially approved art of the Third Reich and the collecting taste of its citizens.
“When we started working with the photographs, we realised there was a difference between what the secondary literature has told us about the exhibition and what it was actually like,” says Christian Fuhrmeister, an art historian from the Central Institute. According to Fuhrmeister, previous research relied on exhibition catalogues that listed works but failed to reproduce them....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 12:36
Name of source: WaPo
RICHMOND, Va. — State grants totaling $1 million are being awarded to organizations working to preserve 530 acres of Civil War battlefields in Virginia, Gov. Bob McDonnell announced Friday.
The grants, drawn from a fund created by the General Assembly to preserve Civil War sites, will help preservation groups in nine counties preserve 10 places where North and South forces fought.
McDonnell said it makes financial sense to preserve Civil War sites, which attract tourists....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 12:33
Name of source: Taiwan News
City authorities say Zimbabwe's famed colonial-era "Hanging Tree" crashed into the street after being struck by a workers' truck during highway repairs.
Mbuya Nehanda and other icons of the first uprising against white settlers were said to have been hanged from the tree in 1898....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 12:29
Name of source: AFP
THE HAGUE — An Amsterdam apartment where Jewish teenager Anne Frank and her family lived for nine years before going into hiding due to the Nazi occupation will be opened Saturday, a spokesman for its owner said.
"Around 400 people will be allowed to enter the home," Andre Bakker, a spokesman for the Ymere social housing company which owns the apartment where Frank and her family lived from 1933 to 1942, said on Thursday.
Tickets priced at 7.50 euros ($10) were mainly sold to people living the same neighbourhood of Amsterdam-South, Bakker said....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 12:28
Name of source: BBC News
Two previously undiscovered pits have been found at Stonehenge which point to it once being used as a place of sun worship before the stones were erected.
The pits are positioned on celestial alignment at the site and may have contained stones, posts or fires to mark the rising and setting of the sun.
An international archaeological survey team found the pits as part of the Stonehenge Hidden Landscapes Project.
The team is using geophysical imaging techniques to investigate the site.
The archaeologists from the University of Birmingham and the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Archaeological Prospection in Vienna have been surveying the subsurface at the landmark since summer 2010....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 12:19
Name of source: Japan Update
Archaeologists are ecstatic as they study a 24,000-year-old human bone fragment that’s been discovered on Ishigaki Island in southern Okinawa Prefecture....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 12:19
Name of source: Popular Archaeology
The Sicevo Gorge is a rugged, picturesque river canyon cut into the Kunivica plateau in southeastern Serbia. Containing a nature park, it draws visitors for its beautiful landscape, the result of the occurrence and interaction of geological, geomorphological and hydrological phenomena. But it also contains a series of caves, at least one of which has yielded evidence of human presence during the shifting glacial times of the Ice Age of present-day Europe. The Gorge was placed on the map of popular attention when, in 2008, anthropologists uncovered a partial human mandible (lower jaw), complete with three teeth, while excavating in a small cave.
"We were looking for Neanderthals," said Dr. Mirjana Roksandic, a participating paleoanthropologist with the University of Winnepeg and a leading research team member. "But this is much better."
What they discovered was a fossil specimen, definitely a human that, at least in terms of morphology, predated the Neanderthal and may have had more in common, physically, with Homo erectus, thought by many scientists to be the precursor to Neanderthals and Homo sapiens (modern humans). Initial dating indicated that the fragment was between 130,000 and 250,000 years old, but a recent series of tests conducted by Dr. Norbert Mercier at the University of Bordeaux produced a date of "older than" 113,000 years BP, significantly younger by comparison....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 12:18
Name of source: AP
JERUSALEM -- Mysterious stone carvings made thousands of years ago and recently uncovered in an excavation underneath Jerusalem have archaeologists stumped.
Israeli diggers who uncovered a complex of rooms carved into the bedrock in the oldest section of the city recently found the markings: Three "V" shapes cut next to each other into the limestone floor of one of the rooms, about 2 inches (5 centimeters) deep and 20 inches (50 centimeters) long. There were no finds to offer any clues pointing to the identity of who made them or what purpose they served.
The archaeologists in charge of the dig know so little that they have been unable even to posit a theory about their nature, said Eli Shukron, one of the two directors of the dig.
"The markings are very strange, and very intriguing. I've never seen anything like them," Shukron said....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 12:17
Name of source: Medievalists.net
A hand-carved reconstruction of an Early Christian cross has been unveiled in the Scottish village of Aberlady to mark the medieval pilgrimage route used by the monks of Iona and Lindisfarne.
The pilgrimage route of ‘St Aidan’s Way’ – marks the culmination of an extensive and ambitious heritage project begun in 2007. Original research, archaeological surveys of four sites, the carving of the Aberlady Cross reconstruction and the development of interpretive panels, information leaflets and teaching materials has been carried out by the Aberlady Conservation and History Society.
Ruth Parsons, Chief Executive of Historic Scotland, said, “The incredible work done by the Aberlady Conservation and History Society has brought previously unknown history to light. It has added to our understanding of a period in history little understood even by those who know most about it....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 12:03
Name of source: Telegraph (UK)
Dutch troops swooped into a village in the town of Rawagede during Indonesia's fight for independence and executed men and boys as their families and neighbours looked on.
Dutch officials say 150 people were killed, but a support group and the local community say the death toll was 431.
"In this context and on behalf of the Dutch government, I apologise for the tragedy that took place in Rawagede on the 9th of December, 1947," the Netherlands ambassador to Indonesia Tjeerd de Zwaan said.
He then repeated the apology in the Indonesian language, to the applause of hundreds of people attending the ceremony, some of whom broke down in tears as they listened in front of a marble monument commemorating the dead....
Monday, December 12, 2011 - 12:02