history http://wnpr.org en Ghost Cats And Musket Balls: Stories Told By Capitol Interns http://wnpr.org/post/ghost-cats-and-musket-balls-stories-told-capitol-interns Every summer thousands of interns flood the offices of Capitol Hill. One of their primary duties is to give constituents tours of the famous buildings. They parade visitors from the rotunda to statuary hall, offering stories and anecdotes.<p>But while these intern tours provide a great deal of information, they are sometimes a little short on actual history.<p>On any given day in the Capitol, thousands of visitors listen to Senate and House interns. They point to the paintings and murals, the statues and architecture and talk about U.S. history. Tue, 29 Jul 2014 08:56:00 +0000 Laura Sullivan 26052 at http://wnpr.org Ghost Cats And Musket Balls: Stories Told By Capitol Interns Strictly a First Class Theater http://wnpr.org/post/strictly-first-class-theater <p>Late 19th and early 20th century Hartford offered the public many theater and concert venues to choose from, but if one wanted to see the newest shows from New York, there was really one place to go: the Parsons Theatre on Prospect Street. Parsons Theatre was to turn-of-the-20th-century Hartford what the Bushnell is today.</p> Fri, 25 Jul 2014 14:39:28 +0000 Will Conard-Malley 25901 at http://wnpr.org Strictly a First Class Theater Smithsonian: Meaning of Family Heirlooms http://wnpr.org/post/smithsonian-meaning-family-heirlooms-0 <p></p><p><em>Today's show originally aired February 24, 2014.</em>&nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p><em style="line-height: 1.5;">From Faith Middleton:&nbsp;</em><span style="line-height: 1.5;">A chair… letter… diary… clock… coin… jewel… car… house… meat grinder… what makes a family heirloom have powerful meaning, even if it has little monetary value? That question will be answered when you read </span><em style="line-height: 1.5;">The Smithsonian's History of America in 101 Objects</em><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> by Richard </span>Kurin<span style="line-height: 1.5;">.</span></p><p> Tue, 22 Jul 2014 13:44:19 +0000 Faith Middleton, Lori Mack & Jonathan McNicol 25689 at http://wnpr.org Smithsonian: Meaning of Family Heirlooms Mistress of the Veeder House http://wnpr.org/post/mistress-veeder-house <p>On August 9, 1962, the Hartford Public High School flag was flown at half-staff in tribute to Mrs. Louise Stutz Veeder, a former teacher, who had just died at the age of eighty-eight. &nbsp;<br /> Fri, 18 Jul 2014 15:27:46 +0000 Mary Muller 25507 at http://wnpr.org Mistress of the Veeder House Germany: Who Are You Now? http://wnpr.org/post/germany-who-are-you-now <p>Two snapshots: <a href="http://www.americanbazaaronline.com/2014/07/14/germany-world-cup-football-champions-deep-seated-reluctance-wave-flag-remains/" target="_blank">The first from the publication <em>American Bazaar</em></a>, right after the German World Cup win. "In the city of Leipzig, a solitary car scuttled along, with the flag attached to the roof. Waving the flag has yet to catch on. Jan Hoffman, who works in Frankfurt, was in New York when 9/11 happened. &nbsp;'I had never seen so many flags in my life. Here, there are hardly any, although we won football's greatest tournament. Tue, 15 Jul 2014 10:00:00 +0000 Chion Wolf, Betsy Kaplan & Colin McEnroe 25267 at http://wnpr.org Germany: Who Are You Now? This Ancient Bird Had the Largest Wingspan Ever http://wnpr.org/post/ancient-bird-had-largest-wingspan-ever <p>An extinct species of bird just discovered may have had the largest wingspan ever. The animal lived 25 million years ago and was found buried at an airport.</p><p> Mon, 14 Jul 2014 13:06:20 +0000 Patrick Skahill 25216 at http://wnpr.org This Ancient Bird Had the Largest Wingspan Ever Scandal in the Beecher Family http://wnpr.org/post/scandal-beecher-family <p>The story reads like a soap opera. In 1870, Theodore Tilton accused his wife of being unfaithful to him with the popular preacher Henry Ward Beecher, and Elizabeth Tilton confessed. After her confession, she spoke with the Reverend Beecher and said that she hoped the confession would help to mend her relationship with her husband by restoring trust. Beecher implored her to take back her confession and restore his good name. Elizabeth retracted her confession, but after speaking with her husband a second time, she retracted her retraction the very same night. Fri, 11 Jul 2014 15:38:32 +0000 Karen DePauw 25127 at http://wnpr.org Scandal in the Beecher Family 70 Years Later, the Hartford Circus Fire Still Burns http://wnpr.org/post/70-years-later-hartford-circus-fire-still-burns <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">On July </span>6<span style="line-height: 1.5;">, 1944, a circus tent in the North End of Hartford caught fire. The tent covered three blocks. It was gone in six minutes.&nbsp;</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Roughly 170 people died. You'll understand my imprecision as we go along. Five employees of the Ringling Brothers Barnum &amp; Bailey Circus pled guilty to involuntary manslaughter, and served minimal prison sentences. One of them, James Haley, was so unscarred by this that he later served for 24 years in Congress.</span></p> Thu, 10 Jul 2014 10:00:00 +0000 Chion Wolf, Betsy Kaplan & Colin McEnroe 25005 at http://wnpr.org 70 Years Later, the Hartford Circus Fire Still Burns Celebrating Sam Colt Is a Delicate Affair http://wnpr.org/post/celebrating-sam-colt-delicate-affair <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Guns have a long history in Connecticut. They've also been the focus of a great deal of recent debate. B</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">oth that history and the debate are now at the heart of delicate discussion: how do you plan a birthday party for Sam Colt, the man who made the gun that won the West?&nbsp;</span></p><p> Tue, 08 Jul 2014 16:24:00 +0000 Jeff Cohen 24726 at http://wnpr.org Celebrating Sam Colt Is a Delicate Affair The Pride of Hartford http://wnpr.org/post/pride-hartford <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The largest artifact in the collections of the Connecticut Historical Society is a nine-ton fire engine. When the </span>Clapp<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> &amp; Jones steam pumper was first purchased by the Hartford Fire Department, it was drawn by three big fire horses. In 1914, when the fire department was becoming motorized, the old pumper was fitted with a gas-electric tractor, prolonging its working life. It saw service in major Hartford fires for more than four decades.</span></p><p> Tue, 08 Jul 2014 12:38:15 +0000 Nancy Finlay 24906 at http://wnpr.org The Pride of Hartford Voices From the Hardware City http://wnpr.org/post/voices-hardware-city <p><a href="http://wnpr.org/post/when-it-comes-paying-stadium-hartford-changes-course" target="_blank">New Britain may lose its baseball team to Hartford</a>,&nbsp;another blow to a city that, over the years, has lost many of its jobs, and many of the the iconic brands associated with the city. Tue, 01 Jul 2014 18:48:21 +0000 Catie Talarski 24575 at http://wnpr.org Voices From the Hardware City Katharine Hepburn, Fenwick and the Hurricane of 1938 http://wnpr.org/post/katharine-hepburn-fenwick-and-hurricane-1938 <p>Katharine Hepburn’s mother, “Kit” Hepburn, insisted that the Fenwick house would withstand the rising tides and the gale-force winds. After 25 summers spent with the extended Hepburn clan filling the house, it felt like a permanent fixture in their lives, and it remained a touchstone and retreat for daughter Katharine even after her Hollywood career brought her fame and success. Katharine had spent the morning outdoors, pursuing her usual Fenwick activities, playing nine holes of golf and swimming in the swelling surf. Fri, 27 Jun 2014 15:09:08 +0000 Jennifer Steadman 24395 at http://wnpr.org Katharine Hepburn, Fenwick and the Hurricane of 1938 American Chairs, Made in Connecticut http://wnpr.org/post/american-chairs-made-connecticut <p>There is something very American about a Windsor chair. Although its name points to England, where the chair’s style and manufacture emerged in the early 1700s, this immigrant furniture found its way into every American home, from a restful rocker in a small Yankee farm house to the seats of the Founding Fathers in Philadelphia’s Independence Hall.</p> Mon, 23 Jun 2014 13:26:21 +0000 Ben Gammell 24096 at http://wnpr.org American Chairs, Made in Connecticut Cedar Hill Cemetery to Celebrate 150th Anniversary http://wnpr.org/post/cedar-hill-cemetery-celebrate-150th-anniversary <p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/pH9p26mF2f0" width="560"></iframe></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">One of Hartford's Crown Jewels turns 150 years old this year. Cedar Hill Cemetery is the final resting place for the city's most prominent natives, from actress Katharine Hepburn to gun maker Samuel Colt, as well as financier J.P. Morgan, and the founder of anesthesia, Horace Wells.</span></p> Thu, 19 Jun 2014 20:39:12 +0000 Christina DeFranco 23939 at http://wnpr.org The Second Amendment, Colt, and Tracing Guns http://wnpr.org/post/second-amendment-colt-and-tracing-guns <p>The Second Amendment is just 27 words long, but it has caused more debate than just about anything else in the Constitution. "It’s confusing and self-contradictory and we spend a lot of time trying to figure out what its clauses and commas mean," said <a href="http://www.brennancenter.org/expert/michael-waldman" target="_blank">Michael Waldman, author of the new book <em>The Second Amendment: A Biography</em>.</a> We talk to him about the history and odd syntax of this Amendment and the debate over it that was renewed by the tragedy in Newtown.</p> Thu, 19 Jun 2014 13:00:00 +0000 John Dankosky, Tucker Ives, Lydia Brown & Catie Talarski 23850 at http://wnpr.org The Second Amendment, Colt, and Tracing Guns Dodgers' Ace Kershaw Notches His First No-Hitter http://wnpr.org/post/dodgers-ace-kershaw-notches-his-first-no-hitter The no-hitters just keep coming. That's the case for the Los Angeles Dodgers, as the team's pitchers have thrown two games without giving up a hit in less than a month. Thu, 19 Jun 2014 11:47:00 +0000 Bill Chappell 23907 at http://wnpr.org Dodgers' Ace Kershaw Notches His First No-Hitter A Salute to Banjos! http://wnpr.org/post/salute-banjos-0 <p>Maybe you think of the banjo as primarily a bluegrass instrument, but try not to forget that prior to about 1830, it was played pretty much exclusively by African-Americans, and it seems to have as ancestors several African instruments.&nbsp;</p> Thu, 19 Jun 2014 10:00:00 +0000 Chion Wolf, Betsy Kaplan & Colin McEnroe 23856 at http://wnpr.org A Salute to Banjos! Yale Architects Help Build First Peace Park in the Middle East http://wnpr.org/post/yale-architects-help-build-first-peace-park-middle-east <p>A team of Yale Architects is lending their expertise to the first ever peace park in the Middle East.</p><p> Mon, 16 Jun 2014 13:54:00 +0000 Ray Hardman 23607 at http://wnpr.org Yale Architects Help Build First Peace Park in the Middle East A Fascination With Magic http://wnpr.org/post/fascination-magic <p style="margin-bottom: 15px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-size: 15px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; line-height: 22px;">Harry Houdini, David Copperfield, Doug Henning . . . Albert Walker? The first three names are well-known magicians. But who is Albert Walker?</p> Fri, 13 Jun 2014 19:29:30 +0000 Barbara Austen 23597 at http://wnpr.org A Fascination With Magic Anchor Recovered In Puget Sound May Have Been Lost In 1792 http://wnpr.org/post/anchor-recovered-puget-sound-may-have-been-lost-1792 More than two centuries after one of the ships in British <a href="http://www.beyondthemap.ca/english/explorer_vancouver_expeditions.html">Capt. Tue, 10 Jun 2014 22:54:00 +0000 Scott Neuman 23405 at http://wnpr.org Anchor Recovered In Puget Sound May Have Been Lost In 1792 An Epic, Multimedia Outdoor Spectacle: Terra Tractus 2014 http://wnpr.org/post/epic-multimedia-outdoor-spectacle-terra-tractus-2014 <p>An epic meditation, multimedia outdoor spectacle with lasers, dance, drums, music, sculpture, water, fire, science, technology, climbers, shadows, and projections:&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">Witness the geological, climatic anthropological history of the Stony Creek Quarry as it evolves through ancient history to our projected future.&nbsp;</span></p><p> Mon, 09 Jun 2014 14:53:00 +0000 Faith Middleton, Lori Mack & Jonathan McNicol 23291 at http://wnpr.org An Epic, Multimedia Outdoor Spectacle: Terra Tractus 2014 Charles W. Morgan Undergoes Sea Trials http://wnpr.org/post/charles-w-morgan-undergoes-sea-trials <p>The world's last wooden whaling ship has taken to the water under her own power for the first time in almost 100 years.</p><p> Mon, 09 Jun 2014 11:57:04 +0000 Harriet Jones 23276 at http://wnpr.org Charles W. Morgan Undergoes Sea Trials Fashion's Changing Silhouettes http://wnpr.org/post/fashions-changing-silhouettes <p>Fashion has changed exponentially over the last two centuries. &nbsp; In the 1860s women wore thickly boned corsets, multiple petticoats, steel hoop skirts and dresses, always dresses. &nbsp;But between the 1860s and 1960s, women’s fashion shifted from grand hoop skirts to short miniskirts. &nbsp;</p><p></p> Fri, 06 Jun 2014 15:34:41 +0000 Karen DePauw 23182 at http://wnpr.org Fashion's Changing Silhouettes Poland's Anniversary of Democracy a Time to Remember http://wnpr.org/post/polands-anniversary-democracy-time-remember <p>This week's big anniversaries of the Normandy Beach invasion 70 years ago, and the crackdown in Tiananmen Square 25 years ago have taken away from another important milestone: the 25th anniversary of Polish freedom from Communist rule.&nbsp;</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">President Obama marked </span><a href="http://www.npr.org/2014/06/04/318888327/in-keynote-speech-obama-marks-a-quarter-century-of-polish-democracy" style="line-height: 1.5;" target="_blank">the anniversary in a speech</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;">, but the real reason for his visit was to highlight the success of Poland in the last quarter-century, while </span><a href="http://www.npr.org/2014/06/04/318733277/in-poland-obama-reassures-region-after-russia-annexes-crimea" style="line-height: 1.5;" target="_blank">vowing NATO support for Ukraine in its struggle for independence from Russian influence.&nbsp;</a></p><p> Thu, 05 Jun 2014 13:57:56 +0000 John Dankosky 23105 at http://wnpr.org Poland's Anniversary of Democracy a Time to Remember The Modest Bus Station At The Center Of A World-Changing Confrontation http://wnpr.org/post/modest-bus-station-center-world-changing-confrontation <em>EDITOR'S NOTE: This summer, we'll be regularly spotlighting sites on the National Register of Historic Places that have some significance to issues of race and culture. </em><p><strong>The Montgomery Greyhound Station, </strong><strong>Montgomery, Ala.</strong><p>It seems odd to suggest that folks should visit a bus station if they're in the area; most people are trying to get out of a bus station as quickly as possible. Thu, 05 Jun 2014 13:14:48 +0000 Gene Demby 23103 at http://wnpr.org The Modest Bus Station At The Center Of A World-Changing Confrontation Digging Deep Into Connecticut's Underground History http://wnpr.org/post/digging-deep-connecticuts-underground-history <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>&nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Connecticut's history is well documented throughout Connecticut museums and historic villages, but t</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">here's much more &nbsp;that we have yet to discover, much of it underground.&nbsp;</span></p> Wed, 04 Jun 2014 14:06:03 +0000 Colin McEnroe, Betsy Kaplan & Chion Wolf 23045 at http://wnpr.org Digging Deep Into Connecticut's Underground History Cashel Man http://wnpr.org/post/cashel-man <p><em>Cashel, Ireland, 2,000 B.C. </em></p><p>In ancient Ireland, bogs were sacred<br />areas; a cool wetland mirage meters<br />deep of peat during demoralizing<br />drought. Greenish-brown landscape<br />of mystery, insufferably slow plant<br />growth. What must a farmer have<br />thought as his wife offered a vessel<br />of golden butter to appease a merciless<br />deity? He plunges his hand deep into<br />the bog, brings a handful of drenched<br />soil to his eyes, squeezes and watches<br />as his hairy forearms stain a deep rust.</p><p> Tue, 03 Jun 2014 16:00:13 +0000 Sean Frederick Forbes 22980 at http://wnpr.org Cashel Man The Art and Power of Poetry http://wnpr.org/post/art-and-power-poetry <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">When the great poet Maya Angelou died last Wednesday, we learned about it during a conversation about the death penalty.&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Maybe you learned about it while reading about deadly violence in Ukraine, or the search for the kidnapped girls in Nigeria.&nbsp;</span></p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Her death was sad news, to be sure. We don’t think we're the only ones who felt forced to step back from the news and consider the beauty and power of words. </span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">This hour, in memory of Maya Angelou’s spirit, we welcome a group of Connecticut poets into our studio to read their work and try to measure the art and power of poetry.</span></p><p> Mon, 02 Jun 2014 13:00:00 +0000 John Dankosky, Lydia Brown, Tucker Ives & Catie Talarski 22891 at http://wnpr.org The Art and Power of Poetry An Unlikely Pair of Portraits http://wnpr.org/post/unlikely-pair-portraits <p>The lovely lady with the eager look in her eyes is Etha Town, the daughter of Ithiel Town, a New Haven architect, and the inventor of the Town truss, used in covered bridges throughout the nineteenth century. The portrait of his daughter was painted in 1826, the year Etha married William Thompson Peters, a recent Yale graduate. She was 19 years old.</p> Fri, 30 May 2014 18:14:35 +0000 Nancy Finlay 22801 at http://wnpr.org An Unlikely Pair of Portraits The Desire For A Reckoning Meets The Wish For A Reset http://wnpr.org/post/desire-reckoning-meets-wish-reset The title of Ta-Nehisi Coates' much-discussed cover story at <em>The Atlantic</em>, <a href="http://www.theatlantic.com/features/archive/2014/05/the-case-for-reparations/361631/">"The Case for Reparations,"</a> might be something of a misnomer.<p>Coates' opus is really calling for a collective reckoning with America's history, and he uses a call for reparations as the vehicle. He aims to disabuse readers of the notion that the most destructive policies toward black wealth creation were from some long-ago time. Tue, 27 May 2014 17:23:54 +0000 Gene Demby 22581 at http://wnpr.org The Desire For A Reckoning Meets The Wish For A Reset