The Great War, on digital display

12 Jul

As mentioned here before (for example, here), this August will bring the centennial of the start of World War I.

The National World War I Museum in Kansas City and the Google Cultural Institute have put together a digital gallery on the war. You can find the gallery here: National World War I Museum – Google Cultural Institute.

Lake Mead watch: At lowest levels since 1937

10 Jul
https://www.hcn.org/blogs/goat/images-2/395742119_89e6d6a97f_z.jpg

The white bathtub ring around Lake Mead shows how much water levels have fallen in recent years. Credit: Chris Richards/Flickr.

For almost two decades, the white band of mineral deposits circling Arizona’s Lake Mead like a bathtub ring, has grown steadily taller, a sign that America’s largest manmade water source is in deep trouble. This week it fell to its lowest level since 1937, when Hoover Dam was completed and the reservoir filled. The white bathtub ring around Lake Mead shows how much water levels have fallen in recent years.

The record-setting mark of 1,082 feet is just seven feet shy of the level that would spur more strict water rationing. It’s the latest indication of a worrisome trend affecting the Colorado River Basin: an unholy mix of drought exacerbated by climate change and increasing water use that’s leaving 40 million people who depend on the river for their drinking water and an entire region of water dependent industries thirstier than ever.

Water in Lake Mead has been dropping steadily since 1998, the last year in which the reservoir was near capacity. Currently it’s just 39 percent full, a number that the Bureau of Reclamation predicts will continue to drop.

So begins an update by Sarah Tory at the High Country News blog. You can find the full post by  Tory here: Lake Mead watch: At lowest levels since 1937 — High Country News.

Nothing has changed, it seems, since I wrote a long post last summer about the “groaning” of much of the West (see here).

What Does a [Natural Science] Curator Do?

10 Jul

If you have ever wondered what a curator does, this post by Charles Preston the Draper Natural History Museum of the Buffalo Bill Center of the West provides an enlightening explanation: What Does a Curator Do? – Buffalo Bill Center of the West.

Of Chinese immigrants, ties (not railroad), and Oregon parks

10 Jul

Christy Sweet is the curator at Kam Wah Chung, an Oregon State Parks historic site in John Day, Oregon. (Yes, that Christy–once upon a time, my student assistant, and so a NWC alumna and, of course, a history major.)

She is happy to welcome visitors to her historic site. You don’t need to tie a tie there, though … (watch the video, though. That narrow cloth thing around the man’s neck is called a tie … ties are becoming historic artifacts …)

Chronicling America’s Historic German Newspapers

8 Jul

Things Dutch and Dutch American receive a fair amount of attention from me, as followers of this blog know. (For example, remember this? Or this? Or this? Or this?)

The Library of Congress (LOC) has a post on historic German newspapers–which is a good reminder that there are other ethnicities besides Dutch to consider. It is also a reminder that there is a lot of good historical stuff online at the Library of Congress …

You can find the LOC post here: Chronicling America’s Historic German Newspapers and the Growth of the American Ethnic Press | National Endowment for the Humanities.

The Genesis of the Declaration of Independence

5 Jul

The Declaration of Independence has been fraught with political and religious contentions since its publication in July 1776.

Zach Hutchins, a professor of American literature and culture at Colorado State University, points out the natural law assumptions tied to understandings of Genesis that infuse the Declaration’s phrase “the Laws of Nature and Nature’s God” in a a post at The Christian Century. You can find Hutchins’ piece here: The Genesis of the Declaration of Independence | The Christian Century.

Sacred Lands

5 Jul

Place, as I and others have noted, is something created out of the interactions of humans with particular locales. Places, in other words, vary not only by locale, but by people groups.

Bear Lodge (Devil’s Tower). Photograph by Emma Hansen, 2000.

Places have a particular significance in American Indian traditions. Emma Hansen of the Buffalo Bill Center of the West explains this a bit in this republication of an article of hers. You can find the article here: Points West: Sacred Lands – Buffalo Bill Center of the West.

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