In 1839, the outcome of the “Honey War” hinged on the exact location of the Missouri-Iowa border. Sarah Laskow concisely details the developments at Atlas Obscura: One Sloppy Land Surveyor Almost Caused a War Between Missouri and Iowa | Atlas Obscura
Tribal sovereignty is a concept that even some of the protesters may not be familiar with. But it’s important. This article by German Lopez at Vox does a fine job of clarifying some key issues and history about tribal sovereignty: The big, nearly 200-year-old legal issue at the heart of the Dakota Access pipeline fight – Vox
The renaming of a Black Hills peak would please Black Elk and Crazy Horse, I think. Read about it at Native News Online: South Dakota Harney Peak to be Renamed Black Elk Peak: Politicians Upset – Native News Online
This post by David H. Montgomery in the St. Paul Pioneer Press seems a reasonable working definition about what is included in the Midwest. Historically, though, the Midwest has moved around, as have just about all the major regions have: Let’s settle it: This is what makes up the Midwest – Twin Cities
A librarian who posted an old Ottoman map to Reddit later found out that it might be from a copy of the rare Cedid atlas. Read Abby Ohlheiser’s Washington Post story about it here: How a karma-seeking Redditor uncovered one of the world’s rarest atlases – The Washington Post
Kristi Finefield at the Library of Congress has a fascinating post on stereographs. Read it here: Geography Through the Stereoscope | Picture This: Library of Congress Prints & Photos
So fire remains an index of our times: it’s like a driverless car barreling down a highway, integrating all the relevant factors around it. Fire is a natural phenomenon, and if humanity disappeared fire would still thrive. But most of fire’s factors remain under the influence, though not the control, of humanity. The pathologies of our fire scene are the national pathologies pyrolyzed into flame. Megafires are the 1% (literally, the 0.1%) of the nation’s fires that account for 80-90% of burned area and costs.
So notes historian Stephen j. Pyne about fires. He has a new book out (Between Two Fires), but he summarizes the burden of the book in an incisive post at the History News Network. You can read his entire piece here: History News Network | Why Forest Fires Seem Like They Are Getting Out of Control