November 2011

Deciphering the Indus Valley

November 30, 2011

Around 2500 BCE, the first cities appeared on the banks of the Nile in Egypt, at the delta of the Tigris and Euphrates in ancient Mesopotamia (modern Iraq), and in the valley of the Indus River in what is now Pakistan and northwest India India. Thanks to the Old Testament, traveling museum exhibitions, and popular […]

Read the full article →

The Other First Thanksgiving

November 26, 2011

Unless you live in the American Southwest, the grade school version of American history* typically leaps from Columbus and 1492 straight to 1620, when the Pilgrims landed in Massachusetts.  There is a vague awareness that the Spanish and the French were “out there” doing something, but the story focuses on the development of the thirteen […]

Read the full article →

The Beauty and the Sorrow

November 22, 2011

. Over the course of the year, I read a lot of history. Some books I mine for facts. Some grab me with the story. And now and then a work of history simply blows me away. The Beauty and the Sorrow: An Intimate History of the First World War by Swedish historian and war […]

Read the full article →

Road Trip Through History: Colonial Williamsburg

November 19, 2011

On Tuesday, My Own True Love and I visited Jamestown Settlement.  Wednesday, we moved on to Colonial Williamsburg. I considered not even writing about our day in Williamsburg.  I’m willing to bet that most of you have a picture of it in your head, even if you haven’t been then.  Besides, Two Nerdy History Girls […]

Read the full article →

Road Trip Through History: Jamestown Settlement

November 16, 2011

For reasons too complicated to go into here and now, I‘ve been yearning to walk the deck of a late sixteenth-century sailing ship.    No late sixteenth-century vessels were available, so My Own True Love and I headed for the next best thing:  the replica ships at Jamestown Settlement, located ten miles away from colonial Williamsburg. […]

Read the full article →

The Peasants Are Revolting

November 6, 2011

In September, 1773, three months before American colonists dumped tea in Boston harbor, Russian serfs in the Ural mountain region rose up and demanded emancipation from bondage. Discontent had been brewing among the serfs since 1762, when Tsar Peter III passed legislation that many serfs (mistakenly) interpreted as the first step toward their emancipation. Several […]

Read the full article →