American Heritage

Articles from Vol. 44, No. 7, November

1918
In many ways 1918 is closer to us than we are inclined to think. Look at Fifth Avenue in New York (or Regent Street in London, or the Champs-Elysees). Most of their present buildings were there seventy-five years ago. Automobiles, telephones, elevators,...
A House by Any Other Name
When I interviewed for a vacant seat on the local historic-preservation board, no one mentioned a word to me about intrigue, romance, and murder. I was told that the board met once a month and that its primary job was to protect the city's best historic...
Coronado Country
"All This land used to be grass that came up as high as a horse's belly," Tom Hunt, a friend who is serving as my guide, tells me as we drive through Arizona's Sonora Desert, "but now it's all mesquite." I look around at the desert dense with the wiry...
Learning to Go to the Movies
On July 5, 1896, the Los Angeles Times greeted the imminent arrival of Thomas Alva Edison's moving-picture projector with enormous enthusiasm: "type vitascope is coming to town. It is safe to predict that when it is set up at the Orpheum and set a-going,...
My Six Years with JFK
In year five of the six years I spent working on President Kennedy: Profile of Power, I ran into an old friend, Thomas Rees, a former congressman from California, who had campaigned with Kennedy in 1960. He asked what I was doing and then he said:...
Terrorism Revisited
"Dynamite! of all the good stuff, this is the stuff. Stuff several pounds ... into an inch pipe . . . in the immediate neighborhood of a lot of rich loafers . . . and light the fuse. A most cheerful and gratifying result will follow... [Itl beats a...
The Great Depression
It has been six years since Henry Hampton's extraordinary six-part documentary series Eyes on the Prize first ran on public television and reminded us, as nothing ever had before, of the role that ordinary citizens--black and white, but mostly black--played...
The Long, Long, Trail
It is one of the more curious distortions of the recent past that thirty years ago World War I seemed farther away from us than it does today. The uniforms--the soup-bowl helmets, the puttees, the choke-collared tunics--were as quaint as those lozenge-shaped...
The Old Front Line
It is early fall in France, and the forest is silent and peaceful. A man, dressed in camouflage fatigues and carrying a metal detector and a sawed-off pickax, disappears into the misty underbrush. Here and there holes in the ground are half-filled with...
The Railroad Watch
The fifteen-jewel Hampden Rail-Way watch on the facing page was made in 1877, one of the first timepieces marketed specifically to the railroad trade. Wound and set with a small key, the watch features a high-quality, adjusted nickel-damascened movement....
The Steamboat Monopoly
In the early 1970s, when Wall Street was going through a particularly bad time, it actually cost more money to buy a taxi medallion--a license to own and operate a taxicab in New York City--than it did to purchase a seat--a license to trade--on the...
Thomason U.S.M.C
"The book is here now: a straightforward prose account of four battles, with infinite detail of the men and emotions in these battles, reinforced with sketches and impressions drawn upon the field. It is, in the opinion of many of us who ought to know,...