American Heritage

Articles from Vol. 61, No. 2, Summer-Fall

An Unlikely Friendship: The Grandson of a World War II American POW Travels to Japan to Learn More about His Grandfather-And the Surprising Relationship That the Prisoner Struck Up with a Japanese Boy
There's something haunting about my grandfather's eyes in the 1944 photograph: Japanese prisoner of war no. 550 is scarecrow thin, yet his eves radiate defiance and fierce resolution. When this image was taken, the 30-year-old Carl Robert Ruse was...
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A Subject of Gratulation
SOUTHERN SOURCE Davis Address [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Two weeks after Jefferson Davis ran uncontested for the presidency of the Confederacy, he sent the following message to the Provisional Confederate Congress as it opened its fifth session....
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Battle of Ball's Bluff
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] NORTHERN SOURCE Abbott Letter Nineteen-year-old Harvard graduate Henry Abbott wrote to his father about his unit's engagement at Bali's Bluff, in which the 20th Massachusetts Volunteers would suffer a third killed or...
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Battle of Belmont
SOUTHERN SOURCE Yandell Letter [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Kentucky surgeon Lunsford "Lunny" P. Yandell Jr. with the 4th Regiment of Tennessee Volunteers observed the carnage at the Battle of Belmont in the following letter to his father. Columbus,...
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Battle of Wilson's Creek
NORTHERN SOURCE E. F. Ware Memoir Secessionists and Unionists both claimed the border state of Missouri, although the state had refused to secede. Three significant clashes took place there in mid-1861, the bloodiest of them occurring on August...
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Cherokee Loyalties
SOUTHERN SOURCE Ross Address [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Fearing that his powerful rival Stand Watie would fracture the Cherokee Nation, Principal Chief John Ross pushed for an alliance with the Confederacy in 1861, successfully arguing for its...
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Eating History: A New York Public Library Program Asks the Public to Help Transcribe 10,000 Historic Menus
TO READ THE MAY, 13, 1900 dinner menu at Rector's, the midtown New York lobster house, is to engage in a little virtual hedonism: the fare includes 57 cuts of meat, 24 oyster dishes, 16 variations of lobster, and five kinds of duck. Some of the well-heeled...
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Editor's Letter
We are delighted to welcome an old friend back into our pages. Longtime readers will remember that David McCullough cut his teeth as an American Heritage book editor in the 1960s, then published articles in our pages that would develop into those first-class...
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Ethan Allen's Big Misadventure: The Hero of Ticonderoga's Attack on British Montreal Early in the Revolution Failed Miserably, an Outcome Often Attributed to Allen's Impetuosity. New Analysis Suggests Otherwise
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] AT 9 O'CLOCK ON THE morning of September 25, 1775, a French Canadian habitant banged on the main gate of Montreal. The Americans were coming, he blurted breathlessly to a British officer. As drums began to rattle out the alarm...
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Finding Farragut: In Paris American Artist Augustus Saint-Gaudens Discovered the Inspiration He Needed to Create One of the 19th Century's Most Powerful Works of Art, the Statue of a Famous Civil War Hero
AUGUSTUS SAINT-GAUDENS came to Paris for the first time in 1867, the year it seemed the whole world came to Paris for the Exposition Universelle, the grand, gilded apogee of Second Empire exuberance. He arrived on an evening in February, by train after...
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First Bull Run
NORTHERN SOURCE Sullivan Ballou Letter [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Commissioned a major in June, Rhode Island lawyer and legislator Sullivan Ballou wrote the following letter to his wife, Sarah, a week before the First Battle of Bull Run/Manassas....
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Forging the First President: Forgeries of George Washington's Signature Have Been Big Business for More Than 150 Years
AS THE EDITOR OF THE Papers of George Washington at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, I have the privilege of intersecting with many people who come bearing documents supposedly signed by the first president. More often than you might...
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Fremont Affair
Headquarters Western Department Saint Louis, August 30, 1861. Circumstances, in my judgment, of sufficient urgency render it necessary that the commanding general of this department should assume the administrative powers of the State. Its disorganized...
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Guide to Historic Sites in Florida
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] FORTS & BATTLEFIELDS Dade Battlefield Historic State Park Forty-five minutes south of Ocala by car, the 80-acre...
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Guide to Historic Sites in West Virginia
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Native American Past Fort Edwards at Capon Bridge British colonial settlers during the early 18th century often...
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Port Royal Falls
NORTHERN SOURCE Mitchell Narrative A writer with the Federal Writers' Project of the Works Progress Administration captured this interview of 87-year-old, former slave Sam Mitchell, who recalled his experience as an 11-year-old boy when Union...
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Queen of the West: Using New Digital Technology, Curators Examine an Old Daguerreotype and Make Startling Discoveries about Life in the Pre-Civil-War Boomtown of Cincinnati
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] In 2006, conservator Ralph Wiegandt flipped on his Zeiss Axio stereomicroscope and peered at the surface of an 1848 daguerreotype. The Cincinnati Public Library had entrusted him to clean its prize possession, a rare five-and-a-half-foot-long,...
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Reader Service Listing
American Heritage makes choosing heritage travel destinations, products, services, and great reading easier with FREE INFORMATION from participating advertisers who value your business. Please complete and mail the postage-paid card today! 1. All...
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The Fall of Fort Hatteras
NORTHERN SOURCE Boston Journal In late August, an amphibious expedition under Maj. Gen. Benjamin Butler attacked the Hatteras Inlet batteries of Forts Clark and Hatteras, the first step in the North's strategy to shut down blockade running, control...
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The Skeptic of Monticello: Thomas Jefferson Took His Scissors to the Bible in Search Truth
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] LIKE A CURMUDGEON who writes cranky letters to the editor, retired president Thomas Jefferson wanted to get the news without editorial bias or commentary--the Good News, that is, because he was reading the Bible. Whiling away...
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Top Secret Rosies: A Largely Unheralded Group of Talented Female "Computers" Helped Win World War II-And Invent a New Science
THE AIR AT 20,000 FEET above Schweinfurt, Germany, was icy cold, but the bombardier crouching in the nose of the B-17 hardly noticed. Sweat poured down his forehead as flak rocked the aircraft, periodically spattering his compartment's Plexiglas bubble...
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