American Heritage

Articles from Vol. 54, No. 3, June-July

1778: The Battle of Monmouth. (Time Machine)
225 YEARS AGO ON JUNE 18 THE last of 10,000 British troops led by Gen. Henry Clinton left Philadelphia and began marching toward New York City. The withdrawal was one of the first fruits of the colonists' alliance with France, as Clinton feared...
Barbecue: It's the Most Purely American Food-And That's Maybe the Only Thing about It Everyone Agrees On
YOU CAN'T GET GOOD BARBECUE IN PARIS, LONDON, or Hong Kong, but you can get 18 varieties in Lexington, North Carolina, and 7 in Piano, Texas. Barbecue is the all-American food, particularly south of the Mason-Dixon Line. But American barbecue--whether...
Hill 102: How a Patch of Ground Forged a Man's Future, Stole a Part of His Soul, and Gave It Back to Him 30 Years Later
ALTHOUGH I NEVER MET HIM, I HAVE BEEN connected to Oliver Noonan since the day he died in a helicopter crash on a green mountainside in Vietnam. I was not far away, just 1,600 feet or so, in fact, when I heard the ripping crack of the rocket-propelled...
Liberty Inn: America's Most Impressive Historic Survivors Just May Be Our Taverns-Because They've Had to Do It All on Their Own, by Offering You Exactly the Same Kind of Comfort They Did Your Great-Grandfather
FOR MANY--PERHAPS MOST--AMERICANS, THEIR FIRST visit to a tavern is a rite of passage, a bridge between youthful days of sneaking illicit booze in a friend's basement and the grownup pleasures of a social drink in good company. Others, however, find...
"Lightness and Force": Writing Lessons from the Founders. (History Now)
RICHARD BROOKHISER HAS WRITTEN BIOGRAPHIES OF WASHINGTON, Hamilton, and the Adamses, but none of them, he says, were as good company as Gouverneur Morris, the subject of his latest book, Gentleman Revolutionary. "Morris, alone among the founding fathers,...
Lincoln's Doctor's Dog. (Reader's Album)
AMERICANS LIKE THEIR "FIRST DOGS." BARNEY, Spot, Buddy, Millie, King Timahoe, and Fala all have been celebrities. So you can imagine my pleasure when I discovered the story of a hitherto unknown canine that supplied comfort and diversion to an earlier...
Prime Mover: The Model T Ford Made the World We Live in. on the 100th Anniversary of the Company Henry Ford Founded, His Biographer Douglas Brinkley Tells How
"I WILL BUILD A MOTOR CAR FOR THE great multitude," Henry Ford proclaimed to the public when he announced the machine that would change America and indeed the world. "It will be so low in price that no man making a good salary will be unable to own...
Remembering Byrdcliffe: An Artists' Colony in Woodstock, New York, Celebrates Its Hundredth Year. (History Happened Here)
AFTER AN ABSENCE OF decades I rode into Woodstock, New York, on one of last July's hottest days and during the town's self-proclaimed Summer of the Guitar. Taking up the new civic-sponsored tradition of street art that had brought fiberglass cows to...
The Case for the Draft: Historically It Has Had Real Virtues. (in the News)
AS EVERYONE IN the United States is aware by now, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld is a man of strong opinions. But Americans of all stripes, regardless of their feelings about the then-looming war, seemed to feel that the Secretary went too far...
The Funny Car. (Letter from the Editor)
"SO A FORD DEALER COMES UP WITH A GREAT idea.... "Actually, I'm not at all sure this is how Americans started off a joke in the first two decades of the twentieth century, but it's how I remember my father's answering my question about whether his...
The Greatest Comeback: After One Ford Changed America, Another Accomplished Something Almost as Amazing. (the Business of America)
I'VE ALWAYS THOUGHT THAT ONE of the saddest words in the English language is has-been. While it has a modern ring--perhaps because the movies and television have produced so many stars who've enjoyed, in Andy Warhol's famous phrase, 15 minutes of fame--the...
The Road to Freedom Fries. (Why Do We Say That?)
"BECAUSE OF CUBBIE'S SUPPORT FOR OUR troops, we no longer serve French fries, We now serve freedom fries." So proclaimed the sign posted this past February on the window of a small chain restaurant in Beaufort, North Carolina. It was the owner's way...
The San Patricios. (Screenings)
THE STORY OF THE SAN PATRICIOS--released under the somewhat baffling title One Man's Hero--is a compendium of everything that's wrong with the movie business. The original script, based on the history of the U.S. Army's Irish brigade in the Mexican...
The Speakeasies I Remember: In a Last Conversation before His Death at 99 This January, the Artist Recalled the Places He Visited, Drew, and Wrote about during Prohibition in New York City. You Can Still Lift a Glass at a Couple of Them. (Al Hirschfeld)
IN 1933 THE SALE OF ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES BECAME LEGAL AGAIN IN THE United States--and the speakeasy died. Thus ended the 13-year social-engineering experiment that President Herbert Hoover had called "noble in motive and far-reaching in purpose." Prohibition...