Browsing All Posts filed under »History«

Mr. Roosevelt and the Navy

April 15, 2018

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Part of my summer reading a few years ago was a joint biography of Eleanor and Franklin Roosevelt written by a brilliant historian, Doris Kearns Goodwin. The book is about the Roosevelts during the World War II (1939-1945) years. It is rich in the details of a peacetime society — ours — preparing for war. […]

Apology

January 30, 2018

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I owe all my readers an apology. The Port Rail from last week, Sunday, Jan. 7, 2018, “Breaking News: Thomas Jefferson Expelled from American History,” was composed in the spirit of Southern humorist Lewis Grizzard, and by that I meant that I made up much of it to entertain us with a bit of Grizzard-inspired […]

Breaking News: Thomas Jefferson Expelled from American History

January 29, 2018

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This column is dedicated to the memory and wit of Southern humorist Lewis Grizzard (1946-1994). He died too soon, but could pull your leg as well as any other American of the 20th century. For those of you under fifty, you can look up Grizzard We’ve just seen the newest version of a leading American […]

Goodbye, Columbus

November 30, 2017

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Once again, Columbus Day has come and gone and I managed to refrain from writing another column on the great discoverer. I thought I had said everything I needed to say about the real, historical Columbus so much at odds with the Columbus that the modern indigenous community has invented in the past few years, […]

Spanish History, 101

September 14, 2017

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I first went to Spain in the late summer of 1964, sent by the USN as a newly minted Ensign to join my ship then in the Sixth Fleet. I landed in Rota, across the bay from the more famous city of Cadiz, and lingered there a few days waiting for a flight, first to […]

“Sowing the Oil” in Venezuela

September 14, 2017

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  I first went to Venezuela in about 1977. It was then politically quiet, economically well off, and possessed a working democracy. There were kinks and chinks in the armor of such a nice picture but I enjoyed my week there at a conference on the history of the Americas. The government was riding a […]

Marking the Anniversary of Our Entry into the First World War

July 5, 2017

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Historians love anniversaries. It not only celebrates or commemorates the past, but gives us an excuse to write and talk about the past. Since the past is our specialty, bring on the anniversaries! Five hundred years ago, this year, the Augustinian friar, Martin Luther, posted his Ninety-Five theses on the church doors of Wittenberg in […]