history

NWPR Books
4:03 am
Wed August 6, 2014

An Heir To E.M. Forster's Vision In 'Every Stone'

Originally published on Tue August 19, 2014 4:38 pm

Every literate nation should have the epics it deserves. The Indian subcontinent already has Salman Rushdie's Midnight's Children (among a few others), and now we can add to that illuminating company Kamila Shamsie's new novel, A God in Every Stone. Stretching from the ancient Persian Empire to the waning days of the British Empire, the novel has an enormous wingspan that catches a wonderful storyteller's wind.

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NWPR Books
7:21 am
Tue August 5, 2014

The 'Bridge' From Watergate To Reagan, Masterfully Drawn

News becomes history in a second. That's one of the reasons history stays alive — people will always discuss the past as long as there's something to disagree about, and there's always something to disagree about. "A fog of crosscutting motives and narratives," writes Rick Perlstein, "a complexity that defies storybook simplicity: that is usually the way history happens." Beyond the names and dates, history never offers any easy answers. It doesn't even offer easy questions.

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NWPR Books
4:03 am
Wed July 30, 2014

An Unconventional Family On The Road To Happiness In 'Lucky Us'

Originally published on Mon August 4, 2014 4:09 pm

Amy Bloom's new novel Lucky Us takes readers across America in the 1940s, that special decade of wartime dislocation and post-war disruption — with side-trips to England and Germany — in the company of a pair of half-sisters as endearing and comically annoying as any you'll find in contemporary fiction.

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NWPR Books
10:20 am
Tue July 22, 2014

London Through The Eyes Of Dickens In 'The Victorian City'

In September 1777, Samuel Johnson declared to his friend James Boswell, "When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life."

Johnson actually was referring to his hectic social calendar, but he did have a point. The city he was discussing was on course to become the largest metropolis the world had ever seen. In 1800, London was home to 1 million residents. By 1911 that number had grown to a staggering 7 million: a population far greater than Paris, Berlin, St. Petersburg and Moscow combined at that time.

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NWPR Books
2:04 am
Sun July 20, 2014

An Elegant, Thoughtful Exploration Of Life In 'Two Italies'

Originally published on Fri July 25, 2014 8:51 am

I remember taking an intermediate Italian class in college, and to gauge our linguistic level of proficiency, the professor assigned us a short essay to write. Using the Italian I had picked up from my grandparents, I proudly wrote about my familial ancestry in Calabria. The essay came back with every other word circled in red and labeled "dialetto."

"In this class," the professor said as he picked up the paper from my desk, "we will learn the proper Italian language of Dante." At that moment, I felt at once robbed of my Italian heritage, and ashamed of my Calabrian ancestry.

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Tacoma Pinball Show
9:49 am
Tue June 24, 2014

Pinball In America - From A New York Ban To Northwest Fans

A Pac-Man arcade cabinet, made by Midway in 1980.
Credit Max Bartlett

When you first walk in to the annual Northwest Pinball and Arcade Show in Tacoma, you’re greeted by a wall of sound. It’s the loud rocket-engine hum of hundreds of people, pinball machines and arcade cabinets.

Get up close and you’ll pick up some familiar sounds – Ken’s cries of “Shoryuken!” in Street Fighter, Shao Khan’s laughter in Mortal Kombat, Mario’s famous jump and even the “wakka wakka wakka” of Pac-Man devouring pellets. And of course the sounds of flippers flipping, spinners spinning, and silver balls hitting bells.

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Washington Holocaust Museum
7:36 am
Wed June 11, 2014

Washington State's First Holocaust Museum To Be Unveiled In Downtown Seattle

The nation’s newest Holocaust museum is about to be unveiled in downtown Seattle. The Holocaust Center for Humanity will host artifacts and testimony from local survivors, and provide resources for students and teachers. Executive Director Dee Simon says it will also draw connections between the Holocaust and other dark chapters of history a little closer to home.

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Native American History
7:31 am
Mon May 12, 2014

Gathering The Stories Of Northwest People "Left Out" Of History

Author LLyn De Danaan at home in Mason County, Washington.
Credit Mary Randlett

It started with the discovery of long-forgotten gravestones in a thicket of bramble and alder. That set one author on the faint trail of a feisty Native American woman and oyster farmer who lived in 19th century western Washington. The biographer is using the resulting book to inspire other Northwesterners - particularly tribal members. She wants to bring out the stories of people who, in her words, have been "left out of our histories." Correspondent Tom Banse reports from Oyster Bay in Mason County, Washington.

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Washington State Archives Flood
6:01 pm
Fri April 25, 2014

Flood At Washington State Archives; County Birth and Death Records Wet

Blue tarps protect historic records from flood waters dripping down from above at the Washington State Archives in Olympia.
Credit Austin Jenkins / Northwest News Network

Cleanup efforts are underway at the Washington State Archives in Olympia after a newly installed kitchen sink line caused a flood overnight. 

Among the historic records that got wet: marriage and birth records from the late 1800s. But the damage could have been much worse. 

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Oregon Trail Damaged
6:21 am
Wed August 28, 2013

Treasure Hunters Destroy Idaho’s Historic Oregon Trail Ruts

The Oregon Trail passed through Idaho for hundreds of miles a century and a half ago. In some places you can still see the ruts from the wagons that brought people west. Now vandals have damaged a section of the trail in Idaho.

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