History

All Things Considered
6:15 am
Fri September 6, 2013

The Astonishing And The Esoteric: New Hampshire's Guinness World Records

Keene's Pumpkin Festival in 2010. Festival organizers say they're feeling really confident that 2013 is going to be the year they reclaim the Guinness world record for most lit jack o'lanterns displayed.
Credit Selbe B via Flickr/Creative Commons - http://www.flickr.com/photos/stacylynn/5117165696/in/photostream/

"World record" is a phrase that brings to mind great feats - doing something no one else has ever done.

And that’s what’s happening this Saturday on Lake Winnipesaukee- if all goes as planned, participants will break the  record for “the largest free-floating raft of canoes and kayaks on a single water body.”

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Word of Mouth
12:15 pm
Tue August 27, 2013

Lobster's Journey From Trashy Food To Fancy Feast

Credit The Vault DFW via Flickr Creative Commons

As the summer winds down, so will demand for lobster and its market price. Maine lobstermen are bemoaning low wholesale prices, but far from shore, say New York City’s Lobster Joint, market price today for a roll is $19…a boiled lobster will cost your $34. Today, the crustaceans are coveted, and symbolic of wealth, class, and extravagant living. Not so long ago, lobster was considered lower than the ocean floor on which it dwells. Here to trace its climb up the social ladder from grub for the poor to high-class delicacy is Daniel Luzer, Web Editor at the Washington Monthly. We found his article, “Low Lobster Got Fancy,” in Pacific Standard.

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Word of Mouth
9:16 am
Thu August 15, 2013

Got Milk Tolerance?

Credit macalit via Flickr Creative Commons

Got milk tolerance? Only about one-third of adults on earth can properly digest dairy. A project uniting archaeologists, chemists and geneticist is studying the history of milk in Europe, where “lactose persistence”, the ability to digest milk as an adult, is thought to have emerged only seven and a half thousand years ago. There’s been a wave of discoveries suggesting that a number of “lactose hot spots” where ancient humans developed the genetic mutation for tolerating milk –  experienced significant advantages which allowed ancient humans to survive and changed the course of human history.  Mark Thomas is an evolutionary geneticist at University College London and co-founder of LeCHE, a collaborative research project that traces lactose persistence in early Europe.

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Word of Mouth
12:04 pm
Tue August 6, 2013

Salt Smarts: How Iodine Has Increased American I.Q.s

Credit Joe Mud via Flickr Creative Commons

Iodized salt is so common today that you may never have considered the two as separate elements. This wasn’t always the case -- in 1924 iodized salt was first sold commercially in the U.S. to reduce the incidence of goiter – or swelling of the thyroid gland. Within a decade the average I.Q. in the United States had risen three and a half points. In areas that had been iodine deficient, I.Q. levels rose an average of fifteen points. A new paper from the National Bureau of Economic Research traces this leap in I.Q. back to iodized salt.  We spoke with Max Nisen, war room reporter for Business Insider, where he wrote about I.Q. increases as a result of iodized salt.

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Word of Mouth
9:48 am
Wed July 17, 2013

Commercial Spaceport Is Being Threatened By History

Credit Jeff Houck/John Stavely via Flickr Creative Commons

Florida’s Aerospace Economic Development Agency is making plans to build a new commercial spaceport not far from the Kennedy Space Center – home of NASA’s now retired shuttle program. There’s just one problem: the land is already occupied.  To learn more, producer Taylor Quimby caught up with Tampa Bay Times reporter Craig Pittmanwho wrote about Space Florida’s proposal to build on top of an  18th century sugar factory and archaeological site called the Elliott Plantation.

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Word of Mouth
8:58 am
Wed July 10, 2013

Studying Slang With An Etymologist

Credit teachernz via flickr Creative Commons

For four decades, Dr. Gerald Cohen has pored over documents, texts and pop culture to study etymology--the history and origins of words and how their meanings change over time. Working with the world’s top language historians, Dr. Cohen publishes “Comments on Etymology,” a journal of the peculiar origins of words and phrases like ‘brainstorm’ and ‘hot dog’. The journal cannot be found online, or even at university libraries…its circulation is under one hundred, and it’s published on paper. Gerald Cohen is professor in the Department of Arts, Languages and Philosophy at the Missouri University of Science and Technology.

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The Exchange
9:00 am
Thu July 4, 2013

A New Look At Calvin Coolidge (Rebroadcast)

Biographer Amity Shlaes say our thirtieth president was deeper than his nickname Silent Cal suggests or what his critics called a man of few words and.. frequent naps.. but a visionary conservative who promoted ideas of limited government and individual responsibility and who oversaw an era of remarkable growth and optimism that preceded the Great Depression.

Guest

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All Things Considered
6:08 pm
Fri June 21, 2013

Sailors, Artists, Tavern Keepers, And Mayors Among Portsmouth's Most Notable Women

The cover of "Portsmouth Women."

A new book aims to tell the stories of some of the most remarkable women in the history of Portsmouth, from colonial tavern keepers to nationally-known artists, politicians, philanthropists and more.

It's called Portsmouth Women: Madams and Matriarchs Who Shaped New Hampshire's Port City.

The book's editor, Laura Pope, talks with All Things Considered host Brady Carlson about some of the women featured in the book.

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The Exchange
9:00 am
Wed May 1, 2013

The Federal Income Tax Turns One-Hundred

Americans recently completed that annual ritual, when they file their returns to Uncle Sam.  But over the century of this tax, there’s been lots of debate on its effectiveness and fairness. and a few states, including New Hampshire have decided not to do this at the state level.  We’ll look at the history of the income tax and how it’s evolved.

Guests

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The Exchange
9:00 am
Mon April 29, 2013

A New Look At Calvin Coolidge

Biographer Amity Shlaes say our thirtieth president was deeper than his nickname Silent Cal suggests or what his critics called a man of few words and.. frequent naps.. but a visionary conservative who promoted ideas of limited government and individual responsibility  and who oversaw an era of remarkable growth and optimism that preceded the Great Depression.

Guest

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Giving Matters
12:09 am
Sat March 30, 2013

Keeping History Alive At The Fells

Credit Seeing New England

John Hay was private secretary to Abraham Lincoln and secretary of state under Theodore Roosevelt. His summer estate on Lake Sunapee was a masterpiece of architecture and of horticultural artistry. In 1987, the estate was deeded to the US Fish and Wildlife Service and opened to the public, and recently became a private non-profit offering programs, tours and classes. David Bashaw is a volunteer docent, guiding tours at the Fells.

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Word of Mouth
10:07 am
Mon March 11, 2013

The Measure Of Civilization

Ian Morris
Credit via stanford.edu

IAN MORRIS, Professor of Classics and History at Stanford University and a Fellow of the Stanford Archaeology Center, is author of several books including, Why the West Rules—For Now: The Patterns of History, and What They Reveal About the Future, which was published in 2010, and his latest, The Measure of Civilization: How Social Development Decides the Fate of Nations. We spoke with professor Morris about his new book, the seminar he gave at Langley to members of the CIA, and his early heavy metal aspirations.

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NH News
8:30 am
Mon March 11, 2013

1763: A Landmark Year In New Hampshire History

This year, 13 New Hampshire towns are celebrating their 250th anniversaries.  As part of a new series called “250 Years In The Making: Stories From 13 New Hampshire Towns," NHPR’s Keith Shields will travel to each of these places, learn more about their founding and find the unique stories buried within their borders. But before we do, we begin with a look back two and a half centuries to the year 1763.

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History
4:03 pm
Wed March 6, 2013

234 Years Later, Committee Passes Bill To Emancipate 14 Slaves

Credit Broadside quoting Marquis de Lafayette, issued 1800-1899 / Rare Books Collection, Boston Public Library, Flickr Creative Commons

Back in 1779, 20 slaves made the case for their freedom before the New Hampshire General Court.  After noting it wasn’t the right time, the body postponed the decision “to a more convenient opportunity.” 

Lawmakers never took that opportunity, and 14 of the petitioners died as slaves. 

But on Wednesday, a Senate committee unanimously passed the bill.  

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Word of Mouth
1:44 pm
Wed February 6, 2013

The Original Luddite

We all have one:  the friend who refuses to take part in social media, has only a landline, shuns digital cameras, the Mp3, and just about anything else with a computer chip.  The hearty  souls who refuse such technologies tend to inspire a lot of eye-rolling – with a measure of respect.  For the rest of us, choosing the life of a Luddite hardly seems like an option.  The history of the term “Luddite”, and the man for which it was coined is a surprisingly violent one, tracing back to the late 18th century.  Morgan Meis is a freelance writer and editor at “Three Quarks Daily."  Recently, he wrote about the original Luddite, Ned Ludd, and he joins us to tell us more.

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