American History, continued

4 February 2011

These are the most important new items onsite since my last entry a year ago: Stanley Clisby Arthur’s The Story of the West Florida Rebellion (and other material relating to “West Florida”), Constance Lindsay Skinner’s Pioneers of the Old Southwest (and other Kentucky and Tennessee material), James R. Jacobs’ Tarnished Warrior: Major-General James Wilkinson, Irving Berdine Richman’s Ioway to Iowa.

In addition, a couple dozen journal articles, mostly about West Point, railroads, and the frontier from the Appalachians to the west bank of the Mississippi; about fifteen hundred more entries of Cullum’s Biographical Register of the Graduates of the U. S. Military Academy, now complete thru the year 1850 and thus including many of the generals of the War between the States — I expect to complete the transcription of all 3384, thru the Class of 1890, in March 2012; orientation pages to the History of Florida, the History of Iowa, the History of Wisconsin; Sidelights on Dutch History.

The homepage of my American history site (as of writing: 32 books, 16,000 pages of print, 700 images in 2700+ webpages) is here.

The Great Iron Trail

27 January 2010

A more substantial addition this time to American railroad history: Robert West Howard’s The Great Iron Trail. The book is about the building of the Transcontinental Railroad. It’s atrociously written, as I point out on my orientation page (and I’m not the first to do so); but it’s a book of solid worth nevertheless, not so much for its detailing of the technical aspects of that great American enterprise, but mostly because it seats its subject firmly in the wider context of American history, paying attention not only to the nuts and bolts and the financial shenanigans of the principals, but to the economic, political and cultural currents of the time.

The homepage of my American history site (27 books, 13,000 pages of print, 600 images in 1700+ webpages) is here.

Jefferson Davis’s Camels

9 January 2010

Today’s addition: an entertaining article in Popular Science Monthly for February 1909 on Jefferson Davis’s Camel Experiment, by Walter L. Fleming, who is already represented onsite (in my American History Notes section) by papers on the Buford Expedition to Kansas, and a really bizarre little Ku Klux Klan item he dug up.

The homepage of my American history site (26 books, 12,000 pages of print, 600 images in 800+ webpages) is here.

Herman Haupt and Mule’s Ears

27 December 2009

Two small items, one serious, the other hilarious; you will guess which is which, of course. Herman Haupt: biographical sketch from Cullum’s Register (a West Pointer largely responsible for the success of the Union Army’s military railroad system in the War between the States), and Mule Ear Currency (a tale from the West, maybe even a true one).

The homepage of my American history site (26 books, 12,000 pages of print, 600 images in 800+ webpages) is here.

American railroad history

1 November 2009

One of the most important and characteristic aspects of American history is how we managed to expand so fast over an entire continent, and a key element in that expansion was the building of America’s railroads. One would think therefore that the story of the railroads’ rôle in that expansion would be well represented online, but it isn’t really — so I intend to do my six bits’ worth in filling up that gap. Today’s item, maybe I didn’t choose so well, since it’s already online in three or four other places; but the book was so short that it took me less than 4 days to input it and proofread it, and then I include the maps, which the other sites out there kissed off, or at least those that I looked at. More on American railroad history is on its way, including of course, now that I’ve done my research a bit better, stuff not online anywhere. For now, though: John Moody’s The Railroad Builders.

The homepage of my American history site (25 books, 12,000 pages of print, 600 images in 800+ webpages) is here.

American Catholic history

11 September 2009

I tend to mark September 11 by adding some important item to the site. Today, it’s American Catholic History: an orientation page to what I expect will be a growing site on the Catholic contribution to our American history, and in particular to the development of the frontier, which is my main theme these days. Right now, the linchpin of the site is not John Gilmary Shea’s History or one of the (few) public-domain works by Ellis or some similar general item, but a rather odd one, a 600‑page book by Camillus Maes: the Life of Charles Nerinckx, a Belgian pioneer priest of Kentucky. Some journal articles round out the site: some of them related to Fr. Nerinckx, but among the others, Flemish Franciscan Missionaries in North America; Father Sebastian Rale, S. J. (1657‑1724) who evangelized the Abnaki Indians in Maine; The Significance of the Frontier to the Historian of the Catholic Church in the United States, a vigorous rebuttal to an exaggerated application of Frederick Jackson Turner’s theory of the frontier; and The Mission as a Frontier Institution in the Spanish-American Colonies by Herbert Bolton, solid as that author always is.

The homepage of my American history site (25 books, 12,000 pages of print, 600 images in 800+ webpages) is here.

John Sevier’s Diary

24 May 2009

The “large and relatively significant item” is now online: Gov. Sevier’s Journal (or Diary, same difference); nominally complete — although I may have unearthed some hanky-panky: the gory details are on that orientation page. Other related material as well.

The homepage of my American history site (24 books, 11,000 pages of print, 600 images in 700+ webpages) is here.