Greed, Terror, and Heroism in Colonial Africa

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Americans have a very diverse heritage. It’s all-inclusive (everyone), comprehensive (everywhere), and interesting (think cowboys, heroes, and inventors) as well as enriching. If we bother to learn our history we find that it is enlightening, invigorating, and sometimes embarrassing. One of our embarrassments is shared by many nations and peoples, indeed, it is the collective… Read more »

Frontier Culture Museum: Time Travel

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Dwellings & Lifestyles of the Early Settlers The Frontier Culture Museum in Staunton, Virginia is a fascinating place to bring children to witness the daily chores of early Americans as actors work in-character wearing period costumes in and around authentic period dwellings from Africa, England, Ireland, and Germany. A wide variety of peoples lived and… Read more »

Cultural Tendency: Walk or Run?

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Speakers of English generally have an ingrained tendency to assume a faster pace which is evident in their use of vocabulary. When we notice that our watch has stopped, we say, “My watch has run down.” Speakers of the various romance languages typically say, “My watch has walked down.” Their choice of words reflects that… Read more »

What’s a Mule Chest?

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A “Mule Chest” is a one-part, case furniture piece with a hinged-lid blanket box built over drawers. Blanket boxes developed first. Chests of drawers developed later. The mule chest was a transitional form of furniture comprising both features, in effect a hybrid, as is the offspring of a horse and donkey – a mule, hence mule chest…. Read more »

What is a Whistle Walk?

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A “whistle walk” is a covered walkway leading from the summer kitchen to the manor house on which servants walked carrying freshly cooked food. Servants were forbidden to partake of their burdens, and to prevent delectable transgressions, they were required to whistle as they walked, hence, whistle walk. Whistling and chewing are incompatible simultaneous actions…. Read more »

WAR: Israel / Iran + Senaku Islands / Taiwan > Japan / China :: ? Your Wealth ?

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It won’t be much longer now. China will test its hegemony in the north Pacific by taking a few bits of contested rock known as the Senaku Islands away from Japan while the U.S. is pulling Israel’s chestnuts out of the fire after she strikes Iran back into the stone age. Will Benjamin Netanyahu attack…

What is a tondo?

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Tondo (Italian): The central part of a dish. Cavetto (Italian): The area between the tondo and the rim on a dish.

Can I sell my Ivory? All about endangered species.

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U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service has a great website. Go there to read in depth passages regarding the sale, trade, and transport of animal and plant products. The links to the various treaties are here. Find an office near you. Own a piano with elephant ivory keys? Yep, you need a permit to export it to… Read more »