History

Famartin/Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 4.0)

From Texas Standard:

If you were making a list of things Texans say that set them apart from non-Texans, friendliness would rank pretty high. Signs of friendliness – literal and otherwise – are ubiquitous here. Look no further than reminders along the interstate to "Drive Friendly, the Texas Way." "Friendship" is the state’s official motto.

As Nature Claims Shipwrecks, Historians Can Only Watch

Apr 17, 2019
Photo courtesy of Texas Historical Commission

From Texas Standard:

What remains of the ship La Belle sits in a place of honor in the Bullock Texas State History Museum in Austin. It sits in a dark exhibit hall, constantly monitored, and protected by clear plastic barriers. According to Franck Cordes, one of the museum’s curators, there’s a good reason the ship is given such respect.

University of Texas at Austin Dolph Briscoe Center for American History

From Texas Standard:

Like media outlets all over the country, Texas Standard is working on its "Year in Review" show in the remaining weeks of 2018. But these final days of the year are also a last chance to reflect on what was happening in the country 50 years ago. 1968 was a tumultuous year and a turning point in American history, and the University of Texas at Austin's Dolph Briscoe Center for American History has an exhibit that takes a deep dive into it.

Julia Reihs / KUT

Texas author Ben Fountain's latest work of nonfiction has a provocative title: Beautiful Country Burn Again. Does he think the country has "burned" before and is it due to burn again?

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From Texas Standard:

Fifty years ago Tuesday, a protest by thousands of students in Mexico City ended with military tanks on the streets and hundreds dead. Just in the past few weeks, the Mexican government officially recognized that on the night of Oct. 2, 1968, it ordered the killings of students. For the first time since the massacre, a government official called it a “crime of the state.” That recognition is by no means an apology, but it is a step that may help survivors begin the healing process.

Wikimedia Commons

From Texas Standard:

It’s inevitable that some of the institutions we rely on today won't be used in the future. Consider the manual typewriter or the milkman ... or the town crier.

Texas Standard's Micheal Marks spoke with Maria Pfeiffer, a local historian in San Antonio, who told him the last town crier in the U.S. was Julius Myers, and he held his position until 1928.

Johan Neven/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

From Texas Standard:

After a dry summer in west Texas, locals would love nothing more than to be able to summon a rainstorm on command. This isn't a new desire; humans have a long history of trying to harness the clouds to do their bidding. Katie Nodjimbadem recently wrote about a wave of efforts to do that in Texas in the late 1800s, for Smithsonian Magazine.

From Texas Standard:

In the late 1800s and early 1900s, New York City had a problem – tens of thousands of homeless children. Widespread poverty and disease led to a city overrun with orphans and unwanted children. That is until a minister had an idea: send them west.

How The 1970s Explains Donald Trump

Apr 10, 2018
White House photographer/Wikimedia Commons (Public domain)

From Texas Standard:

In the 1970s, Watergate, Vietnam, stagflation and secret FBI memos were among the news events that led many Americans to distrust the institutions that had formed the backbone of society. And one of those Americans, steeped in the cynicism of the "me" decade, was Donald Trump, then a young real estate developer in New York, now president of the United States.

Historian Julian Zelizer argues that each president is the product of a particular time in his life – Ronald Reagan channeled the 40s and 50s, Bill Clinton the 60s, and Barack Obama the 90s, for example. The 70s shaped Donald Trump.

Julian Zelizer is a historian at Princeton University, a CNN political analyst, and the author of books about Lyndon Johnson and Barack Obama. He says distrust of institutions is central to Trump's mindset.

Wells Dunbar/Texas Standard

From Texas Standard:

Texas history is chock full of big names – Sam Houston, Stephen F. Austin and Lorenzo de Zavala to name a few. Joaquín de Arredondo played an important role in the area now known as Texas in the 1800s, but there’s a reason streets and elementary schools aren’t named after him: he was remembered as a ruthless leader with a penchant for violence.

Courtesy of Carnegie Library in Bryan, Texas

From Texas Standard:

The wonderful thing about the age of the internet is having a library at your fingertips. Anything is available online. My question: what is the oldest library in Texas? With a click of a search button, there's your answer. Well, answers. According to this map, there are three oldest libraries in Texas. Which is, of course, not logically possible.

U.S. Library of Congress (Public Domain)

From Texas Standard:

The document that sealed Texas' entry into the United States is the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. Mexican officials were forced to sign it in 1848, at the close of the bloody Mexican-American War. The treaty let the United States annex most of Mexico's historic territory and pay $15 million for the land in installments. At least half of Mexico’s regional territory went to the U.S. – what now is Texas, Arizona, New Mexico and California. Both countries would look much different if it were never signed, or if it were to be nullified.

World War I victory parade in downtown Austin.
UT Austin Briscoe Center for American History

From Texas Standard:

The United States officially entered World War I 100 years ago, Thursday. While the fighting took place overseas, the war’s impact was far flung, much of it striking right here in Texas.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Dr. Keith Corson, visiting professor of English at Rhodes College and author of ‘Trying to Get Over: African American Directors After Blaxploitation, 1977-1986.’

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT News

From Texas Standard:

DallasBaton RougeNiceOrlando. It seems like we can’t go more than a few days without a violent event somewhere in the world. While it’s true these attacks are happening for very different and very complicated reasons – they keep happening. It’s almost hard to remember a time when they didn’t.

But when a shooter took aim at the University of Texas of Austin campus from the top of the UT tower on August 1, 1966,  no one had any reference point for such an attack. The Texas Standard spoke to people who were there that day as part of a documentary that will air Monday.

 


Momentum Instruction

From Texas Standard:

In Texas education, there always plenty of fodder still out there to spark outrage. Take a proposed social studies textbook titled “Mexican-American Heritage”submitted to the Texas Education Agency as required for review before appearing on bookshelves in the classroom.

Tony Diaz, an activist based in Houston and host of Nuestra Palabra on KPFT, says this book is the opposite of what activists and scholars, who have campaigned for more visibility of Latino stories in history, wanted to include in the Texas curriculum – in part because of its racist undertones.


Photo courtesy Russell Lee Photography Collection at UT-Austin

From Texas Standard:

Paulino Serda was a small ranch owner near Edinburg, Texas, in 1915 when a group of Mexican bandits came through town. They demanded he open the gates that connected the ranches so the group could pass.

Image via NASA (Public Domain)

From Texas Standard:

Today in 1986, the Challenger space shuttle broke apart over the coast of Cape Canaveral, Florida. Just 73 seconds after the shuttle's lift-off, its seven crew members were dead.

LBJ Library photo by Lauren Gerson

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. conclude his highlights of a conversation with Hank Aaron, Civil Rights Activist, Major League Baseball legend, Hall of Famer, and senior vice president of the Atlanta Braves, at the 2015 Tom Johnson Lecture series.

Before joining the Braves front office, Aaron enjoyed a 23-year major league career during which he rewrote baseball’s hitting record book. He holds more major league batting records than any other player in the game’s history. On May 17, 1970, Aaron became the first player to compile both 3,000 career hits and more than 500 homers. Along with Frank Robinson, Aaron was inducted into the Hall of Fame at Cooperstown, NY, on August 1, 1982.

LBJ Library photo by Lauren Gerson

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. presents highlights of a conversation with Hank Aaron, Civil Rights Activist, Major League Baseball legend, Hall of Famer, and senior vice president of the Atlanta National League Baseball Club, Inc., at the 2015 Tom Johnson Lecture series.

Ted Lee Eubanks http://www.tedleeeubanksphotography.com

An easy-to-miss bridge on W. Sixth Street could be added to the National Register of Historic Places. The West Sixth Street Bridge sits over Shoal Creek, between West Avenue and Wood Street (near Hut's Hamburgers). It was built by hand in 1887. 

"It doesn't look like much when you go over it, and people use it all the time." says Joanna Wolaver, executive director of the Shoal Creek Conservancy. "But if you take a minute to walk down the dirt path to the Shoal Creek trail, it's just gorgeous." 

Last Saturday, the Texas Historical Commission approved an application to recommend nomination of the bridge to the National Register of Historic Places. The U.S. Parks Service will have the final say and could decide by the fall. 

Yoichi R. Okamoto / Lyndon Baines Johnson Library and Museum

The history and the current state of the civil rights struggle will be examined at a three-day summit in Austin this spring. The conference will focus on President Lyndon Johnson’s civil rights legacy.

The Civil Rights Summit will be held April 8-10 at the LBJ Presidential Library – and will mark the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Civil Rights Act by President Johnson.

Mark Updegrove, director of the LBJ Presidential Library, says two former presidents have confirmed their attendance: Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton. President George W. Bush has not yet confirmed, and there is the possibility of President Barack Obama attending.

Putnam Books

One hundred years ago, a president took office who would set the course of the American century, end an era of isolationism, set the stage for the New Deal and eventually become one of the most controversial and fundamentally misunderstood figures ever to lead the nation.

A new biography corrects a lot of misconceptions about the 28th president, but perhaps more importantly humanizes and brings to life an important figure in the American narrative.