Recovering our Maritime Heritage at the Salem Maritime National Historic Site

by krm | Thursday, August 25, 2016 - 7:00 AM

The National Park Service (NPS) celebrates its centennial anniversary in the month of August! NPS has served as a valuable resource for many of our authors, both professionally and recreationally. To commemorate the occasion, our authors have taken to the blog to pay homage to “America’s best idea”! Check back with us throughout the month of August for more #JHUPressOnNPS! ( Series photo credit: Wikimedia )

One can walk the cobbled alleys and brick byways of Salem, Massachusetts and experience virtually the entirety of this country’s history. A stop at Pioneer Village, 1630, overlooking Salem Harbor, reveals the landscape as it likely looked before first contact, when Native Americans summered at Naumkeag, the “fishing place.” A meander along the town’s official heritage trail will take us past a statue dedicated to Roger Conant, a religious reformer who led a group of forty English families to Naumkeag in 1626 and who merged his group with a Puritan party two years later to christen the site Salem. Most visitors presume that the cloaked state of Conant that stands...Read More

Danger and Romance in America: A US National Park Profile

by krm | Wednesday, August 24, 2016 - 7:00 AM

If you could explore another world, would you?

Last year, a staggering 307 million people hiked, paddled, skied and meandered through our 58 US National Parks - the highest number of annual visits in history. The National Parks Service is in charge of protecting all these marvels, and no group does more to ensure that the natural world remains accessible to all Americans, so cheers to the NPS on its 100th anniversary!

In addition to their pivotal role protecting vital natural resources, the awe-inspiring vistas and diverse ecosystems of our national parks allow us to experience a different, wilder world that exists alongside our mundane human hustle of flatscreens and fluorescent cubicles.

I fear that too many people have a trite view of US National Parks- conjuring images of cartoon bears pilfering picnic baskets from camping Cleavers. To counter this misconception, I’d like to pay homage to our national parks by sharing an extraordinary adventure I had in one. Hopefully, it will get you wondering about what amazing journeys might await if you choose to step through these portals into other lands.

...Read More

Beyond Yosemite

by krm | Tuesday, August 23, 2016 - 7:00 AM

The National Park Service (NPS) celebrates its centennial anniversary in the month of August! NPS has served as a valuable resource for many of our authors, both professionally and recreationally. To commemorate the occasion, our authors have taken to the blog to pay homage to “America’s best idea”! Check back with us throughout the month of August for more #JHUPressOnNPS! ( Series photo credit: Wikimedia )

Just recently an email came to my inbox announcing the National Park Service’s 100 th anniversary and gave some info on the ensuing celebrations. It made me think back about my association and memories of America’s national park system. I believed that my very first national park visit was to Acadia National Park in Maine during the 1970’s. It actually was in August 1974. I remember that because as we set around a campsite under the moonlight, we had a small transistor radio and struggled to find a station. And when we did, Richard Nixon was on the airwaves resigning his presidency.

My recollection of that visit was of immense beauty....Read More

“Really, is there anything new?”

by krm | Friday, August 19, 2016 - 7:00 AM

That’s what plenty of people who should know better have been asking us since we started work on this new edition of Women’s Life in Greece and Rome , some forty years after the first. Is there ever! The whole point of the book is the search for the hidden stories of ancient women and their lives, and there are so very many interesting women yet to meet. In college we became friends with the celebrities—Penelope and Alcestis, Medea and Clytemnestra, Claudia and Clodia, all of whom have been in the book for years. But there’s a special place in our hearts for the women and girls we had to dig to find in collections of papyri, inscriptions, and even obscure corners of the mainstream literature. These are the ones the famous writers never mention, the wives and daughters of men who loved them and honored them in stone inscriptions, many of them recorded with their jobs (yes, jobs).

We’re also intrigued by the women intellectuals like Diogenes Laertius’ patroness, who “eagerly sought out his doctrines beyond all others,” or the empress Plotina, who was an enthusiastic Epicurean, and some of the other...Read More

Fifty Years of Fond Memories

by krm | Thursday, August 18, 2016 - 7:30 AM

The National Park Service (NPS) celebrates its centennial anniversary in the month of August! NPS has served as a valuable resource for many of our authors, both professionally and recreationally. To commemorate the occasion, our authors have taken to the blog to pay homage to “America’s best idea”! Check back with us throughout the month of August for more #JHUPressOnNPS! ( Series photo credit: Wikimedia )

My affection for America’s National Parks began nearly half a century ago. Growing up in New England, which had few national parks, I could only read about the magnificent parks in the West. But while still in my teens I was fortunate to visit one, Yosemite, and resolved that I would see more when I had the time, and my own wheels. In 1967, just before entering graduate school at Johns Hopkins, I decided to take a summer tour of as many parks as I could see. This was a solo venture, tenting in park camp grounds and occasionally backpacking into the interior. In two months I saw Yellowstone, the Tetons, Glacier, Crater Lake,...Read More