history

history

The 1619 Project and the legacy of slavery

The 1619 Project and the legacy of slavery

In August 1619, the White Lion, an English privateer ship, landed in Point Comfort, a small settlement in the new colony of Virginia.  According to John Rolfe, a Jamestown colonist, the cargo was unique in the history of North America.  “20. and odd Negroes” from Angola were sold for food by the privateers “at the best and easyest rate they could.”  This event is the official beginning of slavery in what would eventually be the United States (although it should be noted that slaves were present in North America before then.)  The New York Times has created the 1619 Project, a set of free resources covering the legacy of slavery, including essays, statistics, maps and creative writing. A map of … Continued
The magic of abracadabra

The magic of abracadabra

We’ve all seen it –  a magician in a top hat waves his wand and says the magic word Abracadabra.  Poof!  A rabbit appears!  A watch is restored to perfect condition after being smashed to bits!  The woman who was sawed in two is now whole again!  Wonders are associated with this word, but what does it really mean? Abracadabra began its life as a healing spell.  It’s been traced as far back as the third century CE, when physician Quintus Serenus Sammonicus (better known as Serenus) wrote the treatise Liber Medicinalis.  This book documented, in Latin verse, numerous cures for common ailments, including the proper use of Abracadabra. The proper use of abracadabra as a healing spell. First, a … Continued
How accurate is Hamilton?

How accurate is Hamilton?

Hamilton, the ten dollar Founding Father musical released in May 2015, is among the most successful musicals in history.  With the all-time best selling cast recording and a total gross of $463 million by January 2019, not to mention 11 Tony awards and a thoroughly lovable collection of alternative “Hamildrops,” the musical continues to remain in the popular imagination.  But one question that needs to be asked is – Just how true to its history is Hamilton? Alexander Hamilton, by John Trumbull (1806) Nobody listens to a musical for a history lesson.  While a new play by novelist Ishmael Reed asks rather pointed questions about the musical’s accuracy, it can be stated that Lin-Manuel Miranda, the creator of Hamilton, went … Continued
Spotlight on History: Frederick Douglass

Spotlight on History: Frederick Douglass

Born with the name Frederick Augustus Washington Bailey in 1818, the man the world knows today as Frederick Douglass left an indelible mark on American history.  From his bestselling first book, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave, first published in 1845, to his groundbreaking work on both African-American equality and women’s rights to his career as minister to Haiti, Douglass is a figure whose time is immortal and whose words continue to carry deep and important meaning today. Douglass was born into slavery in Maryland.  He barely knew his mother, who was separated from him in early childhood and died when he was nine.  The identity of his father, who was white, remained a complete mystery … Continued
From the past to the present: Continuing community engagement at Indiana University East

From the past to the present: Continuing community engagement at Indiana University East

The IU East campus has a long history of community engagement. IU Bicentennial intern Maureen Girdler is learning about that throughout the Spring 2018 semester. From interviews with students, staff and faculty, and research using historical documents in the IU East archives, she presents here some highlights of the past editions of the Pioneer Press student newspaper, as well as some reflections from members of the IU East community who have been engaged in service. Circle-K Club, then and now Circle-K Club originally started in 1976. It is a college-based service organization affiliated with the national Kiwanis. After several years’ hiatus, a new Circle-K club was chartered at IU East, in 2016. Rachel Johnson, President of Circle-K at IU East, … Continued