Day #335: Historians

S.S. Edmund Fitzgerald

I am grateful for the many people, from many different life paths, who keep history alive, affording us with endless opportunities for reflecting, learning, and keeping our minds open.

Consider, if you will, one of my favorite songs, Gordon’s Lightfoot’s “The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald.” Written to commemorate the tragic sinking of the ore carrier on Lake Superior on Nov 10, 1975, it grabbed the attention of the whole country because of its musicality. The ship sank without a call for help with all 29 men on board killed.

One of my favorite museums, The National Museum of the Great Lakes in Toledo, OH, is offering a special tour of the Col. James M. Schoonmaker Museum Ship to get a hands-on experience of this historic and tragic tale. If you’re in the Toledo area, set aside November 9th or 10th for this look into one of the mysteries of history.

Day #321: Saved by Love

I am grateful that Reinhold Niebuhr wrote this for me to be reminded:

“Nothing that is worth doing can be achieved in our lifetime;
therefore we must be saved by hope.
Nothing which is true or beautiful or good makes complete sense
in any immediate context of history;
therefore we must be saved by faith.
Nothing we do, however virtuous,
can be accomplished alone;
therefore, we must be saved by love.’”

Day #179: Minnesota Historical Society

I am grateful to the people, the planning, and the opportunities for education offered by our Minnesota Historical Society. We try hard to see each new exhibit and we have traveled to most of the installations around the State. I truly believe that “those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” (George Santayana) The people at our MNHS connect us to history. Thank you to the planners, the librarians, the docents, the exhibit managers, the gift shop personnel (they are awesome), the front desk staff, and all the people who maintain the facilities. My wish for every person who lives in or visits Minnesota is that they will avail themselves of these incredible opportunities to remember the past.

Minnesota Historical Society

Day #73: Factum Arte

If it weren’t for insects and lizards, archaeologist was high on my list of careers. The history, the discovery, understanding the connection between then and now. Today I am an armchair archaeologist, avidly following developments in the field. One aspect I could never align with my beliefs is removing items to a museum, oftentimes in another country. I am grateful to know that Factum Arte is reproducing artifacts without moving them, without endangering them, “accurate to one-tenth of a millimeter.” Their work is jaw-dropping, so be sure to watch the video. There are days that being a Luddite is highly appealing (except that I spend 12 hours a day on a computer), but Factum Art’s use of technology is a welcome advancement in archaeology.

Factum Arte workshop. Photo: CBS News