A couple of months ago, Current State’s Scott Pohl visited the president of the Michigan Historical Commission Jack Dempsey in Detroit’s Capitol Park to discuss his book on the park’s historical significance. We liked the result so much that we’ve sent Scott back to Detroit, where Dempsey showed him a few more historical spots.
Harry Wyckom was a turn of the 20th century Grand Rapids insurance salesman...and model. Wyckom posed as the character “Mr. Rover”, a traveling dandy who was pictured in scenes all around Grand Rapids and Western Michigan in front of notable buildings and scenic areas.
On Friday, our nation celebrates its 238th birthday. But today, America is also observing the passage of one of the most significant laws ever crafted in its history. On July 2, 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The law that forbids discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin was born in an era of violence and intolerance in America.
Dr. Charles Hyde is a former Wayne State University professor and author of the 2014 book Images from the Arsenal Democracy. The book follows the wartime transformation of the Detroit auto industry into the war machine of the late 1930's and early 40's.
On June 24th, 1950, Northwest Airlines Flight 2501 left New York City for Seattle. The state of the art DC-4 aircraft was to stop in Minneapolis for refueling, before proceeding to the west coast. Monitoring the plane in threatening weather over Lake Michigan, air controllers lost track of the flight. The aircraft was never recovered, nor were any passengers or crew. Further wreckage discovered some days later indicated a total loss.
We all know Michiganians we feel are extraordinary --for their memorable life experiences or their sacrifices. Maybe for their success or their service, and for the insights they produce. Getting acquainted with extraordinary people is the focus of Current State’s ongoing series, “Voices of Experience.”
On June 6, 1944, more than 160, 000 Allied forces traversed the English Channel to land on the beaches of Normandy in France. Operation Overlord, commonly known as "D-Day," was the largest seaborne invasion in history. The offensive marked the beginning of the end of World War II in Europe.
WKAR is proud to honor the sacrifice of all veterans, living and dead, who gave of themselves to restore freedom and hope to a war-torn world.
If you’ve found yourself passing through Lansing City Hall these past couple of days, you may have noticed a treasured piece of the city’s past. In the lobby now sits a 1901 Curved Dash Olds Runabout. It will be on display there through October as part of a new exhibit entitled “Made in Lansing.”
Historic preservation stakeholders from across the state are convening in Jackson, Michigan this week for the annual Michigan Historic Preservation Network conference. The network works to recognize and conserve Michigan’s architectural culture.
Commencement season is upon us. MSU is sending new graduates into the world this weekend in East Lansing. The only thing more ubiquitous than caps, gowns, and cameras is a military march written by a British guy in 1901.
Seriously, why do Americans graduate to a tune that across the Atlantic Ocean essentially has become an unofficial English National Anthem? Current State’s Melissa Benmark explores the song that’s helped “commence” graduates for over a century.
Dr. Gottfried brought this cast of a skull of a so-called 'mammal-like reptile' from South Africa, that is about 240 million years old to WKAR's Studio S, along with a 50-million year old Sand-tiger shark tooth fossil from the Canadian Arctic.
Kids go crazy about dinosaur fossils at the museum. Most of us grow out of that dinosaur phase, and those dinosaurs become reminders that we are turning into fossils, at least to our kids. But fossils are much more than just old bones. They can tell stories about where we came from, and about our planet’s history.
A new book from the MSU Press looks at the cookbooks and foodways of Americans in the 1860s. “Food in the Civil War Era: The North” is officially out this week. It’s part of a planned food history series from the MSU Press.
Take a drive through Lansing Township north of the Capitol, and you’re likely to pass by a stately Classical Revival-style mansion. Beginning in 1855, the Turner-Dodge House on North Street was home to several generations of one of Lansing’s most prominent families. Today, it’s an interpretive center with its own spot on the National Register of Historic Places.
The Michigan State Spartans had a great run through March Madness, making the Elite Eight. Coach Tom Izzo may want his team to watch the playback of Sunday’s game against the U-Conn Huskies for a little self-analysis. MSU has a lot of tapes like that and other sporting events, some of which pre-date World War II. However, those old film and video clips are falling apart over time. Now, MSU is asking the public for donations to digitize those records for posterity.
Michael Colaresi researched 136 civil wars from 1936 to 2007 for his recent study, “With Friends Like These, Who Needs Democracy? The Effect of Transnational Support from Rivals on Post-Conflict Democratization.”
There’s probably never been a time in history when there wasn’t war and conflict going on somewhere in the world, but amid the Arab Spring and the situation between Russia and Ukraine, right now seems like an especially good time to talk to an expert on international conflict.
On January 5, 1914, Henry Ford introduced a conditional five-dollar a day wage for his assembly line workers. One hundred years later, different people put different spins on the story. Some say it was Henry Ford paying his workers enough to buy the cars they were producing. Some say it was only a move to stop the high levels of worker on the assembly lines. MSU's John Beck takes a look at the competing narratives and some interesting parallels 100 years on.
MSU's G. Robert Vincent Voice Library houses over 40,000 hours of spoken word recordings. Voices in the collection range from everyday people to cultural and political figures. Over 100,000 voices are captured in the collection, which includes audio dating back to 1888.
Current State's Peter Whorf spoke with John Shaw, supervisor of the Vincent Voice Library.
Say “impressionist art” and you’re likely to think of the Europeans like Monet, Manet, Renoir, Degas, and Cezanne. But a number of American artists fit in that category, too. In Jackson, the Ella Sharp Museum has opened an exhibition called “American Impressionism: The Lure of the Artists’ Colony”. It’s on loan from the Reading Public Museum in Pennsylvania.