History

The Civil War battle at Antietam has been described as “America’s Bloodiest Day.” Authors Jack Dempsey and Brian James Egen have written the story of the role played by soldiers and civilians from our state in “Michigan at Antietam.”


Back in the days of hippie clashes with police over the war in Vietnam, the two sides met on the gridiron in games that were dubbed the Bull Bowl. Current State’s Scott Pohl talks with two men who played in the Pigs vs. the Freaks football games.


A new book from Pulitzer Prize winner David Maraniss explores all that was right with Detroit in 1963. It’s called “Once a Great City.” He talks with Current State’s Scott Pohl.


Clem Sohn photo
San Diego Air and Space Museum Archive / flickr creative commons

We look again to Michigan’s past for more stories of pioneers in the field of aviation. This time we find Clem Sohn, also known as “Michigan’s Batman.” Current State talks with Sandra Clark, director of the Michigan Historical Museum, where Sohn’s outfit is currently on display.


postcard of the Edmund Fitzgerald
upnorthmemories / Flickr

On the 40th anniversary of the sinking of the Edmund Fitzgerald, Current State tours the Michigan State Museum's photo exhibit 'Iron Hulls,' which explores the life of Great Lakes sailors. 

Depression glass photo
Jamie Paisley / WKAR

Current State speaks with members of the Michigan Depression Glass Society on the eve of their annual show in Dearborn. It’s one of the oldest and largest glass showcases in the U.S.

Philip Parmelee photo
SDASM Archives / flickr creative commons

In the history of aviation, Charles Lindbergh and Amelia Earhart get most of the glory as pioneering pilots. But this year, as you’re getting ready to ship your Christmas gifts to loved ones far away, take a moment to think about a hometown hero.  Current State’s Kevin Lavery brings you the story of Philip Parmelee, who made the very first air cargo flight.

Fred Roberto Jr. photo
Courtesy photo / Jodi Roberto Hancock

This week and next, Lansing’s Peppermint Creek Theatre Company will stage a production of stories told by veterans and their families. Current State talks with director Blake Bowen and Jodi Hancock, who will tell the story of her father’s Vietnam service in “Telling: Lansing.”


Current State talks with Dr. Clifton R. Wharton Jr. about his new book "Privilege and Prejudice" ahead of his World View Lecture Series at the Wharton Center on November 2.

Jack Lessenberry and Frank Kelley photo
Gary Shrewsbury / Shrewsbury Photography

Michigan’s longest-serving Attorney General, Frank Kelley, has published a new memoir called “The People’s Lawyer.” Current State’s Scott Pohl talks with co-author Jack Lessenberry about Kelley’s remarkable career and life.


Roller coasters by the lake. Summer homes and resort hotels on the shore. If you’re picturing Cedar Point in Ohio, guess again. This was Haslett, Michigan more than 100 years ago. Current State examines the early days of Meridian Township with Jane Rose, executive director of the Meridian Historical Village and author of "Meridian Township."


MSMS time capsule photo
Kevin Lavery / WKAR

When the Michigan State Medical Society moved into its gleaming new mid-century modern headquarters back in 1959, its members buried a letter in a time capsule. In it, doctors predicted what medicine would be like in the 21st century. Yesterday, that capsule was opened.


Mammoth and mastadon jawbones photo
Kevin Lavery / WKAR

History buffs, break out your pick axes! Michigan Archaeology Day 2015 is coming this Saturday to the Michigan Historical Center in downtown Lansing. Current State’s Kevin Lavery talks with Michigan Historical Center director Sandra Clark about the program.


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 South” came out over the summer. It’s  part of a planned food history series from the MSU Press. Current State’s Melissa Benmark spoke with author Helen Zoe Veit of the MSU History Department.


A state history publication once ended by budget cuts is back with a new look and a new focus. We talk with Nancy Feldbush and Amy Bradfield of the Historical Society of Michigan. They’re co-editors of Michigan History for Kids magazine.


Pages