Merry Christmas!

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As we celebrate the birth of our Saviour, Jesus Christ, Mrs. History and I wish each of you a Merry Christmas!

Thunder, the Dog

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Thunder: November 28, 2004- December 19, 2016

He always sat near me as I wrote, or read, or slept. Taking a few days off. I apologize in advance for not responding.

Review: Presidential Wit and Wisdom

I was recently gifted this brilliant little book, a great quick read, containing selected quotes of various U.S. presidents. This book would be the perfect gift for any person interested in U.S. history.

Here are two selections from James Madison and a bonus track from William Henry Harrison.

Georges Nadon – Spitfire pilot, flew 277 sorties

A remarkable story, a great blog that references other great blogs! A lot of history.

Aviation Trails

War creates some remarkable heroes. It makes people perform beyond the limits of normal human endurance; through immense pain and suffering, these heroes are able to perform duties beyond those expected or even believed possible.

There were many airmen who carried out these duties with little or no recognition for their actions, never to speak of them or be acknowledged for them.Georges Nadon, a French-Canadian Spitfire pilot, is one of them.

Georges had a long career, he fought both in the skies of Britain and Malta, and completed two ‘tours’ that amounted to an incredible 277 operations and more than 500 hours in the air.

Georges Nadon’s flying career began with 122 Squadron based at RAF Hornchurch, where he flew Spitfires. Of the 27 original pilots of 122 Sqn, only Georges and one other pilot survived. On Christmas Eve 1943 he sailed to Malta, where he would fly – on…

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Travel: Charlottesville, VA

With only a few days available for a get-away, Mrs. Present and I made a trip to Charlottesville, VA. Forced into a late booking, we choose the Sleep Inn and Suites Monticello. Our room was well priced, clean, and provided the requisite comfort for a one-night stay. The staff was friendly, and the complimentary continental breakfast was satisfying. Not having time to research local eateries before we arrived, we welcomed the recommendations offered by the Front Desk staff. Their recommendations for lunch and dinner proved exceptional.

We planned to visit three sites. James Monroe’s Highland, Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello, and James Madison’s Montpelier. Because of the volume of information associated with each site, I will break the trip into three parts. [Day 1] Part 1: Monroe’s Highland and lunch. Part 2: Jefferson’s Monticello and dinner. [Day 2] Part 3: Madison’s Montpelier and lunch.

Part 1: James Monroe’s Highland

The Blogger Recognition Award

My deepest gratitude goes to Sarah at thepracticalhistorian for nominating my blog. If you do not follow her, please do. Her writing is both informative and witty. OK, so these are the rules to follow when you accept this award.

1) Write a post to display your award.

2) Give a brief story of how your blog started.

3) Give two pieces of advice for new bloggers.

4) Thank the person that nominated you and link to his or her blog.

5) Nominate 15 other bloggers.

Addressing in order:

November 14, 1970

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Marshall University Memorial Fountain HistoryPresent

On this day, we, the daughters and the sons of Marshall, remember 75 people. These 75 people were football players, coaches, and trainers. They held positions in the Athletic Department. They were fans. They were members of a flight crew, a pilot, a co-pilot, a Charter Coordinator. Two were flight attendants. They were husbands and wives. They were parents. They were sons and daughters, brothers and sisters. These 75 people, are daughters and sons of Marshall.

Advocating Buncombe

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History Present

Coincidence often fosters inspiration. A few days before I attended my umpteenth rally of this political season, I was given a gift. A near fifty-pound tome (a slight exaggeration) titled the Concise Dictionary of American History. Opening the book to a random page, I landed on an entry that brought several stark realities home. First, few political speeches rise above the rest. They are formulaic. Candidates acknowledge their supporters, identify the opposition, provide an anecdote designed to create a connection to the audience, and conclude with a call to civic duty. Second, the English language is changing fast. The particular entry on which I lit dealt with a word I rarely hear. Finally, I am getting older. With that comes a reluctance to abandon old things. After all, embracing today does not require erasing yesterday. If utilizing an old word contributes to the richness of a phrase, I am all for using it. This post is my attempt to dust off one such word (an effort that requires a little history).

Duesenberg-Milton Land Speed Record Car

If you are into cars, this is a great article.

Old Machine Press

By William Pearce

After winning the Elgin National Road Race, held in Elgin, Illinois on 23 August 1919, Duesenberg race car driver Tommy Milton began to focus on one of his top goals: establishing a new land speed record at Dayton Beach, Florida. The current record was held by Milton’s rival Ralph De Palma at 149.875 mph (241.001 km/h). Milton had been contemplating a land speed record (LSR) car for a long time. In December 1916, he and Fred Duesenberg entered into an agreement* to build a car to Milton’s specifications provided Milton would partially fund the vehicle. With his share of the Eglin winnings, Milton was one step closer to building the LSR car.

Duesenberg Milton LSR Indy Tommy Milton sits in the Duesenberg-Milton LSR car at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (most likely in May 1920). The burnt paint on the engine cowl was a result of a fire during its speed runs…

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