Historical Figures

New York’s First Black Firefighters

firefighter-Molly-williams-Firefight

By Ginger Adams Otis

Black Firefighters

It’s no secret that FDNY firefighters are among the best in the world, but here’s a little-known fact about New York’s Bravest: a black woman was among the city’s earliest black firefighters. Her name … Read the article

100 Years of Orson Welles

Orson Welles

AFI president George Stevens Jr., uttered the following words when he introduced Orson Welles on the February 1975 evening that the great director received the AFI’s 3rd Life Achievement Award.

“A Great man never reminds us of others,” Stevens said. … Read the article

Obama and FDR: A Faulty Comparison

Time_Obama New Deal

by Aaron David Miller

With only 43 different presidents, (44 to account for Grover Cleveland’s two non-consecutive terms), there’s a natural tendency to compare and contrast our chief executives. The presidential rating game is alternately fun, silly and even potentially … Read the article

Best History Books of 2014 Gift Guide

by The History Reader

The holiday season is upon us as are the end of the year “Best of 2014” lists! Therefore, we have rounded up a selection of this year’s best history books, and are pleased to present New … Read the article

Nelson Mandela: My Prisoner, My Friend

Christo-Brand-Dubai-Community-Theatre-Arts-Centre

by Christo Brand

My entire relationship with Nelson Mandela was instinctive. I never worked out or tried to analyse the dynamics of being the prison warder in charge of his daily life for 12 years, and his close friend for … Read the article

My Time On the Set With Marlene Dietrich

Marlene-Dietrich-Just-A-Gigolo

by Rory MacLean

Why are we drawn to certain cities? Perhaps because of a story read in childhood. Or a chance teenage meeting. Or maybe simply because the place touches us, embodying in its tribes, towers and history an aspect … Read the article

The Truth about Lincoln’s Beard

Abraham Lincoln

By Daniel Stashower

My son’s history teacher thinks I’m spreading lies.

To be fair, he was wonderfully polite about it. “I read your book,” he told me, standing by the punch bowl at Back to School night. “That story about … Read the article