Archive for History

Alger Hiss and the possibly-forged typewriter

I recently encountered a reference to Alger Hiss and a “Woodstock typewriter”; I went looking for more information, and found some really interesting history, which among other things touches on the rise of Richard Nixon. My only association with the name “Alger Hiss” was that he was a spy; I didn’t even know when or […]

Braudel’s _Structures of Everyday Life_

I’m continuing to read/skim Fernand Braudel’s 1980(ish) The Structures of Everyday Life: The Limits of the Possible (volume 1 of his three-volume work Civilization and Capitalism, 15th–18th Century). I continue to find it a mix of fascinating and annoying—there’s a wealth of information here about what Braudel calls “material life” around the world during that […]


I think I’ve had a couple of dreams in which I’ve tried but failed to look up info about the folksong “Oleanna.” In last night’s dream, I finally managed to do a web search on that term, but got no relevant results. But when I woke up, I did a real-world web search, and got […]