A few years ago Charles Mann published a book titled "1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus," which forever changed our understanding of the past. Readers who plunged into that sprawling book emerged on the far side astonished at how much of what we were taught as children about our history was plumb wrong. Now, having given us some years in which to recover from the shock of discovering that America before Columbus was not a wild and uncared-for land populated by a smattering of benighted savages longing to be introduced to proper work habits, some fun national holidays and
Author's note: The following is a condensation of an article that appeared in Better Forests magazine titled "From Pines to Potatoes." Shawn Perich, a veteran outdoor writer and concerned north country resident, recently focused attention on the changes under way in west-central Minnesota as thousands of acres of woodland are being cleared to make way for growing potatoes. Perich, the editor/publisher of Northern Wilds and a member of the Minnesota Forest Resources Council, outlined the concerns of state officials that the conversion, which involves clear-cutting the woods and installing cen
How much is enough? The answer depends, of course, on what you're talking about. All of us would agree that we need a sufficient amount of the basic life support items to keep us upright and able to move about.
Now that school's back in session and parents and students alike are busy putting their mental muscles back to work, it seems appropriate to compare notes with the learning experience of an earlier era. What follows was mailed to me some years ago by a loyal Echo reader, and is taken from an original document on file in Salina, Kansas, and reprinted in the Salina Journal. It's the eighth grade final exam from the Salina school district in 1895.
Boys and dogs go together like ham and eggs, and most of the guys in our gang had dogs. Jim Glendening had a cocker spaniel named Sandy. Smitty had a handsome mutt named Boots. Bruce Nelson had a little snippet of a dog named Tootsie. I don't remember if Larry Bell had a dog, but I know for a fact that Bobby Anderson did, because I was there the day she died. Her name was Buff, and buff she was, both in the palomino color of her coat and the perfectly sculpted condition of her body.
It's that time of year again. The water lilies are in bloom. Walk to the edge of a pond or a slow-moving creek or the shallow bay of a larger lake, and the chances are good you'll be rewarded with the sight of dozens or maybe even hundreds of one of our state's most beautiful attractions, the white or fragrant water lily. A member of the family Nymphaeaceae, Nymphaea odorata is also one of our most familiar aquatic plants.
Just the other day, jouncing along on our old tractor trying to fill the gullies along the side of our driveway where the rain had eroded the gravel, I caught sight of something yellow and, in a heartbeat, found myself transported back across the decades by the memory of a similar moment, one I¹d been moved to write about at the time. Later, back in the house, I paged through old journals and found the sentences I¹d scribbled 32 years earlier, which are what follow. ***** We were walking, my 10-year-old daughter Kia and I, up the path to the raspberry patch when we saw it. Straight ahead,
At a wedding my wife and I attended recently in Fargo, North Dakota, one of the guests was a white-haired woman in a wheelchair who, we found out, was 107 years old. Though we didn't have a chance to talk with her, her presence nearby prompted dozens of peculiar thoughts to rise, unbidden, in my head. I list a few of them in no particular order of importance. • What makes some folks live twice as long as others? I know the easy answer is genetic inheritance, followed by diet and exercise.
Admit it. We humans, along with all other life forms, are creatures of the earth. We take our sustenance from the soil, either directly from plants once rooted in the dirt or from animals that have earlier eaten such plants. Without dirt, we cease to exist. Of the many gifts we tend to take for granted, none ranks higher than the lowly ground beneath our feet. Sadly, our culture fails to help us understand this central fact.
At a recent family get-together, talk turned to memories of Dad. As usual, the memories proved refreshing and made us measure our own lives against the long arc of his. Pops made it to the age of 91 and died in the spring of 2002. Had he lived until August of that year, he and Mom would have celebrated their 66th wedding anniversary. Born in Chicago in 1910, Dad lived through many changes.