January 23, 2008
American Heritage Magazine is Back
American Heritage was one of my favorite magazines when I was in high school during the 1960s. I would read it faithfully. Over the years, however, "life" got in the way (no magazine pun intended)and I lost touch. Only recently have I learned that 1) the magazine had ceased publishing, and 2) it is back under new ownership. I have Tim Lacy over at History and Education: Past and Present to thank for alerting me to the magazine's resurrection.
Visiting the American Heritage website was nostalgic, and I eagerly hit their archive search for articles on Chicago's history. I was both rewarded and disappointed. There are indeed many archived articles of interest, such as Charles Tyson Yerkes: The Streetcar Baron Who Got Rich Twice by Richard F. Snow and The Industrial Age 1865 to 1917 by Donald L. Miller. But, and I guess this is minor stuff, there is no way to sort the articles by date and article snippets are repeated in the search. Also, there are no graphics on archived articles. Small annoyances, granted, and perhaps the new owners will update the archives, though I sort of doubt it. I am, however, delighted that there is a forum for reader's discussion and plan on joining.
The current issue for Winter 2008 (Vol. 58, No. 3) is on the newsstand now. The lead off article is "History and Knowing Who We Are" written by popular historian David McCullough. Tim Lacy had some issues with Mr. McCullough's article, as you can see from his blog post. Since I haven't read the piece I won't comment. Also, McCullough is one of my favorite writers and historian hero, but even I will admit that he can on occasion, rarely, once in a millennium, perhaps misspeak. I'll wait until I read the entire piece. Tim has some good points, though...
I encourage you to check out American Heritage. History magazines, particularly ones written for popular consumption, need our full support.