Don’t let the cynics fool you: Coca Cola didn’t invent Santa Claus. They didn’t create the modern image of Santa, either. Let’s get that out of the way off the bat. Contrary to urban legend, Santa was already a jolly fat man dressed in red and white long before Coke got their hands on him.
While the United States honors its military veterans every year on November 11th, this year is of particular note, as it coincides with the 100-year anniversary of Armistice Day and Remembrance Day. Observed throughout Europe and Canada, these holidays celebrate the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, when the “war to end all wars” came to a merciful close. Read more
At the peak of their popularity, the tintype photograph captured the blank, unfocused gaze of Civil War soldiers, along with the solemn expressions of their worried loved ones. Inexpensive, small, lightweight, and durable, several tintypes could be conveniently tucked away in a soldier’s jacket pocket, making them a favorite memento among fighting men. Read more
Growing up in Kansas, some of my fondest memories were those made on my grandparent’s farm. My grandfather worked in the oilfields, farmed, and performed other odd jobs to support his family of six. My dad, who passed several years ago, told me the story of how my grandfather helped clean up an old dairy located in Bartlesville, Oklahoma that closed in the 1960’s. Read more
Over the past few years, there’s been a rash of aggressive police raids and legal action taken against artifact collectors and hobbyists. This has been part of a national effort to enforce laws prohibiting private citizens from illegally obtaining and collecting cultural artifacts―predominantly Native American artifacts. Read more
The question “who owns archaeological artifacts?” isn’t one that’s easily answered. The United States, and each state within, has its own laws concerning ownership rights to archaeological artifacts. Most of these laws, like the Archaeological Resources Protection Act of 1979, have a distinct year that separates which objects belong to the federal or state government, and which are permissible to be lawfully owned by the public. Read more
Budweiser has dug deep in the annals of American history for its latest brew.
Inspired by a hand-written recipe uncovered in George Washington’s journal kept during the French and Indian War in 1757, the brewing behemoth has brought Washington’s beer back to life in the form of Freedom Reserve Red Lager. Read more
When looking at a pepperbox pistol, one can’t help but to conjure-up nostalgic visions of a bygone era―a gambler firing upon a card cheat, a gold prospector protecting his claim against hostiles, or a Civil War soldier pulling a pistol from his boot as a last line of defense in heated battle. Read more
As I slowly winded my way through the twists and turns of the Hamakua Coast, I relished the cool Hawaiian air. The air was soft; almost silk-like, and it overwhelmed my senses with the tropical smell of sweet grass, fruit, and salt. It was June 2, 2017 and I was on assignment with American Digger Magazine, in search of a story. The magazine arranged for me to meet brothers Brent and Blake Cousins at their home on the Big Island of Hawaii. My assignment was to come away with a story on their bottle hunting escapades. Read more
Several months ago, I was invited by Butch Holcombe, the publisher of American Digger Magazine, to join him on a metal detecting trip to historic Augusta, Georgia. As I soon learned, the city is undertaking an aggressive “beautification” plan, in which public and private developers are reclaiming abandoned and condemned properties, tearing down dilapidated houses, and replacing them with new ones. Our mission? To search recently bulldozed lots for historical remnants of the past. Read more