Exploring a personal connection at the National World War II Museum

On this Pearl Harbor Day, I’m surrounded by history at the National World War II Museum in New Orleans, Louisiana. This world-class museum is sure to provide a moving experience, whether it’s a first-time visit or especially if you have the honor of accompanying a veteran. Located on a six-acre campus in downtown, the museum…

Understanding the Wall: How the Berlin Wall divided a nation

Three decades after the so-called ‘Peaceful Revolution’ toppled the German Democratic Republic, or East Germany, people are celebrating the anniversary of its climax — the fall of the Berlin Wall on November 9, 1989. More time has passed since the Wall came down than the nearly three decades it stood, but painful memories associated with…

Art installation sends ‘wishes’ fluttering over post-Wall Berlin

Freely moving in the wind, independent, yet seemingly in harmony, 30-thousand ribbons dance in front of the Brandenburg Gate, Germany’s most visible symbol of unity. The vision of American artist Patrick Shearn and his studio Poetic Kinetics, a massive public art display drapes the setting for one of Germany’s biggest celebrations in years — the…

Canton Tower stands tall as China’s modern architectural, engineering feat

As one of China’s three most populous cities, Guangzhou is a significant manufacturing and transportation hub, as well as a popular tourist destination. The city’s attractions draw more than 100 million visitors each year, many flocking to the Canton Tower. At 1,969 feet tall, it’s the tallest tower in China and third tallest in the…

Best-preserved section of Great Wall of China located outside Beijing

One of the oldest and best-preserved sections of the Great Wall of China is located about two hours outside Beijing. Construction began at Mutianyu in the sixth century BC and much of it was rebuilt in the mid-1500s. Leaders from each of China’s six kingdoms built sections of the wall, totaling more than 15 thousand…

Tiananmen Square, crossroads of history in central Beijing, China

  One of the largest city squares in the world, Tiananmen Square in Beijing, China is home to numerous monuments, mausoleums, museums, and government buildings. The Great Hall of the People, the Tiananmen and Arrow towers, and the China National Museum are some of the landmarks located along the perimeter, while the Mausoleum of Mao…

Project aims to stabilize, restore Civil War-era Sabine Pass Lighthouse

A witness to history, the 1857 Sabine Pass Lighthouse stands sentinel at the point where the Sabine River empties into the Gulf of Mexico. Rising 75-feet above coastal marsh land, the brick tower, located in Cameron Parish, Louisiana, has survived a half-dozen hurricanes, including monsters Audrey and Rita. Six brick buttresses form its unique octagonal…

Discovering history beyond the books

History isn’t as bland of a subject as it’s sometimes portrayed. Many people probably think of a stack of dusty books taking up space in a classroom or library, but I envision a vibrant picture of stories preserved by people, places, and culture. My fascination with learning and preserving the past is the reason I…

Film profiling folk artist Clementine Hunter premieres in Natchitoches

Clementine Hunter never learned to read or write, but the images she taught herself to paint on canvas, cardboard, window shades or anything she could find, so vividly captured life on Cane River in the early 20th century. On October 15, 2016, the short documentary, ‘Clementine Hunter’s World,’ premiered in Natchitoches, Louisiana to thunderous applause…

Discovering a road paved in good intention

So few communities today embrace their past as closely as Natchitoches, Louisiana. The town is a heritage tourism hot-spot due to its unique blend of the past and present. While the locals are a relatively forward-looking population, tradition and culture are planted deep within daily life. The relaxed style of living adds to the close-knit…