Monday, September 28, 2009

History Geek

We watched the first episode of Ken Burns' documentary on the National Parks last night. It was incredible ... beautiful photographs of Yosemite, Yellowstone, Volcanoes, Glacier ... stunning, really. And a ton of inspirational words from a number of people, most notably John Muir. This was an amazing human being for certain.

One of the historians on the show was Clay Jenkinson, who, like me, is from North Dakota. I first became aware of him a year or two ago when I caught a public radio program he does where he speaks as Thomas Jefferson would have about current political, social and economic issues. The Jefferson Hour that I listened to was utterly spellbinding. Of course, you have to keep in mind that Jefferson ranks among the presidents I admire most for his wide-ranging intellectual pursuits and his love of books, if not for the fact that he owned slaves and took certain, shall we say, "liberties" with them.

The website I linked to has a link to iTunes. Turns out Mr. Jenkinson's musings as the third President of the US are available as podcasts. When I sync up Lola the next time you can be sure I will have The Jefferson Hour in my library. This guy is truly remarkable, and I look forward to seeing more of him this week in the National Parks series.

1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed the series too! I think what struck me though, beyond the beauty of the parks and the history of it all, was the stories of the people...the women who wrote diaries that they read from.

    First the beauty of the words they wrote, which were nearly poetic, but second because they wrote diaries. How often do we record observations like that now? What have we lost in not doing it anymore?