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The Emancipation Proclamation: A Public Document

For the 150th birthday of the Emancipation Proclamation, the National Archives is displaying the original document for members of the public to visit. A'Lelia Bundles, chair and president of the board of directors of the Foundation for the National Archives, viewed the Proclamation Sunday; she discusses what the document did — and did not do — for slaves.
NPR

Peace Pilgrim's 28-Year Walk For 'A Meaningful Way Of Life'

On Jan. 1, 1953, Mildred Norman gave up her name — and possessions — to become Peace Pilgrim. She walked across the U.S. and Canada for 28 years, subsisting on handouts from strangers to spread her message of peace.
NPR

Why We Toast: Uncorking A New Year's Tradition

Some early Europeans toasted to profess their love to young women, while others lifted their arms to honor their kings. Toasting, which dates back to ancient times, is a ritual shrouded in urban legends. But one historian says some of the tall tales are actually true.
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Emancipation Proclamation On View For 'Watch Night'

The Emancipation Proclamation will be on view at the National Archives until after midnight on New Year's Eve, keeping up the longtime "Watch Night" tradition.

WAMU 88.5

Lease Issues Remain For Jack's Boathouse

The National Park Service still plans to open the operation of a Georgetown boathouse to bidders, after a review revealed the owner wasn't on the lease, which itself is out of date with NPS practices.

NPR

'Watch Nights,' A New Year's Celebration Of Emancipation

On Dec. 31, 1862, African-Americans and abolitionists waited for word — via telegraph, newspaper or word of mouth — that the Emancipation Proclamation had been issued. A New Year's Eve tradition marks the anniversary of President Lincoln's actions to end slavery.
NPR

Virtually Anyone Can See The Dead Sea Scrolls Now

This past week, Google and the Israel Antiquities Authority posted thousands of high-resolution images of the Dead Sea Scrolls online. Now, anyone can get up-close and personal with the ancient biblical texts — rewrites and all.
NPR

The Renaissance Man Who Got It All Wrong

In A Man of Misconceptions: The Life of an Eccentric in an Age of Change, John Glassie writes of 17th-century Jesuit priest and scientist Athanasius Kircher, a renaissance man who studied magnetism, Mount Vesuvius, even the blood of plague victims. The only problem? His theories were often wrong.

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