American History

(Please note that this show first aired back in May.) What do we mean when we call someone an "amateur"? What are we saying? As it happens, there are many answers to this question. On this edition of ST, we speak with Jack Hitt, a contributing editor to The New York Times Magazine, Harper’s, and public radio’s This American Life.

"Some folks look at me and see a certain swagger," the former President George W. Bush once remarked to an appreciative audience, "which, in Texas, is called 'walking.'" It's pretty clear to just about everyone that the State of Texas sees itself as a breed apart in many ways, and for many reasons; Texans, as a rule, seem to consider their home state an exceptional, singular, not-to-be-messed-with place.

How many cigarettes are sold each year, worldwide? Believe it or not, six trillion. Our guest, who calls the cigarette "the deadliest artifact in the history of human civilization," was the first-ever historian, several years ago, to testify in court against Big Tobacco. On this installment of our show, we speak by phone with Robert N. Proctor, Professor of the History of Science at Stanford University.

File Photo

"1913 Massacre" is the name of a song that Woody Guthrie wrote circa 1941; it recounts an early-20th-century tragedy that happened at the Italian Hall building in Calumet, Michigan, on Christmas Eve of 1913, when hundreds of miners, along with their families and friends, had gathered for a party. At that time, Calumet was at the heart of Michigan's then-lucrative copper-mining activity.

Tomorrow, of course, is the Fourth of July, America's birthday. But, in the meantime, today (July 3rd) is the 149th anniversary of Pickett's Charge, the failed Confederate infantry assault on the final day of the Battle of Gettysburg: the unsuccessful attack (named for Maj. Gen. George Pickett) that's now basically seen as the beginning of the end of the Southern war effort.

On this installment of StudioTulsa, we're joined by Elizabeth Chambers, the collections manager for the Mount Vernon Estate, Museum, and Gardens, who's currently in town to help set-up a show opening at the Gilcrease Museum on Sunday the 24th. It's a traveling exhibit, "Discover the Real George Washington: New Views from Mount Vernon," that will be on view at Gilcrease through September 23rd. What do we know, for certain, about "the Father of Our Country"?

What do we mean when we call someone an "amateur"? What are we saying? As it happens, there are many answers to this question. On this edition of ST, we speak with Jack Hitt, a contributing editor to The New York Times Magazine, Harper’s, and public radio’s This American Life.

On this edition of StudioTulsa, our guest is the Washington-based attorney Reid Chambers, who was formerly (during the Nixon and Ford administrations) Associate Solicitor for the Bureau of Indian Affairs at the U.S. Department of the Interior. Chambers will be the moderator for a free-to-the-public forum entitled "Renunciation of Termination, Self-Determination, and the Trust Relationship," which is being jointly presented by the Gilcrease Museum, the University of Tulsa, the National Archives, and the Richard Nixon Foundation.

Today and tomorrow (May 18th and 19th), the University of Tulsa and Gilcrease Museum will host a two-day symposium to announce the now-being-planned Helmerich Center for American Research, a new scholarly resource to be constructed on the grounds of the museum. The symposium is entitled "Material Memory" (and you can learn all about it at this link). Our guest on this edition of StudioTulsa is the award-winning Civil War historian, David W.

On today's show, we speak with the writer and new-media strategist Mathew Gross, who (along with Mel Gilles) is one of the two authors of a thought-provoking and quite timely non-fiction book called "The Last Myth: What the Rise of Apocalyptic Thinking Tells Us About America." It's an engaging historical study that mainly explores two separate yet related queries: "Why are contemporary Americans so obsessed with the end of the world?" and "What does this obsession actually say about us, as a people?" Did you know, for example, that nearly 60 percent of Americans believe that the events fore

On today's show, we speak with Joshua Piker, an associate professor of history at the University of Oklahoma. Prof. Piker will give the 2012 Cadenhead-Settle Memorial Lecture, which is presented annually by the TU Department of History, on Thursday of this week (the 5th) at 6pm at the Gilcrease Museum in Tulsa. His lecture is entitled, "The Four Deaths of Acorn Whistler: Telling Stories on the Colonial American Frontier," and it's based on a book that Prof. Piker is just now completing.

On today's program, an encore broadcast of a show that first aired back in November, we hear from Kristen Oertel, who holds the Barnard Chair in 19th-Century American History here at the University of Tulsa. Oertel has co-written a new and award-winning book (just out from the University Press of Kansas) called "Frontier Feminist: Clarina Howard Nichols and the Politics of Motherhood." It's a remarkable biography of a little-remembered yet vitally important American woman who meaningfully participated in several of the crucial social/political movements of her time.

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