Firefighters

The people who stand ready to trade their lives for ours are part of a tradition that goes back 400 years

In the days immediately following the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center, a 77-year-old man from Teaneck, New Jersey, tried repeatedly to cross the George Washington Bridge. He was turned away. But he tried again, and again, until finally police and military personnel waved him through, and soon enough, he was among those thousands who were putting their lives at risk in what proved to be a vain attempt to find and rescue survivors in the smoldering ruins of the Twin Towers.

 

Confronting the unimaginable: New York firefighters on the morning of September 11, 2001.
jose jimenez/primera hora/getty images2005_6_36-37

Old Glory In New York City

The Stars and Stripes take to the streets

Everyone knows New Yorkers love New York, but perhaps it’s not as well known that New Yorkers love America. Wherever you go in Manhattan, you can see the Stars and Stripes: in the storewindow displays on Fifth Avenue, rumbling by on subway cars, draped from fire escapes, on everything from baseball caps to rhinestone pins, and even in graffiti.

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The New Warfare And Old Truths

How our technologies are still our allies

In the early 1880s, a Maine-born inventor named Hiram Maxim, who had tried and failed to become a leading figure in the young electrical industry, met a fellow American in Vienna who told him, “Hang your chemistry and electricity! If you want to make a pile of money, invent something that will enable these Europeans to cut each other’s throats with greater facility.” Maxim took the man’s advice. He invented the first truly automatic machine gun.Read more »