Skip to main content

Coming Up In American Heritage

March 2023
1min read

Rediscover America …

The next issue of American Heritage is given over to travel—and it will be different from any travel magazine you have ever seen. A number of distinguished writers journey to parts of the country that have a particular claim on them, and show how a knowledge of the past can deepen the enjoyment of the present. Among the journeys:

Traveling with a sense of history …

To the journalist and biographer Otto Friedrich, history is an indispensable working tool, and in the essay that serves as an introduction to this special issue, he tells how the past has served him on his travels, from the New England of his youth (where his Concord neighbors spoke casually of those families who had inhabited the town “before the fight” —meaning 1775), through the American South in the footsteps of a great-grandfather who served with a New York artillery outfit, to Bugsy Siegel’s rose garden in the evanescent city of Las Vegas.

Starting again in San Francisco …

During the great scramble for gold in 1849, a New York Tribune reporter wrote, “A man, on coming to California, could no more expect to retain his old nature unchanged than he could retain in his lungs the air he had inhaled on the Atlantic shore.” And the city at the end of the continent retains its amazing ability to work a transformation on people. In an eloquent ode to his town, Richard Reinhardt explains why although no city has more vigorously obliterated the physical remnants of its past, no city has a more vigorous sense of history.

Thoreau’s Cape Cod …

In the fall of 1849 Henry David Thoreau set out to explore Cape Cod, and found it much to his liking. Joseph Thorndike discovers, in retracing Thoreau’s journey, that this is still a place where “a man may stand and put all America behind him.”

Southwest diary …

The distinguished critic Alfred Kazin heads for Santa Fe and discovers both enchantment and hoke, with the emphasis on enchantment.

Plus …

The elegant houses and steel-tough spirit of Charleston, South Carolina … a tour of London reveals that no city on either side of the Atlantic has more poignantly American associations than the British capital … a visit to Hyde Park with a biographer of Franklin Roosevelt reveals that the Hudson River estate was less FDR’s castle than it was his formidable mother’s … and, in keeping with the spirit of questing American restlessness, there is even more to be found along the way.

We hope you enjoy our work.

Please support this 72-year tradition of trusted historical writing and the volunteers that sustain it with a donation to American Heritage.


Stories published from "February/March 1987"

Authored by: The Editors

For more than a century, politicians, journalists, and Western-city boosters urged Congress to get out of the District of Columbia and take the government elsewhere.

Authored by: Bernard A. Weisberger

If the historians themselves are no longer interested in defining the structure of the American past, how can the citizenry understand its heritage? The author examines the disrepair in which the professors have left their subject.

Authored by: Carol E. Rinzler

A postcard version of six tender and crucial rites of passage by the artist Harrison Fisher

Authored by: William A. Nolen

With its roots in the medically benighted eighteenth century, and its history shaped by the needs of the urban poor, Bellevue has emerged on its 250th anniversary as a world-renowned center of modern medicine

Authored by: Richard Eberhart

A distinguished American poet recalls one of his more unusual jobs

Authored by: The Editors

A pictorial history of the state from discovery to the Revolution

Authored by: H. Wayne Morgan

The curiously troubled origin of a brief and fitting inscription

Authored by: William Manchester

An outstanding American historian follows Winston Churchill through a typical day during his political exile in the 1930s and uses that single twenty-four-hour period to reveal the character of the century’s greatest Englishman in all its complexity. See Churchill lay bricks, paint a landscape, tease his dinner guests, badger his secretaries, dictate a history, make up a speech, write an article (that’s how he earns his living), refuse his breakfast because the jam has been left off the tray, refight the Battle of Bull Run, feed his fish, drink his brandy, fashion a “bellyband” to retrieve a particularly decrepit cigar, recite all of “Horatius at the Bridge,” take two baths—and await with noisy fortitude the day when he will save the world.

Authored by: Alexander O. Boulton

The first settlers marked the borders of their lives with simple fences that grew ever more elaborate over the centuries

Featured Articles

Rarely has the full story been told how a famed botanist, a pioneering female journalist, and First Lady Helen Taft battled reluctant bureaucrats to bring Japanese cherry trees to Washington. 

Why have thousands of U.S. banks failed over the years? The answers are in our history and politics.

Often thought to have been a weak President, Carter was strong-willed in doing what he thought was right, regardless of expediency or political fallout.

In his Second Inaugural Address, Abraham Lincoln embodied leading in a time of polarization, political disagreement, and differing understandings of reality.

Native American peoples and the lands they possessed loomed large for Washington, from his first trips westward as a surveyor to his years as President.

A hundred years ago, America was rocked by riots, repression, and racial violence.

During Pres. Washington’s first term, an epidemic killed one tenth of all the inhabitants of Philadelphia, then the capital of the young United States.

Now a popular state park, the unassuming geological feature along the Illinois River has served as the site of centuries of human habitation and discovery.  

The recent discovery of the hull of the battleship Nevada recalls her dramatic action at Pearl Harbor and ultimate revenge on D-Day as the first ship to fire on the Nazis.

Our research reveals that 19 artworks in the U.S. Capitol honor men who were Confederate officers or officials. What many of them said, and did, is truly despicable.

Here is probably the most wide-ranging look at Presidential misbehavior ever published in a magazine.

When Germany unleashed its blitzkreig in 1939, the U.S. Army was only the 17th largest in the world. FDR and Marshall had to build a fighting force able to take on the Nazis, against the wishes of many in Congress.