NATIONAL BESTSELLER - The riveting, tick-tock account of the largest manmade explosion in history prior to the atomic bomb, and the equally astonishing tales of survival and heroism that emerged from the ashes, from acclaimed New York Times bestselling author John U. Bacon
After steaming out of New York City on December 1, 1917, laden with a staggering three thousand tons of TNT and other explosives, the munitions ship Mont-Blanc fought its way up the Atlantic coast, through waters prowled by enemy U-boats. As it approached the lively port city of Halifax, Mont-Blanc's deadly cargo erupted with the force of 2.9 kilotons of TNT--the most powerful explosion ever visited on a human population, save for HIroshima and Nagasaki. Mont-Blanc was vaporized in one fifteenth of a second; a shockwave leveled the surrounding city. Next came a thirty-five-foot tsunami. Most astounding of all, however, were the incredible tales of survival and heroism that soon emerged from the rubble.
This is the unforgettable story told in John U. Bacon's The Great Halifax Explosion a ticktock account of fateful decisions that led to doom, the human faces of the blast's 11,000 casualties, and the equally moving individual stories of those who lived and selflessly threw themselves into urgent rescue work that saved thousands.
The shocking scale of the disaster stunned the world, dominating global headlines even amid the calamity of the First World War. Hours after the blast, Boston sent trains and ships filled with doctors, medicine, and money. The explosion would revolutionize pediatric medicine; transform U.S.-Canadian relations; and provide physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer, who studied the Halifax explosion closely when developing the atomic bomb, with history's only real-world case study demonstrating the lethal power of a weapon of mass destruction.
Mesmerizing and inspiring, Bacon's deeply-researched narrative brings to life the tragedy, brvery, and surprising afterlife of one of the most dramatic events of modern times.
Cabeza de Vaca came to the New world in 1527 as part of a Spanish expedition to conquer the region north of the Gulf of Mexico. His exploration party lost contact with their ships, set out northward on foot, and traveled, their numbers soon reduced from 300 to 4, across Florida, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and northern Mexico for the next eight years. In addition to being one of the great true adventure stories of all time, Cabeza de Vaca's account of their travels is an unparalleled source of firsthand information on the pre-European Southwest--the variety of its climate, its flora and fauna, the customs of its natives. They were the first to see the opossum and the buffalo, the Mississippi and the Pecos, pine-nut mash and mesquite-bean flour. This book contains the first description in literature of a West Indies Hurricane.
"Cabeza de Vaca was not only a physical trailblazer: he was also a literary pioneer, and he deserves the distinction of being called the Southwest's first writer.... The Relaci n, while not fiction, possesses most of the attributes of a good novel."--William T. Pilkington
Akhenaten to the Founding Fathers: The Mysteries of the Hooked X is the third book in a series that investigates the origin and meaning of a mysterious symbol originally found on the five fiercely debated medieval North American rune stones. That research led forensic geologist Scott Wolter on a world-wide search that resulted in several explosive discoveries, including the stunning realization that the Hooked X symbolizes an ideological thread that weaves through at least 3,800 years of human history. This amazing story involves some of the most important figures in world history, including the Egyptian Pharaoh Akhenaten, the biblical Jesus, the medieval Cistercians and Knights Templar, numerous Native American tribes, Freemasonry, and the founding fathers of the United States, including Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and George Washington. This book introduces several new mysterious artifacts and sites in North America along with exciting new scientific geological research using the latest technology, which allowed Wolter to reach definitive conclusions about the authenticity of these and many other controversial artifacts. Some of these artifacts provide conclusive evidence that changes not only North American history in a profound way, but demands a thorough rewrite of world history.Wolter brings the reader along on his investigations and presents his case using his proven and enjoyable narrative style along with over 280 black-and-white images, and 40 color photographs to introduce these artifacts and sites and illustrate his points. After the fun, Wolter distills the evidence down to his findings of fact, his interpretations of the facts, and finally presents his conclusions in a convincing scientific way that is irrefutable.
Joanna Brooks's ancestors were among the earliest waves of emigrants to leave England for North America. They lived hardscrabble lives for generations, eking out subsistence in one place after another as they moved forever westward in search of a new life. Why, Brooks wondered, did her people and countless other poor English subjects abandon their homeland to settle for such unremitting hardship? The question leads her on a journey into a largely obscured dimension of American history.
With her family's background as a point of departure, Brooks brings to light the harsh realities behind seventeenth- and eighteenth-century working-class English emigration--and dismantles the long-cherished idea that these immigrants were drawn to America as a land of opportunity. American folk ballads provide a wealth of clues to the catastrophic contexts that propelled early English emigration to the Americas. Brooks follows these songs back across the Atlantic to find histories of economic displacement, environmental destruction, and social betrayal at the heart of the early Anglo-American migrant experience. The folk ballad "Edward," for instance, reveals the role of deforestation in the dislocation and emigration of early Anglo-American peasant immigrants. "Two Sisters" discloses the profound social destabilization unleashed by the advent of luxury goods in England. "The Golden Vanity" shows how common men and women viewed their own disposable position in England's imperial project. And "The House Carpenter's Wife" offers insights into the impact of economic instability and the colonial enterprise on women.
From these ballads, tragic and heartrending, Brooks uncovers an archaeology of the worldviews of America's earliest immigrants, presenting a new and haunting historical perspective on the ancestors we thought we knew.
USA Today * Time Magazine * Washington Post * Miami Herald * Richmond Times Dispatch * Christian Science Monitor * Daily Beast * Minneapolis Star Tribune On July 8, 1879, Captain George Washington De Long and his team of thirty-two men set sail from San Francisco on the USS Jeanette. Heading deep into uncharted Arctic waters, they carried the aspirations of a young country burning to be the first nation to reach the North Pole. Two years into the harrowing voyage, the Jeannette's hull was breached by an impassable stretch of pack ice, forcing the crew to abandon ship amid torrents of rushing of water. Hours later, the ship had sunk below the surface, marooning the men a thousand miles north of Siberia, where they faced a terrifying march with minimal supplies across the endless ice pack. Enduring everything from snow blindness and polar bears to ferocious storms and labyrinths of ice, the crew battled madness and starvation as they struggled desperately to survive. With thrilling twists and turns, In The Kingdom of Ice is a spellbinding tale of heroism and determination in the most brutal place on Earth.
Greatly expanding on his blockbuster 1421, distinguished historian Gavin Menzies uncovers the complete untold history of how mankind came to the Americas--offering new revelations and a radical rethinking of the accepted historical record in Who Discovered America?
The iconoclastic historian's magnum opus, Who Discovered America? calls into question our understanding of how the American continents were settled, shedding new light on the well-known "discoveries" of European explorers, including Christopher Columbus. In Who Discovered America? he combines meticulous research and an adventurer's spirit to reveal astounding new evidence of an ancient Asian seagoing tradition--most notably the Chinese--that dates as far back as 130,000 years ago.
Menzies offers a revolutionary new alternative to the "Beringia" theory of how humans crossed a land bridge connecting Asia and North America during the last Ice Age, and provides a wealth of staggering claims, that hold fascinating and astonishing implications for the history of mankind.
Produced in conjunction with the website Vancouver Is Awesome, this book collects stories and photos about the people, places, events, and phenomena that collectively have infused Vancouver with a distinct flavor and flair and which laid the foundation for the eclectic city that is consistently named one of the world's top tourist destinations. From vaudeville to beatniks, Rudyard Kipling to Hunter S. Thompson, violent squirrels to train-hopping dogs, Vancouver Was Awesome is an entertaining, informative, and at times jaw-dropping tour of one city's awesome past.
Lani Russwurm is an historian who runs the blog Past Tense Vancouver.
This lavish book showcases the superb photography collection of the National Gallery of Canada, created over the past 50 years. In 1967, when the collection was established, the photography market was in its infancy, allowing the acquisition of works by pioneers of the medium such as Charles N gre, William Henry Fox Talbot, Gustave Le Gray, and Roger Fenton, among others. Today the collection boasts an impressive array of works by world-renowned photographers.
Ann Thomas chronicles the formative years of the collection under its founding curator, James Borcoman. She discusses the role of influential figures in the world of collecting and curating photographs, offering an insider's view of how the key collections entered the museum over the years. John McElhone takes a more technical approach in discussing how the photographic process has evolved, and helps clarify issues related to image appearance and identification.
From the East Coast to the West Coast, the Great Lakes to the Gulf of Mexico and Hawaiian Islands, this handsome book helps explain the lure of lighthouses in the United States. Among the most recognized structures of the maritime world, these lonely sentinels by the sea have long been the subject of paintings and photographs. Today they continue to capture public imagination as Americans flock to their sites for visits and volunteer to help preserve these endangered structures. This book covers all aspects of the subject, not only lighthouses and lightships but buoys, buoy tenders, fog signals, and their keepers. The work is as rich in historical information as it is in rarely seen photographs, and fourteen maps guide readers to the exact locations of the lighthouses. Readers are also treated to stories of shipwrecks and rescues, including the extraordinary story of Ida Lewis, head keeper of the light at Lime Rock, Rhode Island, who rescued eighteen people from the sea.