By the time Washington became a state in 1889, slavery had been abolished for nearly a quarter century. But there are a few documented cases of slavery in the Washington Territory. One is Charles Mitchell, who was born a slave and brought to the territory in 1853.
How did the 12-year-old escaped slave end up in Washington and why did his slavery cause a fight between Canada and the US? Ross Reynolds talks with storyteller Eva Abram to hear the story.
When you look at a person, do you "see race?" Sharon Leslie Morgan and Tom DeWolf have been asking that question as they sat down at dinner tables around America. They found the lingering pain of slavery, and some paths to healing. They join us for a conversation about the journey toward racial equality.
Originally published on Wed January 2, 2013 11:27 am
In his new book, The World Until Yesterday, Jared Diamond tells the story of a young schoolboy named Billy who was killed in a traffic accident on his way home from school in Papua New Guinea.
The driver was alert but simply couldn't stop the car when Billy ran across the road. In an outcome that may surprise people in many parts of the world, the incident was peacefully resolved within days.
Five days after the accident, Diamond explains, the employer and friends of the killer sat down for a meal with the relatives of the dead boy.
Chris Wedes passed away earlier this year after a long battle with cancer. Wedes was the host of the long-running JP Patches Show on KIRO TV and one of the region's most beloved figures. "This NOT Just In" looks back to the final weekday episode of the popular program, back in December 1978.
This year marks the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic. Most people who boarded the luxury ocean liner didn’t survive the trip. For some, the only thing separating survival and drowning was a split-second decision.
Now, 100 years after the tragedy, a Seattle woman wonders what she would do if she had been in her relative's shoes on the night of the sinking.
You think you know him: red suit, white beard, jolly old elf, etc. But do you why St. Nicholas became the Patron Saint Of Prisoners? David Hyde talks with Adam English, author of "The Saint Who Would Be Santa Claus: The True Life And Trials Of Nicholas Of Myra."
Clay Jenkinson assumes both sides in a debate between two of the country's greatest presidents: Thomas Jefferson and Theodore Roosevelt. Jenkinson is a historian who commonly lectures as different historical figures. He spoke at Seattle's Town Hall on December 1, 2012.
In Downtown Seattle, near where the Fairmont Olympic Hotel now stands, history was made back in 1861. The University of Washington was founded at this spot by a small group of local boosters, with the blessing of the Territorial Legislature. Seattle pioneer Arthur Denny donated the land. A single hall was built that housed the UW during the school's early decades, but the UW outgrew its first campus, and had to move and leave behind the old downtown site.
Jon Meacham's new biography of Thomas Jefferson paints the founding father as the most successful political leader of early America, and possibly all of US history. "Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power" discusses Jefferson's passion for his nation in the country's fledgling years and reviews the man's genius and his faults.
Meacham spoke at Seattle's Town Hall on November 28, 2012.
In 1917, the glittering elite of Tzarist Russia were crushed, practically overnight, by the Communist revolution. What happened to the nearly two million people who lived at the top of Russian society? Douglas Smith, awarding-winning historian and author, joins us to talk about "Former People: The Final Days of the Russian Aristocracy."
What does Baseball history tell us about America? That we’re a nation of scandals and corrupt leadership, of racial prejudice and cold economic calculus. But we’re also a nation of humility and redemption. William Woodward teaches American history at SPU and preaches the gospel of baseball all over Washington state. The narrative he sees in baseball gives him hope – not just for America, but for the human condition. Professor Woodward gives Ross Reynolds his pitch.
The US military and its allies are drawing up plans to leave Afghanistan by 2014, but it will be some time before the nation is truly independent. Peace in Afghanistan has been interspersed with foreign invasion for centuries, from the Mongol Empire to today’s war. We talk with writer Tamim Ansary about his new book, “Game Without Rules: The Often Interrupted History of Afghanistan,” and what Afghan independence might look like in the future.
Yesler Terrace is Seattle's oldest public housing project. It was revolutionary when it was completed in 1940. In the near future, though, it will be completely demolished.
In its place will sprout a series of high rise towers with a limited number of low-income housing units alongside up to 4,000 market-rate private housing units, offices, retail and commercial spaces. The ultimate goal, says the Seattle Housing Authority, is to create a sustainable, healthy, mixed-income neighborhood.
It's a radical plan, controversial, and every bit as transformational as that which gave rise to Yesler Terrace in 1940.
On October 30, 1938, Orson Wells' infamous "War of the Worlds" broadcast across the nation. Fake news of a Martian landing fooled a lot of people on the East Coast, especially around New Jersey, where phony live reports described the alien landing site. But the most infamous panic of all didn't happen in the East. And it wasn't just a single person. It was an entire town, and it happened right here in Washington state.