Ranging from the earliest years of the pre-Columbian continent to the digital age, and from the American Revolution to Vietnam, each entry pairs the fascinating history surrounding each object with the story of its creation or discovery and the place it has come to occupy in our national memory. Kurin sheds remarkable new light on objects we think we know well, from Lincoln's hat to Dorothy's ruby slippers and Julia Child's kitchen, including the often astonishing tales of how each made its way into the collections of the Smithsonian. Other objects will be eye-opening new discoveries for many, but no less evocative of the most poignant and important moments of the American experience. Some objects, such as Harriet Tubman's hymnal, Sitting Bull's ledger, Cesar Chavez's union jacket, and the Enola Gay bomber, tell difficult stories from the nation's history, and inspire controversies when exhibited at the Smithsonian. Others, from George Washington's sword to the space shuttle Discovery, celebrate the richness and vitality of the American spirit. In Kurin's hands, each object comes to vivid life, providing a tactile connection to American history.
Beautifully designed and illustrated with color photographs throughout, The Smithsonian's History of America in 101 Objects is a rich and fascinating journey through America's collective memory, and a beautiful object in its own right.
About Richard KurinSee more books from this Author
...Kurin closes with some of the tools of our time, from Chuck Berry’s guitar to the first Apple computer and on to galaxies far beyond our own. A well-conceived and well-illustrated pleasure to read, combining narrative history and keepsake volume.Read Full Review of The Smithsonian's History of ... | See more reviews from Kirkus
Kurin does a terrific job of expanding upon the story of each object, whether it’s a pair of slave shackles or a damaged door from one of the New York City fire trucks that responded to 9/11. This humanistic approach to storytelling...makes for immersive, addictive reading.Read Full Review of The Smithsonian's History of ... | See more reviews from Publishers Weekly
In this beautifully illustrated book, Richard Kurin, undersecretary for art, history and culture at the Smithsonian, uses 101 objects from the institution’s vast collections to illuminate four thematic strands that recur throughout American history...Read Full Review of The Smithsonian's History of ... | See more reviews from Star Tribune
An aggregated and normalized score based on 70 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes