February 1, 2010

Burl Treen

America's earliest European settlers were astounded at the exquisite beauty of Native American woodware carved from burl and quickly set out to replicate it. Since the 17th Century, burl treen has remained a highly prized form of American woodware. This article traces the origins of burl treen, featuring the research of New York antiques dealer Stephen Powers as well as the work of a modern master of burl treen, Michael Combs of Indiana.

Click here the article.

Colonial Reading

Despite the hardships of living in the wilderness, America's earliest colonists were avid readers, eventually achieving a literacy rate that surpassed that of England. In this article I explore the growth of reading in the colonies, what types of books the colonists read, and the impact on early American society. (This article first appeared under one of my pseudonyms.)

Click here to read the article.