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Archive for July 9th, 2010

The Front Page [07-09-2010]

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On this week’s Front Page:

On the Range at a Western Kentucky Cowboy Shooting Competition 
Boaz, KY ~ It may be the closest one can get to an Old West-style shootout, short of a time machine. A rural Kentucky gun club hosts monthly single-action shooting competitions using era-specific firearms. To compete, you have to dress the part as well. Participants wear authentic wild western garb, donning cowboy hats, spurred boots, six shooters and all.

Marshall County Student Goes to Washington 
Benton, KY ~ The American Legion Boys Nation gathers rising high school seniors from 49 states for a week of mock legislative politics in Washington D.C. Participants hold offices, draft bills, and argue out compromises on the senate and house floors. Only two members of each Boys State move on to participate in Boys Nation. Marshall County High School senior Cale Merrick of Benton goes to the capitol as a delegate at the end of this month. Angela Hatton spoke with Merrick ahead of the trip.

Wildlife affected by Olmsted Locks and Dam project 
Olmsted, IL ~ In May, Jacque Day brought us an overview of the Olmsted Locks and Dam project on the lower Ohio River. Last month she investigated the long-term costs. Today, she’ll explore the wilder side of the project. In this third and final installment, Jacque Day looks into how this massive development, 3 decades in the making, has affected the lives and habitats of animals that call the area home.

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Written by Chris Taylor

July 9, 2010 at 1:02 pm

Posted in The Front Page

Good Read: Our Lincoln

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Our Lincoln: New Perspectives on Lincoln and His World
edited by Eric Foner

Buy this book on Amazon.
(Your purchase supports WKMS!)

Product Description:
Among these original essays by prize-winning historians, James M. McPherson examines Lincoln’s deft navigation of the crosscurrents of politics and wartime strategy. Sean Wilentz elegantly explores Lincoln’s debt to the democratic political tradition of Jefferson and Jackson. Eric Foner examines Lincoln’s controversial position on the movement to colonize emancipated slaves outside the United States. James Oakes explores Lincoln’s views on the rights of African Americans. There are also brilliant essays on Lincoln and civil liberties, and on his literary style, religious beliefs, and family life.

Todd Hatton says:

“It’s impossible to go to Washington, D.C. and not be touched somehow by Abraham Lincoln’s ghost.  It’s even more difficult to find something new, something previously unsaid or unwritten about our 16th president.  Lincoln has held our hearts and minds since the end of the Civil War, and one could be forgiven for thinking that in the intervening century and a half we’ve more or less plumbed the depths of this man.

The recent bicentennial of Lincoln’s birth with its releases of new tomes and re-issues of classic pieces nevertheless proves that we are still drawn to him.  And maybe, just maybe, there’s a hint of desperation in this renewed compulsion, as we search for a way to heal our own bitterly divided body politic in the careworn face of this gifted, troubled, and extraordinarily complicated man.

Our Lincoln, New Perspectives on Lincoln and His World, a collection of essays edited by Columbia University history professor Eric Foner, may not show us how to bridge today’s political divides, but it does provide a glimpse into the various and sometimes conflicting facets of a man who held our nation together for its own good when it wanted nothing more than to come apart.

Make no mistake, Our Lincoln isn’t a light read; but then, not much about Lincoln ever is.  It is, however, an engrossing one.  Pulitzer Prize-winning authors like Mark Neely and James McPherson contribute insights into Lincoln the Commander-in-Chief and his relationship to the Constitution and civil liberties, but we also find essays that peer into Lincoln’s spirituality and analyze his role as a student and patron of the visual arts.  Andrew Delbanco, who edited The Portable Lincoln, even contributes a piece asserting that other than Mark Twain, no other writer had as enormous and lasting an impact on American literature as did Abraham Lincoln.  Not bad for a guy with a grand total of 18 months of formal education.

There is much in Our Lincoln to recommend it, and its satisfactions are much like those of running into an old friend, long absent.  This is Abraham Lincoln, after all, the man whose likeness marks our money and a great number of our monuments, and we get a chance to find out what he’s been up to all these years.”

Check out our Good Reads page for more recommended books.

Written by Matt Markgraf

July 9, 2010 at 10:00 am

morning cram [</3’r lebron edition]

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“In the end, it took all of 11 seconds, but the fallout in two American cities may last for years.”

~NPR has more on heartbroken Ohio.

KENTUCKY~ McCracken County rescue workers search for missing man and the County Clerk there has changed some (questionable) policies but retains his department’s financial independence. Western Kentucky has plenty of (electric) power. Trigg County bans smoking on school grounds. The Todd County Funeral Home burned down. Jack & Rand squared off in Louisville yesterday and US Senator McConnell defends his filibuster blocking an extension on jobless benefits.

TENNESSEE~ The 101st Airborne’s Major General John Campbell assures Fort Campbell families from Afghanistan. Police nab a Fort Campbell soldier after (alleged) hit-and-run. Blue dogs back Herron for US Rep.