Friday, June 24, 2016

Make Your History Content More Accessible

Whether it be a blog or a social media group, how can you find the information you want?  Face it, history blogs produce great treasuries of content but not so great pathways of accessing it.  We over-rely on that old search box.  Key word searches cannot be the end of content management.

We history bloggers can do better.  We must better index our content. 

History blogs need both the equivalent of a front-of-the-book Table of Contents and a back-of-the-book Index.  Major pathways for the history blog should be: (1) geographical by region, (2) chronological by era, and (3) categorical.  Major categories of history include political history, military history, social, cultural, economic, and religious history. 

How much more likely would you want to use a blog that allows you to drill into the content through gateways such as those suggested above?

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Akbar Solidifies India

His grandfather established the Mughal Empire. Akbar conquered the great highway into the Decan -- Malwa, Khandesh, Berar, Ahmadnagar. He raised Abul Fazl to the command of the four thousand. He revitalized India's culture while promoting tolerance for all religeons.

 For more information on Akbar and India here is an installment from Akbar Establishes the Moghul Empire In India by James Wheeler.

Don't forget The Basic History Library (free). ------------->

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Beware of "Top History Blogs"

Google "History Blog" or anything similar and links to "Top 100 History Blogs" or something similar will show high up in the search rankings.  Investigate a top blog in such a listing and find that their latest post was done months and years ago.  Not always but too often.  Is it too much to ask that one of the criteria for judging a blog to be "top" is that it is still active?

Two suggestions to improve "top history blog" listings:  (1) disclose selection criteria and (2) set an "as of" date, such as "Top History Blogs of 2015".

These top lists reflect badly on history blogging in general as well as history groups in social media.  Contrary to the impression given by those top sites, there are many fine history blogs going on.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Champlain Surrenders Quebec

During the 30 Years War, the English captured Quebec for the first time.  The French in Canada had not yet made their colony self-sufficient.  It still relied on supplies from France.  In 1629 those supplies were intercepted, the colony starved, and their leader surrendered.

For more information on English Attack Quebec here is an installment from The History of France in Canada by Francis Parkman:


Don't forget The Basic History Library (free). ------------->

Monday, June 20, 2016

Saint Bartholomew Day Massacre Gets Out of Control

1572, Paris. The massacre of the Protestants by the Catholics led by the Prince of Conde was out of control. The occasion was the marriage of the Prince of Navarre to the Princess Margaret. One man entered Margaret's private chambers, begging for her protection. Elsewhere in the palace, King Charles gave Henry, the bridegroom an ultimatum: convert in three days or loose his head. Outside the palace, Paris began to burn.

 For more information on The Massacre Gets Out of Control here is an installment from The St. Bartholomew Day Massacre by Henry White:


 Don't forget The Basic History Library (free). ------------->

Monday, May 23, 2016

Confederate Government's Last Days: Series End

This series begins with Confederate President Jefferson Davis in church getting handed a note.  The note was from Robert E. Lee.  It said that the army could no longer defend the capital and was retreating.  He and his government evacuated Richmond and headed south.

The series ends with Jefferson Davis, virtually alone, being surrounded by Federal cavalry and captured.  It is written by Jefferson Davis himself.
For more information:


Don't forget The Basic History Library (free). ------------->

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Collapse of Remaining Confederate Armies

Both major armies, that commanded by Robert E. Lee and that by Joseph Johnston, have surrendered. In the last weeks of May, the armies in Alabama and Mississippi and the Trans-Mississippi Departments surrendered. During these calamities, Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederacy, his administration now reduced to a last remnant of escorts, left Washington, Georgia, hoping to reach whatever forces remained west of the Mississippi River.

For more information on Last Battles of the Civil War here is an installment from Confederate Government’s Last Days by Jefferson Davis:


Don't forget The Basic History Library (free). ------------->

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Dynamic Mapping Shows Both Space and Time

Important to historians because it shows how the map changes as years goes by. This technique shows how political boundaries move; it shows how location of economic resources and outputs; and population shifts. Dynamic mapping shows changes, but more importantly, the length of time of changes and how suddenly or gradually the changes took place. What does World War II like in a dynamic map?


Don't forget The Basic History Library (free). ------------->

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Champlain Attacks Iroquois

If you're going to Pearl Harbor someone, finish the job. The year is 1610. Francis Parkman wrote, "Judged by the standard of Indian war, a heavy blow had been struck on the common enemy. Here were hundreds of assembled warriors; yet none thought of following up their success. Elated with unexpected fortune, they danced and sang; then loaded their canoes, hung their scalps on poles, broke up their camps, and set out triumphant for their homes." The Iroquois were to dog French Canada for the next century and a half and to the Plain of Abraham. For more information on Champlain Dominates Canadahere is an installment from France in Canada by Francis Parkman: and Don't forget The Basic History Library (free). ------------->

Monday, April 25, 2016

Japan's Very First Emperor

Jimmu lived around 660 BC. This was before Japanese civilization could write so his origins and reign are half buried in legends. Like King David of Israel, he is alleged to have composed poems or songs (psalms). For more information on Psalms of the Emperor here is an installment from Jimmu Becomes Japan’s First Emperor by Sir Edward Reed: and Don't forget The Basic History Library (free). ------------->

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Lee Harvey Arrested for Kennedy Murder

At first he told the police that had nothing to do with it. He said he was eating lunch at the time of the shooting. He also denied the murder of Police Officer Tibbit. As the policeman had crossed Harvey's path in the aftermath of the murder, he had been gunned down, too.

For more information on the Kennedy Assassination here is an installment from The Warren Report by Chief Justice Earl Warren, future President Gerald Ford, and other senior statesmen:

and Don't forget The Basic History Library (free). ------------->;

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Other Democratic Socialist Candidate for President: Who am I?

I was born in 1855. I started out as a labor leader. I founded the Social Democratic Party. I ran for President multiple times. In 1920 I ran from prison, having been convicted for my anti-war speeches. Who am I?

Find out at: 

Don't forget The Basic History Library (free). ------------->

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Ancient China Video.

Another video from those folks at Crash Course. 


Don't forget The Basic History Library (free). ------------->

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

How Big Was the City of Constantinople?

When Emperor Constantine finished building, it was actually small.  During the time of the Roman Empire, "Among the great cities of the ancient world its size was smaller than Babylon and Thebes. It yields to ancient Rome, to the 18th. century London, and even to Paris." Thus Edward Gibbon.

It stayed that way for a long time. Future emperors expanded it but that was in the far future.  More on Constantine's size and features here at our main history blog


Don't forget The Basic History Library (free). ------------->

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

History Moments Blog Passes Milestones

Over 2,500 subscribers, over 700 separate posts, 47 sets of The Basic History Library distributed.  Today is a passage from Herodotus describing the peoples of NW Africa.
Read more:

also check our my review of The Landmark Herodotus: