Hiking to Yosemite’s Tall Trees

Oakhurst, CA:  In 1903 famed naturalist John Muir brought President Theodore Roosevelt to Yosemite National Park in California’s High Sierras.  They spent three days hiking, riding and camping in the wild.  Roosevelt was smitten with the beauty of the place and he and Muir declared “wilderness saves the human spirit.”   These two pioneer conservationists began their Yosemite journey at Mariposa Grove, home to the world’s oldest tall trees, … Continue reading Hiking to Yosemite’s Tall Trees

Letter From Berlin: Wealth and Worry

 In 1891 Mark Twain brought his wife and three young daughters to live in Berlin for six months. He wrote of the German capital, “it’s a new city, the newest I have ever seen, the main mass of the city looks as if it had been built last week.”  The same might be said today 75 years after World War II’s fire and fury reduced … Continue reading Letter From Berlin: Wealth and Worry

Rebalancing China US Economic Relations

  When a moving train decouples, there’s danger ahead. Which is why decoupling is the wrong word to describe the trade conflict between the United States and China.   What’s actually happening is that bi-lateral trade is being rebalanced, correcting inequities that have long favored China. The Phase One agreement that was signed January 15th is a big step in the right direction. It promises a … Continue reading Rebalancing China US Economic Relations

Hardship and Patriotism in 19th Century Southern Ohio

GALLIPOLIS, OH:  In the summer of 1849 several hundred people along the Ohio River between Pittsburgh and Cincinnati perished from an outbreak of cholera.  Red dot, rural southern Gallia County in Appalachian Ohio Among those who died was Catherine Williams, aged 48. Living in  rural Gallia County in southern Ohio, she lasted two months while her 21-year-old son succumbed quickly, dying the horrid cholera death of uncontrolled … Continue reading Hardship and Patriotism in 19th Century Southern Ohio

Ten Days to Key West

BRADENTON, FLORIDA:  Bob Blanchard, who will soon be 79, is about to ride his heavily laden Trek to Key West.  He expects the 475-mile trip to take ten days, averaging about 50 miles per day.  The most direct route would be 100 miles shorter but, as always, Bob will be doing things his way.            Bob Blanchard, Peach’s Restaurant, Bradenton, FL, … Continue reading Ten Days to Key West

East Germany After the Wall

In March 1990, when there was still a communist East Germany, I spent ten days traveling from East Berlin to Leipzig, Dresden and places in between. One dreary evening I arrived late in historic Weimar only to find the hotels fully booked.  But in a makeshift office near the station an enterprising easterner had set up an agency that paired travelers with locals seeking hard … Continue reading East Germany After the Wall

Thomas Edison: Character Forged in Ohio and Michigan

MILAN, OHIO: There are surprises when visiting Thomas Edison’s birthplace in northern Ohio. The great inventor was born in this pleasant village between Cleveland Toledo in 1847, the 7th and youngest child in a family with roots in Canada. The Edisons’ sturdy two-story brick home was a cut above the neighbors, revealing their relative prosperity. Thomas’s father made roofing shingles. A further surprise is that … Continue reading Thomas Edison: Character Forged in Ohio and Michigan