A man playing a banjo while members of his family peel apples in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Kentucky (1955).

The Mythical Whiteness of Trump Country

"Hillbilly Elegy" has been used to explain the 2016 election, but its logic is rooted in a dangerous myth about race in Appalachia.
A drawing of the Alamo Mission in San Antonio, first printed in Gleason's Pictorial Drawing Room Companion, 1854.

The Alamo: The First and Last Confederate Monument?

The Alamo supposedly honors the courage of Anglos pitted against Mexican brutality. In fact, it is about slavery and emancipation.
West Virginia teachers, students, and supporters demonstrate on  a Morgantown Street on the seventh day of a statewide strike (March 2, 2017).

A New Struggle Coming

On the teachers' strike in West Virginia.
Carter G. Woodson Mural on 9th St NW in the Shaw neighborhood of Washington, D.C.

Carter G. Woodson’s West Virginia Wasn’t ‘Trump Country,’ It Was a Land of Opportunity

In his travelogues, Woodson rhapsodized over what he saw as a love of democracy among hard-scrabble mountain settlers of both races.
U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt and nature preservationist John Muir, founder of the Sierra Club, on Glacier Point in Yosemite National Park (1906).

Will Trump Change the Way Presidents Approach National Monuments?

Never before have administrations scaled down sites to the extent proposed by Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke.
A 'Make Coal Great Again' hard hat at the opening of Corsa Coal's Acosta Mine in Pennsylvania.

Coal No Longer Fuels America. But the Legacy — and the Myth — Remain.

Coal country still clings to the industry that was long its chief source of revenue and a way of life.
A stained-glass window installed at the Washington Cathedral honors Robert E. Lee.

When White Supremacists Ruled Washington

The National Cathedral only recently removed stained-glass windows depicting Confederate generals.
Baltimore’s ‘road to nowhere’.

Roads to Nowhere: How Infrastructure Built on American Inequality

From highways carved through thriving ‘ghettoes’ to walls segregating areas by race, city development has a divisive history.

The Latin American Aesthetic of L.A. Music Culture

Understanding the immense reach and cultural implications of Latin American music.

How White Settlers Buried the Truth About the Midwest's Mysterious Mounds

Pioneers and early archeologists preferred to credit distant civilizations, not Native Americans, with building these cities.
Robert E Lee, Jefferson Davis, and Stonewall Jackson make up the massive Confederate monument sculpted in granite rock on Stone Mountain, Atlanta, Georgia.

Reclaiming Stone Mountain From the Alt-Right

How Stone Mountain could become a battlefield where neo-Confederates from across the country make their last stand.
Portrait of Frederick Douglass, 1879.

Frederick Douglass, Real Estate Developer

Frederick Douglas had another, lesser known, impact on Baltimore.