" Nobody, I think, ought to read poetry, or look at pictures or statues, who cannot find a great deal more in them than the poet or artist has actually expressed. Their highest merit is suggestiveness. "
Nathaniel Hawthorne

Back in the day


The Battle of Antietam

In September 1862, Confederate General Robert E. Lee crossed the Potomac River to invade Maryland and Pennsylvania. He was met by Union General George McClellan. The resulting Battle of Antietam, fought near Sharpsburg, Maryland, was the bloodiest single-day battle in American history, with a total of 23,000 casualties. It was a Union victory only in the sense that Lee's invasion was stopped. McClellan was later removed from command and was faulted for failing to act on what crucial opportunity?



The Electromagnetic Bomb

In 2003, it was reported that US forces used an electromagnetic bomb to disrupt Iraqi TV transmissions. The so-called E-bomb is a weapon designed to disable electronics with an electromagnetic pulse. Though relatively non-lethal, it can cripple critical technology, making it a valuable tool in modern warfare. It is believed that older devices containing vacuum tubes may be more resistant to damage from these bombs than newer, transistor-based technology. How can sensitive devices be protected?

Born on a day like today


William Carlos Williams

Trained as a pediatrician, Williams wrote poetry and practiced medicine in his New Jersey hometown. Regarded as one of the most original American poets of the 20th century, he closely observed American life and recorded his impressions in a lucid style. His poems, such as "The Red Wheelbarrow" and "This Is Just To Say," are noted for making the ordinary appear extraordinary. He lost a post at the Library of Congress after one of his works drew scorn—as a result of what misunderstanding?

Last updated on Monday, 17th September 2012

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