Count the Wings · The Life and Art of Charley Harper

By Michelle Houts

When you look at a bird, do you see feathers and a beak? Or do you see circles and triangles? Artist Charley Harper spent his life reducing subjects to their simplest forms, their basic lines and shapes. This resulted in what he called minimal realism and the style that would become easily recognized as Charley Harper’s. Art fans and nature lovers around the world fell in love with Harper’s paintings, which often featured bright colors and intriguing nature subjects.


Beep · Inside the Unseen World of Baseball for the Blind

By David Wanczyk

In Beep, David Wanczyk illuminates the sport of blind baseball to show us a remarkable version of America’s pastime. With balls tricked out to beep three times per second like a troubling EKG and with bases that buzz, beep baseball is both innovative and intensely competitive. And when the best beep baseball team in America, the Austin Blackhawks, takes on its international rival, Taiwan Homerun, no one’s thinking about disability.


Dolores Huerta Stands Strong · The Woman Who Demanded Justice

By Marlene Targ Brill

Today, we know Dolores Huerta as the cofounder, with Cesar Chavez, of the National Farmworkers Association, which later became the United Farm Workers of America. We know her as a tireless advocate for the rights of farmworkers, Mexican American immigrants, women, and LGBTQ populations. And we know her as the recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom from Barack Obama in 2012.


Gone Dollywood · Dolly Parton’s Mountain Dream

By Graham Hoppe

In Gone Dollywood, Graham Hoppe blends tourism studies, celebrity studies, cultural analysis, folklore, and the acute observations and personal reflections of longform journalism into an unforgettable interrogation of Southern and American identity.


Alternative Models of Sports Development in America · Solutions to a Crisis in Education and Public Health

By B. David Ridpath · Foreword by Tom Farrey

In the United States, the entanglement of sports and education has persisted for over a century. Multimillion-dollar high school football stadiums, college coaches whose salaries are many times those of their institutions’ presidents, psychological and educational tolls on student-athletes, and high-profile academic scandals are just symptoms of a system that has come under increasing fire.


Trapeze · The Unexpurgated Diary of Anaïs Nin, 1947–1955

By Anaïs Nin · Edited by Paul Herron · Introduction by Benjamin Franklin V · Preface by Paul Herron

Anaïs Nin made her reputation through publication of her edited diaries and the carefully constructed persona they presented. It was not until decades later, when the diaries were published in their unexpurgated form, that the world began to learn the full details of Nin’s fascinating life and the emotional and literary high-wire acts she committed both in documenting it and in defying the mores of 1950s America.


Empowering the Public-Private Partnership · The Future of America’s Local Government

By George V. Voinovich · Introduction by R. Gregory Browning and Hunter Morrison · Afterword by Hunter Morrison

Using lessons from Cleveland, Mayor George V. Voinovich developed this handbook for governments and private entities seeking a mutually enriching partnership. It is his legacy to those who will guide America’s cities to new growth and vitality.


Virginia Hamilton · America’s Storyteller

By Julie K. Rubini

Long before she wrote The House of Dies Drear, M. C. Higgins, the Great, and many other children’s classics, Virginia Hamilton grew up among her extended family near Yellow Springs, Ohio, where her grandfather had been brought as a baby through the Underground Railroad. The family stories she heard as a child fueled her imagination, and the freedom to roam the farms and woods nearby trained her to be a great observer.


The Message of the City · Dawn Powell’s New York Novels, 1925–1962

By Patricia E. Palermo

Dawn Powell was a gifted satirist who moved in the same circles as Dorothy Parker, Ernest Hemingway, renowned editor Maxwell Perkins, and other midcentury New York luminaries. Her many novels are typically divided into two groups: those dealing with her native Ohio and those set in New York.


Writing an Icon · Celebrity Culture and the Invention of Anaïs Nin

By Anita Jarczok

Anaïs Nin, the diarist, novelist, and provocateur, occupied a singular space in twentieth-century culture, not only as a literary figure and voice of female sexual liberation but as a celebrity and symbol of shifting social mores in postwar America. Before Madonna and her many imitators, there was Nin; yet, until now, there has been no major study of Nin as a celebrity figure.


A Stitch in Time · The Needlework of Aging Women in Antebellum America

By Aimee E. Newell

Drawing from 167 examples of decorative needlework — primarily samplers and quilts from 114 collections across the United States — made by individual women aged forty years and over between 1820 and 1860, this exquisitely illustrated book explores how women experienced social and cultural change in antebellum America.


Protecting the Empire’s Frontier · Officers of the 18th (Royal Irish) Regiment of Foot during Its North American Service, 1767–1776

By Steven M. Baule

Protecting the Empire’s Frontier tells stories of the roughly eighty officers who served in the 18th (Royal Irish) Regiment of Foot, which served British interests in America during the crucial period from 1767 through 1776.


Visions of Loveliness · Great Flower Breeders of the Past

By Judith M. Taylor

Gardeners of today take for granted the many varieties of geraniums, narcissi, marigolds, roses, and other beloved flowers for their gardens. Few give any thought at all to how this incredible abundance came to be or to the people who spent a good part of their lives creating it. These breeders once had prosperous businesses and were important figures in their communities but are only memories now. They also could be cranky and quirky.


Surveillance and Spies in the Civil War · Exposing Confederate Conspiracies in America’s Heartland

By Stephen E. Towne

Surveillance and Spies in the Civil War represents pathbreaking research on the rise of U.S. Army intelligence operations in the Midwest during the American Civil War and counters long-standing assumptions about Northern politics and society.


The Krio of West Africa · Islam, Culture, Creolization, and Colonialism in the Nineteenth Century

By Gibril R. Cole

Sierra Leone’s unique history, especially in the development and consolidation of British colonialism in West Africa, has made it an important site of historical investigation since the 1950s. Much of the scholarship produced in subsequent decades has focused on the “Krio,” descendants of freed slaves from the West Indies, North America, England, and other areas of West Africa, who settled Freetown, beginning in the late eighteenth century.

Authors, Editors, and other Contributors

Thomas Zeller

Thomas Zeller is an associate professor at the University of Maryland, where he teaches the history of technology, environmental history, and science and technology studies.…

Andrew R. L. Cayton

Andrew R. L. Cayton, distinguished professor of history at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, is the author of several books, including Ohio: The History of a People and, with Fred Anderson, The Dominion of War: Liberty and Empire in North America, 1500–2000.…

William W. Falk

Professor and chair of the department of sociology at the University of Maryland, College Park, William W. Falk published Forgotten Places: Uneven Development in Rural America (edited with Thomas A. Lyson) and In the Lion's Mouth: A Story about Race and Place in the American South (forthcoming).…

Danuta Mostwin

Danuta Mostwin emigrated to America in 1951.…

Jennifer Rose

Jennifer Rose is the author of The Old Direction of Heaven (2000) and the recipient of awards and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, Massachusetts Cultural Council, and the Poetry Society of America, among others.…

Norman Gross

Norman Gross is the former director of the ABA Museum of Law in Chicago and the editor of America's Lawyer-Presidents: From Law Office to Oval Office.…

Barbara Kreiger

Barbara Kreiger is the author of The Dead Sea: Myth, History, and Politics.…

David J. Bodenhamer

David J. Bodenhamer is a professor of history and the executive director of The Polis Center at Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis.…

Katherine Hoyt

Katherine Hoyt lived for eighteen years in Latin America, sixteen of them in Nicaragua.…