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What could be more American than Drones+Fireworks?

Quadcopters filming while flying through/near fireworks. That is all. [more inside]
posted by Muddler on Jul 4, 2014 - 23 comments

The 1812 Overture and fireworks, as American as ... waitaminute

Every Fourth of July, Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture is heard all over the United States, timed to the burst of fireworks. How did this Russian composition, celebrating the Russian victory over the French in that War of 1812 (not the war between England and the US), become a staple of the United States' Independence Day celebrations? We can thank the Boston Pops. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Jul 3, 2014 - 29 comments

Bicycle Tours around the World in the 1890s

In 1891, William L. Sachtleben and Thomas G. Allen Jr. graduated from Washington University and set off to travel around the world. But their adventure was unusual for that time, in that they would travel on bicycle, following in the tire tracks of the Englishman Thomas Stevens. The two young lads returned safely to the US after three years, after traveling some 15,044 miles on wheel. Sachtleben was then asked to find another young traveling bicyclist (and photographer), Frank G. Lenz, whose goal was to surpass Stevens' journey "in both distance and daring." Lenz had disappeared in Turkey, where Sachtleben learned of Frank Lenz's untimely demise. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Jul 4, 2013 - 8 comments

"smoke can add an element of interest to the shot."

To get you ready for Independence Day, National Geographic has provided some useful tips for photographing fireworks, complete with a pretty gallery.
posted by quin on Jul 3, 2013 - 17 comments

America - Where Are You Now?

MONSTER is a 1969 song about America by Canadian band Steppenwolf. [more inside]
posted by philip-random on Jul 4, 2011 - 109 comments

Let Facts be submitted to a candid world

The Declaration of Independence is perhaps the most masterfully written state paper of Western civilization. As Moses Coit Tyler noted almost a century ago, no assessment of it can be complete without taking into account its extraordinary merits as a work of political prose style. Although many scholars have recognized those merits, there are surprisingly few sustained studies of the stylistic artistry of the Declaration. This essay seeks to illuminate that artistry by probing the discourse microscopically -- at the level of the sentence, phrase, word, and syllable. The University of Wisconsin's Dr. Stephen E. Lucas meticulously analyzes the elegant language of the 235-year-old charter in a distillation of this comprehensive study. More on the Declaration: full transcript and ultra-high-resolution scan, a transcript and scan of Jefferson's annotated rough draft, the little-known royal rebuttal, a thorough history of the parchment itself, a peek at the archival process, a reading of the document by the people of NPR and by a group of prominent actors, H. L. Mencken's "American" translation, Slate's Twitter summaries, and a look at the fates of the 56 signers.
posted by Rhaomi on Jul 4, 2011 - 72 comments

Super Jesus!!!

Jack English American presents I Hate Britain Day.
(Just pretend it's yesterday, ok? And ignore the Baywatch chick.) [more inside]
posted by miss lynnster on Jul 5, 2008 - 19 comments

A New World Is At Hand

These are the documents that started it all. The Charters of Freedom. As the USA celebrates another Independence Day, the National Archives presents the historical development of the Declaration, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights, and their impact upon the nation and the world.
posted by netbros on Jul 4, 2008 - 56 comments

Before or after you head out to the beach

Look, just take some time and read the Declaration of Independence and The Bill of Rights at the very least. Got sometime? Try the Articles of Confederation. Or the Constitution. Still with us? Then go hog wild.
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Jul 4, 2006 - 80 comments

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