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Civil War in the West, Mary Chesnut, Civil War Photos, Ginseng, Plate Tectonics

Constant Wonder
  • Feb 24, 2020
  • 01:41:07

How the Civil War Affected the American West Guest: Megan Kate Nelson, author, "The Three-Cornered War: The Union, the Confederacy, and Native Peoples in the Fight for the West"  The Civil War didn't just impact the East—it also affected the development of the Western United States. People often forget that before the Civil War, the US was engaged in a massive effort to expand its borders. The Union and the Confederacy competed for control of the Western territories during the Civil War.  Mary Chesnut Diary Guest: Catherine Clinton, Professor, American History, University of Texas at San Antonio, and editor, "Diary of Mary Chesnut" Mary Chesnut was a Civil War diarist and a South Carolina belle from a prominent family. She was firmly committed to the South, but she was also a witty, highly educated feminist with no fondness for slavery. Civil War Photo Sleuth Guest: Kurt Luther, Assistant Professor, Computer Science, and Director, Crowd Intelligence Lab, Virginia Tech They say a photo is worth a thousand words. But if we don't know who the people in the photo are, do we lose their words, their stories? We talk to a computer scientist who uses crowdsourcing to identify Civil War soldiers. Ginseng, the Divine Root Guest: David Taylor, author, "Ginseng, the Divine Root: The Curious History Of The Plant That Captivated The World" Ginseng was the first major export from the US to China. It's not easily cultivated, so most ginseng is harvested from forests. Interestingly, the US has seen a ginseng rush, and people today are still prosecuted for illegal ginseng poaching. The history of ginseng goes all the way back to Pangea, which is why one of China's favorite herbs is also plentiful in the US. Plate Tectonics Guest: Ron Harris, Professor, Geological Sciences, Brigham Young University We live in a moving world—not even the rocks under our feet are fixed. The beauty and drama of tectonic plates. Show More...

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