Why Was Life So Hard for the Pilgrims?
The Pilgrims and other early colonists arrived in a land of plenty. Why did so many die so soon?
by Verlyn Klinkenborg
Scary John Brown
150 years after the start of the Civil War, we’re still mulling the morality of the man who lit the fuse
by Tony Horwitz
Hard Times in the Big Easy
Peter Sekaer’s photos of New Orleans in the Great Depression still reek of grit and glory
by Claudia Glenn Dowling
Mae West’s Secret of Success
Can we thank the bombshell from Brooklyn for Madonna and Lady Gaga?
by Peter Carlson
What Are Lincoln’s Words Worth?
Enough to update a Victorian-era library for 21st-century visitors
by Jan Smith
The Father of the Constitution also sired the divisive politics we know today
by Richard Brookhiser
H.L. Hunley rolls over; Yosemite’s beef with Mother Nature; Civil War vets ID’d; Thomas Edison played with dolls; and more
The Big Picture
A shrinking middle class
We’ve Been Here Before
Can Michele Bachmann break a century-old political curse?
Gorgeous George schools Cassius Clay in the art of self-promotion
A Billy the Kid tintype that sold for $2.3 million
Sam Wineburg tells how history should be taught
Letter From American History
So many lost colonies
Indian resistance in the Pacific Northwest; Ulysses Grant’s heroic last stand; entrepreneurs who went for broke (and got there)
From America’s Attic
Could Ike hit a 3-iron?