June 9, 2015 |
She was known variously as Alice, Alice of Dunk's Ferry, Black Alice, or Old Alice. She was a slave who lived at least 108 years - some say 116 - and saw three centuries. She never learned how to read or write, and never gained her freedom, but her head was filled with priceless memories. Alice could tell a story like no one else - whether it was about meeting William Penn, the founder of Pennsylvania; witnessing the early days of Philadelphia; or navigating boats between Dunk's Ferry - now Beverly - and what is now Bensalem.
June 1, 2015 |
Throughout Philadelphia's sports history, soccer has popped up sporadically, an invading virus that the city's natural indifference to the game typically manages to resist. Sometimes, as now with the Union, the outbreak is more severe. But mostly, like the rest of America, we've been immune to the sport that so infects the world. So it was jarring last week when news of a soccer-related scandal was stripped across The Inquirer's front page, even if this story's appeal was amorality and not athletics.
May 8, 2015 |
P.T. BARNUM never uttered the phrase, "There's a sucker born every minute. " Biographers pin it on a critic or a con man of his era, which sure seems to make more sense. To say such a thing would have been bad business, especially if, as the story goes, the famous promoter was trying to convince the public his fake petrified giant was the real thing and not a plaster-built copy of another fake petrified giant. Barnum eventually fessed up to avoid a lawsuit brought from the guy who owned the other fake.
April 11, 2015 |
One of the most important figures in the civil-rights movement was stopped from speaking at the historic March on Washington and has spent the last half-century in virtual obscurity. But a month before that 1963 march, it was Gloria Richardson, a full-time mother who kept guns in her house, seated next to U.S. Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy during the signing of the historic "Treaty of Cambridge. " As the leader of a group that became a national model for the likes of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference and the burgeoning black power movement, she was instrumental in brokering that agreement, which lay the groundwork for desegregation in an Eastern Shore town in Maryland.
February 17, 2015 |
* THE BOOK OF NEGROES. 8 tonight, tomorrow and Wednesday, BET. MINISERIES are back in vogue, commissioned by networks looking for event programming and headlined by big names who wouldn't think of committing to multiple seasons. Good as an "Olive Kitteridge" or a "Fargo" might be, they can feel, well, mini next to the blockbusters of the '70s and '80s - shows like "Roots," "The Winds of War" and "The Thorn Birds. " At six hours over three nights, BET's Canadian-produced "The Book of Negroes," which premieres tonight, is half the length of "Roots," but it's epic in scope, with a cast that includes Oscar winners Cuba Gooding Jr. and Louis Gossett Jr. (who, 38 years ago, co-starred in "Roots")
February 4, 2015 |
PHOENIX - Tom Brady always believed the Patriots would win Super Bowl XLIX, he said yesterday morning, in a croaking, scratchy voice that no doubt reflected a very long night of celebration. "Then they made that catch, and I had a little bit of doubt," Brady said at the morning-after news conference for the winning coach and Super Bowl MVP. "And then we made a great play. " Surely, as others have suggested, Brady will donate the MVP's Chevy pickup to Malcolm Butler, the undrafted rookie cornerback from West Alabama who stepped in front of Seattle wideout Ricardo Lockette on Butler's 18th defensive snap of the evening.
January 29, 2015 |
For most kids in the region, Tuesday's "snow day" was a perfect storm: A forecast bad enough to cancel classes, yet a dusting so mild that they could spend their unexpected holiday at the mall or the multiplex. But at Bryn Mawr's Baldwin School, it was an ideal day to stay inside the house and read the Chinese philosopher Confucius or sit at the computer coding new apps. In fact, they had no choice. That's because the Main Line girls' academy has replaced "snow days" with "cyber days" - alternative online learning on days when the local roads are deemed impassable but the Information Superhighway is wide open.
January 6, 2015
MY DAD, who was buried yesterday, died happy, but not satisfied. Happy for the gifts of family, good health, longevity and love, but not satisfied, because America had not achieved all she could. He believed that America's people deserve health care - the last crusade of his life - as they deserve, say, free education through college. Sydney Bernard Bykofsky, who spent 98 years among us, believed that every American deserves a job that pays at least a living wage, and that a rich America had no excuse to allow a child to go to bed hungry - anywhere . Since moving to Florida about 20 years ago, and acquiring a wardrobe as colorful as the Seychelles flag, Dad's single extravagance was leasing a new car every three years.
December 26, 2014 |
The Triumph of David was a mess. Old, original paint on the 17th-century canvas was faded and flaking in many spots. Newer paint from several inexpert restoration attempts had become discolored. Standing before the massive painting at Villanova University, art conservator Kristin deGhetaldi could tell all this with her experienced eye. But in order to bring the painting back to life, how could she tell where the old paint ended and the new paint began? The answer: a mix of art and science.
November 17, 2014 |
BRICK TOWNSHIP, N.J. - The remains of a shipwreck buried beneath 20 feet of sand recently unearthed by crews rebuilding a seawall in the Normandy Beach section of this Ocean County municipality may be a historically significant treasure. State archeologists will seek to determine whether a pile of timbers and a wooden, barrel-shaped windlass uncovered as workers tried to pound a steel beam into the sand - breaking the pile-driving equipment twice - are pieces of the 19th-century ship Ayreshire.