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The importance of context

While walking through the city a month or so ago, I was stopped in my tracks by an unassuming sign: Shands Lane. For me, this small sign captured much of what is difficult about protecting, preserving and remembering our past in an urban environment. The sign refers to an early 1860s building popularly known as …

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The children of Cora Villa

It’s an oft repeated phrase that children are frequently difficult to see in the historical record. Other than records of births, deaths and unfortunate accidents, children – that is, the lives of individual children, named and known – are far more scarcely represented than their grown-up counterparts. The antics of children, seen through the lens …

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The librarian’s house

Libraries are a gift. There is something magical about their existence; about the otherwise ordinary rooms and halls transformed by the books that amass on shelves and displays; a congregation of knowledge in a single space that somehow feels bigger than its physical reality. They’re places that represent more than the sum of their parts, …

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