76 Chapters
Medium 9780253337566

An Entry to History

Henry Glassie Indiana University Press ePub

I discovered history in houses. In 1966, I selected a small area in the middle of Virginia for study. A wide, loose survey convinced me that the area would make a good sample of the large architectural region of the Chesapeake Bay. Acting happily within the frame for research crafted by my mentor Fred Kniffen, I intended to depict the geographical personality of the region through its buildings. I made a quick record of every house and drew careful measured plans of many. Old houses dutifully exhibited a distinct regional character, but the more I analyzed them, the more I felt that the big story was historical change. My training in social science, in days dominated by synchronic systematizing, did little to prepare me for the job at hand.

Houses spoke of history. The old house had a square hall with a narrower parlor built on its end. The front door gave access immediately to the interior, and it was set a touch off center to expose the internal workings to view. With one step, the visitor enters the hall, then turns toward the fire where the work of cooking and entertainment takes place.

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Medium 9780253016706

Conclusion: The Remains of the Past, A Look toward the Future

Noga Kadman Indiana University Press ePub

THE LOWER GALILEE VILLAGE of Saffuriyya had over four thousand residents in 1948. In July of that year the village came under aerial bombardment and artillery attack by the IDF, which led most of its residents to flee, including the village’s armed defenders. The following year the villagers who remained were expelled. Some of the village refugees today live in nearby villages, and others live beyond Israel’s borders, mostly in Lebanon.1 The houses of the village were razed to the ground, and only a few public buildings remain. In 1949 a moshav was established next to the village site, on its land, by Jewish immigrants from Turkey and Bulgaria. A forest was planted over part of the village site by the Jewish National Fund. The rest was declared a national park by the Nature and Parks Authority, with the aim of preserving the site’s ancient history and the traces of the Jewish center that had existed there in the Roman period.

The official name given to the site where Saffuriyya stood was Tzipori—the ancient name of the place, preserved in the Arabic variant. The same name was also given to the Jewish moshav built nearby. The official Israeli map shows the village site with marks signifying a ruin and ruined houses, and a caption—Tzipori National Park. The signage at the JNF forest on the site mentions a convent that remains from the village, but not the village itself. The national park signs refer to the remains of the village and describe it as “small and miserable” for most of its days. The text is oblique as to the circumstances of the village’s depopulation, stating curtly that the village was conquered and “ceased to exist,” and that its residents “moved out.” The information leaflet handed to the park’s visitors speaks of the village only in the context of battles and conquest. It says that “gangs” inhabited the village, and that it was later conquered and “abandoned by its dwellers.” A publication by moshav Tzipori describes its own establishment as a revival of the local Jewish community on the site, after temporarily providing a home to Muslims who brought about its decline. The Arabic name of the village is absent from the text, which states that the village was conquered after its residents “ran for their lives.”

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The U. S. in the Nineteenth Century

Henry Glassie Indiana University Press ePub

Returning to the American story, we can envision a moment of unity, the most coherent instant in American history, when after the Revolution segmentable houses with symmetrical facades and closed interiors could be found from one end of the new nation to the other. That is as modern as things ever got.

In his excellent introduction to American architecture, Dell Upton comments correctly that the nineteenth century has been studied less well than the centuries that precede and follow it. One reason is that scholars seem to believe that the directions apparent in the eighteenth century continue through the nineteenth. Another is that, with the nineteenth century, there is a sudden flood of paper with words printed on it, and historians can relax at home, reading written texts that are easy to understand instead of the architectural texts that give them fits. But there is absolutely no alternative to fieldwork, to direct and patient study of real buildings in great numbers. The written texts of the nineteenth century are pertinent, but, alas, the story conveniently constructed out of them violently misrepresents the reality.

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Medium 9780253011428

1. Placemaking and Embodied Space

Edited by Arijit Sen and Lisa Silverman Indiana University Press ePub

SETHA LOW

Within the field of space and culture there has been increasing interest in theories that include the body and walking as bodily movement as integral parts of spatial analysis. These concerns have been addressed partially through the historical analysis of the docile body to social structure and power in work of Michel Foucault, and sociologically in the notions of habitus by Pierre Bourdieu and “structuration” by Anthony Giddens, as well as the works of many others.1 Nonetheless, many researchers, architects, and landscape practitioners need theoretical formulations that provide an everyday material grounding and experiential, cognitive, and/or emotional understanding of the intersection and interpenetration of body, space, and culture.2 I call this material and experiential intersection “embodied space.” These understandings require theories of body and space that are experience-near and yet allow for linkages to be made to larger social and political processes.

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Medium 9780253010469

8 Passing Through: Historic Preservation in Pike County’s Patoka Bottoms

Nancy R Hiller Quarry Books ePub

Edith Sarra

The place was, and still is, south of where county roads 300 West and 200 South intersect, approximately eleven miles below Petersburg in Pike County, Indiana. If you were to turn west from State Road 57 onto County Road 200 South, just north of the Gibson County line, and follow that road until you reach the first crossroads, you could turn again, south this time, and find yourself, as I did ten years ago, on what the late nineteenth-century histories of Pike and Gibson Counties call “the old state road.”

The origin of this road is difficult to pinpoint. A survey of Pike County Commissioners Reports (1817–1826) suggests it may have been constructed as early as 1825. For more than a century, until it was bypassed in 1936 by State Road 57, it served as the main route between Petersburg, the Pike County seat, and what is now Oakland City in eastern Gibson County. Follow this road south and it will plunge you soon enough into a wide floodplain flanked on either side by crop fields. An old set of oil well storage tanks stands off to the left here, just beyond where the road makes a short switchback along the bluff as it drops into the broad valley of the Patoka River’s South Fork.

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