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Cliopatria Awards

Tags: First Annual Montgomery Burns Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Excellence.

I’ve been remiss in mentioning that Cliopatria is hosting the inaugural Cliopatria Awards for history blogging and history writing in the blogosphere. Nominations are invited in six categories: Best Group Blog, Best Individual Blog, Best Newcomer, Best Post, Best Series of Posts, and Best Writing.

Nominations are open until the end of November. (The winners will be chosen by a shadowy bearded cabal.) Since the nominations can be read in the comments of each of the above posts, they also serve as handy one-stop shopping for a lot of the best history writing in Blogistan.

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Too Much History

Tags: The 11th day of the 11th month.

It was during that minute in Nineteen Hundred and Eighteen that millions upon millions of human beings stopped butchering one another. I have talked to old men who were on battlefields during that minute. They have told me in one way or another that the sudden silence was the voice of God. So we still have among us some men who can remember when God spoke clearly to mankind.
—Kurt Vonnegut, Breakfast of Champions

Today is of course Remembrance Day, or Armistice Day, or Veterans’ Day, the 87th anniversary of the armistice ending the First World War. Last year on this day, I posted about my grandfather, killed in action in Italy in 1944. I followed up a few days later with more details. Also on this day in 1831, Nat Turner was executed in Virginia. Last Saturday was Guy Fawkes Day, the 400th anniversary of the Gunpowder Plot. Yesterday, November 10, was the 230th birthday of the United States Marine Corps, the 30th anniversary of the wreck of the SS Edmund Fitzgerald, and the sixth anniversary of the day I met my wife. Today is the sixth anniversary of the first time I asked my wife to go out with me, and my third anniversary of fairly continuous blogging. My point? I don’t know. The earth keeps going round the sun. The vast and the terrible and the epoch-making jostle for our attention with the personal and the small. We never get free of history, yet we never stop making more. Like donuts.