FC 75 Strong Boy with Christopher Klein

This week on Fieldstone Common our featured guest is Christopher Klein, author of the book Strong Boy: The Life and Times of John L. Sullivan, America’s First Sports Hero.

Bio – Christopher Klein

Christopher Klein is a history and travel writer and the author of two previous books, Discovering the Boston Harbor Islands: A Guide to the City’s Hidden Shores–which covers the rich history, recreational offerings, and heritage of each of the 34 islands that compose Strong Boy with Christopher Klein on Fieldstone Commonthe Boston Harbor Islands national park area–and The Die-Hard Sports Fan’s Guide to Boston.

A frequent contributor to The Boston Globe and History.com, he has also written for The New York Times, National Geographic Traveler, Harvard Magazine, Red Sox Magazine, ESPN.com, Smithsonian.com, and AmericanHeritage.com.

Christopher graduated summa cum laude and with honors from Drew University in Madison, New Jersey. He is a member of the Boston Authors Club and the American Society of Journalists and Authors.

You can learn more about Christopher Klein at his author website, www.ChristopherKlein.com and at his book website, www.strongboybook.com.
You can also follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

Book Summary

“I can lick any son-of-a-b— in the world.”

So boasted John L. Sullivan, the first modern heavyweight boxing champion of the world, a John L. Sullivan (Library of Congress photo)man who was the gold standard of American sport for more than a decade, and the first athlete to earn more than a million dollars. He had a big ego, big mouth, and bigger appetites. His womanizing, drunken escapades, and chronic police-blotter presence were godsends to a burgeoning newspaper industry. The larger-than-life boxer embodied the American Dream for late nineteenth-century immigrants as he rose from Boston’s Irish working class to become the most recognizable man in the nation. In the process, the “Boston Strong Boy” transformed boxing from outlawed bare-knuckle fighting into the gloved spectacle we know today.

Strong Boy tells the story of America’s first sports superstar, a self-made man who personified the power and excesses of the Gilded Age. Everywhere John L. Sullivan went, his fists backed up his bravado. Sullivan’s epic brawls, such as his 75-round bout against Jake Kilrain, and his cross-country barnstorming tour in which he literally challenged all of America to a fight are recounted in vivid detail, as are his battles outside the ring with a troubled marriage, wild weight and fitness fluctuations, and raging alcoholism. Strong Boy gives readers ringside seats to the colorful tale of one of the country’s first Irish-American heroes and the birth of the American sports media and the country’s celebrity obsession with athletes.

Book InfoStrong Boy with Christopher Klein on Fieldstone Common

Title: Strong Boy: The Life and Times of John L. Sullivan, America’s First Sports Hero

Publisher: Lyons Press (2013)

Hardcover; 353 pages with end notes, bibliography, an index and BxW photos.

Strong Boy: The Life and Times of John L. Sullivan, America’s First Sports Hero is available for purchase from Amazon.com and other booksellers.

The Interview

In this interview Chris and I talk about John L. Sullivan the son of a humble Irish immigrant family who went on to achieve sports super stardom in the realm of boxing. The Irish had a difficult time, first with the famine in Ireland and then later with prejudice in America. John L. Sullivan had a fighting aptitude for boxing at a time when the rules of boxing were changing.  Gone were the rules that allowed for barefisted fighting, hair pulling and wrestling. These were replaced with more civilized rules including the use of gloves and three-minute rounds.  With fame also came alcoholism and other vices for John L. Sullivan. Surprisingly after his retirement from boxing Sullivan continued to be a sought after star in the theatre and other areas.  In 1905 he gave up drinking and embraced the temperance movement.  Author Christoper Klein regards John L. Sullivan as America’s First Sports Hero.

Prize Winners

One copy of Strong Boy: The Life and Times of John L. Sullivan, America’s First Sports Hero was given out to the Fieldstone Common audience courtesy of Lyons Press.

The winner is: :

  • Bruce Longley of New York
  • Margaret Sullivan of Massachusetts

Congratulations to our winner and thanks to Lyons Press for their generosity in donating the book!

Make sure you qualify to win the giveaway next week by signing up for the Bonus List! Once you sign up your are in the running each week!

The Direct Link to this post is www.fieldstonecommon.com/strong-boy-christopher-klein

News & Announcements

BIG NEWS for Android users! Fieldstone Common is now available in the Android app Stitcher. Stitcher is a program like iTunes but is available on the Android platform. Download Stitcher and search for Fieldstone Common or click here.

Question: What’s that’s new stuff in the Fieldstone Common title (FC 75)?

Answer: That makes it easier, especially for iTunes and other podcast listeners, to keep track of which episode they are listening to. FC stands for Fieldstone Common and 75 is the number of the episode.

**** The new Fieldstone Common Season 2 subscription is now available in iTunes. You will need to subscribe to this link to continue receiving episodes in ITunes. Click on the link to subscribe.

For those of you who haven’t heard yet, Fieldstone Common is no longer broadcast on Blog Talk Radio. You can listen to the show by clicking the play button above or subscribing in iTunes or other podcatchers.

FC 66 A Discussion with Elizabeth Shown Mills

This week on Fieldstone Common our featured guest is Elizabeth Shown Mills, best known as the author of Evidence Explained. In this episode we will be having a discussion on slavery, race, research and writing centered on her two books, Isle of Canes and The Forgotten People which both focus on Cane River’s Creoles of Color.

Bio

Elizabeth Shown Mills is an internationally acclaimed historical researcher and writer who has spent her life studying American culture and the relationships between people–Elizabeth Shown Mills on Fieldstone Commonemotional as well as genetic. Featured on BBC, CNN, PBS, and other networks in the U.S., U.K., and Australia, she has been widely cited as “the genealogist who has had the most influence in the post-Roots era.”

Her 13 prize-winning books range from reference works such as Evidence Explained: Citing History Sources from Artifacts to Cyberspace to the historical novel, Isle of Canes, which chronicles a family of freed slaves across four generations, and is drawn from Mills’s own research in the archives of six nations. She is also the editor of Professional Genealogy: A Manual for Researchers, Writers, Editors, Lecturers, and Librarians.

In 2011, Elizabeth Shown Mills launched an academic website called Historic Pathways that houses digitized versions of articles she has published. The site broadcasts her fascinating and important work to a worldwide audience.

You can also follow Elizabeth on the Evidence Explained Facebook page and the Evidence Explained website.

Book Summary

Isle of Canes and The Forgotten People both focus on the Cane River’s Creoles of Color. The Isle of Canes is a fictional account and The Forgotten People is an academic work of non-fiction. Both provide and exceptional view into the lives and culture of the Creole people of Louisiana.

Book Info – The Forgotten PeopleThe Forgotten People by Elizabeth Shown Mills

Title: The Forgotten People: Cane River’s Creoles of Color

Publisher: Louisiana State University Press (Nov. 2013)

Trade paperback; 416 pages with bibliography, index, end notes and a photo essay.

The Forgotten People is available for purchase from Amazon.com and other booksellers.

Book Info – Isle of CanesIsle of Canes by Elizabeth Shown Mills

Title: Isle of Canes

Publisher: Turner Publishing (2006)

Trade paperback; 583 pages.

Isle of Canes is available for purchase from Amazon.com and other booksellers.

The Interview

In this interview we get into a discussion about the complexity of slavery, race, religion and culture and then segue that into a discussion about research and writing.

Prize Winners

Five books by Elizabeth Shown Mills were given out to the Fieldstone Common audience courtesy of the publishers – Turner Publishing, The Louisiana State University Press and the Genealogical Publishing Company.

The winners are:

The Forgotten People – Brenda Lybbert of Washington

Isle Canes – Lori Lynn Price of Massachusetts

Evidence Explained (3 winners)

  • Libbi Crowe of Florida
  • Crystal Cuelho of California
  • Bill Nelson of Massachusetts

Congratulations to our winners and thanks to Turner Publishing, The Louisiana State University Press and the Genealogical Publishing Company for their generosity in donating the books!

Make sure you qualify to win the giveaway next week by signing up for the Bonus List! Once you sign up your are in the running each week!

News & Announcements

BIG NEWS for Android users! Fieldstone Common is now available in the Android app Stitcher. Stitcher is a program like iTunes but is available on the Android platform. Download Stitcher and search for Fieldstone Common or click here.

Question: What’s that’s new stuff in the Fieldstone Common title (FC 66)?

Answer: That makes it easier, especially for iTunes and other podcast listeners, to keep track of which episode they are listening to. FC stands for Fieldstone Common and 63 is the number of the episode.

**** The new Fieldstone Common Season 2 subscription is now available in iTunes. You will need to subscribe to this link to continue receiving episodes in ITunes. Click on the link to subscribe.

For those of you who haven’t heard yet, Fieldstone Common is no longer broadcast on Blog Talk Radio. You can listen to the show by clicking the play button above or subscribing in iTunes or other podcatchers.

FC 060 Ocean-Born Mary with Jeremy D’Entremont

This week on Fieldstone Common our featured guest is Jeremy D’Entremont, author of the book Ocean-Born Mary: The Truth Behind a New Hampshire Legend.

Bio

Jeremy D’Entremont, author of Ocean-Born Mary, has been writing about and Ocean-Born Mary with Jeremy D'Entremont on Fieldstone Commonphotographing the lighthouses of New England since the mid-1980s. He’s the author of more than ten books and hundreds of articles on lighthouses and other maritime subjects. He’s the historian for the American Lighthouse Foundation, founder of Friends of Portsmouth Harbor Lighthouses, and the webmaster of New England Lighthouses: A Virtual Guide which can be found at www.newenglandlighthouses.net. He is also the owner and tour operator for New England Lighthouse Tours. Jeremy lives in Portsmouth, NH.

Book Summary

Ocean-born Mary with Jeremy D'Entremont on Fieldstone CommonMeet Mary: ocean-born and named by an infamous pirate. Her birth saved a group of Scottish immigrants aboard a ship bound for New England in 1720. Halfway through the grueling voyage, pirates intercepted and captured the vessel. Upon hearing a baby’s cry, the pirate captain promised to spare the lives of all on board if the mother named her newborn Mary, possibly after his beloved mother. The ship arrived safely in Massachusetts, and Mary lived most of her long life in Londonderry, New Hampshire. Discover the house in Henniker, New Hampshire, that Mary is said to haunt and where a pirate purportedly stashed his treasure. Historian Jeremy D’Entremont separates the facts from the fantastic legends shrouding one of New England’s most enduring folk tales.

Book Info

Title: Ocean-Born Mary: The Truth Behind a New Hampshire Legend

Publisher: The History Press (2011)

Trade paperback; 126 pages with an appendix, bibliography and some BxW photos and illustrations.

Ocean-Born Mary: The Truth Behind a New Hampshire Legend is available for purchase from Amazon.com and other booksellers.

The Interview

In this interview we dive into the original tale of Ocean-born Mary and follow the development of the tale in published forms through the years starting in the 1800s. In the 20th century a gentleman named Gussie Roy lived in Robert Wallace’s home which he called the Ocean-born Mary house. Gussie was responsible for many of the embellishments to the story. We also explore some ghost stories as well as the likelihood of which real life pirate was the inspiration for the tale.

Heather Rojo, President of the Londonderry, New Hampshire Historical Society, has written a blog post (with photos) about Ocean-Born Mary to coincide with the release of this interview. Stop by her blog and see some artifacts from Ocean-Born Mary herself!

Prize Winners

Two copies of Ocean-Born Mary were given out to the Fieldstone Common audience courtesy of the the History Press.

The winners are:

  • Peg Cronk of California
  • Linda Denton of Kentucky

Congratulations to our winners and thanks to the History Press for their generosity in donating the books!

Make sure you qualify to win the giveaway next week by signing up for the Bonus List! Once you sign up your are in the running each week!

News & Announcements

Question: What’s that’s new stuff in the Fieldstone Common title (FC 060)?

Answer: That makes it easier, especially for iTunes and other podcast listeners, to keep track of which episode they are listening to. FC stands for Fieldstone Common and 60 is the number of the episode.

**** The new Fieldstone Common Season 2 subscription is now available in iTunes. You will need to subscribe to this link to continue receiving episodes in ITunes. Click on the link to subscribe.

For those of you who haven’t heard yet, Fieldstone Common is no longer broadcast on Blog Talk Radio. You can listen to the show by clicking the link above or subscribing in iTunes or other podcatchers.

FC 058 Discovering Black Vermont with Elise Guyette

This week on Fieldstone Common our featured guest is Elise Guyette, author of the book Discovering Black Vermont: African American Farmers in Hinesburgh, 1790-1890.

Discovering Black Vermont with Elise Guyette on Fieldstone CommonBio

ELISE A. GUYETTE, Ed.D., is a historian active in efforts to develop Vermont’s diversity curriculum in K–12 schools.

Book Summary

Vermont is often regarded as the “whitest” US state. Dig a little deeper and you will realize that Vermont is steeped in the history of many cultures including African Americans. Discovering Black Vermont traces three generations of free blacks who built a life farming in northern Vermont. By using historical records, Elise Guyette pieces together this forgotten piece of history.

Fieldstone Common host Marian Pierre-Louis and Elise Guyette dig into what life was like for these families starting with their arrival in Vermont in the 1790s.

Book InfoDiscovering Black Vermont with Elise Guyette on Fieldstone Common

Title: Discovering Black Vermont: African American Farmers in Hinesburgh, 1790-1890
Publisher: University Press of New England (2010)
Trade Paperback; 213 pages with end notes, bibliography, index and some BxW photos  and illustrations.

Discovering Black Vermont is available for purchase from Amazon.com and other booksellers.

Prize Winners

Two copies of Discovering Black Vermont were given out to the Fieldstone Common audience courtesy of the University Press of New England.

The winners were:

  • Kyle Johnson of Massachusetts
  • Elroy Davis of Vermont

Congratulations to our winners and thanks to the University Press of New England for their generosity in donating the books!

Make sure you qualify to win the giveaway next week by signing up for the Bonus List! Once you sign up your are in the running each week!

News & Announcements

Question: What’s that’s new stuff in the Fieldstone Common title (FC 058)?

Answer: That makes it easier, especially for iTunes and other podcast listeners, to keep track of which episode they are listening to. FC stands for Fieldstone Common and 58 is the number of the episode.

**** The new Fieldstone Common Season 2 feed is now available in iTunes. You will need to subscribe to this link to continue receiving episodes in ITunes. Click on the link to subscribe.

For those of you who haven’t heard yet, Fieldstone Common is no longer broadcast on Blog Talk Radio. You can listen to the show by clicking the link above or subscribing in iTunes or other podcatchers.

Discovering Black Vermont with Elise Guyette

Next episode: Thursday, 26 September 2013Discovering Black Vermont with Elise Guyette on Fieldstone Common

This week on Fieldstone Common, Marian Pierre-Louis interviews Elise Guyette, author of Discovering Black Vermont.

An impressive work of historical recovery, Discovering Black Vermont tells the story of three generations of free blacks trying to build a life and community in northern Vermont in the years following statehood. By piecing together fragments of the history of free blacks in Vermont–tax and estate records, journals, diaries, and the like–the author recovers what is essentially a lost world, establishing a framework for using primary sources to document a forgotten past. The book is an invaluable resource for those conducting local history research and will serve as inspiration for high school and college students and their teachers.

Discovering Black Vermont with Elise Guyette on Fieldstone CommonWhen she was in 4th grade, Elise A. Guyette discovered that her people, French-Canadian, Lebanese, and Irish, were left out of her Vermont history text. When she began teaching, she was given the same little green textbook to teach her first students. It reminded her of the sting of being overlooked and, as a result, she has spent her adult life in pursuit of stories omitted from traditional histories. Guyette is an historian, writer, and educational consultant, who is a part-time faculty member at the University of Vermont. She has taught history workshops for teachers throughout the United States, and in China and South Africa. Her publications include the textbook, Vermont: A Cultural Patchwork; a teacher’s guide for Making a Living: The Work Experiences of African Americans in New England; Gandhi in South Africa: A Perfect Miracle or Political Expediency; and Behind the White Veil: A History of Vermont’s Ethnic Groups in Many Cultures, One People: A Multicultural Handbook for Teachers. Her newest book tells the history of the United States in microcosm from 1790 to 1890, from the viewpoint of African American farmers in northern Vermont.

 

Show Notes: The Philadelphia Nativists Riots with Kenneth Milano

The Philadelphia Nativist Riots with Kenneth Milano on Fieldstone CommonHere are some items that were mentioned during the 19 September 2013 Fieldstone Common interview with Kenneth W. Milano about his book The Philadelphia Nativist Riots: Irish Kensington.

The podcast of the interview is now available.

The Philadelphia Nativist Riots, published by the History Press, is available for purchase from Amazon.com and other booksellers.

Kenneth W, MilanoThe Nativists were an anti-immigrant group in mid 19th-century America who particularly channeled their hostility against Irish Catholic immigrants. In Philadelphia in 1844 that hostility erupted into a 3 day riot in the Kensington section of the city.

You can learn more about Ken at his website.

Kenneth Milano has written six books including:

In addition to being an author, Ken Milano is also a professional genealogist who focuses on Philadelphia. If you have ancestors from the Philadelphia area you can contact Ken for more information from his website.

The History Press, the publisher of all of Ken’s books, donated two copies of The Philadelphia Nativist Riots which were provided as giveaways during the live show to listeners in Michigan and New Hampshire. A big thank you to the History Press for their generosity.

 

The Philadelphia Nativist Riots with Kenneth Milano

The Philadelphia Nativist Riots with Kenneth Milano on Fieldstone CommonLIVE: THURSDAY, 19 September 2013 at 1:00pm EDT

This week on Fieldstone Common, Marian Pierre-Louis interviews Kenneth Milano, author of The Philadelphia Nativist Riots.

The outskirts of Philadelphia seethed with tension in the spring of 1844. By May 6, the situation between the newly arrived Irish Catholics and members of the anti-immigrant Nativist Party took an explosively violent turn. When the Irish asked to have their children excused from reading the Protestant version of the Bible in local public schools, the nativists held a protest. The Irish pushed back. For three days, riots scorched the streets of Kensington. Though the immigrants first had the upper hand, the nativists soon put the community to the torch. Those who fled were shot. Two Catholic churches burned to the ground, along with several blocks of houses, stores, a nunnery and a Catholic school. Local historian Kenneth W. Milano traces this tumultuous history from the preceding hostilities through the bloody skirmishes and finally to the aftermath of arrests and trials. Discover a remarkably intimate and compelling view of the riots with stories of individuals on both sides of the conflict that rocked Kensington.

The Philadelphia Nativist Riots with Kenneth Milano on Fieldstone CommonKenneth W. Milano is a historical & genealogical researcher. He was born and raised in the Kensington neighborhood of Philadelphia. Milano received his degree in History from Temple University. His 2006-2011 column “The Rest is History” is well remembered by readers of Star Newspapers. He is one of the founders of the Kensington History Project.

 

Show Notes – The 1919 Boston Police Strike

Here are some items that were mentioned during the 22 August 2013 Fieldstone Common interview with author James Redfearn where we discussed the the Boston Police Strike of 1919.

The podcast of the interview is now available.

James Redfearn is the author of the historical novel The Rising at Roxbury Crossing, The Rising at Roxbury Crossing by James Redfearnpublished by Olde Stoney Brook Publishing. It is available for purchase from Amazon.com and other booksellers.

You can learn more about Jim at his website or his Facebook page. He also has a page on Goodreads.com.

During the show we discussed the history of the 1919 strike. While the strike may have been local to Boston, the tensions that led up to it were national. This was a turbulent post-war time that included the rise of the labor movement, the women’s suffrage movement, The Red Scare, high unemployment and soldiers coming home to bleak job prospects.

The Boston Police were working extremely long hours, earning a wage that kept them in poverty, and had an outdated, bug-infested work environment. Add to the mix that much of the police force were Irish Catholics, many of them immigrants. There was great tension James Redfearnbetween them and upper class Boston Brahmin community which wanted to keep them from gaining power.

Jim discussed how he approached researching the historical event and then transformed it into a work of fiction.

Jim donated two copies of The Rising at Roxbury Crossing which were provided as giveaways during the live show to listeners both of whom were from Florida. A big thank you to Jim for his generosity.

The 1919 Boston Police Strike with James Redfearn

LIVE: THURSDAY, 22 August 2013 at 1:00pm EDT

This week on Fieldstone Common, Marian Pierre-Louis interviews author James Redfearn James Redfearnabout the 1919 Boston Police Strike.

Leading up to 1919 the Boston Police were working long hours for very little pay. In the post WWI era America was rocked by instability, the growth of the labor and suffrage movement and the Red Scare. The mostly Irish police force was at odds with the Brahmin state leaders. The showdown led to chaos on the streets of Boston and helped pave the way for Calvin Coolidge, then governor of Massachusetts, to the White House.

We’ll talk about how James Redfearn researched the historical event for use in his novel, The Rising and Roxbury Crossing.

James Redfearn, author of the Irish American historical saga, The Rising at Roxbury Crossing, has been an industrial-commercial photographer, a Massachusetts State The Rising at Roxbury Crossing by James RedfearnTrooper and an investigator for a Boston law firm. He graduated from Harvard University with an ALM in Literature and Creative Writing. His stories have been published in the University’s Charles River Review and the New England Writers Network. He was raised in the Mission Hill neighborhood of Boston and now resides with his wife, Gail, west of the city where he enjoys his four children and eight grandchildren.

In 1971, he began a twenty-one year career with the State Police, serving as a patrol officer, criminal investigator and academy instructor. He has lectured on investigative research methods at national Law Enforcement conferences.

Jim has also been an Assistant to the President of a Massachusetts health care system, an investigator for the Boston law firm, Choate, Hall & Stewart and an industrial-commercial photographer for Edgerton, Germeshausen & Grier, a company specializing in nuclear testing, marine studies and high-speed photography.

 

Show Notes: Connecticut’s Indigenous Peoples with Lucianne Lavin

Connecticut's Indigenous Peoples with Lucianne Lavin on Fieldstone CommonHere are some items that were mentioned during the 1 August 2013 Fieldstone Common interview with Lucianne Lavin about her book Connecticut’s Indigenous Peoples: What Archeology, History, and Oral Traditions Teach Us About Their Communities and Their Cultures.

The podcast of the interview is now available.

Listen to internet radio with Fieldstone Common on BlogTalkRadio

You can learn more about Lucianne Lavin and her work at the Institute for American Indian Studies Museum and Research Center website. The museum is located in Washington, Connecticut and is open to visitors. It also has many exhibits and educational programs.

Lucianne recommends that anyone interested in archaeology learn about standard methodology and techniques. One suggestion would be to get involved with your state archaeology office.  If you are located in Connecticut you can check out the Connecticut Office of State Archaeology.

Also, check local community colleges for archaeology programs. The Norwalk Community College in Norwalk, Connecticut has a certificate program in archaeology as an avocation.

Yale University Press, the publisher of Connecticut’s Indigenous Peoples: What Archeology, History, and Oral Traditions Teach Us About Their Communities and Their Cultures, donated two copies of the book which were provided as giveaways during the live show to listeners in New York and Rhode Island. A big thank you to the Yale University Press for their generosity.