Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations
Support NHPR's local journalism that brings clarity, context, and community!

7.05.15: Celebrating the American Legacy

Logan Shannon for NHPR

Historians often interpret the Civil War in terms of important battles, and number of lives lost. But what about  food? Today, we explore a history of the war through the lens of a cookbook. Then, a man who decided to do what nobody has done in more than a century ... cross the Oregon Trail in a covered wagon. Finally, the 4th of July marks the annual Mountain Men Revival in Pinedale, Wyoming. There, dozens of rugged-looking men wearing animal skins shake off the yoke of civilization, tether their horses to trees, make camp, and join others over grilled buffalo meat.

Listen to the full show. 

The Civil War...and Food

Helen Zoe Veit is the editor of Food In The Civil War Era: The South, and she joined us to talk about what food can reveal about the people and cultures it feeds.

You can find a link to a delicious mock apple pie recipehere!

The Civil War...and Food

Crossing the Oregon Trail

Journalist and author Rinker Buck did what no one else had done in more than a century: cross the Oregon Trail in a covered wagon. He talked with us about his new book, The Oregon Trail: A New American Journey, part history, part travelogue, and part family memoir.

Crossing The Oregon Trail

The True History of the Pony Express

Eric Mennel gives us a history of the Pony Express ... which, as it turns out, wasn't incredibly successful, and only lasted for a year and a half.

You can listen to the story again at

Mountain Men

David Burnettauthored “Photographing the Revival of the American Mountain Man”for National Geographic. He spent two years among members of the American Mountain Men, documenting a group bent on preserving the art of survival, self-reliance, and a way of life long since passed.  

Mountain Men

David Burnett: @natgeo @thephotosociety from an upcoming story for National Geographic Magazine, a snowy winter camp in the California mountains with members of the American Mountain Men association, who live life as it might have been in the era of #beavertrapping in the northwestern US. Steve Hill, Larry Walker, and Ken Shelton carry period clothes, muskets, and everyday gear ( flint and steel to make fire, but no matches). Shot on film with vintage #Speedgraphic 4x5 camera. A photo posted by DavidBurnett (@davidb383) on Apr 16, 2013 at 9:24pm PDT

Related Content

You make NHPR possible.

NHPR is nonprofit and independent. We rely on readers like you to support the local, national, and international coverage on this website. Your support makes this news available to everyone.

Give today. A monthly donation of $5 makes a real difference.