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Posts tagged: History

Two important new Hanford books

Here are two new books about a crucial and controversial issue in our region:

  •  “Atomic Frontier Days: Hanford and the American West” (University of Washington Press, $24.95), by John M. Findlay and Bruce Hevly. The authors tell the complex and fascinating story of Hanford’s atomic legacy. It was a vast area of sagebrush which was converted overnight during World War II to a super-secret federal bomb-building facility. Our region is still dealing with many Hanford-related issues today – environmental, political and socialOne reviewer has already called it “a must-read for anyone interested and concerned about this nation’s nuclear legacy.” Both authors are history professors at the University of Washington. Findlay specializes in the Northwest and the American West, and Hevly specializes in the history of science and technology. They “offer perspective on today’s controversies,” according to the publisher. It was just released this month and you can find it at local bookstores, online or here. .
  • “Made in Hanford: The Bomb That Changed the World” (Washington State University Press, $22.95) by Hill Williams. Williams, a former science writer for the Seattle Times, is particularly well-suited to this subject. His father was editor of the Pasco Herald during World War II – and one of the few people in on part of the secret. Williams went on to write about Hanford and other nuclear issues for the Seattle Times. He also had access to the personal diaries of one of Hanford’s key figures. The book combines his personal story with detailed scientific and historic research. You should be able to find it at local bookstores and online or at wsupress.wsu.edu.

A Tunstall lecture on World War I

Graydon “Jack” Tunstall will deliver a lecture titled “History's Forgotten Fallen: The Eastern Front in World War I,” at Gonzaga University tonight (Wednesday) at 6 p.m.

This is Gonzaga's Alphonse & Geraldine Arnold Lecture in the Humanities. Tunstall is a professor at the University of South Florida and the author of four books about the Eastern Front in World War I.

It's at the Jepson Center's Wolff Auditorium and the lecture is free and open to the public.

A WWII radioman’s ‘tower’ of power

Here’s a local development that illustrates the power of a book: On Dec. 22, the tower at Spokane International Airport was officially named the Ray Daves Air Traffic Control Tower.

And it all came about because of the 2008 book “Radioman: An Eyewitness Account of Pearl Harbor and World War II in the Pacific” (Thomas Dunne Books/St. Martin’s Press) by Carol Hipperson, a Spokane author.

“Radioman” is about Ray Daves, a local Pearl Harbor survivor. His story resonated with the air traffic controllers at the airport, who started a drive to name the tower after their fellow radioman.

It wasn’t easy. In fact, it took an act of Congress. But they persevered, and the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate came on board. On Dec. 22, President Obama signed a bill officially naming the tower after Daves.

And on Feb. 25, Daves and Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, who sponsored the legislation, will be at the tower for a dedication ceremony.

“It’s about the power of a book,” said Hipperson. “You could even refer to it as a ‘concrete example.’”

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