Thursday, March 20, 2003

It's a good day for archeologists, historians, and urban anthropoligists. In Boston, preservationists have determined how the Union Oyster House acquired the characteristic bend in its structure. Turns out that the proprietor of a once-nearby candy needed to widen the street to accomodate carriage access to his building. The Union Oyster House bent to his will.

Meanwhile, an FBI sting snagged North Carolina's original bill of rights when a collector tried to sell it for $5 million. The historic document, actually worth about $20 million, was stolen by Union soldiers in 1865 and has been passed hand to hand since then.

And Spanish archivists have discovered almost 1,000 ancient Hebrew texts tucked into the covers of medieval books. Hidden inside about 165 books, the texts include fragments of the Torah, as well as wedding and business contracts. The son my my childhood piano teacher used to hide pages torn from pornographic magazines in the sleeves of record albums. I wonder if those documents have ever been found.

Just goes to show, as uncertain as the future might be, the past can only become more and more certain.

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