B is for Banana Beer
My favorite post is What's Cooking at the Archives: Good to the Last Drop by Jennifer Murray of the National Anthropological Archives. It combines some of my favorite subjects: food culture, fermentation, and beer. Jennifer's fascinating explanation of the process, in addition to the selected scans of Ethel Mary Albert's slides of beer making in Burundi, Africa, make this post stand out for me. It has certainly made me think twice before claiming I've made anything "from scratch." It reminds me of something Carl Sagan wrote in his book Cosmos: "If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe." To make banana beer from scratch, you must first place "ripening bananas in a pit heated with smoke for no less than five days." The next time I buy a head of cabbage, slice it, salt it, and throw it in a store-bought crock to ferment for a month (without any help from me), I'll try to refrain from feeling smug about my DIY ethic.
-- Cecilia Peterson, Ralph Rinzler Folklife Archives and Special Collections
C is for Capeless Crusaders
D is for Double Dutch
-- Lorain Wang, National Anthropological Archives
F is for Fine Facial Hair
A quick but entertaining read, my favorite post is Cecilia Peterson’s Sneak Peek from the Stacks highlighting the creative facial hair of folk singer Bob Ross. I think this was first posted on an afternoon in the middle of what was turning into a long week. Cecilia’s post was a nice break from the day since the attached links gave me a chance to check out the Smithsonian Folkways website.
-- Rachel Brooks, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Photograph Archives
M is for Morris and Marcella
I nominate Morris Louis: Looking Through the Eyes of Love. It's a great human interest story about a somewhat enigmatic artist. True stories about artists in love are pretty irresistible.
-- David Haberstich, National Museum of American History - Archives Center
S is for Soft Drink Slang
My favorite post is I Call it Pop, You call it Soda by Kayla Burns, a former Archives of American Gardens intern. We asked Kayla to write a post that would explain “public tagging” to those new to the subject and this was the result. To date, it is one of the Top Ten most read posts on the blog! Since Kayla’s original posting, the Archives of American Gardens has made a big push to encourage people to tag select images in the collection starting with last October’s hugely successful “Take Ten Minutes to Tag” initiative for American Archives Month.
-- Kelly Crawford, Archives of American Gardens