History of the City of New York in the Seventeenth Century: Volume 1

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Cosimo, Inc.
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Jan 1, 2013
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Although he was known in his own time as a leader of the so-called Romanesque Revival, the American architect Henry Hobson Richardson (1838-86) is today regarded as one of the pioneers of modern architecture — a man who, in the words of Lewis Mumford, “created out of a confusion which was actually worse than a mere void the beginnings of a new architecture.”
This appreciative presentation of his life and work, first published two years after Richardson’s death, is the foundation of all research on the subject; it includes plans, photographs, and detailed discussions of all of Richardson’s major buildings — churches, commercial and civic structures, railroad stations, libraries, dwelling houses and other forms of architecture in American cities and towns from Boston to St. Louis. These buildings reveal the qualities in Richardson’s work that made him both a prophet of culture and a remnant of the past — his assimilation of the Romanesque style, the functional disposition of the parts in his buildings and expressive use of materials, and especially the use of the windows as an integral part of the interior development rather than of the façade alone.
The author begins with Richardson’s biography — his family background, his childhood in Louisiana, his studies at Harvard and at L’École des Beaux Arts in Paris, his professional establishment, first in New York and then in Brookline, Massachusetts, and his public and personal life. This section includes many extensive quotations from Richardson’s letters and from the writings of friends.
The remaining two thirds of the book are taken up with examinations of Richardson’s work. There are chapters on his early work (with detailed attention to his first commission, the Church of the Unity in Springfield, Massachusetts); his first great work, Trinity Church in Boston; works of middle life, such as the Cheney Building in Hartford and Harvard’s Sever Hall; the New York State Capitol in Albany; Albany City Hall, the Harvard Law School, and other works of his later years; the Pittsburgh Courthouse and his plans for the proposed Albany Cathedral; the Field Building in Chicago and the Cincinnati Chamber of Commerce; railroad stations and dwelling houses in Washington, St. Louis, Chicago, Buffalo, and many smaller cities. After appreciative chapters on Richardson’s characteristics as an artist and his methods of teaching, the book concludes with an appraisal of his influence on the architectural profession and on the public.
The #1 New York Times bestseller from David McCullough, two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize—the dramatic story-behind-the-story about the courageous brothers who taught the world how to fly—Wilbur and Orville Wright.

On a winter day in 1903, in the Outer Banks of North Carolina, two brothers—bicycle mechanics from Dayton, Ohio—changed history. But it would take the world some time to believe that the age of flight had begun, with the first powered machine carrying a pilot.

Orville and Wilbur Wright were men of exceptional courage and determination, and of far-ranging intellectual interests and ceaseless curiosity. When they worked together, no problem seemed to be insurmountable. Wilbur was unquestionably a genius. Orville had such mechanical ingenuity as few had ever seen. That they had no more than a public high school education and little money never stopped them in their mission to take to the air. Nothing did, not even the self-evident reality that every time they took off, they risked being killed.

In this “enjoyable, fast-paced tale” (The Economist), master historian David McCullough “shows as never before how two Ohio boys from a remarkable family taught the world to fly” (The Washington Post) and “captures the marvel of what the Wrights accomplished” (The Wall Street Journal). He draws on the extensive Wright family papers to profile not only the brothers but their sister, Katharine, without whom things might well have gone differently for them. Essential reading, this is “a story of timeless importance, told with uncommon empathy and fluency…about what might be the most astonishing feat mankind has ever accomplished…The Wright Brothers soars” (The New York Times Book Review).
Twenty-five years after its initial publication, The Making of the Atomic Bomb remains the definitive history of nuclear weapons and the Manhattan Project. From the turn-of-the-century discovery of nuclear energy to the dropping of the first bombs on Japan, Richard Rhodes’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book details the science, the people, and the socio-political realities that led to the development of the atomic bomb.

This sweeping account begins in the 19th century, with the discovery of nuclear fission, and continues to World War Two and the Americans’ race to beat Hitler’s Nazis. That competition launched the Manhattan Project and the nearly overnight construction of a vast military-industrial complex that culminated in the fateful dropping of the first bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Reading like a character-driven suspense novel, the book introduces the players in this saga of physics, politics, and human psychology—from FDR and Einstein to the visionary scientists who pioneered quantum theory and the application of thermonuclear fission, including Planck, Szilard, Bohr, Oppenheimer, Fermi, Teller, Meitner, von Neumann, and Lawrence.

From nuclear power’s earliest foreshadowing in the work of H.G. Wells to the bright glare of Trinity at Alamogordo and the arms race of the Cold War, this dread invention forever changed the course of human history, and The Making of The Atomic Bomb provides a panoramic backdrop for that story.

Richard Rhodes’s ability to craft compelling biographical portraits is matched only by his rigorous scholarship. Told in rich human, political, and scientific detail that any reader can follow, The Making of the Atomic Bomb is a thought-provoking and masterful work.
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