What types of news do we share when gathering together? Acquaintances and strangers talk about whatever drew them together, a lecture, a movie, or an event. Friends talk about family, births, and celebrations, while families talk about family members, catching up on births, marriages, and deaths. A common thread may be our families, but weather still remains the most popular topic of conversation.
Here's a bit of news from 1635 that will delight the genealogist and historian in us all. I came across this blog post in "Eastman's Online Genealogy" (8 Aug 2014) http://blog.eogn.com/2014/08/09/the-great-colonial-hurricane-of-august-1635/
How do we document weather events? Newspapers, television, and now blog posts and social media are full of the news. What about events before newspapers? We need to look to diaries, letters, and official government reports. How would you dig up the news on an event in the 1600s in North America?
Here are some links to modern stories about this storm.
NBC reconstruction of the storm: http://www.nbcnews.com/id/15825277/ns/technology_and_science-science/t/scientists-reconstruct-pilgrims-killer-storm/#.U-djLGOuk1c
This article from islandnet includes an image of the storm path http://www.islandnet.com/~see/weather/events/gh1635.htm
wunderground's historian put together a nice history of hurricanes on the east coast from the 1600s to the present: http://www.wunderground.com/blog/weatherhistorian/historic-hurricanes-from-new-jersey-to-new-england-16342011
Of course, you can read Reverend Richard Mather's diary from 1635 http://www.americanancestors.org/reverend-richard-mather/ where he writes about the events of the day.
We'll be explore this topic and more in the genealogy course this fall.