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Objects With St. Louis Ties Featured In New ‘Smithsonian’s History of America’

Chuck Berry
Bill Greenblatt | UPI | file photo
St. Louis native Chuck Berry

A new book, The Smithsonian’s History of America in 101 Objects tells the history of the country in a unique and fascinating way.  The book is filled with enlightening back stories and photographs.

Author and cultural anthropologist Richard Kurin, Under Secretary for History, Art, and Culture at the Smithsonian Institution, said the project was a culmination of a broad effort.  “Not easily,” Kurin said about picking 101 objects out of the Smithsonian Institution’s 137 million objects.

Some of the objects in the book have significant ties to the St. Louis area.

  • St. Louis native Chuck Berry’s Gibson guitar
  • Charles Lindbergh’s airplane, The Spirit of St. Louis
  • Meriwether Lewis and William Clark’s pocket compass. In addition to camping out just north of St. Louis before exploring westward in May 1804, Clark was the fourth governor of the Missouri Territory

Cityscape is produced by Mary Edwards and Alex Heuer, hosted bySteve Potter and funded in part by the Arts and Education Council of Greater St. Louis, the Regional Arts Commission and the Missouri Arts Council, a state agency.

Alex is the executive producer of "St. Louis on the Air" at St. Louis Public Radio.