What Definition do I Give to History?

Personally, I define history as anything having to do with our pasts whether personally or worldly. While most people will only look at the significant things that have occurred throughout time and define that as “history” because let’s face it, they were historical events, I look at history on a broader term. Basically I view history as anything that isn’t happening in the now, but that as something that has happened in the past. Everyone and everything in the world has a background or history and the more we get into those backgrounds the more our knowledge with expand. History isn’t certain, and everyone’s history is different, but unless we were there we can only go off of clues, artifacts, readings, etc that help depict a story of what happened.

As I explained, everything has a past or a part to play in history, you could say even something as simple as a stamp could play a major role. When browsing the History Bizarre, I read a blog post my the smithsonian about a stamp from Nicaragua that changed history. This stamp played a significant role in completing the Panama Canal. The Philippe Banu-Villa and William Nelson Cromwell, decided to mail each member of congress a stamp that was a special stamp that was released in the 1900’s that depicted the beautiful landscape of Nicaragua. However, the mountain in the back looked like it had smoke coming from the depicting a volcano that could erupt at any minute putting a kink in their plans to build a canal in Nicaragua. Leaving congress to believe that finishing the Panama Canal was in their best interest instead. As Jordana Bickel said, “Who would have thought that a stamp could have played such a substantial role in the completion of the Panama Canal? Sometimes it can be easy to overlook objects in our everyday lives, since they are so common. A stamp is a wonderful example of an object that we may think of as ordinary, but can still influenced history!” It just goes to show you, not everything is as it seems and everything has its own part to play in our history.

Even though things might be apart of our history, it doesn’t always make it right or make sense at all. Me being a girl scout (that’s part of my past and history), I was interested in reading this post I found, “Desegregating the Girl Scouts” by Livia Gershon. Let me just tell you it still astounds to me to this day that we ever had segregation, slavery, and injustices. It just seems like a concept that is so barbaric, I mean how could someone sit there and judge anyone based on the color of their skin, religion, ethnicity. I don’t understand how after the Girl Scouts declared they were open to all girls, that they could allow segregated cities to band any little girl from being apart of their troop based on the color of their skin. Not only is that morally wrong, but that’s just bad business and public relations for the Girl Scouts. If I were the Girl Scouts, I would have disband any troop that wasn’t allowing ALL members into the troop. The things that happen might not always be something that we are happy about, or that we want to have ever happened, but it is apart our worlds past. We all have skeletons in our closets, even history.

History comes in all shapes, sizes and forms. There is history in literally everything. As shown above it might be ethical history or history that is derived by inanimate objects. It might not always be exciting, or well known but it is apart of our lives. You will always be able to learn new things about our history. I definitely would be interested in taking a deeper look at history that necessarily isn’t well known, or is unique in its own way. Growing up my Dad use to make me watch the history and discovery channel with him all the time. So I would be intrigued to learn something new!





One Comment

  • Emma Fleming


    I loved your post! I think your definition of history is short, sweet, and to the point. I enjoyed reading about what two posts from History Bizzare you chose to read, especially the Girl Scounts one, because you included how it’s personal to you because you used to be a Gairl Scout, which is really cool. Also, I can totally relate to watching the History Channel and Discovery with my Dad! And you’re right, there are a lot of internesting topics discussed on those channels that would be cool to look further into.

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