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Articles by Author Sandra

The Globe Theater, Then & Now

Over the years, countless English literature students have read plays by William Shakespeare and been told these plays were first performed at The Globe Theater. The Globe was one of the first theaters in London. Initially, plays were performed on street corners and in the yards of inns which I’m sure served refreshments. In 1576

The ROYAL ALBERT HALL

Directly across from the Albert Memorial, on the other side of Kensington High Street, stands a solid brick building built in keeping with Prince Albert’s dream for a central hall and a district to promote the arts and sciences.  The Great Exhibition of 1851 was the first step in making Albert’s vision a reality. When

The Albert Memorial

At the edge of Kensington Gardens on the boundary to Hyde Park stands the Albert Memorial, an incongruous and massive example of the Gothic Revival Style popular during the Victorian Age. The structure, built primarily by public subscription, honored Victoria’s consort, a man without a clear portfolio now credited with bringing the monarchy into the

Kensington Palace: A Home for Princesses & Royal Duchesses

When Victoria became queen in 1837, she immediately moved to Buckingham Palace and demoted Kensington Palace to a residence for members of her extended family and various retainers. THE DUCHESS OF TECK Mary Adelaide was George III’s granddaughter. Prohibited by royal protocol from marrying anyone who wasn’t also a royal, she was a spinster of

Kensington Palace: The First Occupants

For more years than I’m going to mention, I’ve stayed in the Kensington area of London when I travel for my urban fix and British Library research. If you’re familiar with London’s layout, you’ll quickly point out that the library is on the other side of the city. Thankfully, it’s a quick trip on The

The Flag at Ft. McHenry & the Star-Spangled Banner

On Sept. 14, 1814 Francis Scott Key jotted down the poem that became the American National Anthem. The United States was engaged in its second war against Great Britain, and events weren’t going well. The war, which some call the Second American Revolution, was about trade and citizenship — two issues that are still controversial.

Uncle Sam: Symbol of America

Uncle Sam with his stove pipe hat, white hair, lanky body, and red and white striped pants remains a visual symbol of the United States. He first appeared during the War of 1812, and received his nickname on Sept. 7, 1813. At the time, he was overshadowed by a figure we no longer think about:

Summer Reads: 3 Thrillers for Summer Afternoons

Summer is a nice time to get away from my usual reading topics and look for something off my beaten track. And one of the side tracks I most enjoy is a “thriller” that is more mystery than violence; more story than hard-boiled detective. Which brings me to John Grisham, prolific writer of 29 novels

Fanny Farmer & Modern Cooking

On August 23, 1902 Fanny Farmer opened her School of Cookery and continued her revolution in American cookery. In order to appreciate her efforts, it’s useful to start with a recipe comparison for Bird’s Nest Pudding. The original 1833 recipe is from The American Frugal Housewife by Lydia Maria Child. Bird’s Nest Pudding If you

Pay Phones, Phone Booths & Superman

Phone booths are so 20th century, but when coin-operated telephones appeared in 1889, they represented a technological breakthrough as amazing as a modern smart phone. At the time, telephones weren’t uncommon, but there were no public venues. It was possible to find an agent operating a telephone pay station. For a fee, the customer could