Wednesday, February 18, 2009

The History Detectives on PBS

Dumpdiggers love everything about The History Detectives television series on PBS. From the Elvis Costello soundtrack to the state of the art investigative science and technology, this show is a model for grade A infotainment.

The History Detectives concept is the logical extension of what I call 'object fantasy' and that's the precognitive notion that some diggers get when they pick up an item in the bottom of the hole and wonder, what pivotal role in history did this x play? Was this Wilfred Laurier's toothbrush? or perhaps those gin bottles were drained by Sir John A MacDonald? This kind of thinking is how the History Detectives came to exist. Imagine a temporal detective agency comprised of experts, with each member of the elite task force willing to put in the time, researching, digging in municipal archives, or doing chemical analysis in labs. Eventually these scholars determine the probability of truth.

For Dumpdiggers guarding priceless relics, History Detectives is where subjective fantasy meets objective reality.

So imagine my surprise when I opened my Dumpdiggers email yesterday and discovered that Amy R. Baroch the Sr. Project Manager at PBS Engage wrote Rob AT Dumpdiggers DOT com a letter asking for help spreading the message that her publicly funded enterprise is featuring History Detective, Tukufu Zuberi, as part of the ongoing blog series called “Five Good Questions.”

The series features a PBS celebrity or insider and asks visitors to send in questions to be answered the following week. The engage blog series is thrilled to have Tufuku as their feature this week, coinciding with a special episode of History Detectives next Monday, February 23 (9pm local time) dedicated to African-Americans’ impact on history and society.

Here's a chance for Dumpdiggers to ask any questions they want about American history, anthropology or what it’s like to explore and solve some of histories most fascinating mysteries, myths, and folklore. Twitter: amyPBS

Finally, the best thing about the History Detectives website on the PBS site, is the chapter on Investigative Techniques - here's a glimpse at their arsenal of tools and the processes by which they divine an artifact's true identity, point of origin and potential role in history.

The list includes Item Appraising, Ballistics, DNA Analysis, Document Examination, Forensic Anthropology, Geological Analysis, Historical Research, Paper Analysis, Patent Searches, Property Searches, Textile Analysis, Timber Dating and Weapons Dating.

Watch History Detectives Monday Nights at 9pm on PBS.


Pam Walter said...

Have never watched this program but will definitely do so in the future. Sounds a little similar to a previous series on PBS called Connections.

Robert Campbell said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ralph DeLuca said...

History Detectives is a great concept, I just wish the show had more substance. It feels that most of the show just shows the guys using the internet for information, far cry from the Indiana Jones type work you may think. I am a collector and historian of old movie posters and music posters, and I sometimes feels like an archeologist digging up facts and following leads as well. So I can really relate. I just hope the show gets more interesting as time goes on.

Ralph DeLuca
Madison, NJ

A said...

The triumph of idiot culture finally arrives at the socialist broadcasting company, further enabling an already dumbed-down society.

Anonymous said...

The triumph of idiot culture finally arrives at the socialist broadcasting company, further enabling an already dumbed-down society.