Telling Stories

Good history is not a litany of facts and dates. We tell stories. That is how we learn from the past. A story builds connective threads between events, places, and artifacts, allowing us to give them meaning. But there is more. Stories from history need to be truthful and placed within the context of the times. As historian Michael Neiberg wrote, "What most amateur historians get wrong is the wider context. When we are at our best, professional historians provide that context. We explain what is happening around an event in question to give it meaning. It’s our distinct skill set."

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