Originally published 02/26/2013
An archaeological project arising out of Hurricane Katrina's floods has turned up bits of pottery fired about 1,300 years before the first French colonists slogged into south Louisiana swamps. The project also has turned up artifacts from later Native Americans, Spanish and American fortifications, as well as a hotel and amusement park near the mouth of Bayou St. John, once an important route from Lake Pontchartrain to New Orleans....
Originally published 02/19/2013
One hundred years ago, the United States completed what was then the most expensive, complex but ultimately successful government program in human history. It was a project where everything went wrong. The French had tried to build the Panama canal a few years earlier, but despite putting the builder of the Suez Canal, Ferdinand de Lesseps, on the job, they left in total failure. The American project’s first chief engineer quit after the first year. His replacement left as well. Only with the third did the project start moving. Yellow fever killed thousands of workers and caused others to flee in fright. The engineering challenges were immense and they often seemed insurmountable. Media reports about the project were largely negative....
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