Online toolbox for history and maps

I can’t index the internet, but I can make a list of places I may want to visit again.


“Chronicling America: Library Of Congress”. Chroniclingamerica.Loc.Gov, 2022,
“Search America’s historic newspaper pages from 1777-1963 or use the U.S. Newspaper Directory to find information about American newspapers published between 1690-present. Chronicling America is sponsored jointly by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Library of Congress.”
“Newspaper Navigator”. News-Navigator.Labs.Loc.Gov, 2022,
Extracted visual data for Chronicling America. Content includes: photographs, illustrations, maps,
comics/cartoons, headlines, and advertisements. Artificial intelligence can be used to refine image search results.


“Arcanum Maps – The Historical Map Portal.” Arcanum Maps – The Historical Map Portal,, Accessed 28 June 2022.
Primarily features European maps. Viewing maps is free. High resolution downloads available for purchase.
“MZK – Moll Map Collection.” MZK – Moll Map Collection,, 16 July 2012,
European maps collected in the 1700s by Bernhard Paul Moll. Czech and German maps are of interest.
GmbH (, Klokan Technologies. “Old Maps Online.” Old Maps Online,, Accessed 28 June 2022.
“OldMapsOnline developed out of a love of history and heritage of old maps. The project began as a collaboration between Klokan Technologies GmbH, Switzerland and The Great Britain Historical GIS Project based at the University of Portsmouth, UK thanks to funding from JISC.” Features map browsing by region selected on a map.
Rumsey, David. “David Rumsey Historical Map Collection| The Collection.” David Rumsey Historical Map Collection| The Collection,, Accessed 28 June 2022.
“The David Rumsey Map Collection was started over 35 years ago and contains more than 150,000 maps. The collection focuses on rare 16th through 21st century maps of North and South America, as well as maps of the World, Asia, Africa, Europe, and Oceania. The collection includes atlases, globes, wall maps, school geographies, pocket maps, books of exploration, maritime charts, and a variety of cartographic materials including pocket, wall, children’s, and manuscript maps. Items range in date from around 1550 to the present.”

Did you see that?

One of the few downsides to spending time alone outside is that there isn’t someone to confirm a sighting with.

This fall has been exceedingly mild. It reached 67 degrees Fahrenheit today, November 7, 2021. Between 2000 and 2020, the average high for November 7 was 50.5 F and the average low was 32.0 F.

While I was walking along a hay field, I saw a monarch butterfly, flying low as if it were looking for nectar from the red clover that the monarchs love. It wasn’t close enough to see it’s distinct patterns, but the size, movement, and general color said monarch. It won’t find many, if any, sources of nectar.

There are a few johnny jump-ups blooming in the flower bed and the mulch in the back of the pickup truck. A witch hazel is covered with beautiful yellow blossoms. The northern holly berries are beautiful, but lack nectar.

What did you see today?

Bean patties

Bean patties ready for frying

15 oz garbanzo beans, drained
0.75 c fine bread crumbs
1 small carrot, grated
1 clove garlic, crushed
3 T fresh parsley
1 large egg
0.5 t salt
0.25 t cumin
0.125 t cayenne pepper
2 t olive oil

Coarsely mash beans. Add all other ingredients except the oil. Form 4 patties. Heat the oil in a cast iron pan on medium heat. Cook the patties until golden brown, about 4 minutes in each side.

The patties did not crumble during frying or eating.

I used fresh Swiss chard in place of parsley.

Getting to Puerto Rico

This is going to be the worst blog post ever. Because who really wants to know the mechanics of our flights?

You are still reading. Wow. Our airline, United, strongly suggested that we postpone our travel for a day because of the bad weather in Chicago. We did and I added a day to our itinerary. The next day our flight was cancelled because of the bad weather in Chicago. We re-booked our flights again. The United website and app were equally unhelpful in these changes. For example, I re-booked part of our trip through Madison without realizing the process was complete because the app just stopped working. While I was on hold for one-half of eternity, speaking directly with an airline representative was the most useful.

There were lots of phone calls because I had scheduled parking at the airport, a rental car, places to stay, and volunteer work. Each change required a call to each vendor, in part because we were so close to our planned travels.

We traveled from Milwaukee to Houston to San Juan. We arrived at the Milwaukee airport very early because of the weather and federal government shutdown. The shutdown required that TSA employees were required to work, but would not be paid until an unknown date. We didn’t know if this would result in long lines or not. In this case it did not. I very much appreciated TSA employees that came to work. The news was noting that passengers were more patient and kinder, knowing the struggles of the security staff. I think this is awesome. I also think that we can be more patient and kind every day.

I used credit card “points” to pay for the car rental. This was great! Extending the car rental for a day (even though I was giving up a day at the time of the change) required actual money. It still was a good value.

Our volunteer site was in the center of Puerto Rico, about 50 miles and 1.5 hours from San Juan. Because of our early arrival in Milwaukee and long layover in Houston, it took us 24 hours to go from home to the worksite.

Our trip home was more compact, but longer than planned because of several delays in the flight from Chicago to Milwaukee, again attributed to the weather. (Our route was San Juan to Chicago to Milwaukee). We arrived in Milwaukee late at night and thankfully spent the night with family before driving home.

Oh, are you still here? My goodness. Find something good to read now.

Random places

First-grader Nola Mae was clearing toys, games, pencils and more off the coffee table to make room for block building yesterday. “I don’t know where these things belong, so I am just putting them in random places” she declared as she put stuff in boxes and pushed things off the table.

Photo of desk covered with stationary, a stapler, bird house, magazine, books, and other random items.
One of my many random places

Is it nature or nurture that forms our behaviors?

Car camping

tent, fly, stakes
tarp/ground cloth
sleeping bag
flat sheet
duct tape
camp chairs
wood camp stool
cook kit

utensils, spatula, can opener
water bottles
dish soap, dish rag, dish cloth, dish pan
hot pads
cutting board
coffee pot

milk can
cast iron pan
dutch oven and lifter
matches, lighter
stove and fuel
axe and Sierra saw
water cooler
flashlight, headlamp
bug dope
day pack
clothes line and pins
wet wipes
paper towel


No wonder that the truck is full when we’re ready to go!


It’s been a long time since I’ve tried to sew clothing from scratch. With clothing so inexpensive at thrift stores, there is really no reason to, except I’m picky about the color, texture, and fit of my clothes. (Not that you’d know that by looking at me!)

Photo of pattern and shirt front

Pattern and shirt front

So I gave it a whirl, or at least part of a whirl, and the shirt ended up being too big. As I sewed, I felt that the shirt would be too small. Almost the next moment, it would grow to a huge size and then back to my UW-Platteville size.

The placket went together perfectly. Well, almost. There were no puckers and the top stitching was top notch! Somehow I made it one placket width off center though. Oh well, it is a busy print, and the front is pleated. (Another note to self: vertical pleats are not good for me.) Then I went on to put the collar on. It was too small, either from the same error that caused the placket problem, poor cutting, or both. I was about to make a new collar and put it on (because this would be the right time to do so; easier than doing it with sleeves and sides seams in place) but then the size kept growing and shrinking in front of me. I added the sleeves and side seams (no puckers or gaps, thank you very much) and tried the shirt on. It’s at least a size too big. I guess that is better than a tiny shirt, but only for my ego. I’m done with this shirt.

I’m not too discouraged, but my next projects will be adapting a couple of pairs of pants from the thrift store. I should try this shirt thing again before another 25 years pass and I don’t remember my mistakes. Just in case I don’t get back to it before my memory fails me, I’ve made a few notes for myself below.

Next time I will compare the measurements on a shirt that fits me well to the pattern before cutting it out. My body measurements did match the XL size on the B6099 Butterick pattern, but the shirt didn’t fit me. I was careful with the seam allowances.

Body measurements chart in pattern

Photo of back of pattern envelope

Note the Easy designation. Read the directions carefully anyway. It may help get the placket on center!

The button hole feature on the sewing machine is easy. Make sure the button is in the presser foot however, or you will end up with one really big button hole. (The busy fabric will disguise this.)

Yes you can…

…have too much candy. Although the 2.25 cups of corn syrup and 2 cups of sugar should have tipped me off, Martha’s delicate picture of nougat threw me off.


Especially when the candy isn’t cooked quite as long as it should be. It isn’t ready to share with anyone who isn’t leaning over the pan with a spoon. Now that we have both overdosed on nougat, it has been wrestled into the freezer. Ask for some when you stop by. We have had enough!

Lucky Dog

Ethics in Practice

I like to think that I’m good with ethical matters. Which, fortunately, are primarily considered only theoretically. My understanding of ethics grew when they were described as “right vs. right” instead of “right vs. wrong.” Most of us can make a good decision when faced with right vs. wrong, especially when it is a theoretical choice.

Here are my theoretical ethics: habitat is greater than individual animals; people are more important than domestic animals; wild animals are priority over domestic animals. (I acknowledge this is not a linear model. Perhaps I’ll draw a diagram someday.) When a friend took her pet in for expensive emergency veterinary care, I declared to myself that I wouldn’t make the same choice. If I was going to spend that money, I would use it to improve the life of humans. These humans could live a potentially better life and possibly make choices that improve habitat, other humans, or even pets. This disregards the fact that I’ve never donated the amount of money my friend spent for any humans or habitat. Nor have I had to make quick decision to try save or end a pet’s life.

George accepted Dozer aka Doughy the dog on a trial basis after his dog Meg died from cancer. That was just over two weeks ago. This past Saturday, Dozer was hit on the road near our house. George thought that Dozer was dead until he went to bury him and found Dozer breathing. Blood was running from his mouth. His eyes were glazed over. His breathing was shallow. We quickly came to the choice: euthanize Dozer or in George’s words “take him to the vet, but don’t spend over $500.” While realizing George’s choice wasn’t a choice, I took Dozer to the vet, 27 miles away. The vet confirmed what we already knew: Dozer was in bad shape. He was in shock, had a very low blood pressure, and had blood (and perhaps other bodily fluids) in his abdominal cavity. Dozer’s likelyhood of survival even with treatment was unknown. The vet provided a quote for an attempt to stabilize him. The vet told me it was certainly acceptable and understandable for me to euthanize him.

I took a few minutes to think. I called Vicky because she loves dogs and George. She would be able to help me think about the problem: finances; likely outcomes; and George. With her support and thoughtful questions, I was able to make the decision to attempt to save Dozer.

Dozer is a lucky dog. He didn’t have any broken bones. His blood pressure stabilized with treatment. He could take in oxygen despite his bruised lungs with oxygen support. His internal bleeding stopped. His lacerated tongue could be stitched. He didn’t have brain damage. He was able to come home on Monday. He had gotten a bath! He gets to live in the house (at least while he’s mending). His only symptom of damage is occasional wheezing or coughing, which should go away as his lungs heal. He has good pain killers and antibiotics. His trial period is over. Lucky dog.

This hasn’t stopped me from thinking about the use of money to save a pet’s life. Or the other ways it could be used.

Dozer is a lucky dog. I am very fortunate to have an easy life and to ponder ethical questions in my free time.

Lucky dog

Lucky dog

Dozer at home on the sofa

Dozer at home on the sofa