Browsing Tag: documentary

    WALTER – I always had two jobs – Min 5
    Articles, Blog

    WALTER – I always had two jobs – Min 5

    August 18, 2019

    Went from traveling around in the country
    after going to work for the railroad here, I didn’t retire until ’63. 50 years – but
    I always had two jobs. INTERVIEWER: What was happening with the railroad at the time? WALTER:
    Oh the railroads were – they had all the railroads here going through….and passenger trains.
    Had two passenger trains out of Great Falls each direction – morning and night. And you
    could go down to the depot where the Great Falls Gas Company is right now, and you could
    find five or six hundred people waiting to get on the trains, because there was no cars.
    Everybody had to – had to ride the train.

    A Bridge Between the USA and Russia
    Articles, Blog

    A Bridge Between the USA and Russia

    August 15, 2019

    The relationship between the USA and Russia is complicated. JFK: “It shall be the policy of this nation to regard any nuclear missile, launched from Cuba against any nation in the Western Hemisphere as an attack by the Soviet Union on the United States.” *Intense laughter* JFK: “We choose to go to the moon in this decade, and do the other things. Not because they are easy, but because they are hard.” Their rivalry defined the second half of the 20th century. Reagan: “Mr. Gorbachev tear down this wall.” Millions are spent each year trying to improve relations, and even more spent undermining them again. To many their opposites; chalk and cheese, vodka and apple pie, Oceania vs Eurasia, East vs West. It’s easy to forget that only 51 miles separates them. If we’re going to spend so much time, energy and money trying to build bridges between Russia and America, then why not just build an actual bridge? In 1986 Ronald Reagan gave engineer Tung Yun Lin a National Medal of Science, Lin handed back to him a 16-page plan for an intercontinental peace bridge. Whether for environmental, financial, or political reasons a bridge across the Bering Strait has been on someone’s agenda ever since. Most of this talk has come to nothing, but in 2015 Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping started to make some actual plans. *Theme music* The Bering Strait is a 51 mile sea passage separating Siberia and Alaska. In 1867 the US bought Alaska for 7.2 million dollars or 2 cents an acre. This created a new border right down the middle separating two small islands, Big Diomede (Russian), and Little Diomede (now American). The same boundary is followed today by the International Date Line, giving the Diomedes the adorable nicknames of “Tomorrow Island” and “Yesterday Isle”. Ever since the Cold War Big Diomede and most of Russia’s Eastern Shore has been a military zone. No travel is permitted. In fact, you can’t arrive or depart there even with a Russian visa. The closest you can get is the port of Provideniya, and even then you should probably get permission before rocking up. This hasn’t stopped people trying though, in 2006 Karl Bushby and Dimitri Kieffer navigated the strait’s ice floes on foot. However Lynne Cox swam between the Diomedes in 1987, The public support was so immense that Reagan and Gorbachev thanked her at the signing of the nuclear forces treaty. Gorbachev: “It took a daring American girl by the name of Lynne Cox a mere two hours to swim the distance separating our two countries, By her courage she showed how close to each other our two peoples live.” Trump: “We’re not gonna let them violate a nuclear agreement, and go out and do weapons. So we’re going to terminate the agreement. We’re gonna pull out.” We could really do with another Lynne Cox right now. Something to bring the US and Russia together. The whole world a little closer. Even if it has to be marketed to us as a trade deal or a “Trans-Pacific Infrastructure Investment”. A bridge would be a common project, a physical link forcing superpowers to cooperate. But ignoring all political and financial hurdles for now. Is it even possible? Currently the world’s longest sea bridge is 34 miles across, Connecting Hong Kong to Zhuhai and Macau in China. And although the Bering Strait is 51 miles, the longest bridge you’d actually have to build would only be 26. The Diomedes make two perfect stopping points. You could build a US bridge on one side and a Russian bridge on the other. In fact, make it a race the loser has to build the three-mile bridge connecting the two. Construction would be slow, for seven months of the year the temperature is well below freezing, and although the Strait rarely freezes large chunks of ice are funneled through the passage from the Arctic. These ice floes would exert enormous pressure on any structure we built. There may be engineering solution around this, but perhaps the simplest would be to scrap the bridge and dig a tunnel. Tunnels may not lend themselves to metaphors as well, but they’re warmer, often cheaper over long distances, you can lay gas, oil, and electricity alongside. They’re protected from harsh weather, and ships can still pass above them. With the Arctic ice caps melting, the Bering Strait could become a very busy shipping lane in the next 20 years. The Strait is relatively shallow, the maximum depth is only 55 metres. The Channel Tunnel is a hundred metres below sea level. That opened in 1994 connecting the UK to Europe, and that relationship is going swimmingly. A tunnel (unlike a bridge) doesn’t have to intersect the Diomedes, it can start and end at more convenient points. But therein lies the problem. There are no convenient points. Here’s a map of the Alaskan and Siberian road networks, the closest highways are 2,000 miles apart. In Russia anything east of Magadan is impossible to get to by car. And although there are plans for major Alaskan routes, anything west of Fairbanks is tricky. Tunnelling under the Bering Strait would be the easy part, you’d also have to build thousands of miles of roads, over rough terrain, in incredibly harsh conditions. And after all that you’ve still got to persuade people to drive it. The only sensible option would be a train. You’ll still face all the same obstacles during construction, but a warm high-speed railroad from Anchorage to Vladivostok is way more convenient than a 60 hour drive through the Arctic. The main use of such a railroad would be freight. If we extend the network through North America and into China, it could transport a significant amount of the world’s cargo. But now we’ve got one of the biggest engineering projects in the world, costing hundreds of billions of dollars. Is there a need for it? An Arctic railroad would have to compete with our existing freight network, boats and planes. The busiest shipping route in the world by cargo is China to North America. So let’s say we want to ship one metric ton between the two busiest ports, Shanghai to Vancouver. We’ve got four options; ship, air, rail ,and road. A boat can do it in 15 to 20 days, cost us $300, and produce 225kg of CO2. Plane: 1 day, $3,500, 4,400kg. A train: 2 to 4 days, $400, 630kg. And a truck: 7 to 10 days, $900, 1,050kg. If speed is the priority and money no object, a plane is the way to go. But if speed doesn’t matter and you want the best value for money then shipping is the clear winner. Ships and planes account for 90% of global trade, that is a lot of fuel being burned all day, every day. Diesel trains are not environmentally friendly, but both Alaska and Siberia have stores of untapped geothermal energy. We need to replace as many major transport routes as possible with renewable alternatives, and high-speed electric trains are one of them. There’d definitely be a market for an Arctic railroad, it would dramatically improve travel time without an enormous increase in price. Whether it would be profitable for whoever built it though is another matter. It would have to be a financier with very deep pockets, and probably an ulterior motive. That pretty much leaves three options; Russia, America, or China. China are building railways and shipping ports everywhere. They’re already building high-speed railways connecting Europe, Africa and Asia. All with China as the central hub. They don’t just want to be at the crossroads. They want to be the crossroads, for all future international trade and transport. That means North and South America are definitely on the agenda. In fact, they proposed a high-speed railway connecting china to the US in 2007. Putin has given China approval to build through Siberia. And then in 2015 China and Russia announced they were collaborating, to build the Siberia and Alaska passage together. This is mostly just talk, but it’s getting louder and more frequent. There’s a reasonable chance of it happening with or without US involvement. It would be a real shame if multiple countries didn’t cooperate on this project. Not to mention the dangerous power dynamic it could create. An Arctic railroad connecting China, Russia, and the US would be an amazing achievement. An opportunity for three superpowers, currently jostling for their place in the century, to collaborate on a common project. One that could genuinely improve the world, environmentally, financially, and politically.

    The Great Model Train Robbery
    Articles, Blog

    The Great Model Train Robbery

    August 14, 2019

    Tucked away in a wooded backroad in Kent in
    southeast England, is a club for model train enthusiasts called The Gravesend Model Marine
    & Engineering Society – where, since 1953, hobbyists meet to work on their mini locomotives. And even though the trains are small, the
    work that goes into them is massive. Most locos to actually build – it takes five
    to 10 years. Some people have been on them even longer
    than that, 20-25 years. And it’s not only running them, you’ve got
    to maintain them and that takes quite a lot of doing as well. The club is open to the public on Sundays
    – hosting birthday parties, charity runs and other events for children. It’s a great hobby to have because I think
    a lot of the youngsters that come up here do appreciate what we do. I’ve got grandchildren of me own and I know
    how much they enjoy it. And over the years I have had three, four
    engines. Unfortunately … do you want me to talk about
    – sorry. Do you want me to talk about the robbery or
    not? On February 14 of 2019 the unthinkable happened
    … and the club would never be the same. We just sat down to eat breakfast when I received
    a phone call from Derek, one of our members who’s a dog walker, who uses this pathway. And he just said, Tricia, I’m sorry. Tough to tell you, but we’ve been burgled. As we came through the gates, the door to
    the clubhouse was off its hinges and laying on the ground. Both these containers were open, the debris
    inside where they just gone through everything broken into the locks where the trains were. In total four trains were stolen – two belonging
    to individual members and two owned by the club itself. The value of the goods was estimated at 25,000
    pounds. Letting people know what had happened, calling
    them up to tell them was probably the worst thing I’ve ever had to do. It was horrible. There were tears. They may be grown men, but there were tears
    on my side and theirs. When I walked in here and realized that my
    engine had disappeared, I must admit at that time I felt like packing up to be honest. To have that year, that engine over 20 years
    and to maintain it and keep it running, it was devastating really, be honest, absolutely
    devastated. And my grandchildren – well my grandson especially,
    cause he loved it and it really upset the young fella, it really did. The second member whose train was stolen decided
    to leave the club. He was too heartbroken to continue. Others, like Tricia, focused their energy
    on investigating the crime. We now know that the thieves had a van of
    some sort parked at the end of this farmer’s pathway at the edge of this field. They walked down this pathway, cut the farmer’s
    fence, climbed over, which brought them to the back of our containers. On entering, they angle-grinded through all
    these hinges. They did this with the same one here. And the last container here is where our two
    club engines were stored. The police believe there must’ve been about
    four of them, as the engines obviously are really heavy and to lift them over that fence
    must have taken some strength. The police were unable to uncover any additional
    clues, but that night, Tricia received a phone call from a model railway shop in Hemel Hempstead
    – a town about 90 minutes from Kent by car. A man was offering to sell some model trains
    from his van, but when asked about paperwork – a requirement for all engines – the man
    drove off. It was matter of seconds, he said, when his
    helper in his shop came out and said, you’ll never guess what, Gravesend Model Marine had
    four locos stolen. He was gutted. From there we’ve had no real leads at all. What we’re hoping more than anything is that
    these people will leave them somewhere because they can’t use them. They can’t get rid of them without the paperwork. They’re nothing as scrap. And to the members, it would be lovely if
    they were found in a ditch somewhere or a field anywhere – even if they’re damaged. We’ve got the facilities where we can repair
    them. The members were quiet for a few weeks. Gradually we were lifted by the community
    around us who decided to do Just Giving page for us and raise money. Donations to the club totaled over 5,000 pounds
    – mostly from small contributions by friends, community members, other clubs, and complete
    strangers. The frowns, the tears gradually turned to
    smiles again. We had such support from the community, a
    lot of us couldn’t believe it because we just saw it as a love of our own. It was like a hobby that just keeps us busy. But when we saw the support from the public,
    it was just brilliant. We have bounced back very well actually. Well, I went out and one of our club members
    – he happened to have a loco for sale. I said to him, look, if you want to sell one
    of your engines, I’d be quite happy to pay for – to buy one off you. I feel a bit sorry for him really because
    the loco he’s given me is better than the one he’s got. I should think it’s quite funny actually. The culprits are still at large, but the club
    is as strong as ever – chugging right along with a newly completed expansion of their
    track. These people will not stop us because we love
    what we do and that’s the truth. And if you enjoy what you’re doing, there’s
    nothing better than that. And I think that says it all really.

    Death of the American Hobo (Documentary)
    Articles, Blog

    Death of the American Hobo (Documentary)

    August 14, 2019

    BEN: Your heart’s racing. Obviously, you’re hoping that
    we wouldn’t get caught. -There’s something about the
    hobo that has to be recorded in American history. BEN: The whole time we were
    asking ourselves, what is the story here? What is the story of the hobo? What is a hobo? EMPRESS VAGABOND HOBO LUMP: It’s
    not like people think. It’s hard, like, a hard life. -It’s speeding up! Go go go go go go! [APPLAUSE] AARON SMITH: This
    is Britt, Iowa. It’s a small town of about
    2,000 people out in the central Iowa cornfields. Over the last 112 years,
    Britt has become known for one thing– an annual event called The
    National Hobo Convention. There’s a hobo jungle, a hobo
    museum, and a hobo cemetery. In 1900, Britt was just a newly
    incorporated farming community in search of
    migrant workers. The town founders enticed the
    hobos to move their annual gathering from Chicago
    to Britt. A tradition was born that still
    brings self-described hobos to Britt every year
    for one August weekend. HOBO MIKE: I’ve been traveling
    trains since I was eight, and as a living since ’63. FROG: I started riding trains
    when I was 20 years old. I’m 62 years old now. WRONG WAY: [LAUGHING] I’m Wrong Way. My nephew gave me that name
    in the early ’70s. HOBO SPIKE: I started in 1952,
    and I used a train to go from one place to another
    to find work, and that’s how I survived. AARON SMITH: Most historians
    agree the hobo emerged after the Civil War. Young men from both sides set
    off across the country in search of work. By the turn of the century, the
    hobo had become part of the fabric of America. But today, what was once a
    substantial culture and way of life seems close
    to extinction. We wanted to see what was left
    of the hobo community, and we hoped we’d find it in Britt. In our minds, there was only one
    way to travel to the hobo convention– the
    freight train. We began our journey in Oakland,
    California, hoping to travel 1,900 miles on the
    rails in five days. AARON SMITH: These are the maps
    that show the different rail lines all over California,
    with like, special zoom-ins that show you all the
    little small towns that you can stop in, different crew
    changes, and this is something totally like, pre-iPhone. Now you can totally just
    GPS your location. But these maps were really
    helpful for a lot of people for a long time. Before a cohesive network of
    roads was laid across America, the train was the fastest way
    to get from place to place. Early hobos learned to ride by
    swapping information with other travelers they met along
    the way in hobo jungles. Chris is from Virginia and
    spends his time hopping freight trains around the
    country for pleasure. Our friend Ben lives in San
    Francisco and had a couple weeks off work and decided
    to join us. BEN: I wasn’t sure what
    to expect of the trip. I knew it was going to be an
    adventure, but I didn’t know exactly what the details
    and the minutiae of the trip would hold. We woke up that morning, hoping
    to catch a train. But we woke up, got ready,
    there was no train there. And as more time passed, we
    realized that the information we had gotten was probably
    incorrect. AARON SMITH: We decided to wait
    for another train, but a worker spotted us in the yard
    and called the bull. Bull is an old-time term
    for a railroad cop. It’s always been a cat and mouse
    game between the hobo and the bull. Back in the day, bulls had
    no problem killing hobos. Today, it’s a little
    bit different. -We don’t really have
    hobos anymore. -A transient, a hobo, vagrant,
    is a guy who participates on the rail property– trespass, hopping
    freights, yeah. -And a tramp, tramp’s in
    the middle, right? -What did they call it? Tramps. I like that. That was back in the day, man. That was back in the day. Tramps, hobos. -When have you seen somebody
    with a broomstick– -A tramp with a bag tied around
    his shoulder, right? All right, guys. You know how to get out
    of here, right? Don’t come back, all right? -Don’t come back. AARON SMITH: There seem
    to be very few people hopping trains anymore. The hobo seems like
    a museum piece. It’s like a joke, a word
    nobody uses anymore. We didn’t want to go to the
    Oakland jail, so we headed to Amtrak station with our tails
    between our legs. We got out to the next crew
    change stop on the line– Roseville, California. As soon as we got to Roseville,
    there was a train getting ready to take off. Bad decision. A conductor saw us and we got
    pulled off the train five miles outside of town. Uh, we just got pulled
    off this train here. -Again. AARON SMITH: Yeah, yeah, it
    was the second time today. Morale was low. Chris decided to set off on
    his own to Denver, and we hopped a gambling bus
    to Reno, Nevada. JACKSON FAGER: Now we’re in
    Reno, Nevada, feeling a little better about our situation, and
    hoping a train comes in the next couple hours. AARON SMITH: In the yard,
    avoiding bulls and workers is one concern. Finding a rideable
    car is another. Some of the wells on these
    double-stacked cars have a cubby hole you can
    ride in, but we weren’t seeing anything. The locomotive at the back of
    the train, called the rear unit, seemed like
    our best bet. But it’s risky. Workers periodically
    check the cars. Lucky for us, the train
    aired up, and we finally got on our way. We’re indoors, Amtrak style, and
    we’ve got these big plushy seats, continuing along. We’re in the middle
    of nowhere. For the first 100 miles,
    there were no roads, no highways, no nothing. It was just desert as far
    as the eye could see. It was beautiful. It was amazing to kind of get
    that, see what that was like, vast expanses of nature. MEDICINE MAN: Now, everybody
    thinks that the real hobo life is great, and it’s part of
    wanderlust, but it’s not. The hobo life is a very,
    very dangerous life. ADMAN: Sometimes painful, when
    everything is all fucked up. You’re looking around, and
    the bulls are out there. BEN: It felt like something out
    of a special operations combat mission. We spotted a grain train. We knew that this was our
    ticket out of Elko. Go go go go go! ADMAN: Riding on a flat car with
    a full moon, and watching the [CLICKING NOISE] It’s a game that gives you
    a fucking hard-on, I can tell you that. MINNESOTA JIM: Once you
    do it, it’s with you the rest your life. You want to keep on the move. ADMAN: We see the world
    in a different light. FROG: Always total, absolute
    freedom, every day of my life. HOBO SPIKE: I don’t think
    there’s any better way to see this great world of ours,
    especially our nation, than from a freight train. AARON SMITH: We were crossing
    the Great Salt Lake. The air was cool, and
    the smell of sulfur rose from the water. It was the most undisturbed
    stretch of natural beauty any of us had ever seen. The train forces you to slow
    down and take it all in. All the frustrations and
    anxieties of life back in civilization seemed
    to disappear. HOBO SPIKE: When you’re on the
    rails, if you don’t get caught, there’s no one to tell
    you what to do, when to go to bed, when to get up,
    what to eat. You’re on your own for 100%. AARON SMITH: Although we were
    loving the ride, we were running out of water fast. After close to 24 hours on the
    train, we were hungry, tired, dirty, and dehydrated. Well, our train stopped here
    in Green River, Wyoming. It’s just a little railroad town
    here in southern Wyoming. Just kind of roamed around and
    got the vibe of the town. HOBO SPIKE: Then when you get
    into a community, of course you have to fit into society,
    so you have to abide by laws at that time. But if you’re by yourself,
    you don’t have to pay attention to any law. AARON SMITH: So we walked over
    this bridge that we’re sitting under now, probably about
    110 degrees, dry heat. BEN: Just took a dip
    in the Green River. After four or five days not
    showering, it felt amazing. AARON SMITH: I’m gonna go
    get in there right now. BEN: Our days have
    been very full. We haven’t gotten
    a lot of sleep. It’s been a few hours here, a
    few hours there, trying to hop on trains successfully,
    which we sometimes have, sometimes haven’t. We’re always on the move trying
    to get to our end goal, which is Britt. AARON SMITH: No eastbound trains
    were coming through. The sun went down, and we
    enjoyed the solitude of the Wyoming landscape. Up to this point, we hadn’t seen
    any other travelers on the trains. At the turn of the century,
    there were around a million hobos on the rails. After the Depression,
    that number doubled. Hobos had organized their own
    union, and there were over 60 hobo colleges all across
    the country. Boxcars were crowded
    with riders. But something happened midway
    through the century. Maybe it was American
    prosperity. Where there were once millions
    on the road, today, there’s probably a couple thousand. In my experience, you hardly
    ever see anyone on the rails. The next morning, we decided to
    try our luck in the Green River yard. -Hey, man. -How about yourself? -We’re hitchhiking. -Sorry, man. -Oh, really? -All right, thank you. -OK, man. -Thank you. AARON SMITH: After getting
    warned by the cops to leave, we went back to our original
    spot under the bridge. MEDICINE MAN: Today, you don’t
    want to jump a train. It’s so dangerous, because the
    old steam locomotives, it was chug, chug, chug, and pretty
    soon, it was [ENGINE NOISE]. But today, in two minutes,
    they’re flying. AARON SMITH: Our train stopped
    in the middle of the yard, and we didn’t know why. AARON SMITH: An hour went by,
    and it felt like an eternity. Each time you get on
    the train, it’s a role of the die– a unique and unpredictable
    experience. Perhaps that’s one
    reason we do it– to gamble, to relinquish control
    completely, and give ourselves to fate and luck. That was one of the faster
    ones I’ve hopped on. You kind of had to run alongside
    and kind of throw yourself up. But we all made it. Really grateful for that. The train out of Green River
    had three units and looked like it would blaze across
    Wyoming, but it puttered along the entire time at
    35 miles an hour. It was time for a
    change of plans. We arrived in Laramie, Wyoming
    on Friday morning, with still 800 miles to go to
    get to Britt. We were behind schedule,
    and the convention had already started. We got off here in Laramie,
    Wyoming because the train was so damn slow. Rent a cars were too expensive,
    the Greyhound would take two days, so we ended
    up getting this U-Haul. 12-hour drive ahead of us, and
    we’ve gotta haul ass to Britt. In keeping with the spirit of
    our trip, we picked up all the hitchhikers we saw
    along the way. JOE YOUNG: Hey, what’s
    up, guys? I’m Joe Young. I’ve been on the road for about
    four or five years. The only way I get around
    is on bicycle. AARON SMITH: We picked
    up another guy. This is Alex. He’s coming from Colorado. ALEX: How’s it going? AARON SMITH: It didn’t take us
    long to fill up the back of the U-Haul. After six grueling days
    of traveling, we finally arrived in Brit. We were ready to hang out with
    hundreds of hobos and swap stories about our travels
    on the rails. -Hello! Happy Hobo Days! -Happy Hobo Days! -What we found instead was a
    family-friendly event with a bunch of tourists. BEN: Just a number of
    townspeople, big farm tractors, fancy or unusual cars,
    and homemade floats. People– not hobos. -All aboard! -The hobo convention has gone
    county fair mainstream. This wasn’t the wild, drunken,
    turn of the century event that brought 1,800 hobos
    here in the 1940s. -Well, we’re serving mulligan
    stew, and it is what the traditional hobo
    used to serve. Meat– we have pork in ours–
    and then it has beef flavoring, and pork flavoring,
    and then vegetables, barley, and rice in it, and
    then water. -Every year for the past 112
    years, the hobos have elected a hobo king and queen. -This year, our new
    queen is Angel. And your new king is
    Minnesota Jim. -It’s an important moment for
    them, especially now that most of the hobos are senior
    citizens. The hobo jungle in Britt is a
    well maintained park on the edge of town. It used to be a pretty
    This is not the same. They bring in like a family
    affair, and a history thing, and people learning. Because the hobo, you wouldn’t
    be finding no children in an old camp, you know
    what I mean? People really was kind of
    sleeping out, and across the tracks or in the bush. It was more like a jungle. AARON SMITH: Today, there’s
    a lot of rules. No drinking, no drugs,
    no unleashed dogs. It’s become the kind of place
    that people used to become hobos to get away from. Most of the hobos we met were
    retired from riding trains. Living an itinerant life for
    decades takes its toll. MEDICINE MAN: A modern-day
    hobo, probably in my estimation, is getting to the
    point where it’s rubber tire hobos that come together
    and perpetuate history. AARON SMITH: The convention
    has become a shadow of its former self. The city’s turned it
    into a parody. There are still plenty young
    people out there riding the rails for adventure, but those
    who call themselves hobos and travel around looking for
    work are a dying breed. FROG: And it’s still there. Though I’m not riding freight
    trains, it’s still there. I still want to ride. AARON SMITH: Out on the rails,
    we slowed down and experienced an adventure that was
    once a way of life for a lot of people. The train tracks persist on,
    relics on the landscape, entry points into the hidden world. We felt a deep nostalgia for a
    time that’s passed and sadness for the American hobo, fast
    disappearing down the westbound track. FROG: I have one final ride, and
    it’s my westbound journey. -For the moments of happiness,
    for the love, for the moments of disappointments, for
    everything, hobo is thankful to the railroad.

    WESTINGHOUSE (Full Documentary) | The Powerhouse Struggle of Patents & Business with Nikola Tesla
    Articles, Blog

    WESTINGHOUSE (Full Documentary) | The Powerhouse Struggle of Patents & Business with Nikola Tesla

    August 14, 2019

    (xylophone tones, How Dry I Am) (old time big band music) Radio announcer: You can be
    sure if it’s Westinghouse. (jazz music) Voiceover: George Westinghouse
    changed the face of the world with his inventions, patents,
    business sense, and personality. Not a day goes by that
    we don’t use something pioneered by George
    Westinghouse. He is the forgotten role model
    that our country needs today to teach future
    generations of Americans that hard work and
    kindness pay off. George Westinghouse was
    one of the most successful
    men in the world; a respected engineer,
    inventor, and America’s
    greatest industrialist. He was a pioneer of the
    Industrial Revolution and played a leading role
    in turning the United States from a young agrarian society into a modern
    economic powerhouse. The name Westinghouse has been
    a household name the world over for more than 100 years
    because of one man, his love of machines,
    and his desire to make
    the world a better place. Edward Reis: The accomplishments
    that George Westinghouse had in his lifetime
    had a major impact on the way we live today. His work in the railroad
    industry with the
    Westinghouse air brake, the electrification of the
    world with Westinghouse
    alternating current, him being instrumental
    in developing natural
    gas as a fuel, and his impact on
    the shipping industry with the Westinghouse geared
    marine turbine engine. George Westinghouse was
    known as a good person. He always had a very good
    rapport with his workers. There was never a strike at any
    of the Westinghouse companies all the time he had
    control of them. That was not common
    back in those days. He certainly was not
    motivated by greed or money. He really thought that
    his accomplishments
    would benefit mankind, and that alone was a
    driving force for him. Jim Sutherland: The most
    important thing about
    George Westinghouse was the way he
    treated his employees. He was unique. Quentin Skrabec: Westinghouse
    really offers a role model. He was a passionate man and a lot of times he’s lost
    in history under Edison. William Terbo: Nikola
    Tesla had great regard for Thomas Edison of
    being a workaholic, and Thomas Edison had great
    regard for Nikola Tesla for his ability to
    be a workaholic. My father tells me
    specifically that of all
    the people that Tesla met, that he had the highest regard
    for George Westinghouse. (drum roll) Voiceover: George Westinghouse
    was born on October 6, 1846 in Central Bridge, New York to George and
    Emeline Westinghouse. Edward Reis: George was
    the 8th of 10 children. Interestingly, he was
    named George Westinghouse,
    Jr. after his father. He was never really a
    good student in school. He always had trouble
    applying himself to coursework that he didn’t think
    had immediate benefit. Later in life he was to
    say that the very best
    educational experience he had was the ability to work
    in his father’s shops. His father owned a
    company called the G.
    Westinghouse and Company, manufactured agricultural
    equipment and small
    steam engines. He loved to make things
    and build things. He built a working
    waterwheel one time, a model. He built a working
    steam motorboat that
    he was able to use. He even made a violin. He developed these
    early mechanical skills and later in life he was to say
    those early mechanical skills he learned as a young
    boy served him well
    throughout his lifetime. Quentin Skrabec: George
    Westinghouse, as a child, he’d probably be considered
    today a problem child. He seemed to be
    bored with school. He loved mechanics. He loved to come back and
    work in his dad’s shop. Voiceover: George spent
    most of his boyhood in
    Schenectady, New York. He would be known as
    George Westinghouse, Jr. for many years until
    his father died, at which time he dropped
    the Jr. from his name. Edward Reis: Interestingly,
    everything that is written indicates that George
    Westinghouse did not get a lot of encouragement
    from his father, but he did get quite a bit of
    encouragement from his mother, the local minister
    encouraged him quite a bit, and we know that one foreman
    in his father’s shops really provided George
    Westinghouse with a great
    bit of encouragement. He set aside an area in the
    factory for him to work. He showed him how to
    use the various machines and materials to make items. Obviously, this
    had a major impact on George Westinghouse
    throughout his lifetime. Voiceover: It was recorded
    that he always felt more comfortable in
    his father’s shops than he did at school. In 1860, at 13 years of age, George began to work
    there for 50 cents a day. Even as a boy it was
    clear that he posessed a unique talent for
    understanding and
    working with machines. Edward Reis: One story
    about George Westinghouse
    as a young boy was that he was in
    a scouting group that was planning to take
    a hike one afternoon. His father had given him
    a chore to cut some pipe, and that chore was
    certainly going to take
    longer than that day. However, George rigged up
    a machine with a saw blade. He was able to cut all
    that pipe in a half a day and he was able
    to go on the hike. From what was documented, it was said that George
    Westinghouse, Sr.
    was not at all happy even though George
    Westinghouse was able to accomplish the task in
    a very short period of time he wasn’t happy at what had
    motivated him to do that. (drum roll) Voiceover: The
    American Civil War broke out in April of
    1861 when George was 15. He desperately wanted
    to serve his country, but was prevented by
    his father to do so. He said that George would
    be allowed to enlist
    at the legal age of 17, but prayed the war would
    not last that long. The Civil War raged far longer
    than anyone had expected. By 1863, the carnage
    was staggering after battles like
    Antietam and Gettysburg. It was clear then
    that the war was not the romantic adventure it
    was once thought to be. Even though the
    casualties were mounting and the Union army
    was demoralized after
    years of defeat, George Westinghouse enlisted in
    the New York Volunteer Cavalry as a private shortly
    before his 17th birthday. The next year, he passed a
    special mechanical examination to become an offer
    in the U.S. Navy. His military service
    made a huge impact. Later in life he said, “My
    earliest greatest capital “was the experience
    and skill acquired “from the opportunity
    given me when I was young “to work with all
    kinds of machinery, “coupled later with
    lessons in the discipline “to which a soldier
    is required to submit, “and the acquirement of
    a spirit of readiness “to carry out the
    instructions of superiors.” George’s older brothers,
    John and Albert, serviced in the
    military as well. Albert was captured at
    the Battle of Gaines’ Mill and confined to Libby
    Prison for a short while. After being exchanged
    and released, he was killed in 1864
    leading a Cavalry charge. Edward Reis: I’m convinced
    that his father thought his brother was the one who was
    going to be successful in life and spent a lot of time
    with his older brother. Quite frankly, from
    everything I’ve read is I don’t think his
    father ever thought George Westinghouse was
    going to amount to anything. (gunfire) Voiceover: The
    war ended in 1865. Although more than 600,000
    American lives had been lost, life began to return to normal. The 18-year-old George
    Westinghouse, Jr. was
    mustered out of service and enrolled at Union
    College in New York. He quickly became bored. It was recorded that
    the President of the
    college said to him, “You’re wasting your time here. “A classical course
    is nothing for you. “You have a genius
    for invention. “Cultivate it and you will
    become a great engineer.” He left school after
    two months and returned
    to his father’s shop. At that time, the country was
    in a rapid state of change. For a man full of ideas,
    there was much to do. Quentin Skrabec: It was an
    excellent time for an inventor, for an industrialist
    like Westinghouse to
    come onto the scene. Lots of people came onto the
    scene at that time, obviously. Even the Carnegies and so forth, a lot of what we call
    today the robber barons, were just starting out
    in that time frame. We had an economic boom going
    that was a residual of the war. It was great time. Investment money was there. People were moving forward. Industries were cranked up. It was a time of expansion. (piano music) Voiceover: On October 31, 1965, the 19-year-old George
    Westinghouse, Jr. was awarded his first patent
    for a rotary steam engine. Edward Reis: He started working
    on that patent at the age of 15. It was granted to
    him at the age of 19. As we go through his
    life, we can see the role
    that rotating devices, the large rotating turbines
    and large rotating generators, the impact they had on
    the electrical industry. Then you look backwards and
    see that George Westinghouse had this interest
    in rotating engines from his very first
    patent as a young boy; started at that work
    at the age of 15. Voiceover: For the next 48
    years, he would, on average, take out one patent
    every month-and-a-half. Edward Reis: He had two
    other early patents, for a car replacer
    for getting cars back onto the tracks
    when they derailed, and an item called
    the railway frog was a device used
    between the tracks where two tracks intersected. These two patents here
    were very successful for George Westinghouse and
    provided him the money he needed to get started with the
    Westinghouse Air Brake Company. (slow band music) Voiceover: He planned
    to have his car replacer and railway frog
    manufactured in New Jersey, but instead looked west
    to the booming town of
    Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Fortunes were being
    made in Pittsburgh. The city’s location at the
    joining of two major rivers made it the ideal spot for
    manufacturing and distribution. In the 1860s, the air
    was thick with smoke as the iron and
    steel industry grew, churning out metal
    for tracks, engines, and the myriad of machines,
    tools, and devices used to build the
    network of railroads crisscrossing the country. Legend has it that as George
    stepped off the train, he practically walked
    into one of Pittsburgh’s
    wealthiest investors. Edward Reis: The very
    first night he was here evidently he’d lost
    his way downtown. He saw this gentleman
    coming his way and stopped him and
    asked him for directions. That fellow’s name
    was Ralph Bagley. Ralph happened to be going
    in that direction he said, so he walked along with
    George Westinghouse to show him where he
    was going that evening. From that chance meeting,
    him and Ralph Bagley became great friends for
    the rest of their lives. Quentin Skrabec: There’s some
    mythology around the meeting. Within a week, he had
    somehow made a business
    connection there. That would have been typical. Westinghouse was the type of
    guy that went into a city, He was a salesman. He was probably looking for
    the industrialist in town. He had an invention. He needed some suppliers
    to make that part. Westinghouse, type of guy that still even all through
    his career would hustle. He’d be out there knocking on
    the door of industrialists. (crash sounds) Voiceover: In a time of
    relative peace and quiet, newspapers were once
    again full of carnage. Catastrophic train
    accidents were on the rise as the number of trains
    in the country grew
    in size and quantity, and with increasing speeed. As the body count escalated,
    a clear solution was needed. Westinghouse was said to
    have been personally effected by a terrible train
    crash in 1866, which motivated him
    to solve the problem. (train whistle) Nearly anyone could make
    trains bigger and faster, but nobody had devised a working
    solution to stop them quickly. (train whistle) At that time, stopping a train was a complicated,
    inefficient ordeal. Edward Reis: In those days, for
    example, on a freight train, the brakeman literally
    rode on top of the
    freight cars all day long. When the engineer gave
    a blast of the whistle
    to put down the brakes, they’d jump up, turn
    the wheel on that car, then run down that car,
    jump to the next car, run down the car to turn
    the brakes on the next car, and that, again, applied
    the brakes to the wheels. So stopping a train was a very
    long, jerky kind of a process. By the way, the brakeman had
    an extremely dangerous job. Many of them were
    killed and injured, as you can imagine, the
    conditions riding on top of those freight cars all day
    long, rain, snow, whatever. Voiceover: A speeding
    train could take up to two miles to come
    to a complete stop. Not only were the lives
    of brakemen at risk when jumping from car to
    car on a moving train, but anything getting in the
    way of a roaring locomotive was almost certainly destroyed. (breaking glass sounds) Westinghouse felt that
    if an immediate powerful application of
    breaks were available that these horrible
    accidents could be avoided. Men had been tinkering
    with train braking
    concepts for years. There were other patents
    dealing with brakes, but George Westinghouse
    was the only man to put old and
    new ideas together into a complete,
    workable combination. (jazz music) In fact, one key ingredient
    was discovered out of thin air. (jazz music) Edward Reis: George
    Westinghouse had been reading a new scientific magazine
    and there was an article that caught his attention
    on a French company building a tunnel through the
    Mont Cenis mountain in the Alps. It caught his attention. It was no ordinary
    tunnel, you see. It was 8.5 miles long. It says they were
    having great difficulty until two new
    inventions came along. An Englishman had invented what
    he called a hammer drill bit, and an Italian had invented
    what he called an air motor. It caught George’s
    attention because the
    article said at that time that the pipe going
    back into the mountain was 6 atmospheres of air to
    drive the hammer drill bit to drill the holes
    for the dynamite was
    over 3,000 feet long. At that point in time
    he thought surely if they can drive a hammer
    drill bit into solid rock 3,000 feet away using air,
    he could be able to use air to drive the breaks on a train. Voiceover: Many people
    thought he was crazy because who in their
    right mind would envision a roaring train being
    stopped by the wind? But that didn’t stop him. George Westinghouse, Jr.
    was issued his first patent for the air brake on April
    13, 1869 at 22 years of age. With the air brake, the
    engineer could control all of the brakes on
    a train from the cab. This would allow
    for longer trains carrying more people
    and more goods. Edward Reis: The United States
    was really moving westward. Industrialization
    was taking place. They had the need to move a
    lot more freight and people. With the Westinghouse
    air brakes, the trains could become
    longer and heavier. (upbeat music) Voiceover: At that time, George
    was traveling the country, soliciting orders for
    his railway devices and had many opportunities
    to present his thoughts on air brakes to
    railway officials. He said that none
    of those approached appeared to have
    faith in the idea. Edward Reis: George
    Westinghouse was so sure that he would be successful
    with the Westinghouse air brakes that he invested all his money, and also his good friend,
    Ralph Bagley, invested money, and he built a
    full set of brakes for a locomotive and four cars. Voiceover: The first
    air brake apparatus was shown in a Pittsburgh
    machine shop in 1868. It then came time to install
    it on a full size train to test it in a real
    world demonstration. Railroad officials were invited and the first air brake
    trial became legendary. Edward Reis: They all boarded
    the four passenger cars. George Westinghouse was riding
    in the locomotive that morning with the engineer, Dan Tate. This trial was to go
    to Steubenville, Ohio and return, a total of 80 miles. Voiceover: Upon emerging
    from the tunnel, they came face to face
    with two horses and a wagon standing on the tracks. Edward Reis: The horses
    kind of panicked. A wheel got stuck. The wagon overturned. The horses fell down. The drayman fell down. Dan Tate applied the
    Westinghouse air brakes for the very first time. They skidded up the track. George Westinghouse, they
    say, was very, very concerned as they skidded up the track. Fortunately, they
    stopped four feet short of running over that
    wagon, those two
    horses, and the drayman. They say everyone in the back got knocked to the floor. They got banged into each other. They got jostled quite a bit. The highest level superintendent of the Steubenville
    and Panhandle Railroad put his arms in the
    air and he said, “Gentlemen, we’ve just seen
    the greatest demonstration “of this Westinghouse air brake
    system we’re ever going to see. “I think we should
    just back her up “to Grants Hill
    and call it a day.” Voiceover: The future of
    railroading was set in motion over the next several months as more tests were conducted
    around the country. Railway officials were impressed resulting in immediate orders
    of air brake equipment. Westinghouse Air Brake
    suddenly began appearing on passenger trains
    around the country. Quentin Skrabec: A lot
    of people in those days, people like Charles
    Dickens and so forth, they had phobias about
    train travel in those days because the death
    rate was so high. The air brake took
    that phobia away. Voiceover: The Westinghouse
    Air Brake Company was chartered on
    September 28, 1869. The new company began
    churning out parts with an initial work
    force of about 100 men. Over the next decade
    George Westinghouse made numerous improvements
    to the air brake, and by 1877, most
    American railroads had their passenger trains
    outfitted with them. It was declared by one
    writer that no railroad claims to be first class
    that does not employ Westinghouse air brakes. Even with the success,
    another major hurdle remained: the freight train industry. It was said that
    the freight industry was the slowest to
    adopt the air brakes because railroad companies did
    not want to invest the money to protect the lives of
    their cheap labor force. Brakemen were paid $1.50 a day and received nothing if
    they were maimed or killed. It cost about $50 to install
    air brakes on a train car. Edward Reis: A piece of
    documentation I came across said that in one particular year there were 5,000 brakemen
    killed or injured in the United States that year. It was an extremely
    dangerous job, one of the most dangerous
    jobs there ever was. Voiceover: This was
    considered the age when railroad companies
    could buy senators. The railroad business
    was profitable, and they intended
    to keep it that way. Quentin Skrabec: The air
    brake offered nothing
    to them, profit-wise. The hand brake system
    seemed to be fine. You lose a few Irishmen. It didn’t seem to
    upset them at all. Edward Reis: Pennsylvania
    Railroad had a very
    good reputation, but some of them did not. It was documented
    that in those days, some of the railroads,
    if a brakeman got killed, they felt no more obligation than to move the body to
    the side of the track. Quentin Skrabec:
    They balked at it and just like a lot
    of companies do today they had to be dragged in
    there by the government. They did everything they could
    to slow that process down. Voiceover: Before any laws
    could be put in place, standards had to be set so
    that a car from California would couple with
    a car from Maine. The Burlington brake trials were
    organized to set those standards and would prove to be one
    of the most critical events in the history of the air brake and in the life of
    George Westinghouse. Quentin Skrabec: As
    Congress in this country got more interested in the
    problem of railroad safety and the pressure came on
    to do something about it, these famous trials out
    in Iowa came into being. They would test a number
    of different types of
    brakes at the time. Westinghouse air brake wasn’t
    the only brake out there. Edward Reis: The first
    Westinghouse air brakes were called straight brakes. As the air went back the
    line, it applied the brakes to the wheels of the
    train to stop the train. However, if the piping or
    the coupling let go or broke, you would lose your brakes. Voiceover: To improve
    upon his original design, he invented the automatic
    air brake in 1873. Edward Reis: Now the
    air was holding the
    brakes off the wheels. When you wanted to
    apply the brakes, you would simply reduce the
    pressure to stop the train. The other advantage to that was if the pipe separated
    or coupling separated
    or the pipe broke, the train would
    automatically come to a stop. It was referred to as
    the brakes that worked
    even when they failed. Voiceover: The automatic
    air brake was powerful,
    but not fast enough. Quentin Skrabec: Initially,
    as the trials started, Westinghouse had some
    problems with the air brake. Eventually came up
    with the triple valve. It allowed a buildup of
    pressure at the local car. You could release that
    pressure very quickly versus waiting for the
    pressure to come down
    the line from the engine. Fast response was what the
    triple valve was all about. Voiceover: The master
    car builders accepted the new Westinghouse air brake. The train, fitted with
    new quick action brakes, was sent on tour and
    a series of trials were made in a dozen cities. Sales exploded. But Westinghouse
    didn’t stop there. Edward Reis: George Westinghouse
    also had an invention called the friction draft gear, which allowed the trains, when they were starting
    out and stopping, to cushion the impact
    between the cars. This was considered to
    be a major improvement in the railroad industry. In fact, the president
    of the Pennsylvania
    Railroad at the time was quoted that the friction
    draft gear by Westinghouse was every bit as important
    as the Westinghouse air brake to the railroad industry. It basically still used
    to this very day the
    friction draft gear. Quentin Skrabec: In the
    1880s they finally enacted, late 1880s, they finally
    enacted several laws that required the
    use of the air brake. That certainly was a big
    boom for George Westinghouse and a success story for him. (train sounds) Voiceover: The booming
    industrial companies in the United States
    purchased these inventions as fast as he
    could produce them, yet George Westinghouse,
    Jr. remained a humble man. It was said that
    progress was always a great deal more interesting
    to him than profit. In fact, he would have said
    that progress is profit. Edward Reis: Some
    railroads were very slow in adopting the air brake. The New York Central,
    under Commodore Vanderbilt, one of the wealthiest men
    in the world at the time, was very slow in adopting
    the Westinghouse air brakes. In fact, the story goes
    that George Westinghouse was talking to a superintendent
    at New York Central one time about the air
    brakes, and he said, “George, as long as I’m
    living there’ll never “be Westinghouse air brakes
    on the New York Central.” Evidently, the story goes,
    George Westinghouse said to him, “Well, I’m a lot
    younger than you. “I guess I’ll just
    have to outlive you.” Now on the other hand, the New
    York Central had a great wreck and there were many people
    killed in that particular wreck. At that point in time, Commodore
    Vanderbilt backed down, got a hold of the
    Westinghouse Air Brake Company to install Westinghouse air
    brakes on the New York Central. Voiceover: A railroad
    superintendent once said, “If the men who worked
    the railroads ever
    chose a patron saint, “it would be Saint George in
    honor of George Westinghouse.” Westinghouse was not
    all work and no play. It was said that he
    loved the theater, music,
    and a good clean joke, although he claimed that solving
    mechanical problems relaxed him. When not working, he
    spent most of his time with his biggest supporter
    and closest friend, his wife, Marguerite. At the time of his very
    first patents in 1867, even before the air brake, George Westinghouse, Jr. met
    Marguerite Erskine Walker by chance on a railroad train. Edward Reis: George Westinghouse
    met his wife, Marguerite, on a train ride. He was on the Hudson
    River Railroad heading
    toward Schenectady. He was not a smoker, so he passed up some available
    seats in a smoking car and went on back to another car. There was an available
    seat beside a very
    attractive young woman. He struck up a
    conversation with her. He really liked this young lady. Just before he deboarded, since
    he was getting off before her, he wrote down the names
    and addresses of three
    friends of his family so that Marguerite could
    write to those folks so they could attest
    to the good character of George Westinghouse. When he returned home,
    he immediately went
    to the local minister and friend of the family
    and had him write a letter to Marguerite, again attesting
    to the good character of George Westinghouse. Today, we’ve kind of gotten
    away from that practice. He went home that night and
    told his mother and father that he had met the
    young lady that day that
    he was going to marry. Within a year, he and
    Marguerite were married and they had a very long
    and fruitful marriage. He always considered Marguerite
    to be his very best supporter. She supported his
    ideas no matter how
    wild they really were. Voiceover: The two
    honeymooned at Niagara Falls, a location that would prove
    to be an important one later in the career
    of Mr. Westinghouse. They had a happy relationship. It was said when they
    were on the same continent they talked every single
    day over the telephone, and when separated by
    the Atlantic Ocean, would send a daily
    cable message. It seems amazing that at
    first George could not afford to move Marguerite
    to Pittsburgh. In the early days
    of the air brake, before it really took off, she lived in Schenectady
    with his parents. When the money began to flow, he bought her a
    home in the affluent Homewood district of
    Pittsburgh in 1871. They added on to the
    old house, which became
    a luxurious dwelling, and dubbed it Solitude. A substantial lawn and
    gardens would grow, along with their
    substantial fortune. Edward Reis: The Westinghouses
    only had one child, George Westinghouse, III. He was born 16 years
    after they were married. When they were married,
    George Westinghouse was 20. His wife, Marguerite, was 24, which means then that when
    she had their only child she was 40 years old. Voiceover: As George
    Westinghouse, III grew up, he spent a lot of time
    at their summer home near
    Lenox, Massachusetts. It became a favorite
    of Mrs. Westinghouse. In the days before
    energy conservation, it boasted 1,500 light bulbs and the world’s first
    lighted tennis court. The massive estate even
    had the world’s first private alternating
    current power plant to supply the electricity. Solitude was
    equally interesting. When looking at pictures of it, one might notice an object
    that seems out of place with an opulent
    estate and gardens; a natural gas derrick. Westinghouse decided to prospect
    for gas in his own backyard. When Marguerite heard about
    this, she was thrilled. It was recorded that
    she said something like, “George, you travel so
    much it would be nice “to have you working
    at home for a while.” Edward Reis: In those days
    when they drilled a well, as they drilled the
    dirt and rock out, they’d strike a match to it. If it flamed up, they said
    they had a vein of gas. At 300 foot they told him
    they had a small vein of gas. At 900 feet they told him they
    had another small vein of gas. He told them to keep drilling. At 1,500 feet they hit
    a huge vein of gas. They immediately threw a
    match and set it afire. It was over 100 feet
    high, the flame. The roar could be
    heard for blocks. For a few days it became the
    great event in Pittsburgh. People came from everywhere. They came by street railway, they came by horse and buggy, they walked; throngs of
    people in the neighborhood to see this great fire that
    lit the sky for miles around. He was absolutely delighted, but his neighbors were not. Initially, neighbors like Henry
    Heinz and Henry Clay Frick were a bit upset by this. However, George shared
    his natural gas with them and with friends
    around the block. Westinghouse would always prove
    to be an interesting neighbor, at one point having 4
    gas wells at Solitude, an alternating
    current power plant, and a set of tracks to test
    street railway equipment. As Marguerite had predicted,
    George spent time at home with his new toys and
    his evenings at the well, designing new drilling tools and
    improvements in gas prospecting. In 1884, he went into
    the natural gas business. Edward Reis: From all
    this gas that he had, he decided he was going to
    start a natural gas company. All his existing charters
    wouldn’t allow him
    to start a utility, so he looked around and
    found an existing charter in the city of Philadelphia
    that would allow someone
    to start a utility. However, that charter
    was not being used at the
    time, so he acquired it. He brought that
    charter to Pittsburgh and started his
    natural gas company. He never, for whatever
    reason, changed the name on that charter, and ironically,
    the name of that company was the Philadelphia Company. He had this very successful
    company in Pittsburgh named the Philadelphia Company. Later his street railway
    company was added to the Philadelphia Company. When that company was
    broken up by the federal
    antitrust in 1951, it became Pittsburgh Railways, the largest streetcar company
    in the city at the time, and it also became Equitable
    Gas and Duquesne Light, both of those companies
    existing to this very day. Voiceover: Two years after
    he drilled his first well, Westinghouse had over 30 patents
    in the area of natural gas. Quentin Skrabec: He had
    seen in his trips to England the use of, what they had coal
    gas over there, not natural gas, but they were using coal gas
    to run a lot of their industry. He saw it as a cleaner,
    more efficient fuel. Industries adapted to the
    natural gas right away. It was cheaper, first of all. A lot of steel
    companies went to it. Then, the engineer that he was, and what he had learned from
    compressed air in air brakes was where he learned
    how to transmit gas. Voiceover: Natural gas was
    dangerous in the early days. Lines frequently broke and asphyxiation from gas leaks
    and explosions were common. It’s usage was not even metered. Westinghouse worked feverishly
    to solve these problems and developed escape
    pipes, meters, and the automatic
    cutoff regulator. (old time music) By the the 1880s and
    ’90s, George Westinghouse had founded dozens of companies. Even with those
    constant distractions, under his leadership the growth of the Westinghouse
    Air Brake Company moved full speed ahead. They quickly outgrew their
    original works in Pittsburgh and moved across the river
    to a larger building. Westinghouse could see
    that the need for trains
    was growing rapidly as the western states
    exploded in population. He knew that a much larger
    plant would be needed to keep up with the
    increasing demand. In 1889, the air brake works
    were moved to a massive site about 14 miles east
    of Pittsburgh in the
    Turtle Creek Valley. A building plan was made
    having in mind topography, water supply, and the
    disposal of sewage. Streets, homes, and a community
    were built around the new shops and the town of
    Wilmerding was created. In that day and age,
    many industrial companies kept their workers in barracks
    and cheap monotonous row houses, but Westinghouse Air
    Brake built good homes with gas, water,
    electricity, and baths. Many of them even had
    lawns and gardens. They went on to establish
    lawn and garden contests, and the little town
    became a place of taste in an otherwise dreary
    industrial region. (old time music) (train whistle) A trip through the
    Westinghouse valley in 1904 gives an up-close look at the
    air brake works and housing. (old time music) George Westinghouse
    always thought of safety and
    sanitation in his shops. They were well
    ventilated with the best heating and lighting
    available at the time. A century old blueprint
    shows the elaborate sprinkler systems
    which were installed
    at the air brake works, which was very uncommon
    and expensive at that time. A writer said that, “As one
    walks about the factory, “he often thinks
    that the men at work “are a good deal better off than
    they are in their own homes.” Included in the plant was
    a small emergency hospital with an operating
    room and pharmacy, complete with a
    surgeon and nurse. Both sick and accident
    benefits were paid to workers years before it was a
    common practice to do so. The cheapest way to take
    care of factory injuries was, of course, to prevent them. At his plants, serious
    accidents were rare. George Westinghouse felt
    that tired, miserable workers were not as safe and efficient
    as well-rested, happy ones. In the days of
    demanding physical labor in the sweltering heat and
    discomfort of factory shops, George Westinghouse
    invented the precursor to the modern-day weekend. Edward Reis: As a young
    man, George Westinghouse was working on a Saturday
    one time, and he was
    quoted as having said, “If I ever own my own company, “I’m going to give my workers
    a half holiday on Saturday.” Later in life, at the
    Westinghouse Air Brake Company, he was the first major
    employer in the country to grant his workers a
    half holiday on Saturday. This was a precedent that Henry
    Clay Frick and Andrew Carnegie were not at all happy
    that George Westinghouse had set this precedent of giving
    his workers a half holiday. He always treated
    his workers well. We know that the homes
    that Westinghouse built for the Westinghouse
    Air Brake people in Wilmerding, Pennsylvania
    and the homes he built for the East Pittsburgh works of
    Westinghouse Electric Company, those homes were rented
    or sold to the employees. If the employees chose
    to acquire the home, they could do it on
    a monthly deduction. We know that George Westinghouse
    had those homes insured so if something
    happened to the worker, his family would
    be taken care of, his wife and children would
    have a home that was paid off. That, again, is the only
    example that I could locate of someone, one of the great
    business owners at that time, doing something like
    that for his workers. (old time music) Voiceover: And his
    workers loved him. Some of the quotes from
    Westinghouse Air Brake employees give the closest look
    at George Westinghouse available to us today. One letter reads, “George
    Westinghouse stood
    well over 6 feet tall. “When he raised his
    great right hand, “palms towards you and
    fingers spread a little, “and said in a gentle voice
    with a hint of a smile, “‘But you don’t understand,’
    it was quite plain “to the dullest mind that
    the sooner he understood “the better for him.” His manner was the
    same with princes as
    it was with mechanics. It hurt him to hurt the
    feelings of another. (old time music) Westinghouse was known as
    having an amazing memory and it was said by company men, “Do not tell the
    Old Man anything “you do not wish him to
    remember 10 years from now.” It was written that
    Mr. Westinghouse was an
    incorrigible optimist. He experimented on
    a full-size scale and backed the faith that
    was in him to the limit. He never looked back, was never discouraged, and never had any regrets
    over past failures. Another said, “George
    Westinghouse is the embodiment “of imagination in
    britches, walking about
    the face of the earth “doing things that change
    society just as birds sing.” It was unheard of at the time
    for men of Westinghouse’s social standing to have
    anything to do with the
    common factory worker. But the former Cavalry private
    didn’t see it that way. In 1894, the Civil War
    veterans group of the north, called the Grand
    Army of the Republic, would hold their 28th national
    encampment in Pittsburgh. Edward Reis: George Westinhouse,
    upon finding that out, went to the committee and
    said, “Listen, I just finished “two big factory
    buildings at my new “East Pittsburgh works of
    Westinghouse Electric Company “and they’re completely done but
    no equipment has been moved in. “What I’d like you to
    do is bring out workers “and convert one of
    those factory buildings
    to a great dining hall. “I’d like it to be carpeted. “I’d like a great
    staircase to be built “and a stage to be
    built, all carpeted. “I’d like tables with linen
    tablecloths and napkins. “I would like to
    host one night during “Grand Army Week,”
    as it was called, “for the Civil War veterans from
    the Grand Army of the Republic.” He also told them,
    “And by the way, “you wouldn’t have to use any
    of your committee’s money. “You could send
    me all the bills. “I’d be willing
    to pay for that.” 6,500 Civil War veterans
    came to that great dinner at East Pittsburgh that evening. (exciting opening movie music) Voiceover: Many people
    know the name Westinghouse because they grew up in a house
    full of Westinghouse appliances like roasters, dishwashers,
    and refrigerators. Innovative industrial
    products and home appliances from the Westinghouse Electric
    and Manufacturing Company made Westingouse
    a household name. But well before their
    first dishwasher would ever roll off the assembly
    line, George Westinghouse had to first win the
    battle of the currents
    again Thomas Edison. (old time music) Thomas Alva Edison
    was born in 1847. He was a forceful,
    egotistic, eccentric creator who had difficulty
    working with others, all direct contrast
    to George Westinghouse who was a military
    trained engineer. Edison got his start
    in telegraphy and
    invented a stock ticker and other industrial
    products early in his career. Around the same time
    that Westinghouse was
    perfecting the air brake, Thomas Edison invented
    the phonograph. Whereas the air brake
    was largely ignored
    by the national press, the phonograph was hailed as the
    greatest invention of all time. The phonograph was fun. The phonograph made music. The phonograph was unlike
    anything 19th century people had seen before and the
    population was in awe. Edison became famous and
    the public loved him. And he loved that
    the public loved him. He was regarded as the most
    famous American in the world. He patented the electric
    distribution system, and soon after activated
    the Pearl Street electric
    generating station which provided direct current
    power to some streetlights and a couple dozen
    customers in Manhattan. In the early 1880s,
    America’s growing industries were crying for
    more and more power that was less costly
    and cumbersome than
    steam-generated power. The development of
    electricity was like the rapid development
    of the automobile,
    computers, or the internet. Everyone could see that
    it was useful and amazing, but nobody knew quite
    how to utilize it or what the standards would be. It could be said that Thomas
    Edison created the idea of the centrally
    located power station. The only problem was that
    the direct current power he was using did not
    transmit very far. Jim Sutherland: You could
    only transmit direct current a few thousand yards from a
    Edison generating station. William Terbo: It was quite
    obvious to George Westinghouse that direct current was never
    going to be a national model. It’s just a local model. Voiceover: That meant that
    in order to power a city, he would need power
    stations every mile or so that were small in practically
    in their customers’ back yards. These facts did not stop
    Edison from promoting DC power with the theatrics and
    flare that he was known for. (smashing sound) Edison lived in New York City,
    was politically connected, and loved to put on a good show. He leveraged his fame,
    his name, and his face to his advantage in business. Direct current
    power became popular and Thomas Edison became
    a leader in the field. Quentin Skrabec:
    Edison had the market and built the first
    power station in New York for transmission of lighting. J. P. Morgan actually had
    the first house that was lit. Voiceover: In contrast,
    George Westinghouse did not even like
    to be photographed. Yet the limitations of DC
    power were very clear to him. He felt that electric power
    should be generated in one place and be transmitted
    to users far away. In 1885, George Westinghouse
    became interested in the inventions of European
    inventors Gaulard and Gibbs, relating to the use of single
    phase alternating currents and distribution
    with transformers. Jim Sutherland: George
    Westinghouse was the first to recognize that you could use
    a transformer in a large system. With alternating current,
    you can transform the voltage up to a high voltage low current and send it hundreds
    and thousands of miles
    at the high voltage, then step it back down to the
    low voltage where you use it. It was the key to
    the entire system. Voiceover: He purchased the
    American rights to their patent and threw himself into
    the study and design of a
    new kind of transformer. It was said that he
    recalled his experiences in the gas industry
    with the reducing valve that allowed high
    pressure gas from the well to be transported
    over a great distance and then delivered at low
    pressure at the point of use. The transformer was his
    reducing valve for electricity. Quentin Skrabec: That’s
    exactly what he was doing with gas transmission. Voltage is pressure. It’s the exact same
    term in electricity as it is in hydraulics
    and gas fluid. He could step up the voltage to
    transmit it at a faster speed and then when he got
    to the houses he could
    step it back down again. Voiceover: Those who watched
    him work were stunned at his capacity to do
    extraordinary things quickly. Through long evenings he would
    work in his private railroad car and in his house, designing,
    sketching, and dictating. When at home, he often
    worked on his billiard table. It was said he
    never had a pencil, but just borrowed one
    from the nearest man. He never returned
    any of the pencils and nobody knows what
    happened to them. One writer said that his
    trail through the world was blazed with
    other men’s pencils. Jim Sutherland: He had a unique
    ability to look at prolems and come up with
    solutions of his own, but he was also willing to take
    other ideas from other people. If he had to buy ides
    or buy patents, he did. Voiceover: In a
    miraculous three weeks, Mr. Westinghouse and
    his staff redesigned the Gaulard and
    Gibbs transformer. Male: Gaulard and Gibbs
    certainly had the idea correct. It was the mechanical
    part of actually manufacturing and building
    these transformers that
    they came up short. It was a rather crude device
    when Westinghouse acquired it. Voiceover: The Westinghouse
    Electric Company was
    started on March 8, 1886 in the Garrison Alley
    works in Pittsburgh. Male: The Garrison
    Alley operation was really a research operation,
    a developmental operation. He was working on a
    number of projects there, including the transformer. Male: He was interested in
    developing ideas into products, and products into companies, and companies
    providing employment. Voiceover: In the beginning,
    Westinghouse Electric
    didn’t have it easy. Along with research into
    alternating current, it was about that
    time that Westinghouse began to seriously
    compete with Edison in the incandescent
    lamp business, with a full plant
    making single pin lamps, which were a slightly
    different design than the
    Edison screw-in bulbs. (cartoonish music) This was the beginning of
    the battle of the currents. The fierce competition between
    Westinghouse and Edison for domination in the
    electrical field would not
    end for another decade. Interestingly, it
    resulted in one of the
    earliest known format wars between which standard
    of light bulb and socket would be the dominant one. Customers who chose to go with
    Westinghouse single pin sockets could buy this clever adapter
    to use Edison’s screw-in bulbs. A few commercial
    alternating current plants were put into operation
    over the next few months but there were still problems. Even though AC power could
    be generated in large bulk and transmitted many miles
    away to light cities, there was still no
    practical AC motor, and thus no practical
    way to power machines
    with alternating current. (slow old time music) Nikola Tesla arrived in
    New York City in 1884 with a head full of ideas and
    barely a cent to his name. He was a brilliant
    Serbian-born inventor who spoke a dozen languages. William Terbo: He came to the
    United States at the age of 28 with a letter from the director
    of the Edison Company in Paris that was directed to
    Thomas Edison saying “I know of only two
    great geniuses in the
    electrical business. “You are one and the
    gentleman holding this
    letter is the other one.” Voiceover: Thomas Edison
    hired him and put him to work redesigning DC generators. The famous story is that
    Edison offered to pay him an outrageous sum of
    $50,000 for his work. William Terbo: Telsa came
    to him and said okay, now where is my $50,000? Supposedly Thomas Edison
    said, “Oh, my dear Nikola, “you don’t understand the
    American sense of humor.” It was the straw that
    broke Tesla’s back and almost immediately
    after that he left Edison. Voiceover: The brilliant
    inventor ended up digging ditches for a while,
    literally, to support himself while he was still creating. In 1887, he constructed
    the initial brushless alternating current
    induction motor. A year later, he saw
    patents issued to him on his motor and on
    the associated method of transmitting power
    by polyphase currents. William Terbo: When George
    Westinghouse heard about that, it was like a light went on, an electric light went
    on perhaps you might say. This was the possibility
    where he could see that technology overtaking
    everything else in the world, and he was right. Voiceover: Tesla’s
    ideas would enable steam or hydro-powered generators
    to generate polyphase currents that power induction motors
    in machines in factories. William Terbo: The group
    of patents that Tesla had, which essentially
    identified the entire path from beginning to end, from the motor to use
    alternating current to the method of
    distributing the current and everything in between. It was the answer
    to the question that
    George Westinghouse had. Tesla had the answer. Voiceover: Unlike Edison who
    was solely behind DC power, he listened to Tesla. He acquired the rights to
    Tesla’s induction motor
    and polyphase patents and Nikola Tesla came
    to Pittsburgh to work for the Westinghouse
    Electric Company. Quentin Skrabec: He
    was also able to back
    off, a guy like Tesla, who had tremendous intelligence, and Westinghouse
    realized, probably more
    intelligent than him, understood, certainly, the
    sophistication of AC current, which is not an easy thing. Today we describe it in
    differential equations; it’s a nightmare even
    for young engineers today trying to learn that. Voiceover: Tesla’s
    inventions combined Westinghouse’s
    manufacturing skills and his ability to assemble
    parts of a whole system brought practical alternating
    current power to existence. One writer said, “The invention
    of alternating current motors “and the system
    for operating them “was one of the greatest
    advances ever made “in the industrial
    application of electricity.” Not everyone agreed. There was serious
    opposition to AC power. (storm sounds) Assertions were made that
    the alternating current
    system was dangerous and that its use should not
    be permitted commercially. Numerous articles appeared
    throughout the country designed to prejudice public
    opinion against the system. (wind) One bitter article
    from a scientist read, “There is no plea which
    will justify the use of
    high alternating current “either in a scientific
    or commercial sense, “and my personal desire would be “to prohibit entirely the
    use of alternating current.” If anything was needed
    to urge Westinghouse to greater effort, this
    antagonism served the purpose. Edward Reis: If we
    look at a comparison of Thomas Edison and
    George Westinghouse, we find a number of
    major differeneces. They had quite a difference
    in personalities. An example, during the
    great battle of the currents is Thomas Edison backed
    the electric chair, not as a humane way to
    eliminate convicted criminals, but as a way to get a
    competitive advantage over his competitor,
    George Westinghouse’s
    alternating current. Thomas Edison was trying
    to discredit Westinghouse’s
    alternating current. He had a campaign to make
    it look much more dangerous than it really was,
    although it was dangerous, and obviously this very day
    we know it could kill people. But George Westinghouse
    believed electricity was there to benefit mankind and
    should not be started off by executing
    condemned criminals. Thomas Edison pushed that
    in the state of New York and recommended the electric
    chair as a humane way to execute condemned
    criminals, and by the way, said you’d have to
    use Westinghouse’s
    alternating current; direct current just
    wouldn’t do it. Now that wasn’t exactly
    true but that’s the
    position that he pushed. George Westinghouse was
    appalled that Thomas Edison would lower himself to
    that level of competition. When the electric chair
    was first proposed, there was no term
    “electrocution” in
    existence at the time. Thomas Edison even
    lowered himself to the
    point where he suggested that the term to be used would
    be called “Westinghoused,” so you Westinghoused
    a condemned criminal, later to be called electrocute
    a condemned criminal. He’d lowered himself pretty low at the point of how he
    was willing to compete. Voiceover: Edison’s
    connections with the media and politicians worked
    overtime for him, spinning the evils of
    alternating current power. It was said that Thomas
    Edison went so far as to work with a man who electrocuted
    dogs and cats on stage to give AC power a bad name. Moving footage
    exists of an elephant being electrocuted
    in front of a crowd. Although it is claimed
    to be Edison’s work, the film clip is generally
    accepted not to be part of the battle of the
    currents; however, it gives an idea of the gruesome
    inhumane acts that those men did in order to prove their
    point about the dangers
    of alternating current. Jim Sutherland: Westinghouse
    came in with a system of alternating current
    that immediately made the Edison direct current
    equipment obsolete. Since Edison had provided
    direct current equipment to a lot of small
    municipal power companies
    and light companies, they didn’t have money, they
    didn’t have any capital, so he had taken paper. He owned large shares in
    those municipal companies. He knew that if
    Westinghouse was successful in replacing all of his
    direct current equipment
    that was installed, he would be financially hurt. That’s why he was so anxious
    to do everything he could to make George Westinghouse’s
    alternating current
    system a bad word. (quiet chords) Voiceover: After years
    of costly research, Westinghouse’s big chance
    to show the complex polyphase system and
    AC power in action would come during the 1893
    World’s Fair in Chicago. But Thomas Edison would
    not make it easy for them. (crowd applause and cheers) The 1893 Chicago World’s Fair, known as the
    Columbian Exposition, was set to commemorate
    the 400th anniversary of Columbus discovering
    the New World. It was to be the
    biggest, grandest, most spectacular
    World’s Fair ever. It would be quite the party, and proved to be an
    interesting event in the life of
    George Westinghouse. It would also be ground zero
    for the battle of the currents. (crowd noises) On May 23, 1892, as
    the immense fairgrounds were being constructed on
    the shore of Lake Michigan, the Westinghouse
    Electric Company won the lighting contract
    for the World’s Fair. David Cope: You have to remember
    how people lived at the time. They lived in darkness. We don’t live in
    darkness at all. Even if you go outside
    at night, there’s light. Whoever wins this bid,
    if it’s going to Edison or if it’s going
    to be Westinghouse, it’s going to mean a great deal because people are going
    to come to the Fair, they’re going to
    see light at night. They’re going to be
    able to extend the day. Voiceover: The story is
    that the exposition company saved about a half a
    million dollars by going with Westinghouse Electric
    over General Electric. This loss to Westinghouse
    was unexpected. Thomas Edison had counted on
    his name and strong patents to guarantee the contract
    and planned to make
    a profit at the Fair. Westinghouse, on the other
    hand, would make a risky move by going into it expecting
    to lose money in order
    to gain promotion, a gamble that could
    sink the entire company because of the time and
    money that went into the
    polyphase development, leaving the Westinghouse
    Electric Company in a weakened state to survive
    the financial crisis of 1893. Quentin Skrabec: Edison
    at the time represented
    General Electric, but he had already
    been bought out. That battle was a vicious one. Westinghouse finally
    undercut and won it. Voiceover: George
    Westinghouse told his managers the work must be done
    right regardless of cost. He said that any loss could
    be charged to advertising, and that was the main objective. David Cope: Hundreds
    of thousands of people came at night just
    to see the lighting. What they do is they go
    back and they talk about it. Voiceover: The World’s Fair
    was a massive undertaking, but Westinghouse had the
    courage of his conviction that his men could do it. He closed the contract
    before even consulting them. Edison was well known
    for challenging people on patent infringement,
    and even though Westinghouse had won the
    World’s Fair contract, they were dangerously
    close to a patent dispute and a massive lawsuit. The Westinghouse
    alternating current system was going to power the
    lights of the Fair, but the light bulbs that
    were going to be used were too similar to a
    patent owned by Edison, the one piece
    incandescent light bulb. Some six months
    before the opening, with all of the Westinghouse
    work already installed, the patent on the Edison
    incandescent lamp was sustained and Westinghouse was not
    permitted to use the light bulbs that he had planned to use. George Westinghouse had a clever
    way around this problem, though. Years earlier, he
    had purchased rights to the Sawyer-Man lamp patent and chose to use
    those lamps instead. Thus, originated
    the famous two-piece
    Westinghouse stopper lamp, so called because a
    piece of ground glass held an iron filament fitted
    into the bulb like a cork. Edward Reis: Good
    business sense said he better have a backup
    and that turned out to be the two-piece all glass
    Westinghouse stopper lamp that was upheld in the court
    as an independent patent. Perhaps wasn’t as good
    an incandescent lamp as the Edison lamp at the
    time, but it was good enough to successfully illuminate
    the great Chicago
    World’s Fair in 1893. Voiceover: Westinghouse
    rushed through extensive new production facilities
    to finish the bulbs the moment the Fair
    was scheduled to open. Edward Reis: The Westinghouse
    Company at that time manufactured 250,000
    two-piece all glass Westinghouse stopper lamps. It was estimated at the
    time that it was 25% of all the incandescent lamps
    made up to that point in time anywhere in the world. Voiceover: It was a
    quick and dirty job, and the opening of the
    Fair on May 1, 1893 was not delayed an hour. In his tradition of surrounding
    himself with smart people, Westinghouse was well served by his patent lawyers
    and engineers. The World’s Fair lamps
    did not last long and had to be changed often, but Fair visitors never
    knew this at the time. All they saw was the
    beautiful lighting, and the name Westinghouse. The Fair was a huge success, attracting nearly 28 million
    visitors in its six month run. The Westinghouse exhibits
    had prime real estate. Just off the court of
    honor sat the massive
    electricity building, which was one of the
    most popular attractions. The Westinghouse Electric
    and Manufacturing Company occupied a huge
    chunk of floor space right alongside their
    rival, General Electric. In machinery hall, the
    Westinghouse Electric Company showed off their complete
    polyphase system. The generating plant for
    the World’s Fair lighting was the largest alternating
    current central station then in existence. To further amaze visitors, the complex switchboard used
    to control all of the machines required only one operator. George Westinghouse attended
    the Fair that summer, but left all the
    planning and construction of the exhibits to his managers. Mr. E. E. Keller, the
    Westinghouse manager of the World’s Fair
    contract, said, “Like most of his
    helpers, I felt ready “to march through fire for
    him, and was amply repaid. “Such was the man,
    Westinghouse.” In the end, they even
    turned a profit of $16,000, not including advertising. Jim Sutherland: I’d
    like to have been there. That would have been
    a great experience to
    walk through that place. But I understand no one person
    could see the entire Fair during the summer, there
    was so much to see. Voiceover: Many believe that
    the greatest single thing to come out of the
    Columbian Exposition was not Cracker Jack
    or the Ferris Wheel, but that it finally settled
    the AC versus DC battle of the currents
    once and for all. The World’s Fair
    helped Westinghouse win one of the most important
    contracts in history. (music and rushing water) The hope of harnessing
    the tremendous power of Niagara Falls
    had been a dream of scientists and
    engineers for decades. Top minds like Lord Kelvin and
    Thomas Edison were involved, but by the fall of 1893,
    the project remained
    stuck in the mud suffering from the bitter
    controversy over whether alternating current or direct
    current should be used. It was the impressive
    display of AC power at the World’s Fair
    that gave Westinghouse
    just the edge he needed, and even skeptics
    like Lord Kelvin, who was once on the
    DC side, gave in. Man: People came into the Fair
    remembering the name Edison. They came away
    thinking Westinghouse. William Terbo: It gave
    the publicity that
    George Westinghouse needed to really put in
    position his ultimate goal, which is also Tesla’s
    ultimate goal from childhood, to put the power system
    into Niagara Falls. Voiceover: Now all the
    power could be generated in one spot, and
    transmitted many miles away with the help of transformers. On October 24, 1893,
    Westinghouse Electric was awarded the contract
    for three 5,000 horsepower alternating current
    generators for Niagara Falls. The first hydroelectric
    generator unit was
    tested on April 16, 1895. A year later, three
    seconds after midnight on November 16, 1896, Buffalo,
    New York was receiving power from the mighty Niagara
    Cataract for the first time. The battle of the currents
    had been won by Westinghouse. William Terbo: It
    was such an event. Tesla was there and spoke,
    and he spoke at length. I understand from some
    newspaper comments, spoke
    at excessive length. Voiceover: Pieces of
    the original power line from the 1895 test were
    saved to honor the occasion. The Westinghouse
    Electric Company finally started seeing returns on
    their enormous investments into alternating current
    and the polyphase system. Orders began to flood in. The original Niagara Falls
    generators were joined by the addition of seven
    similar units a few years later. Today, newer plants
    and technology continue to harness
    the hydroelectric
    power of Niagara Falls. Edward Reis: Later
    in life Nikola Tesla
    was quoted as saying, “The only man in the world
    that could have pulled off “alternating current
    was George Westinghouse, “for he was the only
    man that would come up
    against Thomas Edison.” Voiceover: Even though
    the battle of the currents may have been over,
    the fierce competition between Westinghouse
    and Edison continued. Edward Reis: It’s well known
    today that Thomas Edison had 1,093 patents
    during his lifetime. History also records
    that George Westinghouse is credited with 361
    patents during his lifetime. But again, understanding
    the differences in
    their personalities has a major impact on how
    many patents each was granted. It is well known
    and well documented that if you were a worker
    that worked on an item that was patented and worked
    for Thomas Edison, the name on that patent
    was Thomas Edison. It’s also well known
    and well documented that if you were a
    worker that worked for George Westinghouse
    at the time and had worked an item
    that was patented, the name on the patent was that
    of the empoloyee or the worker. Benjamin Lamme, for
    example, one of the great
    Westinghouse engineers, perhaps best known
    for having designed the first three 5,000
    horsepower generators that went into Niagara Falls, Benjamin Lamme alone
    had 162 patents during his career
    at Westinghouse, Everyone of them recorded in
    the name of Benjamin Lamme. I always thought if we
    could get all these patents of all the great engineers
    and others that worked
    for Westinghouse, if he had the same
    practice as Edison of putting his name
    on those patents, he’d have well excess,
    also, of 1,000 patents
    during his lifetime. Voiceover: George Westinghouse
    always surrounded himself with the best and the brightest. Man: He had a real knack as
    a manager that Edison didn’t, in that he could bring
    a lot of very creative, very intelligent
    people together, and at least get them to
    work towards a project. These people are hard
    to bring together. They had big egos. He was able to manage that. He was a tremendous manager, something that Edison was not an most inventors were not. (old time big band music) Voiceover: By 1900, George
    Westinghouse had started or was associated with
    nearly 40 companies. By 1910, that number would
    rise close to 60 companies. He was worth many millions of
    dollars several times over, although some joked that
    Marguerite spent it faster than even he could make it. Man: Later in life George
    Westinghouse worked on some other ideas that
    perhaps he’s not as
    well known for today. Westinghouse Electric
    Company actually went into the production of
    full-size Westinghouse alternating current
    electric locomotives in the early part of the 1900s. This came about in part
    because the east coast of the United States, the New
    York City area, for example, considered steam
    locomotives too dirty, and also too unsafe. There had been a great
    wreck in New York when an engineer on
    a steam locomotive failed to see the signals
    because of the smoke
    from the locomotive, so the east coast
    of the United States electrified their railroads. Taking advantage of
    that opportunity, Westinghouse Electric
    manufactured full-size electric alternating
    current locomotives at the East Pittburgh works of
    Westinghouse Electric here in Pennsylvania. Voiceover: On May 16,
    1905, he made history by combining two
    of his passions; transportation and alternating
    current electricity, where his electric
    train was matched against a steam locomotive
    of similar size. As he stands front and center, his smile is no doubt covered
    by his trademark mustache. That day, his electric
    locomotive proved superiority in handling a train
    of 50 steel gondolas, opening up the future of new
    electric railroad innovations for the Westinghouse
    Electric Company. Westinghouse made tremendous
    advances in the areas of railroad signalling
    and interlocking. The Union Switch
    and Signal Company, regarded as one of
    his least glamorous but most important companies, was found in 1881. Quentin Skrabec: A lot of
    people remember the air brake; they don’t remember all the work that Westinghouse did with
    switching and signalling. You had trains on
    the same track. They had to pick up signals. They had to make switches. The tracks had to be manually
    switched a lot of times so the trains wouldn’t collide. Voicover: Signals tell a
    train when to reduce speed, when to stop, and when to start, when to proceed under control, and when to go
    ahead at full speed. Quentin Skrabec: The railroads
    weren’t too interested in it. It was a safety issue, and
    they weren’t really … Just like the brakes, they
    didn’t come on stream with that. Westinghouse sort
    of pushed that. He saw a need. Voiceover: Interlocking
    provided control and operation of
    switches and signals so that they moved
    in certain sequences. It was said that if a
    man were blindfolded and pulled levers at random,
    he could stop traffic, but he could not
    produce a collision. Edward Reis: They were
    using air to switch tracks
    was new at the time. They were also using electric
    current down the railroad tracks so they could tell
    where the trains were without having
    observer in a tower, which had a major impact
    on the ability to move lots of trains through
    heavy traffic areas. Those two items alone
    had a major impact on
    the railroad industry. Voiceover: Another of his
    lesser known inventions was the steam heater, which
    used steam from the locomotive to warm train cars in
    the dead of winter. Edward Reis: Later in
    life, George Westinghouse also worked on a marine
    turbine engine for
    the shipping industry. Quentin Scrabec: What you have
    in steam engines in shipping is steam engines turn
    a shaft very quickly. Reduction gear allowed
    that fast turning to move down to slow
    turning with a lot of torque so it could drive
    through the water. So the reduction gear
    allowed for very efficient steam power of ships. (old movie music) Voiceover: George
    Westinghouse was involved with industries related to
    the newest mechanical marvel of the 20th century:
    the automobile. He was influenced by
    a device a chauffeur in Lenox used to reduce
    road shocks in his car. Westinghouse noticed
    that it needs changing
    to make it successful, and a year later
    saw the first set of Westinghouse air
    springs installed on
    one of his vehicles. It was recorded that he said, “They make a wonderful
    difference in the riding
    qualities of the car.” Edward Reis: He came up
    with the idea of using air for shock absorbers on a car. So, for example, he
    owned automobiles and obviously the roads
    were kind of rough and the ride was kind of rough, so he, in effect, invented
    the shock absorber
    as we know it today. Voiceover: George Westinghouse
    was always working for ideals. He was always trying to
    produce a perfect product and commercial success
    was bound to follow, and so was the prosperity
    of his employees. But not everything that
    he touched turned to gold. Edward Reis: Like
    all great inventors, George Westinghouse
    did have some failures. I wouldn’t necessarily say
    they were major failures. His rotary steam engine,
    his very first patent, for example, he was never able
    to make it a commercial success, and yet that idea
    of a rotating engine stayed with him
    throughout his lifetime. He also worked for many, many
    years on a steam turbine, and eventually acquired
    the Parson steam turbine
    patents from England because it was a better
    steam turbine than the one
    he had been working on. Was he successful with
    the development of
    his own steam turbine? The answer is no. But long term, all the
    experience that he gained from having worked on his own
    Westinghouse steam turbine, they reduced the size
    of that engine by 2/3 and keeping the
    same power output. Quentin Skrabec: Also, you
    could set them up anywhere. You didn’t need a Niagara
    Falls in your backyard. This allowed for electrical
    generation across the country. This is where Westinghouse
    was brilliant. He could get in
    there on something that somebody else
    had started like that, and really bring it
    into commercialization. Edward Reis: They made
    major improvements to the Parsons steam turbine
    even though it was basically a very good design
    to begin with. (slow, sad piano music) Voiceover: George
    Westinghouse showed faith in his enterprises by investing
    his own money in them. Many of his new businesses
    were financed at the beginning by borrowing from his
    seasoned companies, which had already
    become successful, like Westinghouse Air Brake. Several times he imperiled
    his entire fortune and his credit by investing
    practically everything into his start-up companies
    when others lacked faith. This meant he had more at risk, but the payout was
    higher if they succeeded. The risks of this
    method of finance culminated in the
    disaster of 1907, which came to be the
    tragedy of his life. The Westinghouse enterprises
    had spread all over the world and their requirements for
    working capital were immense. When the widespread money
    crisis of 1907 arrived, his loans were called. Quentin Skrabec: Because he
    was fascinated in new projects, he borrowed a lot of
    money at the time, which was not his usual stop. He was sort of anti-banking. Not sort of; he was. He didn’t like to borrow money. He liked to generate investment
    out of his own profits. He had a dislike for
    bankers and that would
    hurt him in the long run. But in the case of a lot
    of electrical projects like the Niagara Fall
    generating plant at the time, he was overextended in
    his electrical company, no question about it. J. P. Morgan up in New
    York had wanted to bring Westinghouse in to
    an electrical trust with at the time
    General Electric. Westinghouse disliked
    trusts and refused. That put him at
    odds with Morgan. Edward Reis: The bankers
    were very tough individuals. They had taken Edison
    Electric Company away from Thomas Edison in 1888. He was not happy about
    that, by the way. There was a downturn
    in the economy, a depression, if you would,
    here in this country. George Westinghouse had just
    invested a huge amount of money in building the East
    Pittsburgh works of Westinghouse
    Electric Company. He had quite a number
    of outstanding loans. Loans were callable
    in those days. If he were here
    today, he’d tell you, he believed the bankers
    used that as a reason to force him out of
    control of the Westinghouse
    Electric Company, which they did. Quentin Skrabec:
    Newspapers, the Pittsburgh
    newspapers in particular, blamed it on Westinghouse,
    his poor management. So on top of everything
    else, he’s getting headlines that he’s a poor manager. Now Morgan didn’t take
    over Westinghouse. There were other bankers. It was really a
    crushing blow to him. Voiceover: It was written
    that this was the most considerable mercantile failure
    that America has ever witnessed. Control of the Westinghouse
    Electric Company passed
    out of his hands. Ironically, his name remained
    as their greatest asset. The writer of his biography said that as he was riding
    with him one night, when passing the great
    works at East Pittsburgh, George turned his face
    towards the bleak hills on the other side of the way with an expression so pathetic
    as to break one’s heart. Quentin Skrabec: He didn’t have
    enough cash to make the payment. It was a temporary situation. It just wouldn’t happen today
    for a big company like that. They would be able to get
    money on the open market. But because Morgan
    basically controlled the
    open market in those days, even for the government
    with no Federal Reserve, he could make that decision and
    block that type of cash inflow that Westinghouse would
    have easily gotten today. (soft piano music) That electrical
    company was the company he loved the most at the time. It was where he was doing
    all his progressive projects, all his scientific research. The air brake company,
    which he retained, was pretty much steady business, so he went after another
    group of inventions in a lot of different
    ways that he could utilize the resources and the money
    of his air brake company. Voiceover: The short
    years of his life that
    remained after the tragedy were filled with the
    same unceasing activity. A friend asked him if he would
    slow down, and he replied, “No, I do not feel that it would
    be right for me to stop now. “I feel that I have been
    given certain powers to create “and develop enterprises
    in which other men “can find useful and
    profitable employment, “and so long as I am able, “it is my duty to continue
    to exercise those powers.” Lifelong, he was temperate
    in everything but his work. In an era where everyone smoked, George Westinghouse did not. He rarely drank, and he
    never used profanity. One writer said of him
    that, “While Westinghouse’s “head was in the stars,
    his substantial feet
    were on the ground.” Late in 1913, his
    health began to fade. What was called an organic
    disease of the heart developed and he retired to his
    home in Lenox to rest. During the illness,
    his quizzical humor and inventive spirit lived on. But his body slowly faded away. On March 12, 1914 he died. It was said that drawings
    for an electric wheelchair that he was designing were
    nearby at the time of his death. Edward Reis: Upon his
    death, his eight pallbearers were all his oldest workers
    from the Westinghouse
    Air Brake Company, including the very first
    worker that he had ever hired. To have that honor
    to be a pallbearer at George Westinghouse’s
    funeral certainly showed the interaction
    he had with average
    workers in his plants. Voiceover: Marguerite
    died a few months later. George and Marguerite
    Westinghouse are buried in Arlington National Cemetery
    beneath a modest headstone. He had requested to be
    buried there in honor of
    his Civil War service. (old time music) The world and the
    Westinghouse companies
    continued on after his death. His brother became the President
    of Westinghouse Air Brake, which continued its
    operations and growth. His son, George III, who
    had passed an apprenticeship at the air brake works,
    carried on the legacy and managed the family finances. Man: Westinghouse Air Brake
    Company changed their name at one point in time to Wabco, but they’re still with us
    today with the name Wabtec. Voiceover: Westinghouse Electric
    and Manufacturing Company remained at the forefront
    of the modern era as the country rapidly
    embraced electric power and purchased new
    machines and appliances to aid in daily life. In 1920, Westinghouse
    made history by airing the first commercial
    radio broadcast in the country. Edward Reis: They started
    radio station KDKA. The first transmittal on
    that radio station was done in November 1920 from
    atop the K buidling at the East Pittsburgh
    works of Westinghouse Electric and Manufacturing
    Company as it was
    called at the time. They broadcast the presidential
    election returns that year. That was the very
    successful first commercial radio broadcast in
    the United States. KDKA went on to become a
    very successful company. The very first year
    that they operated, they operated from a
    studio atop the K buidling at the East Pittsburgh works, and they actually had a tent. It was said you could
    hear the train whistles in the background because
    they were in a tent they had not way to
    keep that sound out of the radio programs
    at that point in time. (upbeat movie music) Voiceover: Say,
    what Fair’s this? Female: It’s the
    Westinghouse Freedom Fair. You’ll find it in every
    Westinghouse dealer’s store in every town in
    the United States. So go to the Fair
    at your dealer’s. See these seven great
    Westinghouse appliances and learn how they bring
    you hours of freedom from drudgery every day. For instance, here’s
    freedom from all the nuisance and
    mess of defrosting. (slow big band music) Voiceover: For decades,
    Westinghouse Electric and Manufacturing Company
    appliances were considered to be the leaders in
    their field; well built, well engineered, and
    fashionably styled. Their ads ran everywhere
    and influenced American pop art and pop culture
    for generations. Female: Oh, and that reminds me, when you cook the
    Westinghouse Electric way, you’re free from an
    overheated kitchen, and you’re free, too, from
    all the grease and grime that forms on walls and curtains
    from other kinds of cooking. Voiceover: Westinghouse
    advertisements from the early 20th century showed just how
    happy the American housewife was with a kitchen full
    of Westinghouse
    Electric appliances. No longer did she have to
    slave over a hot oven all day. Now, she could set a
    clock, go out on the
    town with her friends, and come home to dinner
    waiting for her and her family. (big band music) For the fellows out there, tired
    of using a crank in the morning? Westinghouse gave them
    batteries to start their cars. In 1916, Westinghouse
    Electric introduced a revolutionary toaster
    that flipped bread slices, evenly toasting both sides. Things we take for granted
    now, were brand new back then. Electricity was used to
    power fans, curling irons, light bulbs, radios,
    coffee percolators, and a variety of
    Westinghouse Electric wares. In the early days before
    standardized AC wall outlets, these devices screwed right
    in to your light sockets. Smooth curves, sleek
    lines, and chrome accents are hallmark traits of
    their famous 1930s line
    of electric appliances. In the George
    Westinghouse tradition of surrounding himself with
    the best and the brightest, Westinghouse Electric
    filled its ranks with industrial designers
    like Ralph Kruck and created products with
    such style and originality that remain collectors’
    items today. These rare hand-drawn
    sketches by Kruck and rough drafts of
    refrigerators, washing machines, vacuums and other appliances show the amount of
    work and ingenuity that went into their
    manufactured goods for decades. In the 1950s, their
    advertisements and slogans heralded a new era of
    comfort and convenience. Female: And the
    Westinghouse Electric sink frees you forever
    from washing dishes. Here is freedom from
    cooking drudgery. Voiceover: “You can be
    sure if it’s Westinghouse” became a national
    catchphrase in 1954. Famous actors like Ronald
    Reagan, Betty Furness, and Edward G. Robinson appeared
    in Westinghouse advertisements. Cartoon characters like
    Blondie and Dagwood celebrated their electric
    life on board games. Female: And remember, you can
    be sure if it’s Westinghouse. (old movie music) Voiceover: The Westinghouse
    marketing machine
    knew no boundaries and had friends in
    the highest places. In the 1940s the Walt
    Disney Company produced
    a promotional film for the Westinghouse
    Electric Company, showing what advancements
    Westinghouse was making in the area of
    household appliances, electricity, and
    modern comforts. Radio announcer: 1910,
    however, brings into our lives what some people are
    calling a miracle. A new servant, not
    very well trained yet, but willing and
    cheerful: electricity. It lightens our homes, but not yet does it
    lighten our housework. David Cope: This is a
    Westinghouse turkey roaster. My grandmother had this, and she had it back in
    the late ’30s, early ’40s. We have used it every year
    for Thanksgiving since then. Radio announcer: By the
    1930s a new day at last. Our servant, electricity,
    has learned to cool and heat, wash and iron, roast and toast. We get a house, stuff
    it with furnishings, and then try to stuff
    ourselves in last. David Cope: Dependable. It’s what you think
    of Westinghouse. Old line, dependable, usable. You’re talking 60
    years of dependability. Industrial designers
    at the time knew that if they made something
    aesthetically nice, people would by it. Then aesthetically
    they could change it and people would have to
    have the newer models. Radio announcer: Let’s
    look inside that wall. You see, everything
    is going along fine with only 1,950 watts
    plugged into the circuit. The refrigerator, the iron, the coffee maker, and the radio. But, if we plug in
    that extra 1,150 watts, just see what happens when it
    hits and overloads the circuit. (cartoon sounds) Voiceover: Although some
    of their predictions of the future were
    a bit far fetched, much of what we see in the
    film was brought to reality by the Westinghouse Electric
    and Manufacturing Company. (smash) Voiceover: Oh,
    goodness, what was that? Radio announcer: That’s
    what happens when we try to load too many watts
    on poor electric circuit. Female: And here are America’s
    favorite laundry twins, the Westinghouse Laundromat
    and the Clothes Dryer. Radio announcer: This
    is the new Laundromat. It does everything but think. Quentin Skrabec: Industrial
    designers consider the Westinghouse Laundromat and
    the Westinghouse Clothes Dryer as excellent examples of early
    modern industrial design. Actually, Westinghouse
    created the name Laundromat for the washing machine, and they had the twin,
    as they called them, the Westinghouse twins,
    with the Clothes Dryer. Now one year and one year only, this Clothes Dryer
    Westinghouse had, had a built-in unit that
    when the Clothes Dryer finished the drying cycle, it would play the
    song, How Dry I Am. Now we have the unit
    mounted on top here so one can also see the
    device that was used to play that song, How Dry I Am. Radio Announcer: Put in
    the clothes, set the dials, add soap, and it washes,
    rinses and damp dry, ready for the electric dryer, where the clothes are
    tumbled about in heated air until they’re completely
    dry, soft and fluffy. (excited music) Jim Sutherland: I think
    Westinghouse Electric
    had its golden age during and soon after
    the Second World War. Now, of course this was 30 years
    after George Westinghouse died so you can’t credit
    that directly with
    George Westinghouse, but it’s the legacy that
    George Westinghouse, as a man, left that was
    developed into a company that could produce
    the many, many things that they made during the
    Second World War and afterward. They made gun control
    systems for tanks that allowed them to fire
    while the tank was moving. It stabilized the motion
    of the tank platform. They made torpedoes. They made DDT canisters. They made binoculars. They also made helmet liners. They fired chickens
    through windshields to test airplane windshields
    in East Pittsburgh. They had a compressed air cannon and they would fire dead
    chickens at the glass panels that they’d set up
    and see which panels could withstand a
    head-on collision with
    a chicken at 200 mph. (airplanes flying sounds) If you were a pilot,
    it was pretty important to know that your glass
    had been tested! (chuckle) (big band music) Voicover: In true
    Westinghouse tradition, throughout the 20th century many of their most spectacular
    marketing and advertising displays, innovations,
    and spectacles were featured at World’s Fairs. As one newspaper
    headline put it, “Everywhere Around the
    Fairs, it’s Westinghouse.” George had always
    like World’s Fairs because he believed that
    they made the public more conscious of the
    name Westinghouse. David Cope: World’s Fairs
    were used as a promotional. You have to remember, they
    didn’t have advertising, per se, that we have today where people
    could see how things worked. Voiceover: Westinghouse had
    been a constant presence at these massive events sine the
    Centennial Exhibition in 1876. At the St. Louis
    Exposition in 1904, Westinghouse occupied more
    than 70,000 square feet of Exhibition space with their
    growing empire of companies. In 1933, nearly 20 years
    after their founder’s death, Westinghouse made a
    memorable impression at the Century of
    Progress Fair in Chicago. The motto for the Fair was “Science finds, industry
    applies, man conforms.” It was once again held along
    the shore of Lake Michigan. Man: So people came
    away with the name … They knew that Westinghouse
    was a good, solid name. It meant security,
    it meant electricity that was going to
    come into their homes and be able to provide
    them a new way of life. Voiceover: In 1936,
    Westinghouse was there again with a strong,
    glamorous presence for the Great Lakes
    Exposition in Cleveland. The main attraction in
    the Westinghouse booth was the little theater
    with the revolving stage of five scenes called
    Leisure for Living. It was usually packed,
    for it was the only air-conditioned
    enclosure on the grounds. The Fair was deemed a
    success as Westinghouse reported a dramatic sales
    increase in the region following the event. Westinghouse Day was
    celebrated as trains from East Pittsburgh brought
    employees and their families to the Golden Jubilee,
    commemorating the
    50th anniversary of the Westinghouse Electric
    and Manufacturing Company. Male: She’s [consistently]
    diving into the bottom of the dark and greasy water
    to search for knives and forks, dishwater splashing
    around [unintelligible] all over Mrs. Drudge. The rubber apron
    isn’t much help now. She’s splashing so hard
    it’s getting all over me. Voiceover: The 1939 World’s
    Fair could have been the one show where
    Westinghouse really came close to outdoing its
    1893 performance. Their marketing department
    came out swinging with robots, singing
    fountains, time capsules, and the battle of the
    century’s dish washing contest. New York City hosted
    the 1939 World’s Fair in Flushing Meadows with its
    theme The World of Tomorrow. It was thought that the
    public had forgotten all about the battle
    of the currents and they were going to
    New York to dramatize Westinghouse’s mastery
    of electricity. David Cope: Almost every
    Fair building in 1939 had no exterior windows. Westinghouse differentiates
    themselves because their building is
    shaped like an omega with these two
    marvelous glass fronts that people looked into and
    saw what was going on inside. They showed
    absolutely every part of their production
    lines at the time without showing a great
    deal of their products. Elderly lady: That’s
    what I call smart, making time the theme
    of the home exhibits. No one who hasn’t
    cooked over a wood stove with the light of kerosene lamp can really appreciate
    what it all means. Voiceover: A fierce
    competition took place daily in the Westinghouse auditorium. The Battle of the Centuries
    pitted Mrs. Drudge armed with only a
    dishpan, soap, and towel, against Mrs. Modern, armed
    with a Westinghouse dishwasher, in a dramatic dual to
    see who could wash 50
    dishes the fastest. Male: 7 minutes and 58 seconds. In that time Mrs. Modern
    has washed 50 dishes and 40 pieces of silverware. It’s all over Mrs. Drudge. You may as well
    rest now. (laughter) Voiceover: Contestants
    were rated on the time they took to wash
    50 soiled dishes, the cleanliness of the dishes, and the condition of
    the contestants at the
    end of the contest. Male: Now, point number 3. The condition of
    the contestants. Mrs. Modern looks as
    fresh and neat as when
    she stepped into the ring, while Mrs. Drudge, well, I’ll
    have to leave that to you! (audience laughing) So, ladies and gentlemen, I give
    you the winner, Mrs. Modern. (audience applause) Voiceover: As if
    that wasn’t enough, one of the greatest
    publicity schemes of all time was created by Westinghouse when Elektro, the Moto-Man,
    appeared at the Fair. (suspense music) Man: And so, ladies
    and gentlemen, with a great deal of
    pride and pleasure, I present to you Elektro,
    the Westinghouse Moto-Man. Elektro, come here. And here he comes,
    ladies and gentlemen, walking up to greet you
    under his own power. David Cope: People have to
    have something to remember. You can show an electric
    iron and people say, oh,
    that’s pretty exciting. But you can have a robot
    that uses all the technology that Westinghouse had at
    the time, put it together, and it does these
    marvelous tricks. They’re not going to go home
    and say, “we saw an iron.” “We saw Elektro!” Again, they’re
    going home and say, “Where did you see Electro?” “Well, Westinghouse.” Voiceover: It was
    thought that thanks to
    Westinghouse engineering some day robots will do
    all our household chores, and even walk the dog,
    assuming that dog is Sparko, the robotic dog who
    appeared with him
    during part of the Fair. At 7 feet tall and 260
    pounds, Elektro did some
    pretty amazing things. Man: You see, all I need to do
    is to speak into this phone, and Elektro does exactly
    what I tell him to do. Voiceover: Elektro could
    differentiate between
    the colors red and green and would speak out
    “red” or “green.” Most importantly, he smoked
    cigarettes by the dozens, and not only puffed
    them in inhaled, but blew the smoke in great
    billows from his nostrils. (crowd noise) Male: And folks, he’s only two
    years old, too; just learning. Elderly lady: Why
    he’s almost human! Lady in gold hat:
    If he wasn’t so big I’d take him for an engineer. Man: Westinghouse would
    have loved Elektro. Westinghouse would have
    loved the whole exhibit. It showed first of
    all solid workmanship, and I think that’s what
    Westinghouse means. When you think of
    Westinghouse, you’re thinking of solid craftsmanship,
    and inventiveness. Electro: Who? Me? Male: Yes, you. Electro: Okay, toots. Voiceover: During a
    radio interview with KDKA on his way to the World’s
    Fair, Elektro said, “I’m so tough I’m the
    only guy in the world “that really shaves
    with a blow torch!” He was not so tough as to
    withstand water, though. Specific instructions were given
    not to take him out in the rain. Elektro was actually
    the third in a line of Westinghouse robots that
    started in 1927 with Televox. In 1932, Westinghouse
    created Willie Vocalite. One far-fetched idea
    for the 1939 Fair, which was mercifully scrapped, was to convert Willie
    Vocalite into Electro’s
    woman companion robot, and to have her do dishes
    and vacuum at the Fair. David Cope: People for centuries
    had put things into boxes. You’re building a building,
    you put a cornerstone, you put a box and you
    put some things in. Westinghouse comes
    up with an idea. We’re going to have this
    for 5,000 years later. People are going to open it
    up and see what 1939 was like. Voiceover: The time capsule
    was filled with artifacts of the day including a
    slide rule, hats, seeds, cigarettes, and letters from
    scientists like Albert Einstein. Made of cupaloy, it was meant
    to be a 5,000 year time capsule and to be opened
    in the year 6939. It remains buried
    today in the same spot. The letters from
    Einstein and other famous
    scientists of the time hinted at the dangers
    of atomic weapons and the possibility that mankind
    might not be around in 6939 to open the time capsule. (exciting music) At the 1964 World’s Fair,
    things began to change. Radio announcer: Near
    the Astral Fountain in the federal and states
    area of the World’s Fair is the time capsule
    exhibit of the Westinghouse
    Electric Corporation. Three tall towers poised
    against the Long Island sky mark the spot where
    Westinghouse buried the first time capsule in 1938. Man: I think 1893 and
    1939 changed culture. I think ’64 only reflected
    the change in the culture. I don’t know that Westinghouse
    was devoid of ideas, but it was a time period when
    they did repeat themselves. Not a very exciting exhibit. When you look at the
    Westinghouse exhibit, they simply seemed almost tired. Radio announcer: The
    Westinghouse time capsules; legacy for the people
    of the year 6939, proving that man not only
    endures, he also prevails. (music) (gentle big band music) Voiceover: Mirroring the
    changes seen at the 1964 Fair, corporate culture
    and consumerism were
    changing America. Anti-trust laws through
    the mid 20th century had been hard on the company,
    forcing them to break up. The once mighty Westinghouse
    manufacturing plants were regarded as outdated. Foreign competition was
    creeping in, and energy
    costs were rising. As times were changing
    and lower performing
    divisions had to be cut it was difficult to maintain
    the kind of relationship with its workers that the
    good old days permitted. Gone forever were company bands, the Westinghouse athletic teams, employee housing, and the
    lawn and garden contests. Jim Sutherland: Now,
    Westinghouse in 1955 had 55% of their refrigerator
    market in the United States. For any company to have
    55% of a market is amazing. Twenty years later they
    had to sell the division to get money to
    buy a cable system. Voiceover: Even
    though Westinghouse
    was widely thought of as having the best engineers,
    designers, and technology, they could no longer
    keep their costs down
    to remain competitive. Joseph Deley: He said at
    our display last night, all the products
    really looked great, but I heard this morning
    that all the products were stolen by a thief
    except the toaster. The bottom line of that
    was we had a lousy toaster
    in the field. (chuckles) Voiceover: The remainder
    of the 20th century and into the new millennium, the Westinghouse
    companies and divisions went through various changes,
    sell-offs, and mergers. In today’s global economy
    where companies like Toshiba, Siemens,
    Schindler Group, Philips,
    and Northrop Grumman own former divisions of
    the Westinghouse companies, it has been joked in articles, “Can you be sure if
    it’s Westinghouse?” Jim Sutherland: Today there’s
    only one company that’s called Westinghouse Electric
    Company and it’s the group that is designing and
    building nuclear power plants. All the other companies have
    been changed to other names as they were bought by
    Siemens and Emerson, Cutler-Hammer; large companies
    that are very successful today. It’s the same engineers doing
    the same development work, but the name Westinghouse
    does not appear
    outside over the door. Today, CBS manages
    and licenses the use of the Westinghouse Electric
    Corporation name and logo that appear on a variety
    of products that rely
    on the circle-bar “W” to market a familiar and
    trusted brand name to consumers. It was said years
    earlier by E. E. Keller, 1893 World’s Fair manager,
    that George Westinghouse was an exceedingly modest
    man, very unassuming, and almost retiring. He disliked self advertising, but strongly advocated
    the advertising of
    products and performance; therefore, the name Westinghouse had become synonymous
    with ingenuity, initiative, courage,
    and accomplishment, and was unquestionably the
    company’s most valuable asset. Paul Kravath, a
    friend and associate, said that he was the soul of
    the enterprises that he created. That soul is immortal. Because of this, it
    can be said today that Westinghouse is
    remembered primarily as the name of a company,
    while Thomas Edison is remembered as America’s
    greatest inventor. Edward Reis: Yeah, history has
    treated Thomas Edison quite well compared to George
    Westinghouse, considering that the world was
    electrified using Westinghouse
    alternating current. Today many people
    attribute all successes in electricity to Thomas Edison. It came about for a
    number of reasons; personality primarily. George Westinghouse was a
    very reserved individual. He did not seek the limelight. He did not seek media attention. In fact, he tried to avoid it. Thomas Edison, on the other
    hand, liked media attention. He very much like to
    be in the limelight, and he liked to talk about
    his successes to the media. He was also from the New
    Jersey/New York area, where the media provided
    a lot more coverage than they would here in the
    smokey city of Pittsburgh. The other advantage
    that Thomas Edison had is he outlived George
    Westinghouse by 17 years. Voiceover: In a twist of irony, the American Institute
    of Electrical Engineers honored George Westinghouse
    for his tenacious work in establishing the
    alternating current system by awarding him
    the Edison Medal. He was offered, and
    accepted, the presidency of the American Society of
    Mechanical Engineers in 1910. Westinghouse received
    many other honors, including a spot in the Hall
    of Fame for Great Americans. David Cope: Having been a
    teacher, Edison is played up in every major American
    history textbook. He is still that touchstone
    inventor that we think about. Westinghouse gets the
    mention but not the due
    course that he should. Quentin Skrabec: Westinghouse
    was a people person. He loved to have family picnics. He loved to have Christmas
    parties for his employees. He loved to walk through the
    plant and talk to his employees. He got involved with
    them personally when
    they needed help. Joseph Deley: One interesting
    story that I can tell you while I was on the
    trade was I was working with an older fellow
    in the lathe group. His name was Harry,
    who by the way, when he was in his
    teens or my age, he was doing the same
    thing, running a lathe, in East Pittsburgh. Poor Harry one day was having
    problems making a part. He kind of got upset
    and in his anxiety threw a hammer on
    the floor in disgust. Unfortunately, when he looked
    up, George Westinghouse was walking down the aisle and
    saw Harry with his problem. George come over
    to Harry and says, “How you doing? What’s
    up? What’s the problem?” Harry told him, showed
    him the blueprint that he was having
    trouble making a part, George looked at it and said, “Move over,” took off his jacket, rolled up his sleeves, put down his briefcase, and helped Harry make the part, then put his jacket
    back on, and said, “I’ll see you later,” and left. Harry told me that story
    when he was in his 60s and I was 17 and I’ll
    never forget that story
    as long as I live. William Terbo: Among
    the things that Tesla found most interesting
    in Westinghouse was his patents on air
    brake, the railroad business, because he recognized from
    his background in Europe in which the trains were
    doing the same as they
    were in this country, their trains were running
    together at all sorts of times and not stopping properly, that he saw that
    George Westinghouse was a consummate
    inventor himself. Quentin Skrabec: He had such a
    following of his own employees. Very rarely do you see that. When he was even
    in trouble in 1907 and he couldn’t get
    money from the bank, his employees tried to chip in. They didn’t have enough. Jim Sutherland: People are
    in Westinghouse Air Brake and Westinghouse
    Electric and Union Switch
    and Signal companies are very loyal to the spirit
    of George Westinghouse that filled their companies. That spirit was something
    that you could not purchase. It was a gift. Edward Reis: The
    Westinghouse Electric Company was getting ready to
    celebrate its 50th anniversay in the year 1936, so they wrote
    a letter and sent that letter to some older retirees
    in Westinghouse Electric, older workers from
    Westinghouse Air Brake, the Union Switch
    and Signal Company, the other Westinghouse
    companies. They also sent letters to
    people that they thought may have interacted
    with George Westinghouse at one time or another. For example, they sent letters
    to the various railroads. They asked these
    individuals to write back with personal remembrances
    of interactions with George Westinghouse. This large stack of
    letters came back and they’re very interesting
    letters; very personal. They’re a real insight
    into his personality. They’re a real insight into
    the various business practices that he had and his ability
    to get along with people. It’s most interesting
    and very fortunate that these letters exist today. Voiceover: Those who
    knew George Westinghouse and served with him in
    the army of industry considered him to be America’s
    greatest industrialist and held him in
    the highest regard. Personal letters from
    Westinghouse employees speak volumes about the
    character and personality of the man whom they
    refer to as Uncle George. E. E. Keller said that
    all of his employees who came in personal
    contact with him seemed to catch his enthusiasm and were glad to do the job
    in hand for Uncle George. Westinghouse had many nicknames. Former employees wrote letters
    about how the “Old Man” paid for their train fare
    and tickets to attend the 1876 Centennial
    Exposition in Philadelphia where Westinghouse Air
    Brake made their first World’s Fair appearance. The same employee said
    that when the “Chief” asked them to work all weekend
    to finish a job on time, they felt honored to do so. George Verity, former Director
    of Westinghouse Electric and Manufacturing Company,
    said, “His industries “were so solidly and completely
    built around his personality “that the name
    Westinghouse was ingrained “in our national industrial
    structure for all time to come. “As I knew him, he was
    an outstanding man, “who not only created
    many new things, “but he also put old things
    together in a new way, “and then motivated
    both the new and the old “with an invisible,
    mystic and titanic power.” Paul Cravath said, “I
    am sure that none of us “has ever known a man
    who combine the qualities “of faith, imagination,
    and courage “as they are combined
    in George Westinghouse. “But he was never so engrossed
    in his great achievements “that he did not have time
    to help a friend in need. “I need not say that we shall
    never see his like again.” A former foreman said,
    “During the panic of 1893 “many men were laid off
    at the Electric Company, “but Mr. Westinghouse said,
    ‘Get those men back to work. “‘I am not hard up.'” It was recorded that
    he ordered his workers to do odd jobs around the
    shop rather than be laid off. Scientific American
    said, “He succeeded “because he believed in
    himself and in his invention. “An inventor who is a pessimist
    is doomed to failure.” Mr. Samuel Gompers,
    former President of the American
    Federation of Labor said, “I will say this for
    George Westinghouse. “If all employers of men
    treated their employees “with the same
    consideration as he does, “the American Federation
    of Labor would have to
    go out of existence.” Andrew Carnegie summed
    it up by saying, “George Westinghouse is a
    genius who can’t be downed.” In the modern era, when
    many billionaire CEOs are indicted for fraud,
    corruption, and theft, their former employees celebrate
    when they are sent to jail. In contrast, 16 years after the
    death of George Westinghouse, in 1930, former Westinghouse
    working class employees paid for the construction
    and dedication of a monument honoring him that remains standing in
    Pittsburgh’s Schenley Park. (music) It says, “George Westinghouse, “Union soldier,
    citizen of Pittsburgh, “founder of
    Westinghouse industries, “benefactor of humanity through
    his labors and inventions.” (music) Much has changed since his
    days as a Cavalry trooper. His companies have
    come and gone, expanded, contracted,
    and changed. Solitude was demolished in 1919 and the land donated
    for a city park. The George Westinghouse
    Memorial Bridge, built in 1932, remains standing. (music) Alternating current, air brakes, and many of his
    other innovations continue to shape the modern
    world that we live in today. (music) Man: George
    Westinghouse once said, “If some day they say
    of me that in my work “I have contributed
    something to the welfare “and happiness of my fellow
    man, I shall be satisfied.” (music) Jim Sutherland:
    Everybody was proud to work for Westinghouse
    in those days. If you asked a person
    who was a Marine, “Are you a Marine or
    were you a Marine?” they’ll say. ” I am a Marine,” even though it might
    have been 40 years ago that they were serving
    in the Marine Corps. As a Westinghouse engineer,
    I am a Westinghouse engineer. (gentle music)

    The Mystery Of The Nevada Triangle (Area 51 Documentary) | Timeline
    Articles, Blog

    The Mystery Of The Nevada Triangle (Area 51 Documentary) | Timeline

    August 14, 2019

    September, 2007 One of America’s richest men went missing on a solo flight in the mountains of the Sierra Nevada Steve Fossett was a world-famous pilot who cheated death on dozens of record-breaking flights How could he just vanish off the face of the Earth? ‘There were rumors he was in Argentina, There were rumors that he had faked his death.’ ‘A lot of people, especially wealthy people, sometimes they just kinda- check out. ‘I’m walkin’ away from this.” Fossett, who’d made the first solo balloon flight around the world, had disappeared in America’s very own Bermuda Triangle An area of Nevada and California, in which more than 2000 planes have crashed in the last 50 years Some call it the ‘Nevada Triangle’ ‘It’s just something that’s been passed around by pilots in this area for decades; that, y’know, in the old days planes would go missing, nobody ever found the airplane.’ ‘They were talking about hundreds, and hundreds of planes that had vanished into the, uh- ‘Nevada Triangle’, ‘Devil’s Triangle of Nevada’.’ The Nevada Triangle is a mysterious area, with an unforgiving landscape of high mountain and desert Inside its borders is Area 51; a top-secret military base, famous for rumors of UFO sightings, and unsolved plane crashes Only by unlocking these mysteries, to try and find out what happened to Steve Fossett, can we learn why so many planes crash, or disappear in the Nevada Triangle Yerington, Nevada 8:45am, Monday, the 3rd of September, 2007 Record-breaking pilot Steve Fossett took off on a solo flight in a 2-man stunt plane A weekend guest at a ranch 60 miles from Reno, he didn’t tell his hosts where he was going Simply saying he’d ‘be back in a few hours.’ After 3 hours his worried friends declared him missing They triggered the biggest peace-time search and rescue operation in US history It was led by the Nevada wing of the US Air Force’s Civil Air Patrol ‘There was no flight plan file, the only information we had was that, y’know, he was basically takin’ off on a, uh- Sunday joy ride, and flying 395 corridor.’ Fossett’s reputation for fearless flying kept his rescuers optimistic ‘This man can be found alive.’ ‘Any sighting, or anything that seems to be- appears to be accurate with the information known about the aircraft, we are following up with it, come in.’ Fossett had taken off from this desert air strip, the Flying M Ranch owned by his friend, billionaire hotelier, Baron Hilton The potential search area was huge; 8 times the size of Britain ‘He had about 4 hours of fuel on-board that aircraft, and it flies at about 120 miles an hour So, uh, that means that in 4 hours he could cover 480 miles, 500 miles and then to 3.14(r)^2 it’s 3/4 of a million miles, so unless we have some very good clues as to what direction, what piece of that, there’s no way that we could search 750000 square miles.’ The searchers were looking for a pilot who, at the age of 63, had amassed 115 world records ‘There’s a large number of aviation records, but there are 3, uh, what are called ‘absolute’ world records One of them is for distance, one for them for duration, and one for altitude, and, uh, I set 2 of them today.’ Terry Delore flew with Fossett for 5 years Together they set more than 10 world records for gliding The last one just weeks before Fossett disappeared ‘He was interested in what he calls the ‘ultimate challenges’, ‘ultimate achievements’, things that nobody’s ever done before Do something further, or faster, or longer, or, uh, whatever.’ Fossett was a driven man, he saw adversity as a challenge Surely he couldn’t have lost his life on a 2 hour pleasure flight? ‘He trained himself to be able to put up with all a variety of conditions that nature would throw at him, because all he was looking at was the goal of the end, y’know, to finish his challenges. To get the records, to, uh- To get where he wanted to go.’ Fossett had been a risk-taker all his life It had made his fortune By the time he was in his 40s he’d made, lost, and made again millions on the Chicago stock exchange ‘I’ve set a goal, which is at the very limit of this aircraft. If I’ve miscalculated to any extent, I will be unable to finish this flight.’ But had Fossett miscalculated that Sunday morning? The Sierra Nevada mountain range runs down the Western coast of the United States, and straddles the Border of California and Nevada The air strip he’d taken off from in Yarington is in the middle of what has become known as the Nevada Triangle It has seen more than 2000 plane crashes over the last 50 years ‘Since the 2nd World War there’ve been, uh, hundreds, and hundreds of planes that’ve crashed, uh, in the desert, and in the Sierra Nevada, so it is a treacherous place for aircraft.’ Frank Mullen is a newspaper journalist He started to plot out the crash sites ‘The map that I put together of 129 crashes, uh, are only crash sites where there’s still debris on the ground There’s been actually more hundreds, and hundreds of crash sites around the state.’ The area covers almost 25000 square miles Half the size of England There are many theories why so many planes go missing here From unusual atmospheric effects, to alien intervention In the search for Steve Fossett, investigators will explore each one in the hope of finding him ‘I gotta say the most critical part of a search is probably about the first 24 hours It’s the best possibility for someone that’s injured in a crash- survivable crash, to still be found alive your best options at being able to get help to this person, or these people as fast as you can.’ But Fossett wasn’t found on the first day, or the second ‘I would say after about 3 days we are pretty confident that we’re searching for wreckage, rather than an individual who needs to be rescued, unfortunately, uh- The temperatures go down pretty low at night, even in the summer times here, and if a person is injured, they’re not gonna survive very long usually.’ Fossett was not only an adventurer in the skies, he sailed oceans, and made 2 attempts on Everest ‘When you say the name ‘Steve Fosset’, then that changes your whole perspective, and if anyone was going to survive the thing, and come walking out- maybe broken and battered, but still alive, we really thought it would be him.’ The rescuers didn’t want to give up hope, because if anyone could beat the Nevada Triangle, it would be Steve Fossett That is, if he was still in the Triangle The mountains of the Sierra Nevada stretch for nearly 400 miles along the border of California and Nevada In September, 2007, they were the focus of a massive search and rescue operation Steve Fossett, the record-breaking aviator, had not been seen for 2 days since taking off on a pleasure flight As search planes combed the peaks and valleys, they reportedly spotted dozens of plane wrecks that had laid undisturbed for years ‘The planes that went in, down in these rocks here, were just small pieces that were found by hunters a good year after it went in, and uh, it was- just not visible from the air.’ It wasn’t news to the locals, but the world was discovering this region of the Sierra Nevada was an aviation graveyard ‘Initially the TV cable networks were all saying there were hundreds of planes that had flown into Nevada, and, uh, were never seen again. Just vanishing into thin air, and, uh- This turned into talk of the Nevada Triangle on CNN and the other TV networks Bermuda Triangle located in the desert of Nevada, where people just vanish More than 2000 planes have crashed in the Nevada Triangle since 1962 In the Southeastern corner, at the bottom of the triangle, is Area 51, a top-secret military testing site For years it has been associated with UFO sightings, alien encounters, and unexplained crashes ‘When it comes to someone vanishing, and you look at what else is in the area, and you see the proliferation of military bases, and secret technologies and so forth, it’s not a hard leap of faith to say ‘gee maybe these other things are involved in this mysterious disappearance?” Area 51 was within Fossett’s flight range ‘There are rumors that Steve Fossett got into Area 51, or that there was some incident there Somebody who would really get into the airspace of Area 51 would definitely be, uhm, forced down if they really entered the airspace.’ The idea that Fossett was forced down here is not so far-fetched to say Jorge Arnue has spent years studying satellite photographs, and investigating unexplained sightings, crashes, and what actually goes on in Area 51 ‘These 3 f-16s here seem to be pretty much on standby, just in case an intrusion in the airspace would happen.’

    Miniatur Wunderland OFFICIAL VIDEO – world’s largest model railway | railroad
    Articles, Blog

    Miniatur Wunderland OFFICIAL VIDEO – world’s largest model railway | railroad

    August 14, 2019

    The centre of Hamburg’s Speicherstadt district, a Unesco World Heritage Site, has been home to the Miniatur Wunderland since 2001 In 17 years and more than 800,000 hours of work… …on 1500 square metres a miniature world of superlatives was created that cost over 21 million euros to build. The most popular tourist attraction in Germany… …holder of the Guinness World Record for the world’s largest model railway. The Wunderland has been visited by more than 17 million globetrotters of all ages. A mind-blowing experience for all playful adventurers immersing themselves into a giant miniature world consisting of nine sections. The round-the-world trip at a scale of 1:87 starts in Italy, continues through Switzerland to Germany, Austria and Scandinavia and takes you all the way to America, and it keeps getting bigger. More than 1000 trains with more than 10,000 coaches cover several hundred kilometers every day. In the northern Baltic Sea, ships float on real water in a 30,000-litre water basin with simulated tides. The road traffic in America, at the airport, in Scandinavia and in Wunderland’s famous little town of Knuffingen is computer controlled. More than 250 moving cars react to each other in an intelligent simulation. The spectacular large-scale fire-fighting operations of the car system with up to 30 fire-fighting vehicles offer lots of action. According to the Guinness World Record, Knuffingen Airport is the largest miniature airport in the world featuring sophisticated technology down to the last detail. The complex flight simulation uses software to control more than 40 aircraft taking off and landing every minute. To date, more than 265,000 people live in the Wunderland. All facets of life are portrayed with loving attention to detail. Funeral speech or joyous celebration. The saintly and the not so saintly. Very lively people – and those no longer so lively… Some love to play with fire, and others make sure nothing gets burnt. The unlucky fellow or the lucky devil. The muscleman or the beanpole. Nudists, exhibitionists or tourists. Some reach for the stars and others are not of this world. Eat or be eaten. Lazybones or dreamer. Some go on a long trip, and others feel most comfortable at home. Blue light and red light. Superhero or strong girls. Knight of the Round Table or knights from another galaxy. Fairy tale characters, mythical creatures, cartoon figures or famous movie heroes. Some have their noses in books, others are given the runaround. On a journey from the highest mountain of six metres… across dreamy roads through the Grand Canyon… snow-covered landscapes… and idyllic villages, to secret underground bases, the miniature landscape is created with loving attention to detail. A day in Miniatur Wunderland is 15 minutes long. When night falls, everything is illuminated in dazzling light. Throughout the Wunderland, secret stories are brought to life. The 220 entertaining actions can be activated at the touch of a button along the edge For the sweet-toothed and chocoholics at the chocolate factory. Jumping dolphins. Rocking gondolas. Duelling gunslingers. Or when new life is created. The 350 Wunderlanders work day-in-day-out on new ideas, gimmicks and gadgetry. The world has so many stories to tell. The new sections Monaco and Provence in France will follow by 2020. Subsequently… South America. What comes next is written in the stars. But we will continue to build…

    Howard Zinn – You Can’t Be Neutral on a Moving Train- A People’s History
    Articles, Blog

    Howard Zinn – You Can’t Be Neutral on a Moving Train- A People’s History

    August 13, 2019

    Welcome to books of our times produced by the massachusetts school of law today we shall discuss two books by one of america’s
    most famous historians of any political stripe and certainly the most famous american
    historian from the left howard inn the two books are you can’t be neutral
    on a moving train a personal history of our times and failure to quit reflections of an optimistic historian professors zinn is also the author of one
    of the most famous and in the schools one of the most widely adopted works of
    american history called a people’s history of the united
    states which has sold over a million copies howard thank you very much for coming up here you know on this show howard
    i’ve had people uh… or this and other shows i’ve had
    people as famous as uh… eugene mccarthy and the famous federal judge
    richard posner and uh… I want to say that it’s a
    real privilege to have you because what you have done you have
    worked something of an intellectual revolution in this country no less than posner has in a different
    field and and no less than uh… than eugene
    mccarthy worked a revolution in politics uh… in nineteen sixty seven and eight so i’m delighted to have you here and
    let me start out by asking you this as a man of the left as they used to say in the
    britian one would think that that that somebody
    with your views uh… would be extremely disappointed with the way history has
    gone and uh… with the way in which you might foresee that it could go in the
    future and yet you’re not you are a very optimistic guy and you talk a lot about uh… things
    always change and uh… the importance of small acts which cumalativley mount up
    why don’t you get into all these reasons why you’re so optimistic about american
    history in the future for the future ok probably probably the word optimistic is a little misleading because it… suggests something that i don’t really believe
    and that is things will be ok tomorrow
    next week next month i’m optimistic in the long run in the short run i see what everybody
    sees i see all the things that make people depressed i see all the things that make people
    pessimistic i see the wars i see the starvation
    i see the of the uh… the terrible violence that is going on the sickness of society i see all of
    that but uh… but i think the reason that i am
    optimistic for a long run is that i’ve also in my lifetime i don’t like to say this but my lifetime
    has now spanned many decades and in my lifetime i’ve seen enough
    change to suggest that more change is possible i was in world war two i saw a victory there when it looked impossible i was in the
    civil rights movement involved there for seven years living in the south and saw marvelous developments and triumphs that nobody ever expected i was in the
    movement against the war in vietnam and there too it seemed impossible but the war finally ended and we had a great movement against that war and uh… and also maybe more important even today as we are in the midst of a war a war which is very depressing because we see no end to it and we see an administration in power which seems determined to have war after
    war after war in order to maintain american supremacy
    in the world and yet in the midst of the situation
    today i see signs in the united states and certainly all over the world of people who are aware of what is
    happening and who do not go along with it then they’re not going along with it
    doesn’t mean that that they have yet succeeded in changing our policy right howard I want to go back to that the
    whole question of war in just a moment but before we before we get there and and i think that what i’m about
    to ask relates to it you talk a lot about the importance of what you call
    small acts that do not receive national publicity and the way in which those acts show that there’s
    something stirring underneath and ultimately cumulatively cause people in
    the nation to change and you’ve seen a lot of this in your
    own history why don’t you elaborate about that when i was talking about that i guess i was thinking primarily about
    my experience in the south moving to atlanta georgia in nineteen fifty six before there was a civil rights movement
    the montgomery bus boycott had taken place but now things were quiet and there was no real expectation
    of a tumultuous change in the south but uh… i saw it in atlanta signs of unrest of dissatisfaction my students at spellman college were quite
    reserved polite you might say controlled yeah at the
    same time it was and is a woman’s college it was a woman’s spellman college
    is a woman’s college at the same time it was obvious that these
    students although they were not get breaking out of they’re controlled situation had enormous resentment inside at the segregation in the south at the humiliation the people of color endured every day
    in the south and uh… and they began to act in small
    ways that were not noticed and i was involved with them though they the social science club at spellman
    college decided uh… we’ll try something small we’ll try desegregating the atlanta
    public library and they carried on a campaign which ultimately succeeded yeah it’s the kind of thing that
    didn’t make headlines n like the sit-ins or freedom rides and so on
    but these little forays and these later on I discovered these had
    taken place will over the south to put it another way before the famous nineteen
    sixty sit-ins there were many sit ins that
    didn’t attract attention yeah before the freedom rides they were attempts at freedom rides
    which didn’t lead to anything big right so i came to the conclusion that it’s very important that people engage in even the smallest of actions even if they don’t seem to bring any
    immediate results because its these small actions that build
    and build and build that eventually come to fruition you talk a lot on a related subject about the need of human beings in
    this democracy and i suppose it would go to any
    democracy to seize the day as it were and if
    necessary in the street and build a democracy themselves because you say democracy will not be handed to you by
    the courts by the congress by the executive by the governors it is not
    given to you by the constitution and therefore people must go out
    and sometimes in the streets earn democracy themselves why don’t you elaborate on
    that point of view that you express i think the way you express is is
    an accurate representation not everybody expresses accurately what i
    say but you’re doing it funny i have
    the same problem on my point is that we grow up we go to school we got a junior high school and the teach us about uh in my day they used to call it civics
    I don’t know if they still do yeah but they teach us about government they teach us about democracy they talk about the three branches of
    government and the you know the checks and balances and they give you the impression that
    this is what democracy is about that you can put democracy on the blackboard
    yep and make a diagram and show the
    executive and the judiciary and the legislative and the arrows going well of course historically that’s not how changes come
    about the experience of black people is one striking example of it even after the fourteenth and fifteenth
    amendments were added to the constitution after the civil war it didn’t matter the law wasn’t going to be enforced by
    the president of the united states and so in order to make the fourteenth
    and fifteenth amendments come alive black people had to take it unto
    themselves which is what they did in the fifties and sixties yeah yeah and this is also true of
    the labor movement with the labor movement perhaps even more dramatic because the
    labor movement didn’t even have amendments to the constitution that gave
    them rights in a way that black people finally got rights in the fourteenth and fifteenth
    amendments and working people with no
    constitutional rights the constitution after all is not a
    document that favors the economic needs of people roosevelt saw
    that that’s why he proposed at one point an economic bill of rights no the constitution does not provide
    a right to health care or to housing or to food and so our working people had to go out
    and strike and boycott face the police face the national guard they had to do it themselves that’s how
    the eight hour day was won you know you make a point that i
    find very striking because it’s exactly the same point made by the most capitalistic of people
    but they make it from the other direction you make the point that that people
    overvalued the present and extrapolate that the future will be exactly like the
    present and taint so which is one of the
    reasons that you are optimistic in your love for the long term and the funny thing is you read about
    the stock market and they say yeah that’s exactly the problem that people have on
    the stock market day they think whatever’s going on today is just going
    to keep going on and its not true it’s just a a sort of a typical uh… human
    typical human thing but let’s talk just a little bit
    about the war since you did bring it up and then we’ll go back to a couple other
    things you say that the some method of well i’ll put it this week doing away with
    what if we can is is the central issue of our time your not a pacifist as i
    understand it but you do have a great revulsion uh… at war as do some of the rest
    of us what caused you to develop to develop this revulsion let me say for the audience’s
    sake you’ll elaborate this that actually in in world war two when
    you were a young kid you were eighteen you just graduates from high school you had a job in a shipyard building american naval
    which would have deferred you from combat and from joining the service in fact you worked on the u_s_s_ iowa
    which is one of america’s most powerful battleships it the one that the turret blew up
    just a few years ago and yet you you went off you took
    one of the most dangerous jobs in the war you were flying i think a
    bombardier if i remember correctly b-17s those people did not have a long life
    span there was the worst casualty rate probably in that then them in the infantry so you started off as sort of gung
    ho in favor of our
    military and you’ve gone a hundred and eighty in
    the other direction why don’t explain what what motives what has motivated you and
    what continues to motivate you when i was gung ho as you say and enlisting in the force in world war they called it the army air corps at that time in world
    war two it wasn’t because i was a militaristic general it was because i
    believed that this war this specific war world war
    two was absolutley necessary in order to defeat you know what
    seemed the most horrible phenomenon of modern times and that is fascism nazism and so enthusisastically i joined and and i flew bombing missions over europe
    and but what happened is that at the end of the war uh… i began to have more
    complicated thoughts about war i say more complicated thoughts because
    it’s not that i went simply from being pro or to antiwar it’s just that it seemed to me looking back on the world war two as
    i did shortly after it was not simply a good war you may notice that studs terkel in his oral history which is entitled a good war puts
    quotation marks around the good war so many other people he interviewed
    who were in world war two later expressed doubts about the purity of
    that war if I may interject something we’ve had a historian a fellow who wrote a history of
    world war two on these shows howard and there seems to be
    absolutely no question whatsoever that in the pacific on both sides it was a
    race war joh i dont know if you had john dower on
    no we had donald miller on you had donald miller i said i see well john dower hum wrote a book about that fact just what your talking about there were atrocities on both sides and history is always written almost always written from a
    nationalistic point of view and so when we write our history or when journalists talk about world war two it always the japanese cruelties the bataan
    death march and so on which is true of course but what they omit of course is our cruelties and our atrocities and uh… so in john dower wrote a book called war
    without mercy which deals with that redresses that balance in fact what begins my thinking rethinking about war was right after the war when i read john hersey’s hiroshima
    mmm-hmm and john heresy had gone to hiroshima after the bombing and he interviewed the people who were the
    victims of that bombing and who were still alive and his account of it was so personal so human so harrowing that i who had accepted thee bombing of
    hiroshima when it happened in our world i don’t have to go in the pacific now
    yeah the wars over yeah and i didn’t think about the human
    consequences of that bombing and that made me rethink my own missions and realize that i had never understood the human consequences of the bombing missions that i was
    flying yeah i didn’t realize that i was bombing really indiscriminately and all this talk about which they still talk about you
    know precision bombing accurate bombing we only bomb
    military targets was all nonsense it was nonsense then
    and its still nonsense now they started
    saying that in those days because of what was then a big new device but
    norden bombsite that’s right and actually we were engaging as were the british
    in area bombing to a large extent you know when you talk about hiroshima
    there are people who can say and its not my purpose to get into that discussion
    here but merely to point out that there are people who say that that that the
    atomic bombs may have saved millions of lives on both sides but be that as it may you participated in the bombing of rouen
    afterwards you could find no legitimate excuse for that
    bombing at all and it took hundreds as i understand it of uh… allied french lives on the
    ground yes I don’t want to bypass hiroshima
    ok because it is still one of the great myths in
    american culture that we saved lives by bombing hiroshima and nagasaki we did not i’ve done a lot of
    research on that the most elaborate research
    job on that done by gar alperovitz and a crew of scholars makes it clear we did not save lives japanese were about to surrender
    we killed several hundred thousand people unnecessarily and i want to say something else about that
    which goes not only to hiroshima but to bombing in general i think i would ask people who say we had to do it in order to save lives i would say well if it was in august nineteen forty five and you knew that we could end the war with japan more quickly
    because that’s what it was about ending it more quickly not ending it we knew it would end the japanese were on their way to defeat but ending it more quickly by dropping a bomb would you be willing to kill a hundred
    thousand american children to end the war more quickly well the answer to that is obvious nobody would
    say yes but you’re willing to kill a hundred
    thousand japanese children in order to and the war the war more quickly what does that mean what does that say about the way we think about other people what does that say about war was it say
    about a willingness to kill other people because their lives are not
    as important as ours okay i i know you didn’t want to hiroshima
    but i couldn’t let that go because it’s such an
    important myth in american culture what what that brings me to is this and i must say i think there should be more writing on one side
    of the other about the question of whether the japanese were about to surrender and
    what would the casualties have been but putting that to one side for a moment my understanding is that and
    i think you probably agree with this and my intent here is to ask why you
    think it’s true is that that much of the rest of the
    world much is an ambiguous wrod i don’t know what other word to use much of the rest of the world considers
    america as the premier terrorist in the world today and uh… and the as i understand
    that has a lot to do with our use of bombs and other kinds
    of really vicious weapons whether it’s uh… better or worse to
    kill people one way or another that’s another question but uh… an i right in thinking
    that that you yourself because of the massive bombs because because of the fact that you inevitably kill
    civilians thats what i’m trying to say you inevitably kill civilians
    do you think that it’s fair to say that and americans certainly don’t want to hear
    this we certainly don’t want to hear this do you think it’s fair to say that much of
    the rest of the world considers us major terrorists i think there’s no question
    about it but i mean recent polls of the past few years have have shown that people of other parts of the world consider president bush more dangerous then osama bin laden more dangerous than saddam hussein now why is that i mean to american ears that’s unimaginable but what they see they see the united states having suffered a terrorist attack nine eleven terrible terrorist attack they see the united states responding by
    its own terrorism not by focusing upon who did this attack let’s
    find a not treating it like a police operation or an international
    police operation but simply going ahead and bombing
    afghanistan killing three thousand or more civilians in afghanistan without any particular effect on
    al-qaeda osama bin laden terrorism and then they see us going into iraq and now i have not just recently seen
    figures by an organization that has worked very hard to compile figures on the civilian dead in iraq as a result of this very short
    war and they come up with figures like ten
    fifteen twenty thousand civilians americans don’t even know this because all we
    focused on is the fact that everyday we lose another two one three soldiers you know several hundred by now
    but when the rest of the rest of the world
    knows this better than we do they get better news than we do they don’t listen to fox television they don’t listen to c_n_n_
    they have much better news sources they know what the united states has
    done and also i think this is also true they have a memory of vietnam which is being lost in the united states
    yeah to me it’s interesting that in our culture and on television
    and in the movies they’re bringing back world war two in
    a very heavy way saving private ryan you know and and the the stories of d_-day and the hundred and first airborne bringing back world war two why because world war two immediately conjures
    up the image of a just war and the enemy as hitler they don’t bring up vietnam and and but among europeans and i think
    lot of people in the world who opposed the american war in vietnam to a far greater extend and earlier than
    americans did they still remember that the united
    states was responsible for killing several million people in vietnam they can’t forget that they see the history of
    the united states in vietnam central america supporting death squads in central
    america results being hundreds of thousands of
    lives being lost in guatemala el salvador they know this in a way that american’s
    don’t you know there were three million people dead in
    vietnam and i suppose had we not intervened the figure would have been a few
    hundred thousand perhaps as many as a million but
    three million not a chance not a chance and people don’t remember
    the havoc that our sanctions wrought in the last ten years on iraq putting aside the question whether
    saddam hussein is a good man or a bad man nobody’s going to say anything but
    saddam hussein is horrendously evil but it was children who basically bore the brunt as i understand it
    who basically bore the brunt of our sanctions there heres another instance of how the media have kept the american people really
    ignorant of what has been going on because what you talked about the
    sanctions of going on for ten years and by the way under both democratic and
    republican administrations you know before people get to idealistic and romantic about the democrats these sanctions according to the u_n_ perhaps a million people and several
    hundred thousand children we
    take a quick break for a public service commercial we’ll come right back and we’ll continue
    discussing this this subject stay with us we’ll be right back with
    howard zinn those of you who watch books of our time
    know that many of our programs are about books that deal with history this
    reflects not just might own interest in history but also the widespread belief
    that we would do better if our leaders knew more about history this belief is one of the most important reasons the
    massachusetts school of law is starting a new and unique college called the
    american college of history and legal studies a c_h_ ls a c_h_ ls will be a senior college
    offering only the junior and senior years of undergraduate education it will focus entirely on american
    history including the history of some important fields of american law it will offer specific pathways to law
    school for those who choose to become lawyers including entrance into law school
    after the junior year for those who do well at achls and and education which
    rigorously prepares those who choose other fields than law it’s teaching will be entirely by the
    discussion method in which all students participate as it msl itself and other fine law
    schools if will have very small classes of only fifteen
    to twenty students it’s tuition will be only ten thousand dollars per year much lower than almost any other college
    offering a bachelors degree you can view ACHLS’s catalogue on
    line at the web address on your screen achls will be opening in salem new
    hampshire which is on the new hampshire massachusetts border
    in august of two thousand ten if you would like further information
    about achls or would like an application call write or email maureen mooney at the phone number or address
    on your screen welcome back howard before the break you had mentioned that a we had both
    mentioned americans don’t like to hear certain things about our society because we tend to
    grow up with a view of america as being almost solely a righteous and virtuous
    country and to some extent i think that
    that comes up from the media and to some extent it comes from the vast miswriting for
    should save one-sided writing of american history and uh… i take it
    that that this had something to do within a your decision to write the book that’s called a
    people’s history of the united states am i my right in that and
    wanting i’m right or wrong why don’t you explain how you came to write that book and what
    impact it has had it has after all sold a million copies which for and history uh… book is pretty amazing you know i think i came to write that
    book because i was looking for a book like
    it and couldn’t find it and i suspect that a lot of books are written for that
    reason you know if if you’re looking for a certain kind of book it’s not there so i’ll
    sit down and write it take a few
    days out of my life but why were you looking for a book like
    that well i was looking for a book like that
    because and i think this came from my experience
    in the south here i was in the midst of all sorts of incredible dramatic events
    going on from atlanta and my students involved in the sit-ins
    and myself involved too in demonstrations picket lines and then i left atlanta and went down to albany
    georgia to cover the demonstrations in albany georgia i became involved with sncc the student
    non-violent coordinating committee they invited me to be on their executive
    board and i went to selma alabama and various
    towns in mississippi and and all these amazing things happening you were right in the middle of some of the most
    i mean that was like being at all the big battles of world war two
    so to speak yeah i felt like i was john reed writing ten days that shook the
    in the midst of those crowds at leningrad and so and so i i noticed that so many things that we’re going on were
    simply not being reported and uh… and I realized and extrapolated
    from that and i said in every year there must be all sorts of amazing things
    happening that never get into the newspapers that never get into the history
    books now and what they are mostly are the doings of ordinary people and the resistance of ordinary people and that our historians is like our newspapers
    and like our television tend to focus on the important people you watch public television and public
    television is supposed to be better more broad minded then commercial television when you
    watch commercial television public television and
    you see let’s say the lehrer news hour certainly spending more time on important subjects
    than commercial real estate but who do you see on the news hour you see important people uh… you know you see experts you se secretaries of state you see
    congressmen and senators the big shot theory of leading history
    exactly and history in the history books
    what are history books written on their writton on presidents this is the age of lincoln this is the age
    of roosevelt this is the age of jackson here are the founding fathers well instead of the talking about the founding
    fathers how about talking about shay’s rebellion how about talking about the
    farmers in western massachusetts who rebelled against the rich in boston instead of talking about george
    washington and the great victories in the revolutionary war or i should say not instead of but in
    addition to yeah how about talking about the soldiers in
    washington’s army who mutinied against the officers who mutinited because they were being treated like dirt and the officers were getting these
    resplendent uniforms and all this food etc and high pay where are those soldiers and those new mutinies in the history books and so i extrapolates from all of that
    than came to inclusion that doings of ordinary people what happens
    to ordinary people their victimization and also their
    rebellions aren’t there in the history books so i want
    to write about that i wanted to for instance the history books stress the economic miracle of the united states
    especially after the civil war that period after the civil war the united states becomes a great
    industrial power the railroads spanning the country and the steel mills
    going up but i wanted to read about and hear about the people who
    worked in the steel mills the people worked on the railroads the irish immigrants the chinese immigrants
    who worked on the transcontinental railroad who died in large numbers and i want to hear about the strikers of
    the eighteen seventy seven and the pullman car strikers and here’s an interesting thing interesting
    to me course after i began to read on my own and read the history of labor struggles
    in this country here and saw that they were not there in the history books i have a p_h_d_ in history
    went to graduate school as a history major and none of my history books today talk
    about the colorado coal strike of nineteen thirteen fourteen
    the ludlow low massacre yeah woody guthrie wrote a a song about the
    ludlow massacre but it was not in the history books one of the most dramatic events
    in american history the lawrence textiles strike here we
    are sitting we are in lawrence aren’t we near lawrence
    yeah we are in lawrence great textile strike in lawrence in nineteen
    twelve women immigrant women who seemed hopeless striking against the great you know textile companies yeah and winning wasn’t there in the history books so i wanted to bring that and and i take it uh… what you’ve done has had uh… a
    dramatic impact in the last ten to fifteen years because if i understand right high school teachers and
    college teachers all over the united states adapt your book as supplemental reading to sort
    of offset I think the key
    phrase is what you said in addition to not instead of but in
    addition to all the laudatory stuff that we read
    about america and our leaders here were all these other problems and here is what
    some of the small people were thinking and we’re doing and we’re suffering while all this was going on it’s interesting that when my book first
    came out high school teachers were very reluctant
    to use it not for themselves but you know they sort of school
    committees looking over their shoulders you know what are you giving our kids in
    fact some schoolteacher high school teacher
    in on on the west coast in wrote to me lajolla california wrote to me and
    said she was in trouble because she had used my book and kid brought my book home parents look at looked at the first chapter
    of the book which deals with columbus and of course there it’s a very different story i give of columbus
    not the great hero but the murderer the kidnapper her parents looked at this and said her mother was horrified you know columbus is a hero this must be a communist
    book right and she asked for an investigation of this teacher well that’s what happened then but over the years more and more high school teachers have begun to use
    my book and it has become i hate to say this respectable to use my book your done yes so it’s used in our schools and of course colleges all over the
    country but high schools are more difficult to enter because high schools are kind of
    totalitarian institutions yeah things are so controlled in
    high schools here but uh… i think you’re right that there’s been a change in education not enough of a
    change still but there’s been a change in now I would say that
    there are hundreds of thousands of teachers all over the country who are teaching in a different way they’re teaching the story of columbus they’re doing
    more black history more women’s history and i don’t attribute it simply to
    my book I attribute it to the movements of the sixties with many people more
    conscious of race sex all these people the sixties have gotten a really terrible
    rap from the conservative movement in this country in the last ten to twenty
    years and i i think the sixties are really
    responsible for much of a good that has gone on in the country you know in
    the last forties years its interesting what you say about the
    treatment of the sixties they’re trying to present the sixties and when i look at the sixties treated on television’s what
    i’ve seen emphasis on crazed kids yeah drugs yeah huh you know wild violence of course there we’re there but the sixties by and large a marvelous time in
    american history of when millions of people became involved
    in social movements non-violent social movements for change in a time of the flower children a time when generosity seemed to be a more
    prevalent when you’d stop on the road and give a
    ride to hitch hikers and people don’t do that anymore= the sixties were a
    wonderful period of new consciousness and social change and when
    people where much more cognizant of equality whether it’s for gays
    whether it’s for a racial minorities and women you name it end of the controlling
    nature of so much of what we have been taught you yourself seem to feel that
    education has been largely used in this country by the powers that be whoever they may
    be people with money people with position to uh… more or less brainwash i hate to use george romneys words
    brainwash children into accepting a place in the
    society as these people wanted to be and they gave all kinds of uh… holy toledo to teachers who would
    teach something different and that do you think there’s been any a
    diminution in this use of education aand the media to control control what the american
    people think and what the next generation thanks well it’s still still going on i just
    read about the teacher in school in north carolina who lost her job who was simply dismissed
    because she brought up in class the war she wanted to her students to discuss the war and no if you mustn’t talk about that and soon she got a letter
    saying you know this is unacceptable you’re out you
    know theres something the matter with that carolina because the state
    university down there and i’m only half kidding the university of north carolina
    has this new program where incoming freshmen read a particular book and then
    everybody in university discusses it during the first and two straight years now they’ve just caught
    hell because people haven’t liked the book
    that i don’t know even remember what the books were that were chosen but uh… the university just caught
    hades throughout the state for choosing whatever book they chose because
    these books didn’t reflect only well on our society it’s interesting that education in our country has always been pro-war pro-war in the sense of exalting military heroism these are our heroes these are the
    statues in our cities statues of military heroes kids
    grow up from elementary school on with kinda reverence for know the people who won the
    war yes can I ask you aquestion howard about that you make the most striking comment in
    one of the two books that uh… are the subject of today’s program maybe in both you say that there are leaders are
    addicted to war addicted to war why do you say that well sign of an addiction i suppose is when somebody keeps coming back to something
    that’s bad for you and can’t seem to get out of it and somebody who sees for instance a drug as a solution to their
    problems you know not looking for other solutions
    because a drug drugs are quick solution to problem that you have you know you you’re unhappy or depressed you know or you’re in pain and yes the drug will be a quick fix but war is a
    quick-fix war is a quick fix you’re attacked uh… her you know as in nine eleven oh what do we do instead of stopping and thinking
    intelligently about what caused this act what was behind it what can we do to eliminate the causes of it you go to that drug which you have
    always used and and war was the way to solve howard i was talking to
    somebody the other day and i was making some of these points that you are
    making and the person said to me and i’m interested
    in your response to this the person said to me look its kind of
    like a a play on the poor you will always have
    with you you will always have people in
    this world who want to attack us no matter what we do or how nice we try to be and therefore we we have to attack these
    people first or vitally or whatever what’s your response to that will first when they say there will always be
    people there will always be government’s i think that’s an important
    distinction must be made a lot of i think there’s a lot of
    thinking that goes on which puts the blame for war on people and you know even find biological
    impulses to violence and aggression and uh… i think that’s a lot of
    nonsense if that were true that is if people had an inherent desire to go to war nations would not have to compell them nations would not have to draft armies
    they would not have to seduce people with propaganda and persuade them that
    this is a just cause no no people’s natural tendency i think is not to engage in wars you know when they say well we must be
    engage in war because other countries engage in war well of course that
    creates the vicious cycle and they are not asking the question how can we
    get at the roots of war its like the present isreali palestinian situation you know the the palestinians are you know sending suicide bombers you
    know so we have to then attack palestinian territory and destroy
    homes and then the palestinians say well you
    see what they’re doing to us it’s a cycle and the united states has
    contributed to that cycle can i interrupt you for a sec
    excuse me i’m getting wild waves here that i have
    to break for the second commercial we’ll be right
    we’ll be right back with more with howard zinn those of you who watch books of our time
    know that many of our programs are about books that deal with history this
    reflects not just my own interest in history but also the widespread belief
    that we would do better if our leaders knew more about history this belief is one of the most important reasons the
    massachusetts school of law is starting a new and unique college called the
    american college of history and legal studies a c_h_ ls a c_h_ ls will be a senior college
    offering only the junior and senior years of undergraduate education it will focus entirely on american
    history including the history of some important fields of american law it will offer specific pathways to law
    school for those who choose to become lawyers including entrance into law school
    after the junior year for those who do well at achls and an education which
    rigorously prepares those who choose other fields than law it’s teaching will be entirely by the
    discussion method in which all students participate as it msl itself and other fine law
    schools if will have very small classes of only fifteen
    to twenty students it’s tuition will be only ten thousand dollars per year much lower than almost any other college
    offering a bachelors degree you can view ACHLS’s catalogue on
    line at the web address on your screen achls will be opening in salem new
    hampshire which is on the new hampshire massachusetts border in august of two thousand if you would like further information
    about achls or would like an application all write or email maureen mooney at the phone number or address
    on your screen came out has massachusetts school of law at andover offers an accessible affordable legal
    education to both full-time and part time law students when making admissions decisions
    msl looks at all aspects of the candidate’s qualifications and does not
    consider the flawed lsat at tuition of less than half of all the other
    law schools in new england it is by far the most affordable our
    teaching and standards are rigorous students learn to think clearly to write well and
    to advoate effectively for others decide today to make a difference welcome back to our discussion with howard inn
    howard you have taken the position which is awfully hard to argue with
    really that the media act as the handmaiden handmaidens to war with the latest example perhaps being
    this embedding of troops so american television was rah rah as we’re going forward in riding in the
    tanks and so forth but why don’t you elaborate
    historically and currently on your view of the media in this country being the
    handmaiden to war first of all its important to understand
    that the media the major media little
    media i’m not going to small newspapers small radio stations but major media have always been owned
    controlled by the people of wealth and uh… and therefore the the editorial positions the choice of news items has always been determined by the those people who control the press i think was a j liebling the writer
    who said freeing the press belongs to whoever
    owns the press and so back in the in the in the early part of twentieth century
    upton sinclair wrote a book called the brass check the brass check was something used in houses of
    prostitution in paris and he was talking about the press as
    prostitutes the press as selling out for money the press has well in fact at that very
    time talk about a press being pro war you know the hearts news papers and the
    pulitzer papers revved up the country for war with spain you provide the reporting i’ll
    provide the war exactly the uh world war one again the press played up the german atrocities
    and some of them turned out to be false you know the lusitania has been sunk a harmless passenger ship
    later turns out it was carrying war munitions and playing up the atrocities of the
    germans not saying anything about the british
    empire and that’s been going on today what we see is in this in when the war started in afghanistan to call it a war is actually a
    misnomer i mean this is the war between two equal
    parties the united states and afghanistan afghanistan is a helpless miserable
    country in the united states bombs afghanistan’s and its called a war what happens then is that executives in c_n_n_’s send out word to their reporters
    and i’ve seen this it was leaked by people in c_n_n_ sent word to the reporters saying let’s not reports civilian casualties
    in afghanistan we were bombing and we were killing
    civilians they were not to be reported and c_n_n_ began festooning the band the
    the stand of anchors c_n_n_ with american
    flags and and the media have been going along with war for
    a very long time actually the rest of the the rest of the world as i understand it apropos of that you know vietnam was in a sense
    different because reporters were investigating the truth and their editors
    and publishers at least didn’t block them from publishing
    from publishing it but the editorial and publishing publishers positions at least
    early in a war were world’s different from what you were
    reading from the uh… reporters at the new york times in time
    magazine and so forth but so that’s an interesting point in the early nineteen sixty eight the boston globe did a survey of something like twenty nine major american dailies not one of them called for the united states to get out
    of vietnam I’m particularly conscious of this because in
    nineteen sixty seven i wrote a book called vietnam the logical withdrawal
    and and and uh… suggesting strongly the united states would get
    get no major in nineteen sixty eight supported the idea of getting out
    of vietnam and you know this this really hasn’t
    changed but the rest of the world sees it
    sees it thru television see’s a very different war than americans
    see on fox and c_n_n_ c_b_s_ they see the civilian casualties they
    see the bombs falling and uh… so on so so you have a real disconnect i
    think between the way we thinking we’re a virtuous country see the war
    and the other countries see the war thats interesting you may remember that in
    the in the afghan war and in this war in iraq the united states bombed the offices
    of al jazeera the mid eastern television network they did not want that network too be able to show pictures of the results of our bombing i mean is this is the kind of thing that
    happens in a totalitarian state the soviet union nazi germany they shutdown newspapers
    shutdown televisions stations they want to control everything this the way the united states
    government has behaved in these wars howard what is your response to those
    people who say that that you and that people who
    believe as you do in include myself to a large extent
    in that we don’t see eye-to-eye on everything but i see eye to eye with
    you on an awful lot uh… what do you say to people
    who say well you’re being unpatriotic will you know i i think this also as part of our culture
    i think and that is a miss guided notion of what patriotism is i think that we grow up in
    this country very often with the idea which is inculcated from the beginning
    you pledge allegiance to the flag and say the star spangled banner and exalt military heroism you get an idea to be patriotic means to support
    whatever the government does and if you oppose the government if you criticize
    government your being on patriotic to think that way is a violation of
    basic democratic principles the declaration of independence establishes the democratic principle
    governments are artificial creations governments are set up by the people to
    ensure certain rights equality life liberty the pursuit of happiness when governments become destructive of
    those rights that’s what the declaration of independent says it is the right of people to alter or
    abolish the government if it’s the right of the people to alter or
    abolish the government then certainly it is the right of the people to criticize the government the government and the people you know i see on
    television young fellows going off to war as i did way back i see the television interviewer asks well young man how do you feel about going off to iraq well i feel that i owe something to my
    country it’s not your country that you’re
    fighting for when you go to war it’s your government mhm it’s halliburton it’s the great corporations it’s the people who benefit from war
    it’s the politicians it’s the industrialists it’s not the country would it be fair to say howard that you think that i know lincoln thought this it loads it up by my having said that
    but would it fair to say that you think that
    patriotism essentially consists of loyalty for the underlying principles of the
    united states and that to some extent at whole notion of patriotism has been
    hijacked by those who believe in uh… military action lincoln had it right mark twain had it right mark twain said this notion my my country right or wrong is absurd no and patriotism shouldn’t mean adhering as you were just saying to the principles of the country and i would i would suggest that one of our
    principles although we haven’t followed it through one of our principles should be to behave in the world like a peace-loving country not to initiate wars we have initiated wars it’s one
    thing when we’re attacked it’s another thing we initiate wars we
    initiated war in vietnam we initiated wars in panama and
    grenada in afghanistan in iraq twice we initiated those wars and tthe mexican the spanish word
    for the record the mexican war the spanish-american
    war no question about it the war in the philippines we initiated and uh… that we should consider that to go against
    principles our country should stand for howard do you think uh… the writing of
    history is fundamentally such subjective not only in the way that the things
    are said you know know what your stress in the first
    part of a sense versus what the tale of the sentence says not only in a way that things are said
    but also in a sense of what is put in and what is left out of the history books i think that that is the most important way in which
    history is distorted if you say something false in a historical description it can be verified or not verified
    be counteracted but if you leave something out the
    person reading it has no idea that you’ve left it out and if you you know if it’s tell the the
    story of the civil war and it’s all battles then you leave out the fact that during
    the civil war the u_s_ army did not only fight against
    the confederacy but it fought against the indians out west
    mmm-hmm committed massacres during the civil war and during the civil war more land was
    taken from the indians than any comparable period in american history that is left out of the books and native americans know what is left out
    black people know what is left out people interested in labor struggles
    know what is left out and they certainly leave out when they talk about world war one they leave out the huge movement against world war one that took
    place at that time howard we have to wrap this up this
    is why i wanted to do two hours rather than one but we cant so we have to warp this uh… i want to
    thank you very much for coming up here go and uh… recommend to everybody that these books are just intensely
    interesting failure to quit and you cannot be
    be neutral on a moving train and again i thank you for what uh you
    know you’ve opened the eyes of a lot of people in this country over the
    last fifteen twenty years thank you larry

    The Maze | KQED Truly CA
    Articles, Blog

    The Maze | KQED Truly CA

    August 13, 2019

    (dramatic music) (somber music) – [Narrator] The MacArthur Maze. An intersection of three
    major California highways: the I580, the I880 and the
    nation’s second longest highway running from New Jersey to
    the San Francisco Bay Area: The Interstate 80. This elevated, static river
    of concrete asphalt and steel, towers some 90 feet above the ground. Also known by its original name,
    the Distribution Structure, this interchange allows
    300,000 cars, each day, to travel to all four
    corners of the Bay Area. This multi-level junction,
    packed with hundreds of vehicles that are
    zig-zagging and criss-crossing while heading into various directions, is one of the most important
    intersections in California. But long before the Maze
    was built, another man-made structure rose above a
    different kind of landscape. (man singing in foreign language) – It’s a burial site, a grave yard. A native grave yard. – (speaking foreign language) Thank you so much for coming out today. We stand here together,
    we stand on a sacred site. The sacred sites of my ancestors. (melancholy music) My ancestors were right in this space. This place was the biggest
    one of all 425 shellmounds that once ringed the entire bay area. Shellmounds are burial
    sites of our ancestors and they got larger and
    larger as people passed away. And they just so happen
    to also work for us to have ceremonies as they grew on top. And on the top of those shellmounds we would light fires to send signals. And since there’s no electricity, imagine seeing those fires
    at night, all along the bay. We were able to impact a lot of people. We were able to trade places. – [Narrator] But industry
    and an amusement park heavily damaged the shell mound. And eventually made way for a
    multi-complex shopping mall, luxury apartments and a
    16-screen movie theater. All of it, conveniently built
    next to the MacArthur Maze, which today stands almost twice
    as tall as the sacred hill where the people who first
    called this place home, laid their loved ones to rest. – People destroyed this, because they didn’t know what it was. They give us this little tiny
    memorial, that’s supposed to represent thousands
    of years of my ancestors. That’s not what’s it about. Even though the shape of the
    land now looks different, it’s important for us to
    continue to go back there. It doesn’t make it any less sacred because now there’s a
    parking lot on top of it, or there’s a mall on top of it or there’s a school or bar or
    railroad tracks on top of it. It is our relationality to
    that land and that space. So, there are songs that
    need to be sung there and there are prayers that
    need to be put down there. (singing in foreign language) But I think that there’s no
    honor of the Ohlone people. There’s no idea that we still exist. And that’s what’s so difficult
    about living in this city when your traditional
    territory is built upon by these communities
    that came much later on and have destroyed those sacred places. – [Narrator] The Temescal
    Creek, once the life line of the Ohlone people, today
    remains a hidden waterway, covered by asphalt and cement. The I880 flyover touches down
    right on top where the stream of fresh water, flows into
    the San Francisco Bay. (gentle music) Willets, dunlins and marble
    godwits are among the thousands of birds that flew from
    all over the Americas to winter along the California coast. Some have opted for the muddy shore of the State Marine Reserve
    that’s nestled against the Maze. But just a couple of feet
    below from where the birds stick their beak into
    the mud lies a mixture of toxic waste and landfill
    consisting of rubble dating back to the 1906
    San Francisco earthquake. Partly built on the
    same fill in the 1930s, the Maze has since played a major role in the economic development
    of the state of California. It’s an integral link
    in a system that enables mass transportation of people and goods, which is at the heart of Oakland. – In the 1860s, the location
    of Oakland was recognized as a really good location
    for deep water vessels coming out from the Golden Gate, they needed a place to anchor. And that was the beginning of Oakland as a freight terminus. The next huge thing was the construction of the Central pacific railroad. It terminated in Oakland. It’s the place where the railway ends and where the shipping comes in. And when the Central
    Pacific yards came in, they brought in huge numbers of jobs. They were pretty well paid
    and they were permanent. So, it becomes a hub, it
    becomes an attractant, it becomes a magnet. And if you wanted to travel
    from Oakland, in the East Bay, to San Francisco, you’d
    have to get on a ferry. So especially in that
    area of the MacArthur Maze everything is really focused around there in terms of transportation. That’s what brought people there. That’s what gave people good jobs. Transportation. – [Narrator] As the engine
    of the second industrial revolution started picking up steam and Oakland came of age as
    the transportation nexus of the American West, dreams
    that once seemed far-fetched were now within arm’s reach. – [Announcer] After 80 years of planning and three years of actual building. The San Francisco-Oakland
    Bay Bridge is completed. The largest engineering structure ever conceived and built by men. Now for the official opening ceremony. The golden chain is cut
    with an acetylene torch. Whistles shriek. The harbor fire boat streak
    the air with ribbons of water. And the first cars to cross
    the world’s largest bridge come rolling along like
    a regiment of soldiers. – [Narrator] And meet what
    was built in the shadows of this new world wonder:
    the distribution structure. Basic and far less grand and
    impressive than the bay bridge. But undeniably linked. And in the following 80
    years, the interchange and its freeways would
    leave a lasting impact on the communities surrounding
    this modern-day crossroads. The bright side of the bay flourished. And the screeching sound of
    steel wheels coming to a halt, echoed throughout West Oakland, as trains still dominated transportation. Every day, dozens of
    black workers arrived at, and departed from these yards. And as they unionized, the Brotherhood of Sleeping
    Cart Porters instilled the activist spirit that the
    town would become known for. Traveling all over the
    United States by rail, they advertised this place
    called Oakland, California. And the black cultural capital
    on the Pacific became a home. – My family has been here since the 1860s, and I have never ever forgotten what Oakland was about, I guess. And in certain sense I have some type of
    romantic idea about Oakland. These were the people
    who were able to make a pretty comfortable
    living for their families. – [Narrator] Despite the
    restrictions and racism black people faced in the Golden State, the first generation away from slavery was able to enjoy a middle class life and own their own
    property in West-Oakland. – It was really kind of idyllic. But there was white flight. – [Announcer] There is an internal treat. Like a cancer, it thieves
    upon and drains the economy and vitality of the entire city. Almost in the shadow of the city hall can be found the end result
    of this disease: the slum. Yes, this too is Oakland. The tax-payers in the
    good areas of the city pay for the slum. City officials and department
    heads have worked together to assure steady progress
    and proper planning for Oakland’s rejuvenated future. To prevent the spread of deterioration. – [Man] The Cypress street
    viaduct is essentially a two-mile-long double-deck structure, connecting the bay bridge
    distribution structure on the north, with the east-west section of the east shore freeway. The completed project provides four lanes north bound on the lower deck. Four lanes south bound, on the upper deck. We are now arriving at the
    distribution structure. With appropriate pomp and
    ceremony attended by notables too numerous to mention
    the Cypress Street viaduct was opened to traffic. – [Narrator] The new
    freeways that sprouted from the Distribution
    Structure in the 1950s and wrapped their tentacles
    around West-Oakland were bigger, wider and higher. Displacing hundreds of
    families, businesses and cultural institutions. It cracked open the social
    fabric of the people who made this strip on the south-east
    corner of the Maze, home. – And we became more and more isolated. The freeway just displaced
    my whole life, I feel. And some people in my
    community, they don’t know it, but they really had an impact on making me the women I am today. They’re gone. And just little kernels
    and nuggets and stuff. In certain circles, they
    saw the freeway as a conduit for them getting to
    where they needed to be. They could get to San Francisco, that’s where the jobs were. But nobody wanted to get to us. At the same time, dope was being dropped into our neighborhood. – I’ll never call this home because I don’t want this to be permanent. That’s why I probably haven’t got a tent, because it’s like admitting, you feel me? It’s some type of shelter. It’s not a very good shelter
    because when it rains and you’re still under the freeway, you’re still going to get wet. Surprisingly, they’re
    steadily building condos for people who aren’t from here. They just care about
    money and getting richer. So, people say it’s economics,
    it’s not race anymore. It is race to a certain extent. I think it’s not fair for a
    person that didn’t grow up in a neighborhood flooded with drugs, to judge a person who did
    grow up in a neighborhood overran with drugs for being on drugs. There’s a group of people
    that moved down here that turn their noise up towards us and pointing their finger towards us. It’s not just homeless people,
    it’s homeless black people. The freeway is not a roof
    over my head brother. A roof over my head, I’m
    thinking four walls right up under that roof, some type of heat, some type of couch and
    some type of cable TV. (car engine roars) Very hard to hear. Very hard to sleep, very hard to sleep! Constant noise. Cars. Police sirens. (train hooting) – [Alternier] The Maze is a mess as far as I’m concerned. The Maze, it’s a necessary
    evil in this day and time. Because people have to have it in order to get where they’re going. – I try not to fight the traffic, but at the same time it’s like… ugh, 6.11. There you go buddy, enjoy it. Look at this. There’s nothing communal about this. Communal kind of gives this picture that we’re in this together. I think we’re all little
    individual modules. We don’t interact unless
    you’re asking me to be let in or I’m asking you to be let in or you’re flipping me off
    or you’re honking at me. Fuck you! You’re not getting in! This is a physical manifestation
    of the rat race, right? This is what it feels like. What is this guy doing? We’re all these little beings trying to get to our very important lives and trying to navigate this maze. So, maybe if I wasn’t navigating the maze on such a regular basis
    I could see beauty in it, but it’s very hard for
    me to see beauty in this. It’s like this further disconnect. And here I am in my SUV
    driving into the city. (gentle music) – [Narrator] From a
    bird’s-eye perspective, the freeway interchange
    known as the MacArthur Maze separates four different landscapes: a port, a mall, a
    neighborhood and a state park. It stands as a testimony of the history of the eastern shore of
    the San Francisco Bay. As the gateway to one
    of the busiest bridges in the United States, the maze is a kaleidoscopic monument
    of the everyday mundane. And each frame, each layer represent what has been before, and
    what and who, had to move in order for others to move around.

    Forests You Should Never Visit Alone (and the Terrifying Reasons Why)
    Articles, Blog

    Forests You Should Never Visit Alone (and the Terrifying Reasons Why)

    August 13, 2019

    By day, the scenery can be incredibly calm
    and beautiful… even stunning. However dusk begins early in a sea of trees,
    and as daylight begins to wane, the hapless visitor may realize, he has not allowed for
    enough time, to get out of the forest before nightfall. If only he had partnered with another hiker,
    he may not have ended up at night, in one of the forests, you should never visit alone. Robinson Woods in Illinois covers land that
    was appropriated from three different tribes of Native Americans, the Pottawatomie, Ottawa,
    and Chippewa nations. Robinson was the European name adopted by
    the last family of Indians to remain, the family of Chief Chee-chee-pin-quay, who was
    also known as Alexander. After their house was burned to the ground
    in 1955 by offenders unknown, the wood became their final resting place. In winter, in the vicinity of the indigenous
    burial ground, people report the smell of lilacs in the air. During the day a herd of deer may defy the
    nature of the animal, by running circles around visitors, for no apparent reason. At night appear orbs of light, believed to
    be the spirits of the family. Another house that was burned to the ground,
    from colonial times, gives its name to the “Old House Woods” of Virginia. This forest, near the Chesapeake Bay, is bordered
    by the Atlantic Ocean, and the nearby port town of Mathews, was visited in the 1700’s,
    by British soldiers and pirates. Here the ghosts of the British are said to
    be occasionally joined, by the spectre of a headless dog. A lesser bay on the coast, known as Whites
    Creek, is also the site where in the 19th century, a fisherman is reported to have seen
    a pirate ship of old, sailing inland on the bay. But the vessel did not rest when it came to
    the shore… instead it continued to sail, over the beach and dry land, as the spectral
    ship disappeared slowly into the forest. A forested area in the city of Wildwood, Missouri,
    adjacent to the Meramec River, is truly the haunted wood for unbelievers. Visitors often get the feeling of being watched. Its only access is the infamous Zombie Road,
    which runs parallel to the river, and the bed of the railroad, which also once followed
    the waterway. In the daytime, footsteps may be heard, coming
    from just inside the forest, flanking the road. To lay its tracks in 1863, the railroad company
    employed mainly Irish immigrants. The work was dangerous, as the men were required
    to position the iron rails over the cross ties, by brute force. More than one worker lost his life, by means
    of grisly accident, and their souls may still walk the line at night. The phantom bodies are said to glow with a
    light of bluish-white, but if they are approached, they disappear. In Northern Ireland, ancient stone circles
    buried deep in the forest of Ballyboley, gave the site its reputation, as a place of worship,
    in the religious ceremonies of the ancient Druids. Another legend claims that Ballyboley conceals
    an entrance to the Celtic Underworld. The legend says that an alarming number of
    disappearances took place within the wood, between the 15th and 17th centuries, with
    no explanation as to where the missing people ended up. In 1997, a scream was heard by two men who
    were hiking in the forest. Their search for the victim, ended only with
    the discovery of a tree, which was covered with gore. As they retreated along the trail, the men
    could not help but look back. Standing next to the tree, four human figures
    now appeared, with hoods over their heads, who evidently were watching them leave. In 2016, a rave was held in the same wooded
    area. It is said that none of the participants can
    remember a single detail, of their attendance at this event. In France during World War One, the forest
    of Verdun was the site of the longest battle in history. Throughout the year of 1916, it reduced both
    sides, German and French, by a total approaching one million human casualties. Artillery transformed the battlefield into
    a crater-filled moonscape, that remains to this day. It is still littered with so much unexploded
    ordinance, barbed wire and arsenic, that crops refuse to grow.