Showing Archived Posts

Remembering at the Korean War Memorial

Posted March 29th, 2012 at 6:00 pm (UTC-4)

More than 54,000 Americans died in the Korean War, or “conflict,” as it was referred to, from 1950 through 1953.  Or died of their injuries later.  Half a million South Koreans and other United Nations troops fell, and more than 1 million GIs and their allies brought home wounds and nightmares and other terrible souvenirs […]

The Harlem of the South

Posted February 9th, 2012 at 10:24 am (UTC-4)
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In the years immediately following the American Civil War of the 1860s, thousands of African Americans, including both former southern slaves and northern soldiers, moved into a lively neighborhood in Richmond, Virginia, the capital city of the defeated Confederate States.  The neighborhood became known as Jackson Ward locally, and to blacks across the American East […]

Man Caves and Woman Caves

Posted February 3rd, 2012 at 8:19 pm (UTC-4)
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I sort of hope you’re reading this before the big Super Bowl American football game on Sunday — an undeclared holiday in millions of U.S.  households.  But the points I’ll make hold, even after the game. There’s a sports-talk host whose work I like and follow, both on local radio in Washington and on his […]

Hog Culture

Posted January 31st, 2012 at 3:27 pm (UTC-4)

As I write this post, I am looking down at my mostly black mouse pad, which is emblazoned with stars, rippling U.S. flags, and a large emblem of the Harley-Davidson motorcycle company. And to my right is a photo of my four kids, taken on a day when they visited VOA some years ago.  It’s […]

Your Life, Written Down

Posted July 29th, 2011 at 6:49 pm (UTC-4)

When it comes to autobiographies and memoirs, you think of famous or eccentric people.  But in thousands of senior centers, churches, synagogues, and night-school classes, ordinary Americans are daring to learn, and write about, their lives.   And perhaps why Iris DeMent was wrong when she sang, in one of her mournful mountain songs, “My life, […]

Dealing with the Fat of Our Land

Posted June 13th, 2011 at 6:18 pm (UTC-4)

Of late I’ve lost 16 kilos (35 pounds).  Friends look at me with startled wonder, as if they’ve bumped into a unicorn.  “You OK?” they say.  Since I’m well known for lacking dietary discipline, they figure I’ve come down with a deadly disease. To their surprise, and mine, I have shrunk the puffy jowls and […]

Landphair for President

Posted March 8th, 2011 at 1:52 pm (UTC-4)
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I like the sound of that.  “Landphair for President”! I can visualize the campaign buttons and slogans: Ted in ‘12 Let’s Be Led by Ted Theo’s for Meo For our Land, a Phair Deal Steady Teddy I Adore Theodore Speak Loudly for Teddy (a work-in-progress reference to the first Teddy president: man’s man Theodore Roosevelt, […]

Raining and Straining

Posted October 2nd, 2009 at 3:29 pm (UTC-4)
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Last time, while enjoying my way across South Dakota, I mentioned that my ultimate destination was Seattle, Washington.  Just as life is (hopefully) a marathon, not a sprint, my goal was to amble around all three of the Pacific Northwest states a bit in order to refresh my impressions of them.  Seattle was the finish […]

South Dakodak

Posted September 24th, 2009 at 4:41 pm (UTC-4)
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If you’re like me, you sometimes look back at an earlier period in your nation’s history and think, “Those were the days!”  We romanticize the slower pace and what today seems like their relative innocence — even if reality was something else again.  I’ve already told you that I sometimes linger over old photographs — […]


Posted September 9th, 2009 at 3:02 pm (UTC-4)
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On a just-completed cross-country trip, Carol and I drove, languidly and admiringly, through a tidy place full of cheery people, picture-postcard farms with bright-red barns, and white-fence towns with names like Oconomowoc and Ashwaubenon — Indian words that locals articulate as fluidly as they order a beer and a brat. That’s brat as in bratwurst […]

Ted Landphair


This is a far-ranging exploration of American life by a veteran Voice of America “Americana” reporter and essayist.

Ted writes about the thousands of places he has visited and written about as a broadcaster and book author. Ted Landphair’s America often showcases the work of his wife and traveling companion, renowned American photographer Carol M. Highsmith.

Ted welcomes feedback, questions, and ideas. View Ted’s profile. Watch a video about Ted and Carol by VOA’s Nico Colombant.

Photos by Carol M. Highsmith


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