Read something every day with Delancyplace

For several years, I was also curating a Tools site for students. I decided to stop updating that and to gradually move the more useful tools from that site to this Topics site, adding new tools as I come across them. Here’s a new one.

Delancyplace is

“a brief daily email with an excerpt or quote we view as interesting or noteworthy, offered with commentary to provide context.  There is no theme, except that most excerpts will come from a non-fiction work, mainly works of history, and we hope will have a more universal relevance than simply the subject of the book from which they came.” (from their About page)

You can sign up for a daily email, or you can browse the archives, which go back to January 2006.

Here is a recent excerpt I enjoyed, from January 4th. It’s about how dangerous the drinking water used to be, and so instead of drinking water, people drank beer.

It’s from a 2016 book titled Colonial Spirits: A Toast to Our Drunken History, by Steven Grasse.

“It was not for religious freedom nor by divine providence that our ancestors [the Pilgrims] so fatefully settled at Plymouth Rock. It was because we were running out of beer. … (read the rest of the excerpt)

It reminds me of a scene from “Back the the Future” (part 3) when Marty goes back to the Old West and asks for water at a saloon.