Important messages of peace and joy

by Bill Federer -- On Christmas Eve, Dec. 24, 1492, Columbus' ship, the Santa Maria, ran aground on the island of Hispanola (Haiti). Columbus left 40 men and named the settlement la more…

Hanukkah roots are deep in America

by Bill Federer -- The origin of lights at this time of year has an important meaning for today. King Cyrus of Persia let the Jews return to Jerusalem after 70 years more…

'Amazing Grace' had amazing origin

by Bill Federer -- Amazing grace! How sweet the sound, That saved a wretch like me! I once was lost, but now am found, Was blind, but now I see. These were more…

We've forgotten the horrors of Valley Forge

by Bill Federer -- Washington lost the battle of Brandywine on Sept. 11, 1777, and was forced to retreat toward Philadelphia. British General Burgoyne's troops marched down from Canada through New York, more…

Overcoming deafness to write brilliant music

by Bill Federer -- Twenty years after composer Johann Sebastian Bach died, Ludwig van Beethoven was born in Bonn, Germany, and baptized on Dec. 17, 1770. While Bach lived during the Baroque more…