Ulysses S. Grant may not be remembered as our best president, but his memoir is often cited as the best of all presidential writings.
A list of Michele Bachmann's favorite books includes one that "startles" an interviewer.
Commemorating a day to call attention to a political cause has long been a tactic of liberals and those further out on the left. For instance, there's Labor Day, Martin Luther King Day, Earth Day, Gay Pride Day, May Day, and so on. Conservatives, by contrast, have largely stuck to fighting battles over the "true meaning" of traditional holidays observed by people of all political stripes, such as Christmas, Memorial Day, and the Fourth of July. Still, conservatives have tried to come up with holidays to tout, with varying degrees of success. Here are our top five:
Fort Sumter marked the start of the Civil War, with Confederates shelling it on April 12, 1861. Today, the cannon rolls still reverberate in a country that remains at peace, but torn by ideological divides.
Dale Smith of Johnsonville, S.C., holds a Confederate Naval Jack flag as he looks out at Fort Sumter from the Battery in downtown Charleston, S.C., after cannon were fired to mark the 150th anniversary of the start of the Civil War on April 12.
The Sons of Confederate Veterans want to honor Nathan Bedford Forrest, a Confederate general who subsequently joined the Ku Klux Klan, on some Mississippi license plates in 2014.
Monitor readers share their favorite book picks.
Home sales plunged in July and housing prices may dip again. But in six metropolitan areas, the housing picture is far brighter: Home values are rising and median prices are already well ahead of their peak during the housing bubble. What allowed these metro areas to beat the downturn in home sales prices? Two are state capitols. Five have lower-than-average unemployment. All of them had undervalued real estate, even at the height of the housing boom, says Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors (NAR). When mortgage rates fell, "they had room to grow" and home sales rose. Is your city on the list? Click on the right arrow to see each metro area:
Readers write in about the US Civil War and Africa's agricultural promise.