August 2009

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Cahaba River

River of Riches

An unsung Alabama waterway is one of the most biologically diverse places in the nation, home to rare flora and fauna


Finding Herod's Tomb

After a 35-year search, an Israeli archaeologist is certain he has solved the mystery of the biblical figure’s final resting place

Conus gloriamaris shell

Mad About Shells

Collectors have long prized mollusks for their beautiful exteriors, but for scientists, it’s what inside that matters

Alex Katz

Cool Katz

At 82, the pathbreaking painter known for stylized figurative works has never been in more demand

Galileo and Jupiter moons

Galileo's Vision

The Italian scientist turned his telescope toward the stars and changed our view of the universe

Charles Atlas tug of war with Rockettes

Muscle Man

How the original 97-pound-weakling transformed himself and brought physical fitness to the masses


Indelible Images

Still Together Now

On a whim, a young duo went to the legendary festival only to be captured in a memorable image by photographer Burk Uzzle

My Kind of Town

Out of the Box

The fiction writer cherishes her mountain town's anti-commercialism, as epitomized by the local swap stop, a regional landmark


Evolution's Big Bang

A storied trove of fossils from a Canadian paleontological site is yielding new clues to an explosion of life on earth

Presence of Mind

Blue Sky Thinking

How an unlikely mix of environmentalists and free-market conservatives hammered out the strategy known as cap-and-trade

From the Editor


Larger than life, for ill and good



Readers Respond to the June Issue

This Month in History

August Anniversaries

Momentous or Merely Memorable

From the Castle

From the Castle

Ways We Serve

Around the Mall

Cracking the Code

On a small island near Washington, D.C., Smithsonian researchers have found a genetic code that could revolutionize botany

The Object at Hand

One Giant Leap

When the lunar module landed on the moon, it provided an unforgettable moment for the millions watching back on Earth


Q and A: Buzz Aldrin

Buzz Aldrin, the second man to walk on the moon, reflects on the Apollo 11 mission

What's Up

What's Up

The Last Page

Darwin for Dads

A daughter tries to help one member of an endangered species survive