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WORLD HISTORY

How Organized Crime Got Organized

June 16, 2019

Three gangsters involved in a shoot-out at a gas station, in a scene from an unidentified film, circa 1935. Source: (Photo by Lass/Frederic lewis/Archive Photos/Getty Images) From 193...

Was the Millennium Falcon Found at the Bottom of the Ba...

June 15, 2019

On June 19, 2011, Peter Lindberg and Dennis Asberg, members of the deep-sea exploration team called Ocean-X, discovered a strange circular object at the bott...

Mermaids: Aquatic Rescuers Or Malicious Predators?

June 14, 2019

Thanks to Disney and Hans Christian Andersen, mermaids are most often thought of as human-like creatures who live in the ocean. Despite having fishtails and the abi...

The Tragedy of the Tree of Ténéré

June 12, 2019

In the heart of the Sahara is the “desert within the desert” the brutal region of the Ténéré. This sand-duned region stretches across northeastern Niger and western Chad and is e...

The Mutiny That Created Washington, D.C.

June 11, 2019

At the end of the Revolutionary War, veterans from the Continental Army wanted to get paid and wouldn't take no for an answer. The result was one of the first major confronta...

Our Founding Fathers

June 10, 2019

Father’s Day can represent not only fathers of families but also the fathers of our country. Our founding fathers of America consisted of seven men of valor: George Washington, John Adams, Thoma...

What Is Causing the Taos Hum?

June 8, 2019

The small town of Taos, New Mexico, isn’t famous for celebrities like Julia Roberts and Dennis Hopper who have called it home. That spotlight has been stolen by a mysterious sound, know...

The Mysterious Tribe of North Sentinel Island

June 7, 2019

The idea of modern-day societies encountering cultures and people who have not met outsiders may seem like a throwback to the Age of Discovery. However, there are still ...

The Mysterious Life of William Shakespeare

June 6, 2019

The most famous playwright of all time, William Shakespeare, is also the most controversial. While his plays are the most read and performed of any playwright in history, t...

Antoni Gaudi, An Architectural Genius or Madman?

June 3, 2019

Antoni Gaudi was a very unique and talented architect. Most of his work was done in Barcelona. Not a lot is known about Gaudi as a person but his talent for architec...

History of Windmills

June 1, 2019

There have been different types and forms of windmills throughout history. The various types were created for different purposes. The very first person to use the windmill idea was Heron of Ale...

First Known Author in History: Enheduanna

May 31, 2019

The first author that signed her name to a literary work was the ancient Sumerian poet Enheduanna. There were other poems and stories that had been done but none associated ...

Australia’s Historic Nemesis: The Bunny Rabbit

May 29, 2019

Australia is home to 66 venomous species of animals. Some, like the funnel web spider, the Dubois sea snake, the taipan snake, the blue-ringed octopus, and the box je...

Crossing the Line: One of Maritime History's Oldest Tra...

May 27, 2019

Imagine that you are in a cabin aboard a ship when one night you receive a summons from King Neptune to mark your first crossing of the equator. You are to ...

The Rise and Fall of the Aztec Empire

May 26, 2019

The Aztecs were a people that lived in the middle American region in what is now known as Mexico City and the area that surrounded it back in the 14th through the 16th centuries....

What Really Happens at Area 51?

May 24, 2019

A popular topic among science fiction enthusiasts and conspiracy theorist is Area 51. Frequently connected with the 1947 incident during which a UFO allegedly crashed near Roswell, Ne...

The Amazing Harry Houdini

May 22, 2019

Harry Houdini was a man of many talents. Despite only living to the age of fifty-two, his résumé included such titles as a circus performer, aviator, actor, and writer. But it was his skil...

A Pirate Profile: The Savage François l'Olonnais

May 20, 2019

As I had written in my prior pirate profile piece on Ned Low, the pirates of the Caribbean were not Johnny Depp, but fall somewhere south of Al Capone with Jack the R...

What Caused the Patomskiy Crater?

May 17, 2019

In 1949, in Irkutsk, Siberia, a geologist happened upon a mysterious crater. To this day, scientists have yet to positively identify what caused it. At first, it was believed to be...

Atlantis: Lost City or Mythical Island?

May 16, 2019

Often with folklore and legend, it is impossible to uncover the primary source. Either the original texts are lost, or the stories are passed down from one generation to the n...

Why Did London Stink in 1858?

May 13, 2019

Today, the River Thames in England is about as picturesque a city river as one might imagine and is often cited as one of the cleanest waterways in the world. However, this was not alwa...

Amazing Mothers Throughout History

May 12, 2019

The inspiration for Mother’s Day came from Ann Reeves, from West Virginia, who not only cared for wounded soldiers during the Civil War but also helped to organize clubs that taught...

Major General Lew Wallace, Author of Ben-Hur

May 11, 2019

General Lew Wallace was the author who wrote Ben-Hur in 1880. The popular classic version of Ben-Hur was the 1959 production with Charlton Heston, who also played Moses in...

From Davy Jones’s Locker to the Flying Dutchman: The Or...

May 9, 2019

Many people will recognize Davy Jones as the name of the tentacle-faced villain of Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean movies. Others may remember him from ...

The Creation of the Appalachian Trail

May 8, 2019

Views on a hike are seen throughout Lead Cove Trail and Bote Mountain Trail towards the Appalachian Trail in the Great Smoky Mountains. Source: (Photo by Patrick Gorski/NurPhoto via...

Who Was Jimmy Hoffa?

May 7, 2019

On July 30, 1975, in Detroit Michigan, Jimmy Hoffa disappeared, in what would become one of the most culturally referenced historical mysteries in United States history. Most people have at leas...

Exploring the Northern Lights

May 6, 2019

One of the most captivating sights in nature, the auroras have fascinated mankind for centuries. Long before physicists learned to explain them, the northern lights have been the subjec...

Alexander Graham Bell – Can You Hear Me Now?

May 5, 2019

Alexander Graham Bell, the Scotsman who invented the telephone, experimented with giant man-carrying kites during the first decade of the 20th Century. Source: (Bettmann/Co...

The Desert Sands of Ancient Egypt

May 4, 2019

There is a lot more to Egypt than just the sands of its deserts. Even though there is no rain in Egypt, the Ancient Egyptian culture has produced historical achievements such as cre...

What’s Inside the Great Pyramid of Giza?

May 3, 2019

A view of the pyramid of Khafre (L) (also spelled Chephren) and the Great Pyramid of Khufu (also spelled Cheops) on the Giza Plateau, on the southwestern outskirts of the Egypt...

The Challenger Disaster of 1986

May 1, 2019

On January 28, 1986, the United States shuttle orbiter, Space Shuttle Challenger, exploded just seventy-three seconds after liftoff, in what would become one of the most memorable even...

John D. Rockefeller And The Monopoly Of Standard Oil

April 29, 2019

2/8/1924-Moravia, NY: The boyhood home of John D. Rockefeller, Near Moravia, is now being used as a domicile by convicts from Auburn Prison, NY, who are employed in r...

First UFO Sighting in America

April 28, 2019

While alien abductions and UFO sightings may seem to be a 20th-century American fad, it seems that humans have been witnessing visitors from beyond our planet for much longer. In fact, ...

The Supreme Navigators of History: Voyagers of the Paci...

April 27, 2019

The Pacific Ocean covers more than 60 million square miles of the Earth, more than 30 percent. It contains double the amount of water from the next largest ...

Famous Brothers Throughout Time

April 24, 2019

The bond of brotherhood is strong, but sometimes the intensity of sibling rivalry can be just as strong. History is filled with brothers whose interactions had lasting results, not on...

When was the First "Bloody Sunday?"

April 21, 2019

13th November 1887: Policemen fighting a contingent from Clerkenwell Green during a riot in Trafalgar Square. Source: (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images) U-2’s song, “Sunday, Blo...

A Pirate Profile: The Most Vicious Ned Low

April 20, 2019

Nowadays, there is glamour associated with pirates from the 17th to 18th centuries – think Johnny Depp. But curiously there was nothing glamorous about them. The vast majo...

World Famous Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris

April 19, 2019

A massive fire breaks out in the world famous Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris. Looking very similar to this wallpaper image related to a video game called Assassins Creed, a ...

Crucifixion As Capital Punishment

April 18, 2019

Located inside the Roman Colosseum, this cross was erected as a monument to the suffering of early Christians in Rome. Location: Rome, Italy. Source: (Jared I. Lenz Photography/Getty Im...

Is The Earth Really Hollow?

April 17, 2019

At some point during grade school, most likely elementary school, students are taught that the earth is made up of four layers: the crust, the mantle, the outer core, and the inner core. ...

Rise of the Empire State Building

April 15, 2019

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - APRIL 02: The Empire State Building lights it up blue for World Autism Awareness Day on April 02, 2019 in New York City. Source: (Photo by Roy Rochlin/Getty Images ...

Andes Flight Disaster Of 1972

April 13, 2019

The thought of becoming a victim in a disaster of any kind is not a pleasant thought. Most people rely on rescue workers such as firemen, ambulance attendants, and policemen as well as ...

Who Put the Lean In The Tower Of Pisa?

April 12, 2019

Perhaps the best-known architectural blunder in the world has given Italy one of its most popular tourist attractions and giving Instagram travelers a clichés photo opp. The Lea...

Who Was The First American To Circumnavigate The Globe?

April 11, 2019

At the end of the War of Independence, the United States was bustling with the energy of a new nation. Opportunities were seen abroad for American expansion an...

The Dive that Conquered the Deepest Depths

April 10, 2019

It is curious that while eleven men have been to the moon, only three have been to the deepest recesses of the ocean. The Challenger Deep at the southern end of the Mariana...

The Sultana Disaster: The Titanic Of The Mississippi

April 9, 2019

The Sultana was a large wooden steamboat which transported people and freight between St. Louis and New Orleans. Early on April 27th, 1865 – a few days after the ...

Ida Tarbell: The Mother Muckraker!

April 8, 2019

(Original Caption) 9/20/1921- Ida M. Tarbell at her desk. She was the investigative journalist and chronicler of American industry, famous for her classic The History of the Standard O...

The Untouchable Eliot Ness

April 7, 2019

If asked to list the most famous gangsters of all time, most people would unhesitatingly begin with the name “Al Capone.” However, if asked who was responsible for putting Capone behind bar...

Cinco de Mayo Is Not Mexico’s Independence Day

April 6, 2019

Despite popular belief, May 5 is not Mexico’s Independence Day. That honor falls to September 16. While still an important date in Mexico’s history, May 5 is not con...

Writer’s Cramp: The Life of a Medieval Scribe

April 4, 2019

Scribe or copyist writing at his desk. Reproduced from a fifteenth century miniature. Source: (Photo by Culture Club/Getty Images) Before Gutenberg invented the printing...

Who Made the First Non-stop Transatlantic Flight? (It's...

April 3, 2019

Most people associate the first non-stop transatlantic flight with Charles Lindbergh’s epic journey in the “Spirit of St. Louis” in 1927. However, his fligh...

Drake’s Drum: Magical Protector Of England

March 31, 2019

An ancient snare drum said to be haunted by the spirit of Sir Francis Drake is believed to be a magical totem that protects England. People have claimed to hear the myster...

Centralia, Pennsylvania: A Town Condemned By The Fire B...

March 30, 2019

Underground coal fires are neither new or rare. In fact, they are burning on every continent except Antarctica, with more than one hundred in the U.S. alone...

Did Nero Start the Great Fire of Rome?

March 28, 2019

According to the legend, he fiddled while Rome burned, but some historians believe Nero actually started the fire that consumed Rome in 64 A.D. The great-grandson of Caesar Aug...

A Quest For The Origins Of The Holy Grail

March 27, 2019

In the 1989 movie, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, the swashbuckling archaeologist embarks on a mission to acquire a cup with the power to grant immortality to anyone who...

The Gilded Age Of America

March 26, 2019

NEWPORT, RHODE ISLAND, UNITED STATES - 2010/08/27: The Breakers mansion located along the Cliff Walk. Source: (Photo by John Greim/LightRocket via Getty Images) What was the Gilded Age?’The G...

Olga Kiev: The Princess Who Buried People Alive

March 25, 2019

Olga's avenge to the Drevlians, before 1839. Artist: Bruni, Fyodor Antonovich (1800-1875) Source: (Photo by Fine Art Images/Heritage Images/Getty Images) Why Was She So ...

Pistols at Dawn: A History of Dueling

March 23, 2019

These days getting into a fight because someone got their feelings hurt is considered the height of immaturity. A fight to the death could likely result in criminal charges. Ho...

Ponce De Leon and The Fountain of Youth

March 17, 2019

People who graduated high school before the turn of the century will most likely remember learning about Ponce de Leon and how he discovered Florida during his quest for the fo...

The Legend Of Lady Godiva

March 15, 2019

A painting of Lady Godiva riding through town nude while a peeping Tom watches. Source: (Photo by Mark Kauffman/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images) The LegendThe legend of Lady Godiva i...

The Legend or Cibola, the Lost City of Gold

March 14, 2019

Tales about undiscovered cities filled with vast riches were prevalent in medieval times and several of them remain today. The story of Cibola, the seven cities of gold, or...

H.H. Holmes: The Master Of Murder

March 11, 2019

Who Was He?H.H. Holmes was born in 1861 with the name of Herman Webster Mudgett. He was from New Hampshire. Even as a child he had a fascination with death. He was always interested ...

Sarah Winchester’s Mystery House

March 10, 2019

Currently, a tourist attraction in San Jose, California, the Winchester Mystery House, formerly known as Llanada Villa, was once the largest and most expensive private residence in ...

Vincent Van Gogh, The Starving Artist

March 9, 2019

One of the most well-known painters of all time, Vincent Van Gogh was the epitome of the starving artist. He suffered from illness, both mental and physical, and had difficulty m...

It’s Istanbul, Not Constantinople

March 7, 2019

When The Four Lads released their catchy Top Ten hit, “Istanbul (Not Constantinople)” in 1953, they were making a humorous jab at the 1930 declaration by the Turkish city to offici...

Australia's Convict Colonies

March 6, 2019

The arrival of the first prisoners at the Botany Bay penal colony, Port Jackson. The day has become a holiday, designated the National Day of Australia. Source: (Time Life Pictures/Mansell/T...

Rosetta Stone: The Key To Deciphering Egyptian Hierogly...

March 5, 2019

Egypt fever hit British explorers and academics from roughly the late 18th century into well after Howard Carter unearthed the tomb of King Tutankhamen in 19...

Queen Mary I: Bloody Mary

March 4, 2019

Her ChildhoodQueen Mary I was born on February 18, 1516. She was the daughter of King Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon. She was their only child. King Henry VIII had his marriage to Cather...

Henry Ford and the Birth of the Model T

March 2, 2019

Famed industrialist and founder of the Ford Motor Company, Henry Ford is known for his creation of the Model T and his progressive strides in assembly-line factory production. ...

George Washington Carver: More Than Just The Peanut Man

March 1, 2019

George Washington Carver Conducts Experiments. (Original Caption) 1/25/1921. Source: (gettyimages.com) His Early LifeThe best guess of Carver’s birthday is Janua...

Living In The Dust Bowl

February 28, 2019

What Exactly Was The Dust Bowl?Over the span of eight years, dust storms had become commonplace whereas in the past they were very rare. The air was very dry and static charges would even shor...

Charles Ponzi - An International Con Man

February 26, 2019

There are many people in society who try to “get rich quick.” Taking shortcuts to fame and fortune rather than trying to build up their fortunes over time through hard work an...

The Oldest City in the U.S. – St. Augustine, Florida

February 25, 2019

St. Augustine, Castillo de San Marcos. Source: (Photo by Wojtek BUSS/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images) The oldest continuously occupied city in the United States? Nop...

Elizabeth Báthory, The Blood Countess

February 24, 2019

One of the most infamous female serial killers of all time, Elizabeth Báthory, nicknamed the Blood Countess, was believed by many to be a vampire. Determining where legend ends...

The Ides of March and Other Dates to Beware

February 23, 2019

Some days are just born bad. Not really, but there are some days of the year which have gained a reputation for being unlucky. The most notorious of these is Friday the 13t...

The Cruelty Of Irma Grese: The Beast Of Belsen

February 22, 2019

Irma Grese, a German guard at Bergen-Belsen concentration camp, was noted for her cruelty to prisoners. She underwent a trial for war crimes in 1945. Source: (Photo by © CO...

William Tell, The Man, The Myth, The Legend

February 21, 2019

William Tell with a crossbow, is forced to hit the apple placed on top of his son's head, according to the legend, on November 18, 1307. Colored woodcut, XVI century. Source: ...

Fearsome, Functional Gargoyles, Then and Now

February 18, 2019

High atop old European churches and cathedrals, you will find the terrifying looking gargoyles. Carved of stones and resembling devilish monsters, these strange statues ha...

The Rediscovery of Petra By a Masquerading Explorer

February 16, 2019

Chances are, your first introduction to the ancient city of Petra was when it was featured in the movie, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. The incredible city car...

The Real Pirates of the Caribbean

February 15, 2019

There’s no Jack Sparrow or Black Pearl in the history of piracy; however, not everything about the Pirates of the Caribbean movie franchise is fictional. The pirates existed, though ...