Category Archives: History

The Sacking of Osceola


In 1861 in southwestern Missouri, near its border with Kansas, the city of Osceola was sacked by rabid anti-slavery jayhawkers (from Kansas). When the looting and burning were over, ten people were dead and the city was ruined. The Jayhawkers Brigadier General James Henry Lane led the 3rd, 4th and 5th Kansas Volunteers- soldiers who were staunchly free soil riding […]

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Why the Standard Retirement Age Is Set Where It’s At


Sheel P. asks: How was the official retirement age for people first determined? The idea of “retirement” from working is a relatively recent one in the Western world. In fact, even at the end of the 19th century, over three-quarters of men over age 65 remained active in the workforce. So what happened? History of Retirement Pensions The greatest contributor […]

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Smedley Butler and the Business Plot


In 1933 and 1934, an alleged plot to overthrow the government of Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR) by Wall Street Bankers may have happened. While contemporary newspapers called it a “gigantic hoax,” others, including the House’s Special Committee on Un-American Activities, found the allegations “credible.” You decide: The Bankers & Power Brokers During the campaign of 1932, FDR’s promise of jobs […]

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United States: Republic or Democracy?


Mike asks: Why does everyone say the U.S. is a Democracy when it’s really a Republic? Frequently, politicians, and many ordinary Americans, refer to the United States as a democracy. Others find this aggravating because, unlike in a democracy where citizens vote directly on laws, in the United States, elected representatives do – and, therefore, the U.S. is a republic. […]

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Al Capone vs. George Moran: The Saint Valentine’s Day Massacre


In the 1920s, gang warfare threatened the streets of Chicago. In the midst of prohibition, mobsters were making a killing by providing alcohol to thirsty cityfolk from all walks of life. The infamous Al “Scarface” Capone ruled with an iron fist, and at his peak was earning an astounding $60 million per year (about $700 million today)—and yet he controlled […]

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Written in Human Blood: Draconian Laws and the Dawn of Democracy


In ancient Greece, since laws were unwritten at first, the social pyramid’s elite of nobles and rich men interpreted and twisted the aforementioned laws for their own exclusive benefit. Of course, as usually happens in such cases, this elite claimed the laws were god-given, and subsequently, holy and to be blindly followed by all members of society… except themselves. At […]

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The Ponce Massacre


In March 1937, several days before Palm Sunday, Puerto Rican Nationalists in the city of Ponce obtained permits for a parade and demonstration. The former was to commemorate the end of slavery in 1873 while the latter was to protest the detention of one of their leaders, Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos. Ponce’s mayor, José Tormos Diego, granted the permits. Campos […]

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The First U.S. Presidential Assassination Attempt


There have been four assassinations of U.S. Presidents to date. Two are very famous and two not as well-known. The first assassination of a President is both well-known and well-documented. On April 14, 1865, actor and southern advocate John Wilkes Booth shot the 16th U.S. President Abraham Lincoln at Ford’s theater. Lincoln died from his wounds the next day. (Incidentally, […]

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