History »

People in Columbus’ Time Did Not Think the World Was Flat

People in Columbus’ Time Did Not Think the World Was Flat

Melissa May 8, 2013 26

In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue… with a whole lot of maps and information about the very round Earth. Contrary to popular belief, not only did Columbus realize the world was round, so

Read More »
1816- The Year That Had No Summer

1816- The Year That Had No Summer

Terynn Boulton May 6, 2013 2

For those who are used to a year with four seasons, imagine how hard it is to believe there could ever be a year where summer never came. In 1816, people living in the

Read More »
The Siberian Family Who Didn’t See Another Human for Over 40 Years

The Siberian Family Who Didn’t See Another Human for Over 40 Years

Matt Blitz May 3, 2013 1

To this day, the Siberian wilderness is still one of the most isolated places in the world. Known as the Siberian taiga (meaning “forest” in Russian), its harsh, cold climate greatly discourages human habitation.

Read More »
Vasili Arkhipov: The Man Who Saved the World

Vasili Arkhipov: The Man Who Saved the World

Matt Blitz May 2, 2013 9

In 1962, the U.S. and the Soviet Union were on the brink of possible mutual destruction- the world as a whole was facing a possible nuclear winter and all the devastation that would come

Read More »
Et Tu Brute? Not Caesar’s Last Words

Et Tu Brute? Not Caesar’s Last Words

O'rene Daille Ashley April 30, 2013 8

In terms of famous last words, Julius Caesar’s supposed “Et tu, Brute?” may be the most well known of any in history. For context, William Shakespeare would have us believe, Julius Caesar, in his

Read More »
The Nazi Origin of the Volkswagen Beetle

The Nazi Origin of the Volkswagen Beetle

Melissa April 26, 2013 4

Hard to believe but true- the industrial production of the lovable VW Bug was partially the brainchild of none other than Adolf Hitler. While most of us, when we think of Hitler and the

Read More »
The First Stock Market Crash: The South Sea Company

The First Stock Market Crash: The South Sea Company

Melissa April 25, 2013 3

Building on a long tradition of catastrophic financial market crashes, the economic meltdown caused by the bursting of the housing bubble in 2008 is only the latest in a long line of epic stock

Read More »
The Origin of Humpty Dumpty

The Origin of Humpty Dumpty

Emily Upton April 24, 2013 6

Nevin asks: Why is “Humpty Dumpty” always depicted as an egg? As you seem to have noticed, in the “Humpty Dumpty” nursery rhyme, nowhere does it say that Humpty is an egg, yet he

Read More »
Who was the Real Mother Goose?

Who was the Real Mother Goose?

Emily Upton April 22, 2013 1

Rachel asks: Was “Mother Goose” a real person? A nursery necessity and childhood favourite, Mother Goose is a household name and the writer of dozens of well-known nursery rhymes like Baa Baa Black Sheep,

Read More »
The Last Veteran of the Civil War

The Last Veteran of the Civil War

Matt Blitz April 19, 2013 5

The Civil War ended 148 years ago this past month (April 9th, 1865) with the surrender of the Confederate forces at the Appomattox Court House in Northern Virginia.  54 years ago, in December 1959,

Read More »
The History of Cheese

The History of Cheese

Teri Crane April 17, 2013 6

The story goes something like this: an ancient Arab sets out on a journey across the desert. In preparation, he puts a ration of milk into a handy sheep’s stomach to transport it. (Those

Read More »
Cinderella’s Castle was Modeled After Bavaria’s Neuschwanstein Castle

Cinderella’s Castle was Modeled After Bavaria’s Neuschwanstein Castle

Emily Upton April 11, 2013 2

Today I found out that Cinderella’s Castle at Disney World and Sleeping Beauty’s Castle in Disney Land are modeled after Bavaria’s Neuschwanstein Castle. Each castle was also inspired by several other castles, including Fontainebleau

Read More »
The Fascinating History of Birth Control

The Fascinating History of Birth Control

Yona Williams April 5, 2013 3

Kerry asks: What did people use for birth control before modern methods like the pill and condoms? Pregnancy prevention around the world has a lengthy history that includes many effective yet sometimes lethal methods

Read More »
The Origin of “Say Cheese” and When People Started Smiling in Photographs

The Origin of “Say Cheese” and When People Started Smiling in Photographs

Terynn Boulton April 2, 2013 18

Sue T. asks: Why do people say “say cheese” when taking pictures?  Also, why did people not smile in old pictures and when did they start? “Say cheese!” This simple command is meant to

Read More »
The History of Yoga

The History of Yoga

Tyler Edwards April 2, 2013 2

Although yoga is something of a recent fad in the West, you’re probably aware that this system of gentle exercise and meditation has very ancient roots. What you might not know is just how

Read More »
The History of Shaving

The History of Shaving

Kathy Padden April 1, 2013 16

Kelly asks: When did women and men start shaving different parts of their body? Both sexes have a love-hate relationship with removing body hair. We’ve been pulling, plucking, burning, tweezing and ripping out undesirable

Read More »
The Origin of the American Democratic Party

The Origin of the American Democratic Party

Melanie Mayne March 29, 2013 2

Although the Democratic and Republican parties in the United States currently seem extremely polarized, they did not start out that way. In fact, these two parties originated as one, single party. This party was

Read More »
The Origins of the Neck Tie

The Origins of the Neck Tie

O'rene Daille Ashley March 26, 2013 8

Jp23 asks: When and why did men start wearing ties? The neck tie has its roots in military history. For starters, a collection of terracotta sculptures discovered in 1974 in Xian, China gives insight

Read More »