Category Archives: Misc.

WWII Horror Files: Unit 731

torture

At the dawn of World War II, although biological and chemical weapons had been used previously in warfare, little was known of precisely how they worked on the human body. Curious, certain Japanese researchers in its army unit 731 conducted a series of indescribably cruel experiments testing the limits of the human body when subjected to harsh conditions, poisonous substances […]

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The Voynich Manuscript

manuscript

So mysterious, no one even knows exactly which century it was written in, the Voynich Manuscript has stumped medieval scholars, linguists, cryptologists and the curious for hundreds of years. The Manuscript Approximately 6″ x 9″ x 2″, this octavo contains 240 pages of indecipherable text and a host of illustrations drawn with iron gall ink on vellum. Many of the […]

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Toilet Paper wasn’t Commonly Used in the United States Until the Early 20th Century

toilet-paper

Today I found out it’s only been very recently that people in the U.S. started using toilet paper. Despite toilet paper having been around since at least the 6th century AD (initially in China), it wouldn’t be until the late 19th century when toilet paper would be first introduced in America and England and it wasn’t until the 1900s, around […]

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The Mystery of Gobekli Tepe

Göbekli_tepe

About eleven thousand years ago, in a remote corner of the cradle of civilization, Stone Age people who lacked cities, agriculture and metal tools built an enormous complex of multi-ton stone pillars called Gobekli Tepe (Potbelly Hill) in a region in modern day Turkey. The high degree of artistic skill and organizational wherewithal discovered at the site has caused the […]

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The Creator of the Nike “Swoosh” Logo was Originally Paid Only $35 for the Design

nike

Today I found out the creator of the Nike “swoosh” logo was originally only paid $35 for it. The woman is Carolyn Davidson. At the time she created the now world famous logo, Davidson was a student at Portland State University where one of the co-founders of Nike,  Phil Knight, was teaching as an assistant professor in accounting.  On the […]

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Ben Franklin’s Interest

Ben-franklin-money

Dan Lewis runs the wildly popular daily newsletter Now I Know (“Learn Something New Every Day, By Email”). To subscribe to his daily email, click here.. Google the phrase “magic of compound interest” and you’ll come up with about 4 million or so results. Compound interest — which Albert Einstein may have called ”the most powerful force in the universe” — is the […]

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The Morton’s Salt Girl

salt2

Most people are familiar with the “Morton”s Salt girl“. With her bright yellow dress, oversized umbrella, and leaking container of table salt, she’s an iconic figure in American grocery stores. But who is the Morton’s girl, and where did she come from? The Morton’s story begins in the 1880s, when a man named Joy Morton invested in a Chicago-based salt […]

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