Stuff You Missed in History Class
Battle of Blair Mountain07/23/14
In 1921, coal miners fed up with unfair labor practices and exploitation took up arms against their employers. The resulting conflict lasted five days and has been called the biggest armed uprising on U.S. soil since the Civil War.
Les Filles du Roi
While the building of a population in a new colony seems like a tricky endeavor, France’s King Louis XIV launched a scheme to do just that by shipping eligible ladies to New France in the 1600s. How did this play out?
The Doctors' Riot of 1788
In the late 1700s, medical colleges needed cadavers for educational dissection, but there were no legal means for obtaining them. This led to some unorthodox dealings in the acquiring of bodies, and brought New York to a fever pitch in 1788.
Cosmetics From Ancient Egypt to the Modern World
Makeup has a rich and lengthy history that spans the globe and crosses cultures. From 10,000 B.C.E. to the 20th century, people have been using cosmetics to enhance their looks -- sometimes with unintended side effects.
The Battle of Mons and the Angels That Followed
The Battle of Mons was one of World War I’s earliest battles. In the months after the battle, stories spread that a supernatural presence had covered the British army, preventing it from being destroyed.
Suleiman the Magnificent and the Siege of Vienna
The Ottoman Empire’s Suleiman the Magnificent was a head of state, a poet, a reformer of the military and a goldsmith. His reign had a significant impact on the law, literature and art of the Ottoman Empire.
The Great London Smog
London is no stranger to smog, which is why when the Great London Smog descended in December of 1952, nobody quite realized anything unusual was going on. At its largest, it extended 30 kilometers around London, and it killed thousands of people.
Caroline Herschel: Astronomy's Cinderella
Herschel managed to break the barrier of women in scientific fields far earlier than you might suspect, in part because of her association with her brother, and in equal measure due to her steadfast dedication to her work.
The Yaa Asantewaa War of Independence
The Asante-British war of 1900 capped about 100 years of war between Great Britain and the Asante Empire, which occupied part of what is now Ghana.
Battle of Poitiers
On Sept. 19, 1356, one of the decisive battles of the Hundred Years War took place in France. It was the first major battle after almost a decade of relative quiet, and it stacked a small English army against a French military three times its size.
Edna St. Vincent Millay, Part 2
Edna St. Vincent Millay was the first woman to win the Pulitzer Prize for poetry and was one of the Guggenheim Foundation’s judges for its poetry fellowships. And she managed to make a great deal of money as a poet in the middle of the Great...
Edna St. Vincent Millay, Part 1
Known as Vincent to family and friends, Edna St. Vincent Millay grew up poor, caring for the household and her sisters while her mother worked. From an early age, she showed incredible talent and sowed the seeds of a life of passion and impressive...
The S.S. Sultana
Because the Sultana sank the day after John Wilkes Booth was captured and killed for the murder of Abraham Lincoln, it didn't make headline news. But it's considered the biggest maritime disaster in U.S. history.
Ruth Harkness and the First Panda in the U.S.
In the 1930s a New York socialite had a dream. She wanted to be the first person to capture a panda from Asia and return to the western world with it. Her quest had a significant impact on the way the Western world viewed wild animals.
The Treaty of Waitangi
This document -- a treaty between the British the Maori -- established New Zealand as a nation. The spirit of the agreement was to see to the best interests of both the Maori and the Crown, but a hurried translation of the document led to some...
Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923
Sept. 1, 1923 changed Japan forever when a devastating earthquake obliterated Yokohoma and much of Tokyo, killing more than 140,000.
Deaf President Now
This episode breaks the rule of thimb about covering fairly recent history. In 1988, the appointment of a hearing president at Gallaudet University sparked a protest that changed the course of both the school and deaf culture in America.
The Red Ghost of Arizona and the U.S. Camel Corps
In 1883, a mysterious beast was spotted in Arizona and trampled a woman. First described a a demon, the creature turned out to be a camel. But what was it doing in the American Southwest in the first place?
Bets and Burlesque: Joseph Oller
Joseph Oller was an entrepreneur with an incredible head for business. He revolutionized gambling practices as a young man, and also opened the most famous burlesque house of all time -- The Moulin Rouge.
Between 1854 and 1929, about 250,000 children were taken to new families by train. Except … they weren’t called “orphan trains” at the time, the children weren’t all orphans, and “family” didn’t always factor into it.
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