Ridiculous History-logo

Ridiculous History

HowStuffWorks

History is beautiful, brutal and, often, ridiculous. Join Ben Bowlin and Noel Brown as they dive into some of the weirdest stories from across the span of human civilization in Ridiculous History, a podcast by HowStuffWorks.

History is beautiful, brutal and, often, ridiculous. Join Ben Bowlin and Noel Brown as they dive into some of the weirdest stories from across the span of human civilization in Ridiculous History, a podcast by HowStuffWorks.
More Information

Location:

United States

Networks:

HowStuffWorks

Description:

History is beautiful, brutal and, often, ridiculous. Join Ben Bowlin and Noel Brown as they dive into some of the weirdest stories from across the span of human civilization in Ridiculous History, a podcast by HowStuffWorks.

Language:

English


Episodes

Adidas Versus Puma: A Tale of Two Brothers

8/16/2018
More
Today Adidas and Puma are two of the industry's most well-known tennis shoe makers, and people around the world prize the footwear for its unique design and reliable craftsmanship. Yet there's a strange, bitter origin story behind these giants of the sneaker world. Join the guys as they delve into a tale of petty recrimination, family feuds and the unending contempt that, ultimately, created the Adidas and Puma we know today. Learn more about advertising on the HowStuffWorks podcasts at...

Duration:00:44:53

Fanny and Stella: The Cross-Dressing Scandal of Victorian England

8/14/2018
More
In April of 1870, a shocking court case captivated Victorian England: Fanny and Stella, also known as Frederick Park and Ernest Boulton, were arrested after attending a play at The Strand (in what was then considered inappropriate dress) and held on suspicion of violating the moral codes of the time. Listen in to learn more about the absurd legal war England waged against these two twenty-somethings, and the consequences of this ill-informed crusade. Learn more about advertising on the...

Duration:00:37:59

Kansas Imprisoned Women For Having STDs

8/9/2018
More
At the close of World War I, American soldiers returned home from abroad with scars, wounds, stories and, in some cases, infectious diseases of which their romantic partners were unaware. When cities in Kansas noted the spike in sexually-transmitted diseases, they embarked upon a misguided quest to quell the infections by imprisoning the women these soldiers had infected (the soldiers didn't get arrested). So why did Kansas decide to imprison women for having STDs, how long did the program...

Duration:00:33:21

The WWII Naval Battle Won Using Potatoes

8/7/2018
More
The U.S.S. O'Bannon was a Fletcher-class navy destroyer with an impressive array of weaponry and a solid track record in conflicts in WWII. However, even the most experienced sailors aren't perfect -- and when the O'Bannon happened upon a hapless Japanese submarine, both crew engaged in a desperate and bizarre food fight. Tune in to learn more. Learn more about advertising on the HowStuffWorks podcasts at www.howstuffworks.com/advertisers.htm And to learn about your ad choices when...

Duration:00:35:18

The Korean Soldier Who Fought for 3 Armies During WWII

8/2/2018
More
Born in what is now North Korea, Yang Kyoungjong didn't set out to become a soldier -- but fate had other plans. Join the guys as they trace one man's journey through prisons, battlefields and multiple armies in a desperate bid to survive World War II. Learn more about advertising on the HowStuffWorks podcasts at www.howstuffworks.com/advertisers.htm And to learn about your ad choices when listening to podcasts, visit https://www.howstuffworks.com/privacy.htm#ad-choices

Duration:00:25:12

Oregon Was a White Supremacist Paradise

7/31/2018
More
Today Portland, Oregon is often portrayed as a left-leaning haven for hipsters across the country, but the original Oregon was a vastly different place. Listen in to learn more about the ridiculous aims of the white supremacists who sought to found Oregon as a whites-only state. Spoiler alert -- there's a fantastic extra segment at the end of today's episode, wherein the guys join special guest Robert Evans, the creator of the new HowStuffWorks podcast Behind The Bastards. Learn more...

Duration:00:45:03

Why did people hate the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge?

7/26/2018
More
Nowadays most people are fans of national parks, but this wasn't always the case. Join the guys as they delve into the strange 'birds vs. babies' conflict over Lake Malheur. Learn more about advertising on the HowStuffWorks podcasts at www.howstuffworks.com/advertisers.htm And to learn about your ad choices when listening to podcasts, visit https://www.howstuffworks.com/privacy.htm#ad-choices

Duration:00:34:21

The 1904 Summer Olympic Games in St. Louis Hosted a Racist 'Special Olympics'

7/24/2018
More
A few years after Baron Pierre de Coubertin revived the ancient sporting event known as the Olympics, he brought the games to the U.S. for the first time. The 1904 Summer Olympics were held in St. Louis, Missouri, coinciding with the 1904 World's Fair. Seems set to make history, right? Not the way you'd think. Join Ben and Noel as they take a closer look at the series of disastrous decisions and bizarre notions that led one games organizer to set up his own racist olympics. Learn more...

Duration:00:36:25

When Heineken Made Bottles That Could Be Used as Bricks

7/19/2018
More
Heineken is one of the world's most well-known, popular beers, and people across the planet can instantly recognize the iconic green bottle and red star. But in the 1960s Freddy Heineken dreamed of a bottle that could do more than just hold beer -- he wanted to make bottles that could be used to build houses and shelters across the world (selling tons of booze in the process, of course). Join Ben and Noel as they explore the oddly inspiring story of Freddy Heineken and his dual purpose...

Duration:00:35:21

Why British Soccer Players Saluted the Nazis

7/17/2018
More
As global tensions grew to a breaking point in the lead-up to World War II, European nations used every available avenue to pursue their geopolitical goals, including the propagandistic power of sporting events. Join the guys as they explore the strange policy of appeasement, and how it led British soccer players to salute Nazi officials on the field. Learn more about advertising on the HowStuffWorks podcasts at www.howstuffworks.com/advertisers.htm And to learn about your ad choices...

Duration:00:40:56

The United States That Never Were

7/12/2018
More
Nowadays the number of U.S. states seems set in stone -- since 1959 the country has been comprised of fifty states, with one star for each on the flag. Yet in the not-so-distant past the concept of statehood was both contentious and fluid, with multiple groups vying for recognition of their own territorial claims. Tune in to hear the strange stories of would-be states across the continent, as the guys trace each state's rise and fall, along with their influence on the modern day. Learn...

Duration:00:46:48

Philadelphia's Transylvanian Doomsday Cult: The Cave of Kelpius

7/10/2018
More
There's a nifty bit of hidden history tucked away in Philadelphia's Wissahickon Valley Park -- a cave that, legend has it, was home to a doomsday cult. In today's episode, the guys follow the strange journey of Johannes Kelpius and his followers from Europe to North America as they prepared for the end of days (first in 1694, then in 1700). Tune in to learn what motivated the group, how they influenced American history, and what happened to them after the world kept spinning. Learn more...

Duration:00:49:03

Enough About Us: What About You?

7/5/2018
More
When we're talking about Ridiculous History, one thing's for sure: The story doesn't stop when the podcast ends. You've probably heard Ben and Noel mention the Ridiculous Historians page in previous shows -- the place where you and your fellow listeners can suggest topics, trade strange tales and delve even further into the stories from earlier episodes. And the guys enjoy these stories so much that they had to bring them on air! Tune in for first-hand tales from your fellow Ridiculous...

Duration:00:39:41

Weird Wars Fought For Dumb Reasons

7/3/2018
More
What do a camel, a bucket and an ear all have in common? Each was, at some point, responsible for starting a war. Join Ben and Noel as they dive into true stories of weird wars fought over cartoonishly dumb things. Learn more about advertising on the HowStuffWorks podcasts at www.howstuffworks.com/advertisers.htm And to learn about your ad choices when listening to podcasts, visit https://www.howstuffworks.com/privacy.htm#ad-choices

Duration:00:46:30

The FBI's Quest to Understand "Louie, Louie"

6/28/2018
More
The Kingsmen's cover of "Louie, Louie" is one of the world's most famously unintelligible songs -- and this haunted the FBI. In this episode, Ben and Noel recount the evolution of "Louie, Louie", as well as Uncle Sam's insanely thorough (and hilariously unsuccessful) attempt to figure out the song's lyrics. The guys also rack up some extra credit with their special guest Christopher Hassiotis, who introduces them to the wide, wide world of "Louie, Louie" cover songs across multiple musical...

Duration:00:49:33

The Time a Soviet Premier Was Banned From Disneyland

6/26/2018
More
At the height of the Cold War a series of debates in a model kitchen in Moscow (true story!) led Nikita Khrushchev to visit the US on a whirlwind publicity tour. The Soviet leader hobnobbed with politicians, celebrities and business tycoons, soaking up all that America had to offer, often with a few choice remarks along the way. However, there was one place he wasn't allowed to enter: Disneyland. Join Ben and Noel as they take a closer look at Khrushchev's doomed quest to meet America's...

Duration:00:46:21

Kidnapping, Binge Drinking and Costumes: Voter Fraud in the 1800s

6/21/2018
More
Allegations of U.S. voter fraud have made the rounds in recent years -- but, once upon a time, these were much more than allegations. Join the guys as they explore the massive voting fraud operations that riddled U.S. politics throughout the 19th century. Learn more about advertising on the HowStuffWorks podcasts at www.howstuffworks.com/advertisers.htm And to learn about your ad choices when listening to podcasts, visit https://www.howstuffworks.com/privacy.htm#ad-choices

Duration:00:34:54

Why don't Americans use bidets?

6/19/2018
More
Whether you're royalty or a roaming vagrant, a President or a pauper, one thing's for sure: At some point, you'll have to use the restroom. While sanitation isn't often brought up in polite conversation, it plays a vital role in human health, and over the centuries various civilizations have come up with some pretty innovative ways of staying clean. Globally speaking, the bidet is one of humanity's most popular sanitation technologies -- it's spread across Europe to Asia and beyond. So why...

Duration:00:32:08

The Earliest Recorded Mooning Killed Thousands

6/14/2018
More
You've heard of mooning -- the practice of bearing one's butt as an insult -- but where did it come from? Join Ben and Noel as they dive into the deadly story of the world's first recorded mooning, along with some other notable moments in keister history. Learn more about advertising on the HowStuffWorks podcasts at www.howstuffworks.com/advertisers.htm And to learn about your ad choices when listening to podcasts, visit https://www.howstuffworks.com/privacy.htm#ad-choices

Duration:00:38:15

The Presidential Reason Fido Became the Default Name for a Generic Dog

6/12/2018
More
Learn more about advertising on the HowStuffWorks podcasts at www.howstuffworks.com/advertisers.htm And to learn about your ad choices when listening to podcasts, visit https://www.howstuffworks.com/privacy.htm#ad-choices

Duration:00:39:54