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I Am Not Making This Up Podcast

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History that is stranger than fiction. Five minutes long. That's shorter than your high school history class and way more entertaining.

History that is stranger than fiction. Five minutes long. That's shorter than your high school history class and way more entertaining.
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History that is stranger than fiction. Five minutes long. That's shorter than your high school history class and way more entertaining.






I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 27 Dude! Where’s My Poe

Author Edgar Allan Poe is known for some of the best horror fiction around. He's also a bit of a sad sack for whom things never seemed to go right. In the days leading up to his death, he vanished. He was found in clothes that didn't belong to him, unconscious. Though he did wake, no one could make sense of his ravings before he died. Join author Melanie Miller Fletcher and I as we discuss our favorite theories about what might have happened to Poe.

Duration: 00:10:04

I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 26 The Birth of the Byronpire

Author Melanie Miller Fletcher is my special guest for this episode. Join us as we discuss the birth of Science Fiction and the modern vampire (A.K.A. the Byronpire).

Duration: 00:06:11

I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 25 Lifestyles of the Rich and Poisonous

Though the Robert Browning poem The Laboratory is a fictional poem, it may be based on a true event. A scandal that swept 17th century France, leading all the way to the Sun King's inner circle, and right to the doors of his official mistress.

Duration: 00:08:45

I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 24 The Real Rapunzel

There is a story of a girl who is locked away in a tower and forbidden to see her one true love. But this is no story about a signing princess with a talking animal friend. And the king in this story is the bad guy.

Duration: 00:05:28

I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 23 Why You Shouldn’t Order The Lincoln Special

When you’re a high-profile figure, your life isn’t really your own. This can even be true of elected officials. Particularly martyred elected officials. Such was the case with Abraham Lincoln, who was sent on a farewell tour after his death that would have been worthy of any rock band.

Duration: 00:08:17

I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 22 He Gave His Life For Tourism

When he was born, about 1342 BC, Tutankhaten’s life wasn’t his own. But the boy who would become known to us as Tutankhamen would be especially noteworthy because even in death his story isn’t his own.

Duration: 00:09:19

I am Not Making This Up: Ep. 21 The Fabulous Fox Sisters

Imagine if you were 11 years old, and your April fool's prank got out of hand. So out of hand that it spawned a major religion? This actually happened to Kate Fox. She, along with her two sisters, Maggie and Leah ended up helping to found the Spiritualism movement after a practical joke got out of hand.

Duration: 00:07:41

I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 20 Tell My Friend Willie Brown

Robert Johnson is known as the king of Blues and the granddaddy of Rock and Roll, influencing some of the biggest names in music from Bob Dylan to Eric Clapton. Johnson's life is shrouded in myth, and fans have filled in the gaps with even more myth. Legends say that he sold his soul at a crossroads in Mississippi to gain his legendary guitar skills.

Duration: 00:05:05

I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 19 How The West Was Spun

Go anywhere in the world, and ask people what they think of Americans, and the word "cowboy" is likely to pop up. How is it that a brief 50 year period involving the least populated part of the United States has come to define the country as a whole? You can thank - or blame depending on your viewpoint, a man named Buffalo Bill Cody and his Wild West show.

Duration: 00:07:07

I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 18 Barnum’s Burning Buildings

Recently it was announced to the world that in May of 2017, the Ringling brothers Barnum and Bailey Circus would be rolling up it's tents for the last time. P.T. Barnum revolutionized entertainment for a country that was just starting to have leisure time. But One thing Barnum is not known for, but maybe should be, is the many, many times a building that he owns burned down.

Duration: 00:08:06

I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 17 Warrior, Princess, Badass

If I asked you to name a badass warrior princess, you might mention Xena or Wonder Woman. But one real life woman left them all behind. Her name was Khutulun, and she was the great-great-granddaughter of Genghis Khan.

Duration: 00:05:16

I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 16 When Frederick Law Olmsted Changed The World

In 1857, if a New Yorker wanted to get away from the city, he or she would go to a cemetery. That all changed with the establishment of Manhattan's Central Park, and it's architect and superintendent, Frederick Law Olmsted.

Duration: 00:05:04

I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 15 Would The Real Anastasia Please Stand Up?

It was a cold February night in Berlin, 1920, when Franziska Shanzkowska jumped into the Landwher Canal. We know why she jumped: she’d lost her fiancee during the war. She’d also suffered from an accident in the munitions plant where she worked. She had scars, a head injury, possibly survivors guilt and definitely depression. In […]

Duration: 00:04:50

I am Not Making This Up: Ep. 14 Agatha Christie’s Personal Mystery

Agatha Christie is the bestselling author of all time. Her works outsell Shakespeare, J. K. Rowling, and Stephen King. Even if you’ve never read her work, you’ve probably heard of Murder on the Orient Express, or And Then There Were None. But a greater mystery sits at the heard of Christie’s life. In 1926, after […]

Duration: 00:05:15

I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 13 Tale Literally As Old As Time

Out of all the fairy tales known worldwide, Beauty and the Beast, or “La Belle et la bete” as it is known in French, may be one of the most popular. The themes of the fairy tale are even recycled in such popular and well-known works as The Phantom of the Opera and Twilight. Versions […]

Duration: 00:06:51

I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 12 The Titanic Man

All Carlos Hurd wanted was to take a vacation. But when he boarded the Carpathia for Italy with his wife, Katherine, the reporter and his wife were put on the path to the most Titanic scoop in Carlos’s life.

Duration: 00:07:09

I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 11 People Were Once Paid To Be Garden Gnomes. This Is A Thing That Happened.

In the 18th century, the English took conspicuous consumption to a whole new level when they hired actual old men to live in their gardens as ornamental hermits.

Duration: 00:04:14

I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 10 The Littlest Pirate

Lots of kids talk about running away to join the circus or become pirates. But few actually do it. However in 1716, one boy did. His name as John King, and he was around ten years old.

Duration: 00:05:38

I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 9 That Time Edwin Booth Could Have Changed Everything

Let's talk a little about Edwin Booth. People don’t remember the other two Booth brothers. John Wilkes Booth casts a long shadow. And when they do, it’s because Edwin once rescued Robert Lincoln, Abraham Lincoln’s son, from being crushed by a train. There’s a certain neatness in the symmetry of that. One brother saves a son, while the other murders a father. But there was a time when Edwin’s name outshone his more infamous brother. There was a time when, by the right word or the right...

Duration: 00:11:07

I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 8 Why Some People Hate History

Until you saw the musical Hamilton, You probably got the impression that the founding fathers all got along and always knew exactly what they were doing. That's because people like to tell stories.

Duration: 00:05:38

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