Tracy S. Morris

Quirky Mysteries, Screwball Fantasy and Sassy History

Archive for the 'history' Category

I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 33 That Time Bunnies Attacked Napoleon

Napoleon is widely regarded as one of the greatest military leaders of all time, up there with Alexander the Great. But one of his most humiliating defeats actually came from a pack of domesticated rabbits.

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I am Not Making This Up: Who Was That (Iron) Masked Man?

When the Kong’s special warden in charge of France’s VIPs (Very Important Prisoners) changed prisons, people noticed. Especially when he moved a man in a mask. Soon everyone wondered: who was that masked man?

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I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 32 One Way To Spend An Afternoon When Visiting The City in 1848

Imagine you’re an American farmer 170 years ago. Depending on where you live, you may go to a big city once a year, when it’s time to sell off your surplus livestock.

And, after you’ve done that, you might go have one of those fancy daguerreotype light paintings made.

Having a Daguerreotype image made was the 1850’s fad equivalent to taking a selfie at Disneyland while performing in a flash mob in front of Cinderella’s castle. And if you adjust for inflation, the price was about the same.

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I Am Not Making This Up: Peace On Earth, Even In War

Too often, you hear on the news of spontaneous fighting breaking out in war-torn areas. But during the 1914 Christmas of World War I, spontaneous peace broke out. And to the officers in charge, spontaneous peace was received just as badly as spontaneous warfare would be.

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I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 31 When Special Snowflake Wasn’t An Insult

You probably already know that no two snowflakes are alike. Every school child knows that.
But before 1931, no one knew that. The man who changed our perspective on snowflakes was Wilson “snowflake” Bentley.

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I Am Not Making This Up: That Time The Guy Who Wrote Sleepy Hollow Saved Christmas

Some ideas are simply timely ideas. Which might explain all the competing patents for things like airplanes and radio. Saving Christmas was another timely idea.

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I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 30 Catch Me If You Can, Gingerbread Man

Gingerbread men are practically synonymous with Christmas. But, at the risk of sounding click-bait-y, you won’t believe the surprising origins of this cookie.

Spoiler it’s Queen Elizabeth. Maybe.

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I Am Not Making This Up: Having The Dickens Scared Out Of Christmas

Unless you are a fan of The Nightmare Before Christmas, you probably leave the ghosts and other creepy stuff firmly behind in Halloween.
But this hasn’t always been the case. Prior to the Victorian era, Christmas was a darker holiday, one in which ghosts and ghost stories were a big part.

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I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 29 What Was On The Table That First Thanksgiving?

When we gather around the table this Thanksgiving, we’ll probably have turkey, cranberry sauce, stuffing and mashed potatoes.

Turkey is such an iconic part of Thanksgiving that there is even a giant turkey float in the Macy’s Thanksgiving day parade.

But the first Thanksgiving may not have even had turkey.

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I Am Not Making This Up: Ep. 28 John Smith Is The Wrong John

Long before the founding of the United States, some of the first colonists didn’t have much to be thankful for. Including food. They called that season the starving time.

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