Nine out of 10 malaria victims live in Africa, most of them children under the age of five.

West African Scientists Are Leading the Science Behind a Malaria Vaccine

Researchers in Mali have been working for decades on the treatment that's now in the final phase of clinical trials

A dedication marker outside of the damaged Prince Hall Masonic Lodge.

Black Soldiers Played an Undeniable but Largely Unheralded Role in Founding the United States

Veterans like Prince Hall fought for independence and then abolition in the earliest days of the nation

When she learned to play the theremin, Dorit Chrysler was struck by its emotional expressiveness.

A Century Ago, This Eerie-Sounding Instrument Ushered in Electronic Music

Now, the theremin—a strange little invention that translates hand gestures into pitch and volume—could make a comeback

The author likes to think the lunar rover's design was informed in part by his father's experience retooling the family station wagon.

From the Family Station Wagon to the Apollo Lunar Rover, My Dad's Engineering Talent Had No Limits

Stricken with polio as an adult, he retired from the military and joined NASA's ingenious design team

It was during another experiment in his lab that Naohiro Kato realized that microalgae might be a good ingredient for bioplastic.

Made From Microalgae, These Mardi Gras Beads Are Biodegradable

Louisiana State University molecular biologist Naohiro Kato is confronting plastic pollution one necklace and doubloon at a time

The Hell Gate Bridge in NY, one of the main targets

The Inside Story of How a Nazi Plot to Sabotage the U.S. War Effort Was Foiled

J. Edgar Hoover’s FBI took the credit, but it was really only because of a German defector that the plans were blown

Italian-Americans were placed under suspicion when the United States entered World War II.

During World War II, the U.S. Saw Italian-Americans as a Threat to Homeland Security

The executive order that forced Japanese-Americans from their homes also put immigrants from Italy under the watchful eye of the government

Ginseng roots

The Fight Against Ginseng Poaching in the Great Smoky Mountains

A profitable black market for the native shrub pits the National Park Service against poor residents of Appalachia

Conspiracists try to decode Masonic symbols, like those in the temple's stained-glass window.

The Lost Symbol's Masonic Temple

Conspiracy buffs, including author Dan Brown, tour the lavish Washington, D.C. temple of the Freemasons


Hear Here

Record your life story at a studio in New York City's Grand Central Terminal. You may just make history

American ginseng—whether wild or cultivated (for sale at left in New York)—commands higher prices than Asian varieties.

Getting to the Root of Ginseng

Questions about the herb's health benefits haven't cooled the red-hot market in wild American ginseng

A Noble and Absurd Undertaking

The Federal Writers' Project gave Depression-era writers a second chance...and America its first comprehensive self-portrait


Tasty Brazil Nuts Stun Harvesters and Scientists

A Smithsonian biologist tracks the protein-rich nuts to understand their role in the Amazonian forest


Paderewski's Piano

When Polish pianist Ignace Paderewski toured America, he became a celebrity—and boosted Steinway


The History of the Doughnut

A look back at the men, women and machines that made America’s favorite treat possible


The Object at Hand

Even as a bust, the real king of Siam turns out to be a more complex chap than the bald-headed caricature made famous by Yul Brynner and others

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