Smart News History & Archaeology

A celebratory Silent Spring float

Crazy Lies Haters Threw at Rachel Carson

Silent Spring turns 50 this month, but Rachel Carson's ecological game-changer was not always the beloved green bible it is today

Labor day parade, 1882

Labor Day’s Secret Society Connections

Add Labor Day to the vaulted hall of things concocted by secret societies, alongside Madonna's Superbowl performance and Pancho Villa's stolen skull

Five Epic Patent Wars That Don’t Involve Apple

The recent Apple patent decision was a big one, but here are some historical patent wars you might not have heard of

Left, the Kingdom Tower of Jeddah. Right, the Tower of Babel.

Better, Faster, Taller – How Big can Buildings Really Get?

The race for the tallest structure in the world has been with us since humans built structures, and today it is going strong. But where's the limit?


Inside the Unnerving Reality of Modern Slavery

The number of people in slavery is estimated to be upwards of 27 million — 2x the number of slaves taken from Africa during the transatlantic slave trade


Archaeologists Excavate Death Pit, Finding Hundreds of Sacrificed Soldiers in Denmark

Archaeologists are excavating hundreds of skeletons from the boggy swamps, and the remains belong to men who all sacrificed around the time of Christ

A crowd gathers in Times Square in 1945. Since then, we’ve added a few more people to the population.

A Different Kind of Pi Day – the U.S. Population Hits π x 100,000,000

The U.S. Census Bureau announced yesterday that our population has hit one of math's favorite landmarks

Great Wall of China Collapses After Torrential Rains

Flooding fueled by heavy rains brought down a 36 meter long stretch of the Great Wall of China

Pottery beakers were used to hold the “Black Drink”.

Archaeologists Discover 1000-Year Old Hyper-Caffeinated Tea in Illinois

Unearthed from a site near modern day St. Louis, Missouri, archaeologists found tea residue in pottery beakers that dates back to as early as 1050 A.D.

In 1956, Two Kittens Crossed the Atlantic on a Raft

On a wooden raft two kittens (and three sailors) traveled from Canada to Cornwall

Mark Twain. Left: Photographed by Life Magazine. Left, in Tesla’s Lab, photographed by Wutz

The Only Footage of Mark Twain in Existence

This silent film footage was taken in 1909 by Thomas Edison at Mark Twain's estate

Political geography of America, March 30 1822 to November 15 1824

170 Years of America’s Evolution In One Animated GIF

In one click, the drifting lines and changing colors take you through 170 years of history.

Jesse Owens

76 Years Ago Today, Jesse Owens Proved the Nazis Wrong

In 1936 Jesse Owens won four gold medals at the Berlin Olympics, throwing the idea of Aryan supremacy back into Hitler's face

“Night At The Museum” For Adults Lets You Sleep Over With Dinosaurs

London's Natural History Museum is challenging adults to channel their inner child in an upcoming grown ups-only slumber party


Old-Timey Olympians Show How Things Have Changed

Clendenin's photos evoke the feeling that for all the changes seen by the modern Olympic games, the athletes themselves could be transposed across time


Queen Elizabeth 1 Loved Live Action Role Playing

From the ancient Romans to the Tudor Queen, everyone likes dressing up and pretending to be something else

The Gabarnmung cave paintings lie in southwestern Arnhem Land, in Australia’s Northern Territory.

Is This the Oldest Cave Art on the Planet?

Underneath a rock slab which rests on dozens of narrow stilts researchers have found the world's oldest stone axe, and a vast collection of painted artwork


A Brief History of Death By Subway in NYC

A few highlights of death on New York City's subways over the years

Behind the doors of the Geneva Freeport are untold treasures.

Hollywood’s Next Heist Movie Should Be Shot Here

No one knows exactly what's hidden in a giant warehouse in Sweden, but everyone agrees that it's really, really valuable

Today's Google Doodle celebrates Amelia Earhart's birthday.

Amelia Earhart, Fashionista

A few highlights of coverage celebrating Amelia Earhart's 115th birthday

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