Military

Drummer boy John Clem (left) and Robert Henry Hendershot, who claimed to be the celebrated "drummer boy of Rappahannock" (right)

Why the Union Army Had So Many Boy Soldiers

A new book unearths the startling numbers behind underage enlistment during the Civil War

This 1605 drawing of a Black sumo wrestler may depict Yasuke.

Who Was Yasuke, Japan's First Black Samurai?

In the late 16th century, the enigmatic warrior fought alongside a feudal lord dubbed the "Great Unifier"

The new hydrogel might someday lead to shock-absorbing smartphone cases, as well as better bullet-proof vests and space equipment.

This New Shock-Absorbing Gel Can Withstand Supersonic Impacts

Made from a resilient protein in human cells, the technology could improve body armor, space gear and even cell phone cases

Researchers used satellite imagery to help narrow down the location to start digging.

Cool Finds

Archaeologists Unearth First-of-Its-Kind Roman Watchtower in Morocco

The military fortification was discovered near the ancient city of Volubilis

Environmental investigators found radioactive waste in samples taken from the playground of Jana Elementary School.

Radioactive Waste Found on Missouri Elementary School Grounds

The contaminants can be traced back to World War II's Manhattan Project

President Joe Biden speaks at a ceremony to create a 53,804-acre national monument in the mountains of Colorado.

Biden Declares His First National Monument at Colorado's Camp Hale

Once home to the Ute Tribes, the site later became a military training base for the skiing soldiers who fought in World War II

Six years after Wilbur and Orville Wright invented the first airplane in 1903, the Army purchased the Wright Military Flyer for $30,000.

After the Wright Brothers Took Flight, They Built the World's First Military Airplane

The 1909 Military Flyer is the centerpiece of the "Early Flight" exhibition at the National Air and Space Museum

The Quadcopter Mines Detector uses a metal detector to find land mines as it flies above them.

A Ukrainian Teenager Invents a Drone That Can Detect Land Mines

Seventeen-year-old Igor Klymenko worked on his invention while sheltering in a basement from Russian attacks

The Woman King tells the story of the Agojie, an elite, all-woman army in the West African kingdom of Dahomey.

Based on a True Story

The Real Warriors Behind 'The Woman King'

A new film stars Viola Davis as the leader of the Agojie, the all-woman army of the African kingdom of Dahomey

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A Deadly World War II Explosion Sparked Black Soldiers to Fight for Equal Treatment

After the deadliest home-front disaster of the war, African Americans throughout the military took action to transform the nation's armed forces

The so-called frogmen swam into enemy beaches unarmed, wearing only swim trunks, dive masks and fins.

Untold Stories of American History

The Stealth Swimmers Whose WWII Scouting Laid the Groundwork for the Navy SEALs

The Underwater Demolition Teams cleared coastal defenses and surveyed enemy beaches ahead of Allied landings

In the aftermath of the disaster and for decades to follow, numerous theories emerged. The men had been captured by the Japanese. They had been murdered by a stowaway. They had killed each other in a fight over a woman. They had simply fallen out of the blimp.

The 80-Year Mystery of the U.S. Navy's 'Ghost Blimp'

The L-8 returned from patrolling the California coast for Japanese subs in August 1942, but its two-man crew was nowhere to be found

Donald Duck title card art, circa 1942

How Disney Propaganda Shaped Life on the Home Front During WWII

A traveling exhibition traces how the animation studio mobilized to support the Allied war effort

Bradford Freeman died on Sunday, July 3, at age 97.

Bradford Freeman, Last Surviving Member of WWII 'Band of Brothers,' Dies at 97

The Easy Company veteran parachuted into France on D-Day and fought in major European campaigns during the last year of the war

The men of the 23rd Headquarters Special Troops created elaborate illusions featuring inflatable tanks, jeeps and artillery.

Untold Stories of American History

How the Ghost Army of WWII Used Art to Deceive the Nazis

Unsung for decades, the U.S. Army's 23rd Headquarters Special Troops drew on visual, sonic and radio deception to misdirect the Germans

Pages from Plastic Surgery of the Face by Harold Gillies

Inside a Trailblazing Surgeon's Quest to Reconstruct WWI Soldiers' Disfigured Faces

A new book profiles Harold Gillies, whose efforts to restore wounded warriors' visages laid the groundwork for modern plastic surgery

Members of the 25th Infantry Bicycle Corps pose on Minerva Terrace at Mammoth Hot Springs in Yellowstone National Park in 1896.

Untold Stories of American History

The Black Buffalo Soldiers Who Biked Across the American West

In 1897, the 25th Infantry Regiment Bicycle Corps embarked on a 1,900-mile journey from Montana to Missouri

The 15 freed hostages and their rescuers arrive at San José del Guaviare airport in July 2008.

The Daring Rescue Mission That Freed 15 Hostages Held in the Colombian Jungle for Years

A new exhibition at the International Spy Museum revisits Operación Jaque, a covert 2008 plot led by the Colombian military

Black soldiers during World War II

History of Now

Nine Army Bases Honoring Confederate Leaders Could Soon Have New Names

Proposed by a government panel, the suggested title changes honor several women and people of color

Tom Cruise revives his Top Gun role as Pete "Maverick" Mitchell in the new film arriving in theaters May 27.

'Top Gun' Is Back. But Is the Elite Navy Fighter Pilot School Really Like the Movies?

The Smithsonian’s Chris Browne flew the much-feared F-14, and as a former TOPGUN student, knows well the power of a Navy-trained fighter pilot

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