Families walking beside the Berlin Wall in 1989.

Escapist Humor in East and West Berlin

Humor in East and West Berlin before the wall came down.
Black and white illustration of the Battle of Orleans

The Influence of Wars on American Politics

What does war do to domestic American politics?
A Gall Wasp on a horizontal stalk

Alfred C. Kinsey On Gall Wasps and Edible Plants

Alfred Kinsey was a professor of entomology before becoming a sexologist.
An open pack of graham crackers

A Hell of a Cracker

The unusual origin of the graham cracker
A skeleton-costumed child holding out a pumpkin bowl of Halloween candy

The Origins of Halloween

Halloween history and ethnography.
Close-up of a voting machine lever

The Early American Origins of Political Terms

What does stump speech and pork barrel mean? A short lexicon of American political terms.
A Polio Quarantine Card outlining the Act of Assembly Act from 1909

The Origin of Quarantine

Such forms of enforced isolation are referenced as far back as the Old Testament, while the word "quarantine" itself dates to the late medieval Plague.
A stamp depicted the first earthling in space, Laika, a dog.

Laika: The First Earthling in Space

The first Earthling was Laika, a Russian mongrel found on the streets of Moscow.
Slate statute of Alan Turing at Bletchley Park.

Remembering and Representing Alan Turing

A 1955 obituary of Turing from the Royal Society is fascinating for what it leaves out of the first draft of history.
Stuffed Passenger Pigeon atop a wooden perch

Passengers Long Gone

Martha, last of the passenger pigeons.