This statue in front of US Steel's Edgar Thomson Works in Braddock, PA depicts Joe Magarac, a mythical steelworker deriving from local legend.

Joe Magarac, a Boss’s Idea of a Folk Hero?

The Paul Bunyan of the steel industry never went on strike. He was too tied up working the twenty-four-hour shifts that unions were fighting.
An advertisement for Eagle Pencil Co's fine arts lead pencils, c. 1870-1900

Why You’ll Never Get Lead Poisoning from a Pencil

Some of the greatest moments in international pencil history involve discoveries of a different mineral.
Beachgoers at Myrtle Beach, SC

How the Beaches of the South Got There

The government funded beach construction for private developers, which displaced Black farmers from their coastal lands.
A recumbent bicycle in 1935

Who Killed the Recumbent Bicycle?

How a dominant technology became viewed as the only option, with no need for better-designed competitors.
Illustration: Branding Iron by Henry Rasmusen, c. 1937

Source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Henry_Rasmusen,_Branding_Iron,_c._1937,_NGA_21119.jpg

A Fistful of Data: Information and the Cattle Industry

Beef barons needed cowboys less and bookkeepers more as the nineteenth century wore on.
A cowboy pulling a sleigh of gifts

The Rise and Fall of Montana’s Christmas-Tree Harvest

Douglas firs weren't great for lumber, but they once made the small town of Eureka the Christmas-tree capital of America.
Cannabis sativa, 1828

Growing Cannabis to Fight Exploitation

In the early years of cannabis prohibition, agricultural workers in the western United States used the plant to treat pain and supplement family incomes.
A live window display to celebrate UK Plus Size Fashion Week on September 3, 2015 in London, England.

How Body Positivity Coexists with Fat Shaming

Retail workers at a plus-size clothing store had to promote the contradictory messages that every body is beautiful and that being fat is bad.
Students of an engineering course in training in Japan, 1915

When Scientific Management Came to Japan

Japanese workers, many of them women, worked up to 17 hours a day in the early 20th century. Yet experts still wondered why they “wasted” time.
A vintage ad for Crest toothpaste

How Toothpaste Got Scientific Cred

Would you brush with a toothpaste for the sweet taste alone or because of its touted health benefits? The answer wasn't always so obvious.