Wendell Willkie

An Untested Businessman Almost Became President During WWII

In 1940, Wendell Willkie ran against FDR. The rumpled "man of the people" was a New York businessman with no political experience, but voters loved him.
An illustration of John Harvey Kellogg and an early corn flakes advertisement

The Strange Story Behind Your Breakfast Cereal

Kellogg's Corn Flakes were originally created by a doctor who believed bland food would reduce people's urge to masturbate.
A county fair in Shelbyville, KY

Judging Families at the State Fair

"Better Baby Contests" began as part of the Progressive Era push to improve children’s health and reduce infant mortality. Then eugenicists got involved.
Illustration of Mexican agricultural laborers forming a raised fist of solidarity

How “Measured Militancy” Empowered California’s Fieldworkers

When Mexican-American fieldworkers' strikes didn't net results, César Chávez led the Ventura County Community Service Organization in alternate tactics.
W.E.B. DuBois, 1904

W.E.B. DuBois Fought “Scientific” Racism

Early 20th century intellectual W.E.B. DuBois countered the then-popular idea that African-Americans could be scientifically proven to be inferior.
The Miscegenation Troll

The “Miscegenation” Troll

The term “miscegenation” was coined in an 1864 pamphlet by an anonymous author.
Creole in a Red Turban by Jacques Aman

The Free People of Color of Pre-Civil War New Orleans

Before American concepts of race took hold in the newly-acquired Louisiana, early 19th-century New Orleans had large population of free people of color.
Yorktown Victory Monument, Colonial National Historic Site, Yorktown, Virginia

Whitewashing American History

One of the National Park Service's first historic preservation projects, the Colonial National Monument, wrote people of color completely out of the story.
Wedding rings on an American flag

How Love Transformed American Immigration Law

Love was a deciding factor in the expansion of Asian immigration to the United States, via laws that emerged from Congress in the 1960s.
Two scientists in a hot air balloon

When Victorian Scientists Caught Ballomania

In a moment when scientists were working to fashion a credible identity for themselves, they had to decide how much showmanship was too much.