Stalingrad flag

How the Nazis Created the Myth of Stalingrad

The battle of Stalingrad was the first major defeat of the Nazis in World War II, and presented the Nazis with a propaganda quandary.
Woman sitting on chair, putting on stockings

Why Women Burned Their Stockings in the 1930s

The average 1930s American woman bought up to 15 pairs of silk stockings a year—until, that is, women boycotted the fabric behind an essential garment.
Hormel Girls

The Singing, Dancing Hormel Girls Who Sold America SPAM

SPAM was introduced 80 years, but it was a military-style corps of singing women that helped the canned meat skyrocket in the years after World War II.
Amelia Earhart

Amelia Earhart Taught America to Fly

Amelia Earhart taught America to fly. How Earhart and other women pilots of her day helped overcome Americans’ skepticism about flight.
Portland diner

The Making of the American Diner

Today's diners would surprise a 1940s patron. These restaurants were once vulgar boy’s clubs before becoming today's family-friendly establishments.
Eisenhower before D-Day

What Eisenhower’s Unsent Letter Reveals About True Leadership

Before the D-Day landing on June 6th, 1944, General Dwight D. Eisenhower, commander of the invasion force, wrote two letters for public consumption.
Public housing project

Why is the U.S. Losing Public Housing?

In much of the U.S., public housing is disappearing as governments fail to maintain the buildings or actively demolish them.
Wedding bands

Selling the Men’s Wedding Ring

How changing mores, cultural pressures, and, yes, the jewelry industry made two-ring wedding ceremonies the norm in America.
Rosie the Riveter

How Conflict Boosts the Economy

Historically speaking, we are living in unusually peaceful times. But does peacetime mean bad things for the economy, which is often boosted by war?
Car junkyard

The Birth of Planned Obsolescence

Before WWII, American businesses began embracing “creative waste”—the idea that throwing things away and buying new ones could fuel a strong economy.