History

How Freak Shows Worked

Not too long ago, people would pay money to gawk and stare at a performer with a physical disformity. They were called freakshows and they began in large part thanks to P.T. Barnum, whose circus we still enjoy today. Sounds awful, but some of these performers became rich folks as a result. Exploitive? You decide.

(Approximately) 10 Things That Vanished Mysteriously

Sometimes things - like dentures, airplanes or even people - go missing. And when they never turn up again they become enduring, and engrossing, mysteries.

How Land Diving Works

On Pentacost Island the ritual that preceded bungee jumping is alive and well. Just why do these tribesmen risk life and limb? To ensure a hearty yam harvest. Great reason.

Operation Mincemeat: How A Corpse Fooled the Nazis

In World War II, a secret department of British 'corkscrew thinkers' hatched a plan to use the cadaver of an unclaimed homeless man to turn the tide of the war in the Allies' favor. It worked.

The "Satanic Panic" of the 1980s

In the late 1980s, the United States experienced a "Satanic Panic," leading parents to fear for the safety of their children. But were there any real examples of Satanic ritual abuse? Find out this and more in today's episode.

How Lizzie Borden Worked

Everybody knows how many whacks Lizzie Borden gave her mother and father with that axe, but there is plenty about the infamous double homicide that remains unresolved, like who actually did it. Travel into the mystery of Lizzie Borden in this episode.

The Great Wall of China Episode

The Great Wall of China is one of the most visited tourist desinations in the world. How'd it get built? How old is it? What's the current condition? Learn this and more in today's episode.

How the Antikythera Mechanism Works

In 1900 sponge divers found the wreck of a 2000 year-old treasure ship that contained within it a machine that should not exist. Learn of the device that reveals an understanding of the cosmos far more sophisticated than anyone knew the Greeks possessed.

The Best Stuff We've Read This Week

Wonderful articles on the Ermahgerd Girl and lots more stuff.

The Best Stuff We've Read This Week

Articles on female serial killers, murderous jesters and more.