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Archive for November, 2008

30 November
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The Great Fire of London

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At one o’clock in the morning, Sunday, September 2, 1666, a disastrous event began and didn’t end until Wednesday, September 5th. It is known as The Great Fire of London and would change the city forever.

Read the whole article at History Undressed.

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29 November
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Antonius Pius

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Antoninus Pius was Roman emperor from 138 to 161. He was the fourth of the Five Good Emperors and a member of the Aurelii gens. He did not possess the sobriquet “Pius” until after his accession to the throne. Almost certainly, he earned the name “Pius” because he compelled the Senate to deify Hadrian.

Read the whole article on World History Journal.

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28 November
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The Anasazi Mystery

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Photo by AL Gator on Flickr

Photo by AL Gator on Flickr

700 years ago, in the area that we today know as Arizona and New Mexico, the Anasazi people came en masse from the north to build large stone settlements. Their predecessors (the Hohokam) had built with sticks and mud, and as a result the older settlements are much harder to find today. The Anasazi settlements stand as grand, abandoned cities that now house a mystery: why did these people move south? What would cause a thriving civilization to pull up stakes and abandon its homeland?

Read the whole article on mental_floss

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27 November
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8 Turkey Tales to Tell Today

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1. Butterball turkeys have been a holiday tradition for the past 50 years. While the name “Butterball” implies that the bird is injected with butter (which it is not), it actually refers to a specific breed of turkey. Butterball turkeys have all-white feathers (birds with colored feathers often have dark spots on their meat, which is not aesthetically pleasing) and have extra-broad breasts. Butterball turkeys are also the best-selling brand in the U.K. at Christmas, since the British obviously don’t celebrate Thanksgiving.

Read the other 7 at mental_floss.

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27 November
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10 Thanksgiving Traditions

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Those of us in the States will be gorging ourselves on tryptophan a week from today, but there’s a lot more to Thanksgiving than just the eating and the Pilgrims. While eating turkey and pumpkin pie is probably the most well-known tradition, there are lots of other customs that you could be missing out on (or did miss out on, if they aren’t celebrated any more).

Read about all the wacky and strange traditions including Franksgiving and the Presidential Turkey Pardon at mental_floss.

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27 November
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Happy Thanksgiving!

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Photo by Hanga Girl on Flickr

Photo by Hanga Girl on Flickr

 

Check out our History of Thanksgiving episode here or listen by clicking here.  Have a great day!

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26 November
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A 2,800-year-old monument to a soul

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In 800 B.C., a royal official in the city of Sam’al in what is now Turkey, ordered a stone monument be inscribed after his death directing his mourners commemorate his soul.  Archaeologists who found the stele last summer believe it’s evidence the locals believed in an eternal soul separate from the body, which is notable for the time and the area.

Read the whole article at The History Blog

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25 November
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Sugar Frosted Cereal Museum

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Here is some really cool pop culture history.  Enjoy a cool Flickr slideshow of cereal history.

Flickr set

Found on Digg

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24 November
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Thanksgiving 2008: 14 of the Best Web Resources

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Are you excited yet?  Thanksgiving is just around the corner!  These are some great resources to make the most of the holiday we found on Mashable!  My favorites are:

The History Channel
Maybe you’re not on American soil, or maybe you’ve lived in sweet, blissful ignorance about the Thanksgiving holiday all your years. In any case, some education might be best. History.com, appropriately enough, hosts a minisite dubbed “The History of Thanksgiving.” Read, listen, and watch your way through a crash course of pilgrimage and consumables.

Scholastic
When you’re a kid, you go to school. No ifs, ands or buts. If you’re a kid in 2008, however, you might be learning a good amount via the Web. Scholastic’s “The First Thanksgiving” resource is interactive without being as sleep-inducing as that turkey supper laced with Tryptophan.

USA.gov
Indeed, the US Government has plenty of things to say about Thanksgiving. Most of its highlights are educational and informational. Recipes, air travel, facts and statistics, plus USDA-approved cooking tips – in case you don’t want to get a visit from the nutrition police. Volunteerism is promoted on the page as well. 

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23 November
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The Surprisingly Cool History of Ice

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Until two centuries ago, ice was just an unfortunate side effect of winter. But in the early 1800s, one man saw dollar signs in frozen ponds. Frederic Tudor not only introduced the world to cold glasses of water on hot summer days, he created a thirst people never realized they had.

In 1805, two wealthy brothers from Boston were at a family picnic, enjoying the rare luxuries of cold beverages and ice cream. They joked about how their chilled refreshments would be the envy of all the colonists sweating in the West Indies. It was a passing remark, but it stuck with one of the brothers. His name was Frederic Tudor, and 30 years later, he would ship nearly 200 tons of ice halfway around the globe to become the “Ice King”.

Read the rest on mental_floss

History Podcast: behind the scenes:  Today Samantha is 2 month’s old!

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