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Historium Unearthia: Unearthing History's Lost and Untold Stories
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Historium Unearthia: Unearthing History's Lost and Untold Stories

Author: Crystal Ponti

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Have you ever heard of Louis Congo? What about the forgotten Downwinders or The Devil’s Bible? These are just a few examples of people, events, and things from our past that have been lost to time. They’re important in the greater context of our understanding of the world and how our past shaped our present, yet they never made it into history books. In this bi-weekly podcast, freelance journalist, Crystal Ponti, digs up extraordinary excerpts of forgotten history, bringing her passion and love of storytelling to each episode. Recently honored as one of the best history podcasts of 2018 (Uproxx), listeners have likened “Historium Unearthia” to “60 Minutes” and said, “Crystal’s narration is concise and enrapturing, and the production value of her stories holds the audience’s attention like only the best of radio programs. She delivers interesting and entertaining stories from the lost parts of history, and, not only does she unearth them, she brings them to life.”
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In the United States, the war against women took a particularly dark and secretive turn in the early 1900s—around the start of World War I. Under a government-sponsored “social hygiene” campaign, to protect newly recruited soldiers, tens of thousands of women were arrested on “suspicion” of having a venereal disease. Sex workers were the prime targets, but any woman who raised an eyebrow could be apprehended. The women were subjected to invasive gynecological examinations. If they tested positive for an STI, they were incarcerated in hospitals, reformatories, and prisons, without any semblance of due process. Once imprisoned, the women became test subjects—receiving painful injections of mercury and other ineffective treatments. Many were beaten and forcibly sterilized. Most were held indefinitely until they were deemed “cured” or “reformed.” The program persisted for decades, well into the 1950s, and even shades of this discriminatory practice are present today. Have you ever heard of the American Plan? Credit: It was an absolute pleasure to speak with Scott Stern, author of The Trials of Nina McCall, the first book-length history of the American Plan, and Jeana Jorgensen, a scholar and sex educator who has written extensively, from a feminist angle, on the impacts of the American Plan. Sources: The Trials of Nina McCall: Sex, Surveillance, and the Decades-Long Government Plan to Imprison "Promiscuous" Women; Stern, Scott W.; Penguin Random House; May 15, 2018. The American Plan: The U.S. Government's Forgotten Plan to Lock Up Women and Free the Country from the Scourge of Disease; Stern, Scott W.; Yale University; 2015. The U.S. Detained 'Promiscuous' Women in What One Called a 'Concentration Camp.' That Word Choice Matters; Stern, Scott W.; TIME; May 15, 2018.  The American Plan and World War I; Jorgensen, Jeana; Patheos; January 1, 2019. The Impact of the American Plan; Jorgensen, Jeana; Patheos; January 1, 2019. American Social Hygiene Association History and a Forecast; Virginia Commonwealth University, Social Welfare History Project; Retrieved May 2019. Brief History of Syphilis; Tampa, M; Journal of Medicine and Life; March 25, 2014. Sexually Transmitted Disease Control in the Armed Forces, Past and Present; Emerson, Lynn A.C.; Military Medicine; 1997.
This trailblazer became the most successful and significant black woman writer of the first half of the 20th century. In the 1970s, during the second wave of feminism, Alice Walker helped revive interest in this pioneer’s writings, bringing them back to public attention. Have you ever heard of Zora Neale Hurston? DOWNLOAD NOW Credit: It was a deep honor and absolute pleasure to speak with Valerie Boyd, author of Wrapped in Rainbows: The Life of Zora Neale Hurston, and DaMaris Hill, a professor at the University of Kentucky and author of A Bound Woman Is a Dangerous Thing, for this episode. Sources: Wrapped in Rainbows: The Life of Zora Neale Hurston; Boyd, Valerie; Scribner; February 3, 2004. Dust Tracks on a Road; Hurston, Zora Neale; Harpers; 1942, updated 2017. A Bound Woman Is a Dangerous Thing: The Incarceration of African American Women from Harriet Tubman to Sandra Bland; Hill, DeMaris; Bloomsbury Publishing; January 15, 2019. Zora Neale Hurston; Official Website; Maintained by the Zora Neale Hurston Trust; Retrieved February 2019. Zora Neale Hurston: A Literary Biography; Hemenway, Robert; University of Illinois Press, September 1, 1980.
In the US, doctors are held in high esteem. But that wasn’t always the case. There was time when the medical field was riddled with controversy and public scrutiny. Tensions between the world of medicine and society reached a boiling point in New York City during April of 1788, when resurrection, the common practice of grave robbing, came under scrutiny. Have you ever heard of the New York Doctors Riot? DOWNLOAD NOW Credit: I want to give a special thanks to Andrea Janes, owner and founder of Boroughs of the Dead LLC, a boutique tour company dedicated to dark and unusual walking tours of New York City, and Bess Lovejoy, journalist and author of Rest in Pieces: The Curious Fates of Famous Corpses. Sources: The Gory New York City Riot that Shaped American Medicine; Lovejoy, Bess; Smithsonian Magazine; June 17, 2014. Doctors' riot, New York, 1788; Bell, Whitefield J.; American Association for the History of Medicine; December 1971. Grave Robbing And The Doctors Riot of 1788; Hernandez, Miguel; The New York History Blog; December 20, 2016. The Doctors’ Riot of 1788; Ancestry.com; Retrieved February 2019. American resurrection and the 1788 New York doctors' riot’; de Costa, Caroline and Miller, Francesca; Perspectives, The Art of Medicine; January 22, 2011. Prelude and Aftermath of the Doctors' Riot of 1788: A Religious Interpretation of White and Black Reaction to Grave Robbing; Swan, Robert J.; New York History, Fenimore Art Museum; Vol. 81, No. 4 (October 2000), pp. 417-456. American Heritage Book Selection: The Body Snatchers; Gallagher, Thomas; American Heritage Magazine; June 1967.
In the days before modern medicine, the sick, injured, and expecting often relied on community healers to perform the services of doctors and midwives. Women largely fulfilled these roles. Whether their practices were rooted in scripture, nature, or common sense, there’s no denying their quintessential place in the history of medicine. Have you ever heard of the Ozarks’ Granny Women? DOWNLOAD NOW Credit Janet Allured, a professor of history and the Director of Women’s Studies at McNeese University in Louisiana, and Vincent Anderson, historian and author of multiple books on the Ozarks’ region. Sources Granny Women: Healing and Magic in Appalachia; Burns, Phyllis Doyle; RemedyGrove; March 11, 2018. Women’s Healing Art: Domestic Medicine in the Turn-of-the-Century Ozarks; Allured, Janet L.; Gateway Heritage, Spring 1992, Vol. 12, No. 4; Missouri Historical Society; Retrieved January 2019. The “Granny-Woman” in the Ozarks; Rayburn, Otto Ernest; Midwest Folklore, Vol. 9, No. 3 (Autumn, 1959), pp. 145-148, Indiana University Press; Retrieved January 2019. Last of the Ozark Granny Women; Shannon Country Coordinators; Shannon County, Missouri GenWeb; Retrieved January 2019. Mozark Moments: Tales of Granny Women and Yarb Doctors; Johns, Paul; CCHeadliner.com; March 20, 2011.
On July 27, 1890, a painter sustained a single gunshot wound to the abdomen and died a few days later. This infamous event has carried through time as a suicide. After his death, the deceased became one of history’s most iconic and celebrated artists. Yet, we are only now learning the truth about his life and untimely death. Have you ever heard of the mysteries surrounding Vincent van Gogh? DOWNLOAD NOW Credit: I want to give a special thanks to Dr. Irving Arenberg, a prominent (retired) ear surgeon and author of the new book Killing Vincent: The Man, The Myth, and The Murder, and Louis van Tilborgh of the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam. Source: Killing Vincent: The Man, the Myth, and the Murder; Arenberg, Irving Kaufman; Amazon Digital Services; October 24, 2018. Van Gogh: The Life; Naifeh, Steven and Smith, Gregory White; Random House LLC; October 18, 2011. Meet Vincent; Van Gogh Museum – Amsterdam; Retrieved December 2018. Vincent Van Gogh; Historical Figures; BBC; Retrieved January 2019. Vincent Van Gogh Biography; The Van Gogh Gallery; Retrieved January 2019.NOW
Throughout history there have been countless methods for forecasting the weather. In 1818, David Young, a poet and an astronomer from Morristown, New Jersey, launched a publication that would help take the guesswork out of this tricky task...and then some. Have you ever heard of the Farmers’ Almanac? DOWNLOAD NOW Credit: Peter Geiger, publisher and editor at the Farmers’ Almanac, joined me for this wonderful episode on the history of a timeless publication. I’m grateful for his insight and stories. Image Copyright: Almanac Publishing Company Sources: Farmers’ Almanac History; Farmers’ Almanac; Retrieved December 2018. Agriculture, Food, and the Environment; Brosnan, Kathleen A. and Blackwell, Jacob; Oxford Research Enclyopedias; April 2016. What is an Almanac?; Wonderopolois; Retrieved December 2018. Farmers’ Almanac Timeline; Farmers’ Almanac; Retrieved December 2018. History of American Agriculture; Bellis, Mary; ThoughtCo.; October 3, 2018. A Visit to the Past; Duncan, Sandi; Farmers’ Almanac; December 10, 2012. Time Travel Anyone?; Duncan, Sandi; Farmers’ Almanac; November 12, 2013.
Greene County, Missouri was once home to many bustling communities that slowly withered away. One town had quite an intriguing story. There it was said the springs could cure; that a bit of heaven had fallen to earth. A respected doctor even banked his future on the town’s medicinal wonders. Have you ever heard of the lost town of Bethesda? DOWNLOAD NOW Credit: A huge thanks to author and local Greene County historian Shirley Gilmore who wrote a little book called Bethesda: Lost City in 1970, when she was a senior in high school and as part of a Girl Scout project. The book is in the reference section of the Springfield-Greene County Library in Springfield, Missouri. I also grateful for the historical insight of John Sellars, the Executive Director of the History Museum on the Square, dedicated to revitalizing and preserving the history of the Springfield, Missouri community. Sources: Bethesda: Lost City; Gilmore, Shirley; Girl Scout Troop #15 (Springfield, Missouri); August 12, 1970. A Directory of Towns, Villages, and Hamlets Past and Present of Greene County, Missouri; Moser, Arthur Paul; Springfield-Greene County Library; Retrieved December 2018. Robberson Township, Ebeneezer, Hackney, Bethesda, Glidewell; Greene County 1904; Missouri Publishing Co. Glen M. “Heinie” Siegel; Obituary; Newsok.com; January 10, 2001. The Lost Town of Bethesda and More on Springfield's Cryptid History; Urban Cryptids; December 14, 2012. The Mysterious Goat Man; Urban Cryptids; May 19, 2013.
In the 1920s, one aviation pioneer launched a thank-you project for the families that keep coastal ships safe. He propelled a goodwill tradition that’s lasted longer than he ever imagined. One that has lasted to this day… Have you ever heard of the Flying Santas? DOWNLOAD NOW Credit: I’d like to give a huge thanks to the Friends of Flying Santa for their dedication and generosity in keeping this good-will tradition alive. If you’d like to donate to this wonderful cause, please visit their website at https://www.flyingsanta.com/Donations.html. This story first appeared on Narratively. Sources: The Origins and History of the Flying Santa; Tague, Brian, Friends of Flying Santa; Retrieved November 2018. No Reindeer Necessary; DownEast Magazine; December 2015. The Flying Santa of Coastal New England; New England Historical Society; Retrieved November 2018. History of Owls Head Light, Maine; D'Entremont, Jeremy; New England Lighthouses: A Virtual Guide; Retrieved November 2018.
After the Revolutionary War, at a pivotal moment when Washington and Spain were fighting for control of North America, one American war hero deflected from honor and signed a secret allegiance with Spain. President Theodore Roosevelt said, "In all our history, there is no more despicable character.” Have you ever heard of James Wilkinson? DOWNLOAD NOW Credit: A huge thanks to New York Times bestselling author, Andra Watkins, whose new book I Am Number 13 pairs international aid volunteer Emmaline Cagney with the unsettled ghost of James Wilkinson—the former American general who’s stuck in an in-between world called Nowhere. I’m also grateful for the scholarly insight of James Lewis, a professor of history at Kalamazoo College. Sources: An Artist in Treason: The Extraordinary Double Life of General James Wilkinson; Linklater, Andro; Walker Books; September 8, 2010. Spaniards, Scoundrels, and Statesmen: General James Wilkinson and the Spanish Conspiracy, 1787-1790; Savage, James E; Hanover College; Retrieved November 2018. James Wilkinson: America's Greatest Scoundrel; Jewett, Tom; Varsity Tutors; Retrieved November 2018. Tarnished Warrior: Major-General James Wilkinson; Jacobs, James Ripley; Literary Licensing; May 26, 2012. James Wilkinson; Encyclopedia.com; Retrieved November 2018.
For years, on Thanksgiving, one former railroad worker from Pennsylvania told his family a chilling tale. Well, they thought it was a tale—a grandiose and macabre account almost certainly rooted in fiction. Yet, as the story traveled through generations, the family would discover that some ghosts lead to the truth; that some of our darkest secrets lie below our feet. This is a Thanksgiving ghost story…
In the heart of southeast Utah, water and gravity have sculpted one forgotten national park into a rugged landscape. Rich in human history and natural beauty, this vast and untamed terrain is also an epicenter of legend and lore. Have you ever heard of Canyonlands National Park? DOWNLOAD NOW Credit: For this episode, I had the pleasure of speaking with Bill Bentenson, Butch Cassidy’s great nephew and author of the book Butch Cassidy, My Uncle; David Weatherly, author, explorer, and investigator of strange phenomenon; and Clyde Denis, a professor at the University of New Hampshire who has explored, researched, and written extensively on the history and terrain of Canyonlands. Sources: Canyonlands; National Park Service; Retrieved October 2018. Canyonlands National Park; Canyonlands Natural History Association; Retrieved October 2018. Closing the road to Chesler Park: Why access to Canyonlands National Park remains limited; Denis, C.L.; Utah Historical Quarterly. 84: 328-346; 2016. Canyonlands: The Story Behind the Scenery; Johnson, David; KC Publications; June 1, 1997. Park History: Canyonlands National Park; National Parks Traveler; Retrieved October 2018. Butch Cassidy, My Uncle; Bentenson, Bill; High Plains Press; May 1, 2012. Lost Landscapes: Utah's Ghosts, Mysterious Creatures, and Aliens; Dunning, Linda; Cedar Fort; June 1, 2007. Hypothesis: The pinnacles of the Chesler Park/graben region of Canyonlands National Park result from paleostream induration and inverted topographical relief; Denis, C.L.; In MacLean;  J.S., Biek, R.F., and Huntoon, J.E editors; Geology of Utah’s Far South: Utah Geological Association Publication 43, p. 25-38; 2014. The origins of Chesler Park: determining late 19th century snowfall records and occupations of inscription writers in Canyonlands N.P.; Denis, C.L.; Canyon Legacy 69, 2-9; 2010.
“So full of artless jealousy is guilt, it spills itself in fearing to be spilt,” wrote Shakespeare in his famous play Hamlet. Perhaps, in the spectrum of human emotions, there is no deeper feeling than guilt. This strong emotional reaction manifests when we believe—or when we come to realize—that we’ve done something wrong or violated some universal moral standard. Guilt, and its handmaiden, shame, can paralyze us—or it can ruminate into mania. It is said that Micah Rood knew this kind of madness. When a farmer supposedly murders a traveling salesman in his orchard, under the original tree, the apples soon bleed with guilt—confessing to a sin their caretaker could not.
On Christmas night in 1843, a horrific crime rattled Staten Island. Within days, suspicion attached itself to one woman. Decades before Lizzie Borden gained notoriety, this young woman was accused of a horrific crime and dubbed the "Witch of Staten Island." Have you ever heard of Polly Bodine? DOWNLOAD NOW Credit: For this episode, I had the pleasure of speaking with Patricia Salmon, a professor of history and author of the book Murder and Mayhem on Staten Island. She previously served as the history curator at the Staten Island Museum and on the Board of Directors of the Tottenville Historical Society and the Preservation League of Staten Island. I also spoke with Maxine Friedman, the chief curator at Historic Richmond Town – Staten Island’s historical society. Sources: Murder and Mayhem on Staten Island; Salmon, Patricia; The History Press; October 8, 2013. The Staten Island Mystery of 1843; Clemens; Will M.; The Era Magazine: An Illustrated Monthly; Volume 14; July 1904. The Witch of Staten Island; Undine; Strange Company; October 7, 2013. The Anti-Rent Era in New York Law and Politics, 1839-1865; McCurdy, Charles W.; The University of North Carolina Press; June 19, 2003. Staten Island’s Very Own Lizzie Borden; Matteo, Thomas; SILive.com; August 9, 2011. Edgar Allan Poe and the Witch of Staten Island; Boroughs of the Dead; Retrieved September 2018. City Lore: The Witch of Staten Island; Rasenberger, Jim; The New York Times; October 29, 2000. Poe’s Contributions to The Columbia Spy; Doings of Gotham; Poe, Edgar Allan; The Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore; Retrieved October 2018.
Before Chatty Cathy made us flinch, the Wizard of Menlo Park not only perfected the lightbulb, he also gave us a creepy humanoid with a nightmarish shrill. Have you ever heard of Thomas Edison’s talking dolls? DOWNLOAD NOW Credit: For this episode, I had the pleasure of speaking with Paul Israel, the director and general editor of the Thomas A. Edison Papers at Rutgers University and Patrick Feaster, a three-time Grammy nominee and specialist in the history, culture, and preservation of early sound media, including Edison’s recordings. Sources: Origins of Sound Recording: Edison's Path to the Phonograph; Feaster, Patrick; Thomas Edison National Historic Park; Retrieved September 2018. Edison Talking Doll Recordings, 1888-1890; National Park Service; Retrieved September 2018. Edison: A Life of Invention; Israel, Paul; John Wiley & Sons; February 11, 2000. Thomas Edison’s Greatest Inventions; Bellis, Mary; ThoughtCo.; September 24, 2018. Thomas Edison’s Creepiest Invention: The Talking Doll; Hartzman, Mark; Weird Historian; May 10, 2017. Listen to the creepy voices of Thomas Edison’s talking dolls; Starr, Michelle; C/NET; May 5, 2015. Hear Edison Talking Doll Sound Recordings; Thomas Edison National Historic Park; Retrieved September 2018.
In 1921, a white mob entered an affluent district known as Black Wall Street. They opened fire into crowds of innocent people, burned homes and businesses to the ground, and forced countless others to flee. For decades, the attack was hidden from textbooks and even oral histories. Have you ever heard of the Tulsa Race Massacre? DOWNLOAD NOW Credit: For this episode, I had the pleasure of speaking with Hannibal Johnson, an author, attorney, consultant, and college professor who writes and lectures about the history of the Greenwood District. His books include: Black Wall Street: From Riot to Renaissance in Tulsa's Historic Greenwood District and Tulsa’s Historic Greenwood District. I also spoke with Michelle Place, the Executive Director of the Tulsa Historical Society & Museum. She served on the Race Riot Commission, which was organized to review the details of the Tulsa Race Massacre. Sources: Images of America: Tulsa’s Historic Greenwood District; Johnson, Hannibal B.; Arcadia Publishing; January 27, 2014. Black Wall Street: From Riot to Renaissance in Tulsa's Historic Greenwood District; Johnson, Hannibal B.; Eakin Press; September 1, 1998. Death in a Promised Land: The Tulsa Race Riot of 1921; Ellsworth, Dr. Scott and Franklin, John Hope; Louisiana State University Press; January 1, 1992. Reconstructing the Dreamland: The Tulsa Riot of 1921; Brophy, Alfred; Oxford University Press; February 14, 2003. Riot and Remembrance: The Tulsa Race War and Its Legacy; Hirsch, James S.; Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; May 13, 2013. Tulsa Race Riot: A Report by the Oklahoma Commission to Study the Tulsa Race Riot of 1921; February 28, 2001. My Life and An Era: The Autobiography of Buck Colbert Franklin; Franklin, Buck Colbert; LSU Press; October 1, 1997. 1921 Tulsa Race Riot; Tulsa Historical Society and Museum; Retrieved August 2018. Tulsa Race Riot; Greenwood Cultural Center; Retrieved September 2018. The Tulsa Race Riot of 1921; Carlson, I. Marc; Retrieved September 2018. Tulsa Race Riot Overview; Oklahoma State University Library; Accessed September 2018. Tulsa Race Riot; Oklahoma Historical Society; Retrieved September 2018. Meet The Last Surviving Witness To The Tulsa Race Riot Of 1921; Gilles, Nellie; NPR; May 31, 2018. Hal Singer Short Doc; Sutherland Media; Vimeo; Accessed September 2018.
In the Late Middle Ages, the Kingdom of Hungary rose from the ashes, leaving behind a dismal episode in Hungarian history. The mid-15th century soon marked the nation’s Golden Age. At the height of its prosperity, a revered ruler, hailed the Raven King, commanded an eminent presence on the European stage. But, in the end, it wasn’t his conquests or his castles or his culture-forward mentality that made him so remarkable. His legacy may be better defined by his unorthodox relationship with Dracula and his magnificent library. Have you ever heard of Matthias Corvinus? DOWNLOAD NOW Credit: It was an honor to speak with Joe Hajdu, and an urban and cultural geographer and author of the book Budapest: A History of Grandeur and Catastrophe, and Dr. Katalin Szende, an associate professor in the Department of Medieval Studies at Hungary’s Central European University. Their brilliant insight brought the Raven King back to life, even if for just a moment. Sources: Budapest: A History of Grandeur and Catastrophe; Hajdu, Joe; Austin Macauley Publishers Ltd.; July 31, 2015. The Names in the Family of King Matthias Corvinus; Pop, Ioan-Aurel; Eötvös Loránd University; Retrieved August 2018. Bloody Bibliophile Matthias Corvinus; Book Review; The Telegraph; May 25, 2008. Marcus Tanner: 'Did you know that Dracula's best friend was a warrior bookworm?'; O’Brien, Murrough; The Independent; April 20, 2008. Matthias Corvinus of Hungary; New World Encyclopedia; Retrieved August 2018. Bibliotheca Corviniana: The library of Matthias Corvinus of Hungary; Csapodi, Csaba; Irish University Press; 1969. Matthias Corvinus and His Time: Europe in Transition from the Middle Ages to Modern Times between Vienna and Constantinople; Simon, Alexandru, et al; Austrian Academy of Sciences Press; December 7, 2011. The Raven King: Matthias Corvinus and the Fate of His Lost Library; Tanner, Marcus; Yale University Press; July 1, 2008. Once the Greatest Army in Europe – The Black Army of Hungary; Gaskill, Matthew; War History Online; May 31, 2018. Will to Survive: A History of Hungary; Cartledge, Bryan; Oxford University Press; April 19, 2011.
Slow as molasses in January is a common American idiom for something that is painfully slow. The history of this expression dates to the turn of the twentieth century and to one very specific event. On an unseasonably warm winter day in 1919, only a few weeks into the new year, Boston, Massachusetts suffered one of history's strangest disasters. Have you ever heard of the Great Boston Molasses Flood? DOWNLOAD NOW Credit: For this episode, I had the pleasure of speaking with Stephen Puleo, historian, public speaker, and author of Dark Tide, and Nicole Sharp, an aerospace engineer turned science communicator who runs a Tumblr blog on fluid dynamics. Sources: Dark Tide: The Great Boston Molasses Flood of 1919; Puleo, Stephen; Beacon Press; 2004; Reprinted 100th Anniversary Edition, January 2019. Incredible physics behind the deadly 1919 Boston Molasses Flood; Ouellette, Jennifer; NewScientist; November 24, 2016. The Great Molasses Flood of 1919; Andrews, Evan; History; January 13, 2017. The Great Molasses Flood; Stanly, Robert; New England Today; January 15, 2018. Remembering Boston's Great Molasses Flood of 1919; Trex, Ethan; Mental Floss; January 15, 2018. Eric Postpischil’s Molasses Disaster Pages; Mason, John; Yankee Magazine; August 27, 2015. Great Molasses Flood of 1919: Why This Deluge of Goo Was So Deadly; Choi, Charles; LiveScience; November 21, 2016.
A series of unexpected events in 1811 and 1812 caused some strange phenomena and gave birth to countless legends. Sand volcanoes. The Mississippi running backward. Miles-long chasms opening in the earth. But only some of these weird occurrences are the truth. Have you ever heard of the New Madrid earthquakes? DOWNLOAD NOW Credit: For this episode, I had the pleasure of speaking with Jeff Grunwald, administrator of the New Madrid Historical Museum, and Seth Stein, a seismologist and geophysicist at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois and author of several papers and books on the New Madrid earthquakes. Sources: The 10 Deadliest Earthquakes in US History; Mason, Betsy; Wired; November 21, 2008. Strange Happenings During the Earthquakes; City of New Madrid; Retrieved July 2018. Summary of 1811-1812 New Madrid Earthquakes Sequence; United States Geological Survey; Retrieved July 2018. Disaster Deferred: How New Science is Changing our View of Earthquake Hazards in the Midwest; Stein, Seth; Columbia University Press; 2010. Teaching about New Madrid earthquakes: science and hazards; Stein, Seth; Illinois State University; 2011. The New Madrid Earthquakes of 1811-1812; Soddalter, Rod; Missouri Life; February 7, 2018. The Lost History of the New Madrid Earthquakes; Bolton Valencius, Conevery; University of Chicago Press; September 25, 2013.
In 1892, Charles C. Willoughby became the first archaeologist to excavate sites in Maine that contained powdered red ochre and artifacts in clusters that he interpreted as graves. His discovery led to an assumption that would later be proven wrong. Have you ever heard of the myth of the Red Paint People? DOWNLOAD NOW Credit: For this episode, I had the pleasure of speaking Dr. Bonnie Newsom, an indigenous archaeologist and professor of anthropology at the University of Maine, and Julia Gray, owner of Riverside Museum Solutions and the former director of collections and research at the Abbe Museum. I also want to acknowledge Cinnamon Catlin-Legutko, director of Abbe Museum, who is leading the effort in the emerging practice of decolonization. Located in Bar Harbor, Maine, the Abbe Museum was founded in 1926 and first opened to the public in 1928 as a private museum at Sieur de Monts Spring in Lafayette National Park (Acadia National Park). Although most museums in the U.S. have yet to embrace decolonization, the Abbe has worked closely with indigenous peoples of Maine, specifically the Wabanaki, sharing authority for the documentation and interpretation of Native culture. Sources: Who Were the Red Paint People?; Cole-Will, Rebecca; Abbe Museum; 2002. Antiquities of the New England Indians; Willoughby, Charles C.; Cambridge University Press; July 1937. A Report on the Archaeology of Maine; Moorehead, Warren; The Andover Press; 1922. The Lost Red Paint People of Maine; Smith, Walter Brown; Lafayette National Park Museum; 1930. Ochre - The Oldest Known Natural Pigment in the World; Hirst, K. Kris; ThoughtCo.; April 15, 2017. Tools of the Archaeologist; Johnston, Grahame; Archaeology Expert; December 15, 2016. Why is ochre found in some graves?; The National Museum of Denmark; Retrieved June 2018.
More than a century before the United States was even formed, some African slaves escaped forced servitude and formed the first free black community in the nation. The enclave was founded and led by an extraordinary military commander who has never received proper acknowledgment in history books. He gave the lost hope, the fledgling refuge, and the enemy a run for their money. Have you ever heard of Francisco Menendez? DOWNLOAD NOW Credit: For this episode, I had the pleasure of speaking with Jane Landers, a historian of Colonial Latin America and the Atlantic World specializing in the history of Africans and their descendants in those worlds, and Diana Reigelsperger, a professor of history at Seminole State College and member of the Speaker’s Series at the Florida Humanities Council. Sources: Gracia Real de Santa Teresa de Mose: A Free Black Town in Spanish Colonial Florida; Landers, Jane; The American Historical Review; Vol. 95, No. 1 (Feb., 1990), pp. 9-30. Leadership and Authority in Maroon Settlements in Spanish America and Brazil; Landers, Jane; 2005. Africa and the Americas: Interconnections During the Slave Trade; Curto, José C. and Soulodre-LaFrance, Renée; Africa World Press, Inc.; 2005. Fort Mose: America's First Community of Free Blacks; Schwarb, Amy Wimmer; Visit Florida; Retrieved June 2018. Fort Mose Site Florida; American Latino Heritage; National Parks Service; Retrieved June 2018.
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Carl Davidson

Great episode. Interesting stories and history.

Sep 5th
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