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Mistakes Were Made
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Mistakes Were Made

Author: Robert Bacon

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A middle school, history teacher teaches his two adult friends about mistakes made in history.
31 Episodes
30 - Mao Zedong

30 - Mao Zedong


This week we learn about Mao Zedong and his weird obsession with mangos and murder.
In 1939 Russia invaded Finland in what's called The Winter War. During the war a sniper from Finland, Simo Häyhä, was able to kill hundreds of Russians.More here:
28 - Franz Ferdinand

28 - Franz Ferdinand


This week we learn about the legend of Franz Ferdinand and his cartoon bombs.
27 - Alaska

27 - Alaska


In 1867 America bought Alaska from Russia for $7.2 million. Some opponents called it "Seward's Folly" after Secretary of State William H. Seward. Turns out it was a pretty great investment.
26 - The Berlin Wall

26 - The Berlin Wall


Building a wall dividing a city. Can't see how this will be a mistake.
This week we learn about the Halifax Disaster and welcome on a new co-host with Bobby Smithney.*Sorry for the audio quality this week. We're still working stuff out.*
Season 2 Announcement

Season 2 Announcement


Hey guys, I’ve got some great news. We’re back for season 2 of Mistakes Were Made very soon.We’ve used this time to think about the podcast and how to make it better and Mike and I came up with a great idea. Neither of us are real history buffs and while that makes the podcast humorous sometimes we both thought that the podcast would be so much better with an actual history buff. Someone who has studied it and understands it more so we can have more to joke off of.We found that person with Bobby Smithney and he will be joining us for Season 2. We’re currently scheduling dates to record and we expect new episodes to arrive sometime in March. Thanks so much to the listeners who have reached out to ask about the show and all our subscribers. Tell a friend about the podcast or if you don’t have any friends leave a positive review to help get the word out.Thanks guys! Talk to you soon!
In the year 66 things were pretty tense between the Romans and the Jews around the mediterranean. You see there was this guy named Caligula in charge of the Roman Empire at the time and he wasn’t the worst, but he also wasn’t the best. Caligula spent a lot of money on building projects. Practical ones like aqueducts and harbors, cultural ones like theaters and temples, but also weird ones like taking hundreds of Roman merchant ships and using them to build a 2 mile long floating bridge across the Bay of Bauli. What was the bridge for? He used it to gallop back and forth on his horse for a couple days and then had it disassembled. He also threw some pretty awesome parties, but everyone did back then so that wasn’t the main problem.The main problem is he was spending money faster than the Empire to make it. So to help offset that he would have citizens falsely accused of crimes. Those citizens would be fined if they were lucky. If they weren’t lucky they would be killed and then the Empire would sell their estate so they could make money. (MORE ON THE PODCAST)
While he was dictator he did the standard dictator stuff. He killed those who spoke out against him and with all the money at the top many of his people starved. Mobutu was spending billions of dollars on himself and his family. He would overpay his generals or other people that might want to overthrow him and underpay his soldiers, many of whom were forced to steal from civilians just so they could have money to eat.Mobutu also was one of the men who was instrumental in bringing the Rumble in the Jungle boxing match between Muhammad Ali and George Foreman to Zaire on the 30th of October 1974. According to the documentary When We Were Kings, promoter Don King promised each fighter US$5 million for the fight. Mobutu was the only one who was willing to fund such amounts. Mobutu, wanting to expand his country's image, put up the nation's money to do so. According to a quote in the film, Ali supposedly said: "Some countries go to war to get their names out there, and wars cost a lot more than $10 million."(MORE ON THE PODCAST)
Saparmurat Niyazov (Super-murat Ne-yah-zov) was born on February 19th, 1940 in the former Soviet Republic of Turkmenistan. He didn’t have the best childhood. His father either died fighting Nazis in World War II or dodged fighting and was therefore sentenced by a military court (two different stories on this). When he was 8 his mother and both his siblings were killed in an earthquake that leveled the city they were living in when the building they were all in collapsed. Niyazov spent 8 days digging himself out of the rubble with his bare hands. When he emerged he was the only living member of his family so he was shipped off to a Soviet-run orphanage in the middle of the mountains. (More on the podcast)
U-boat is the anglicised version of the German word U-Boot, a shortening of Unterseeboot, literally "undersea boat". While the German term refers to any submarine, the English one refers specifically to military submarines operated by Germany, particularly in the First and Second World Wars. During World War II, U-boat warfare was the major component of the Battle of the Atlantic, which lasted the duration of the war. Germany had the largest submarine fleet in World War II, since the Treaty of Versailles had limited the surface navy of Germany to six battleships, six cruisers, and 12 destroyers but nothing on undersea boats. Prime Minister Winston Churchill wrote "The only thing that really frightened me during the war was the U-boat peril."On April 6, 1945, a German navy submarine named the U-1206 departed from the port city of Kristiansand, in Nazi-occupied Norway, and began its first combat patrol with it’s captain Karl-Adolf Schlitt. Assigned to the waters of the North Atlantic, its mission was to seek out and destroy British and American ships on the high seas. (MORE ON THE PODCAST)
Nicolae Ceausescu (Nick-o-lie Chi-Ches-Coo) was born on January 26th, 1918. He was one of the ten children of a poor peasant family. His father owned 7 and a half acres of agricultural land, a few sheep, and he also supplemented his large family's income through tailoring.At the age of 7 Nicolae started his education at the local village school, but after only 4 years of education he ran away from home to escape his extremely religious, abusive, and strict father. He initially lived with his sister and became an apprentice shoemaker. The shoemaker he was an apprentice for was an active member in the then-illegal Communist Party and taught Nicolae about communism. Nicolae loved it and he was soon given small tasks to help spread the word of communism. (More on the podcast)
In 1919 the molasses business was booming. So much so that molasses tanks had to be built in places like Boston and quickly. Some tanks were built too quickly though and mistakes were made.
Europe in the middle ages wasn't a very happy place to live. That's why it was so weird that randomly groups of people started dancing in masses. This was known as "Dancing Mania" and it would happen several times thoughout history.
Since the beginning of written history there have been tails of people trying to cheat death and live forever. It explores humanity's deep-seated fears and comprehension of its own mortality. Many people through history did not see this as fiction, but instead strived to make it a reality.
The compromise that eventually lead to the American Civil War.
“The reign of tears is over. The slums will soon be a memory. We will turn our prisons into factories and our jails into storehouses and corncribs. Men will walk upright now, women will smile, and children will laugh. Hell will be forever for rent.” - Reverend Billy SundayReverend Billy Sunday was a proponent of the “Noble Experiment”, a anti-alcohol movement that gained steam throughout the nineteenth century and became a staple of the progressive movement at the start of the twentieth century. By 1900, Maine, Vermont, Kansas, Iowa, and North Dakota were already dry states with many scheduled to follow. The Prohibitionists believed that there was no way a person in a dry state could obtain liquor. However, they overlooked the postal service, which was run by the federal government, not the states. So alcohol could be purchased from a wet state and sent to a dry state. (More on the podcast)
Check it out, we found a completely different continent! Let's murder people on it!
Basically the story of Beanie Babies, but hundreds of years before Beanie Babies.
Muhammad bin Tughlaq (Two-cli-ock) was born in 1300 and was the eldest son of the Sultan of Delhi. This kingdom covered most of what is now northern India and Pakistan. They also had a cool flag (dark green with one off center black vertical stripe).  Muhammad was a strict Muslim, maintaining his five prayers during a day and fasting. He was hailed as a "man of knowledge" and had interest in subjects like philosophy, medicine, mathematics, religion, and poetry.In 1325 Muhammad’s father, the Sultan Ghiyasuddin Tughlaq, was watching a parade of elephants. The elephants were war booty that Delhi has acquired in the capture of another territory. Suddenly the large wooden pavilion the Sultan and many others was sitting on collapsed killing him. At the time there was a mass conspiracy that the collapse was deliberate, but this is refuted by historians. (More on the podcast)
Comments (2)

Jemi Assefa

More episodes?

Aug 9th

Jemi Assefa

this is hilarious, but I also love hour more serious mistakes. hope you mix it up

Aug 3rd
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