history

Argentine police have uncovered some 75 Nazi artifacts hidden in a secret room in a house near Buenos Aires. The objects include children's harmonicas in a box adorned with swastikas and a large bust relief of Adolf Hitler.

Argentina's Ministry of Security stated that the pieces were all "of illegal origin and of great interest due to their historical value." The finding came after a federal police investigation.

A remarkably complete fossil of a young child suggests that key elements of the human spinal structure were already in place in an ancient human relative 3.3 million years ago.

The child, about three years old, likely died suddenly and quickly drifted into a body of water, where she was covered in sediment that eventually hardened to sandstone, Zeray Alemseged of the University of Chicago tells The Two-Way.

This year marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of the man who invented recorded sound — Edouard-Leon Scott de Martinville. He beat the more well-known inventor Thomas Edison by 20 years, though his accomplishments were only recognized over the last decade.

While the uses of recorded sound seem obvious now — music, news, voice messages — none of it was obvious to Scott or Edison when they made the first recordings. It's a story that has some lessons for today's aspiring inventors.

The morning that the space shuttle Columbia was supposed to return home, Wayne Hale was at the landing site. At age 48, Hale was an up-and-coming manager with NASA. He'd just taken a job overseeing shuttle launches. But since this was a landing day, he didn't have much to do.

Officials in Egypt say they've uncovered 17 mummies in an ancient burial site, most of which are intact.

Egyptology professor Salah al-Kholi of Cairo University said there may be as many as 32 mummies in the underground chamber, Reuters reports.

The burial site, which sits about 26 feet underground, was first discovered a year ago by students using radar. It's located in the Tuna al-Gabal village in central Egypt, about 135 miles south of Cairo.

Nancy Klingener / WLRN


The bones of a humanlike creature have puzzled scientists ever since they were found in a South African cave in 2013.

Homo naledi is primitive in some ways, with a small brain and other physical features reminiscent of our early ancestors. But it also walked upright, and had hands that may have been capable of making tools.

This month marks 350 years since John Milton sold his publisher the copyright of Paradise Lost for the sum of five pounds.

His great work dramatizes the oldest story in the Bible, whose principal characters we know only too well: God, Adam, Eve, Satan in the form of a talking snake — and an apple.

Except, of course, that Genesis never names the apple but simply refers to "the fruit." To quote from the King James Bible:

From the front door of the glass-walled gift shop at the Alnwick Garden in the far northeast of England, the scene looks innocent enough. A sapphire green English lawn slopes gently downward, toward traditional, ornamental gardens of rose and bamboo. Across the small valley, water cascades down a terraced fountain.

But a hundred or so plantings kept behind bars in this castle's garden are more menacing — and have much to tell visitors about poison and the evolutionary roots of medicine.

Researchers in Southern California say they've uncovered evidence that humans lived there 130,000 years ago.

If it's true, it would be the oldest sign of humans in the Americas ever — predating the best evidence up to now by about 115,000 years. And the claim has scientists wondering whether to believe it.

After years of legal wrangling and intimidation, New Orleans has begun the process of dismantling four monuments of the Confederate and Jim Crow eras.

The first monument, which honors members of a white supremacist paramilitary group who fought against the city's racially integrated, Reconstruction-era police force in 1874, was dismantled and removed before the sun rose Monday.

Following death threats, the contractors wore flak jackets and helmets as they broke down the Battle of Liberty Place monument, as WWNO's Tegan Wendland reports.

Secret crypt in London: Beware of exploding bishops

Apr 18, 2017

A forgotten crypt has been uncovered in an ancient church in London. Inside are the remains of some of England’s most influential churchmen. They will remain undisturbed for now — apparently being sealed in a lead coffin can have explosive consequences.

"Dearest Marlene: I always love you and admire you and I have all sorts of mixed up feelings about you […]  please know that I love you always and forget you sometimes as I forget my heart beats. But it beats always.”

The letter was addressed to Marlene Dietrich and written by Ernest Hemingway, one of many he sent to her over their 30 years of friendship.

It’s signed “Love, Mister Papa” and was written on Aug. 12, 1952 — a couple of months after Hemingway finished writing "The Old Man and the Sea." It goes up for auction next month.

The meat on an adult human's bones could feed another person for over two weeks, or maybe a whole Stone Age tribe for a couple of days, according to a new report on the practice of Paleolithic cannibalism. No wonder, then, that evidence of cannibalism in ancient humans pops up in the archaeological record from time to time.

In 1967, Dr. Martin Luther King delivered one of his most politically charged speeches from Harlem's Riverside Church. In "Beyond Vietnam," he not only condemns the Vietnam War, but also compares American tactics to those of Nazis. His speech paints a dark vision of the world, a contrast to the optimistic speech he had delivered 4 years earlier, "I Have a Dream."

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