World’s Strangest

Your source for the strangest things around!
Ads

John Wilkes Booth Dressed as Marc Antony

A year before he assassinated President Abraham Lincoln, John Wilkes Booth (left) played Marc Antony in a production of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar. His brother Junius (right) played Caesar and his other brother Edwin (center), played the traitor Brutus. This production on November 25, 1864 was the only time all three acting brothers starred together in [...]

17 More Offbeat Holidays and Anniversaries to Celebrate in January

Forget weight loss and penny-pinching, make a resolution to keep this year a little more unconventional. What better way to start than with a few offbeat holidays and anniversaries you can easily observe? 1. January 1: First Foot Day A Scottish New Year tradition, the first person to step into someone’s home is called the “first-footer” and [...]

The Emancipation Proclamation

Today, January 1, 2013,  is the 150th anniversary of the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation. And some are still arguing over the meaning of that document to this day. It was a momentous act, and President Abraham Lincoln knew it as he signed it. What the proclamation did—and did not do—has been a matter of debate [...]

10 Things You Didn’t Know About Steven Spielberg

You probably know quite a bout about Steven Spielberg, the director of Jaws, Raiders of the Lost Ark, E.T., Schindler’s List, and the new movie Abraham Lincoln. But there are still surprising things about him that I never suspected. Sis you know producer Cubby Broccoli rejected Spielberg twice when he tried for a position directing [...]

Debate Prep: A Brief History of American Political Debates

by Maggie Koerth-Baker Getty Images From the Revolution up to the turn of the 20th century, America preferred that its presidential candidates be seen and not heard. The presidency was regarded as so solemn an office that it was considered indecent and prideful to aspire to. Instead, candidates were to approach nomination as if it were something [...]

Our Top 16 Stories of August 2012

In case you weren’t obsessively refreshing mentalfloss.com all month, here’s what you missed: 1. 24 Vintage Photographs of Abraham Lincoln Being Awesome, by Lucas Reilly * 2. 11 Geeky Wedding and Engagement Rings, by Jill Harness * 3. 11 Time Traveler Urban Legends That Pretty Much Debunk Themselves, by Bill DeMain * 4. Why Do Olympians [...]

10 Scandalous VP Stories Worth a Warm Bucket of Spit

Getty Images This morning Mitt Romney tapped Wisconsin congressman Paul Ryan as his running mate. John Nance Garner, FDR’s first vice president, either said the VP position wasn’t worth “a warm pitcher of piss” or “a warm bucket of spit.” Whatever body fluid and receptacle he really used, you get the idea. But that doesn’t mean [...]

19 Presidential Jokes for Presidential Joke Day

We often think of American presidents as butts of jokes, the muses for mockery, and the subjects of satire. But every once in awhile, our commanders-in-chief (or their speechwriters) come up with a few witty wisecracks of their own. Saturday is presidential joke day – a holiday to commemorate the fact that presidents sometimes have [...]

Lincoln on Mars

Image: NASA/JPL-Caltech I’ve been waiting for NASA’s rover Curiosity to land safely so I can tell you that we now have Lincoln on Mars. Yes, Abraham Lincoln on the Red Planet. The penny, a 1909 [...]

24 Photographs of Abe Lincoln Being Awesome

Abraham Lincoln broke ground for U.S. presidents in many ways, one of them for being photographed. Photography was still in its infancy, but we can go back and see how the man actually looked as he ran for congress, campaigned for president, supervised the Civil War, etc etc. I really like this picture of Lincoln [...]