World’s Strangest

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How a Punctuation Mark Gave Us Uncle Tom’s Cabin

If you Google “Semi-Colon Club” right now, you’re going to get a lot of stuff about colon cancer awareness. But back in Harriet Beecher Stowe’s heyday, the Semi-Colon Club was a gathering of extraordinary writers living in Cincinnati, Ohio.   In 1832, at the age of 21, Harriet moved to Cincinnati with her father when he accepted [...]

Why Are Flags Flown at Half-Staff in Times of Mourning?

On Friday, President Obama ordered that all U.S flags should be flown at half-staff until Veterans’ Day to honor the victims of the Fort Hood massacre. Flying a flag at half-staff has become a well-recognized symbol of national grieving, but where did this tradition originate, and how does the decision to lower the flag work? How [...]