World’s Strangest

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A Little Bit of Lotto History (Including Thomas Jefferson’s Take on Lotteries)

EPA/ERIK S. LESSER /LANDOV Tonight’s Mega Millions jackpot is up over $500 million—the biggest lottery prize ever. Whether you call it the poor man’s dream, a casino without walls, or a tax on the stupid, the lottery has deep and widespread roots. Here’s a look at three quick stories about the numbers game. Lotteries of Yore Lotteries have [...]

Preserving Smelly History

We can preserve and experience historical sights and sounds. But how do we know what, for example, Eighteenth Century Manhattan smelled like? Thanks to technologies developed by the perfume industry, there are now ways to preserve smells so that future generations can experience them: A pioneer of this approach is Roman Kaiser, a Swiss fragrance chemist [...]