World’s Strangest

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Elizabeth Van Lew: An Unlikely Union Spy

Among hundreds of women who acted as spies during the Civil War, Elizabeth Van Lew stands out as one of the most effective. She was a prominent member of Richmond society who opposed both slavery and secession, but kept quiet among the fervent Confederates around her. Van Lew and her mother volunteered to care for [...]

America’s True History of Religious Tolerance

You might think that modern America is losing ground on one of its founding principles: religious freedom. But the concept was never universal. Since the first settlers, people are all for the freedom of their own religion, but not so much for other people’s religions. In newly independent America, there was a crazy quilt of state [...]