World’s Strangest

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10 of the Most Famous Photo Hoaxes Through History

Photographic evidence has been an act of faith since the 1830s! The first photo hoax was perpetrated by a competitor of Louis Daguerre, whom daguerrotype was named for. Then there was William Mumler, who made a living taking “spirit photographs,” like the image here of Mary Todd Lincoln with her late husband’s ghostly arms around [...]

Morbid Road Trip: The Scattered Artifacts of Lincoln’s Assassination

Almost every item even remotely connected to Lincoln’s assassination, death, and funeral later found its way into some special collection. Many wound up in the hands of museums, historical societies, or the government, and are available for public viewing. Many more in private collections occasionally get loaned out for display. If I ever convince my [...]

That One Time Abraham Lincoln Threw a Wedding Reception for Tom Thumb

It’s a bit unbelievable to think that Barack Obama would hold a White House wedding reception for Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, but something just like that happened almost 150 years ago when Abraham Lincoln held a White House reception for General Tom Thumb and his wife. The 2’11″ Charles Stratton had toured with P.T. Barnum [...]

The Quick 10: 10 Ghosts Lurking at the White House

We live in an old house, and I occasionally see things out of the corner of my eye that make me wonder. There are many totally logical explanations for this, including paranoia, a mirror in a built-in wall cabinet that catches my reflection, and three dogs who move in and out of my line of [...]

History of the U.S.: Abraham Lincoln, Psychic Friend

Some of the most famous séances took place in the White House in 1863, when Mary Todd Lincoln invited the female medium Nettie Colburn Maynard to help her contact the spirit of her dead son Willie. Colburn’s stories from the Lincoln séances include some fantastic occurrences: supposedly a grand piano began levitating when she played [...]

The Quick 10: 10 First Lady Fashion Faux Pas

Michelle Obama is both lauded and disparaged for her fashion choices, especially her recent decision to wear (gasp) shorts while riding Air Force One. But she’s hardly the first to choose outfits a little outside of the norm for a First Lady. Here are 10 FLOTUSes (FLOTI?) before her who shocked and stunned the nation [...]