World’s Strangest

Your source for the strangest things around!
Ads

Home for Christmas: 9 Flattops at Norfolk

The US Navy’s base at Norfolk, Virginia is the largest in the world. It can berth a vast number of ships. On 20 December, the station was packed with five aircraft carriers and four amphibious assault ships: Five aircraft carriers, four big-deck amphibious assault ships, a full cast of “small boy” surface warships, along with nuclear [...]

The 13-year-old Veteran

Calvin Graham was only 12 when he became a seaman in the United States Navy. He had already left home to escape an abusive stepfather, and the military was desperate for manpower right after the Pearl Harbor attack that drew the US into World War II. Graham was assigned to the USS South Dakota, which [...]

RIP Daniel Inouye

Senator Daniel Inouye became a U.S. Representative on the day that Hawaii became a state, on August 21, 1959. He was elected Senator in 1962, and became the longest-serving member of the Senate. But he was already quite accomplished before entering politics. Inouye was a teenager in Honolulu when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, and [...]

WWII War Paint: How Bomber-Jacket Art Emboldened Our Boys

As we reflect on the significance of Pearl Harbor Day, we can learn more about one of the iconic artistic relics of World War II: the decorated leather bomber jacket. The Army Air Corps was filled with new pilots, some just teenagers, who dressed up those jackets with mission counts, cartoon characters, caricatures, and sometimes [...]

The Japanese Invasion of Alaska

The Japanese military invaded American soil in 1942 when a force of 500 men overtook the Aleutian Islands of Attu and Kiska in Alaska. They captured a Navy weather crew stationed there and occupied the islands, which are the westernmost parts of the USA. It is now known as The Forgotten Battle but the invasion caused [...]

Music History #11: “The Ballad of Ira Hayes”

“The Ballad of Ira Hayes” Written by Pete La Farge (1963) Performed by Johnny Cash The Music Folk singer and songwriter Peter La Farge packed a lot into his thirty-four years on Earth. The son of a Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist was a Korean War vet, a rodeo cowboy, an actor, and a singer who was part of [...]

New York City’s Mad Bomber and His Patriotic Break

On November 16, 1940, an unattended wooden toolbox was discovered on a windowsill in the Consolidated Edison Company Building at 4 Irving Place in Manhattan. The headquarters of the utility giant is huge, taking up an entire block, and it was bustling that day. No one had seen who left the box behind, where they [...]

World War I Centennial: Even Bigger Battleships, Part II

The First World War was an unprecedented catastrophe that killed millions and set the continent of Europe on the path to further calamity two decades later. But it didn’t come out of nowhere. With the centennial of the outbreak of hostilities coming up in 2014, Erik Sass will be looking back at the lead-up to the [...]

Four Years Before Women Had the Right to Vote, Jeannette Rankin Was Elected to Congress

In 1916, four years before the Constitution recognized her right to vote, Jeannette Rankin was elected to Congress. While women had not achieved suffrage across the U.S. yet, there were no laws barring them from holding office in the Capitol. So Rankin, with her belief that “men and women are like right and left hands; it [...]

11 Visual Clichés You Never See in Real Life

A Christmas tree on the lot with a wooden X-stand affixed to the bottom. Armored car guards loading sacks marked with giant dollar signs. There are some things that, it seems, are stereotypical images constantly used in movies, comic strips, and on TV, but just never happen in real life. For example, have you ever [...]