World’s Strangest

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The Quick 9: 9 Victims of the Curse of Tippecanoe

It was 30 years ago today that Ronald Reagan was nearly killed in an assassination attempt by John Hinckley, Jr. The more superstitious among us chalk that up to the Curse of Tippecanoe, a gift to William Henry Harrison from Chief Tecumseh’s brother after the Battle of Tippecanoe. The curse apparently damned Harrison and every [...]

Eye for an Eye: The Punishments of 8 Political Assassins

Note: As server migration week rolls on, we’ve been reposting a few oldies/goodies from the archives. Here’s another from 2009. Good (new!) material is being stockpiled for next week. Ever wonder what happened to the criminals who assassinated various heads of state? The image of Lee Harvey Oswald being gunned down by Jack Ruby is all [...]

24 More Cool College Landmarks

Back in February 2008 (posted again in January 2009), we brought you a list of 10 cool college landmarks, ranging from MIT’s relatively new Stata Center to the 130-year-old Nott Memorial at Union College. Today, we’re bringing you 24 more, recommended by mental_floss readers. 1. Cathedral of Learning The University of Pittsburgh‘s Cathedral of Learning holds the [...]

A $100,000 Bill? The Story Behind Large-Denomination Currency

Your local convenience store may not accept bills larger than $20, but once upon a time you could have paid for your gum with a nice fresh $10,000 bill. What’s the story behind the large-denomination bills that the government used to issue? What big bills has the U.S. issued? In 1928, the federal government overhauled its system [...]

The Quick 10: 10 Reasons Why the Number 13 is Unlucky

It’s Friday the 13th again! Anyone see any black cats? Walk under any ladders? I don’t really subscribe to the theory that Friday the 13th is unluckier than any other day, but superstitious people may have good reason to stay in bed on days like today. Here are 10 reasons the number 13 is unlucky. 1. [...]