Operation Gunnerside: The Norwegian Assault That Deprived Nazis of the First Atomic Bomb

A stealthy group of skiing commandos took out a crucial Nazi facility and stopped Hitler from getting the atomic bomb. Introduction After handing them their suicide capsules, Norwegian Royal Army Colonel Leif Tronstad informed his soldiers, “I cannot tell you why this mission is so important, but if you succeed, it will live in Norway’s[…]

The Haymarket Affair: Labor Exploitation and Violence in Chicago, 1886

Introduction The Haymarket affair (also known as the Haymarket riot or Haymarket massacre) on Tuesday May 4, 1886, in Chicago, began as a rally in support of striking workers. The strikes began on May 1st in Chicago and other locations in support of an eight hour work day. After several days of strikes, an unknown[…]

The Irish Potato Famine and Its Aftermath, 1845-1849

The immediate effect on Ireland was devastating, and its long-term effects proved immense. Introduction The Great Famine or the Great Hunger (Gaelic: An Gorta Mór or An Drochshaol), known more commonly outside of Ireland as the Irish Potato Famine, is the name given to the famine that occurred in Ireland between 1845 and 1849. The[…]

How the Horrific 1918 Flu Spread across America

The toll of history’s worst epidemic surpasses all the military deaths in World War I and World War II combined. Haskell County, Kansas, lies in the southwest corner of the state, near Oklahoma and Colorado. In 1918 sod houses were still common, barely distinguishable from the treeless, dry prairie they were dug out of. It had[…]

Medieval Hygiene: General Habits and Expectations

Urban centers especially had become centers of plague and disease outbreaks. By Mark CartwrightHistorian Introduction People in the Middle Ages have acquired something of a bad reputation when it comes to cleanliness, especially the peasantry. However, despite the general lack of running water and other modern amenities, there were common expectations of personal hygiene such[…]