The U.S. Once Got A Fourth Of July Card From Over 5 Million Polish People (Cool Weird Awesome 802)

Back in 1926, Poland wanted to thank the US for its aid during World War I, but instead of sending the usual diplomatic letter, they sent papers all around their country and got one out of every six Polish people to sign.

Instead Of West Virginia, The US Could Have Had The State Of Westsylvania (Cool Weird Awesome 792)

Today in 1863, West Virginia became a state - though back in the 18th Century, there were several efforts to meld this land with parts of Pennsylvania, Kentucky and Maryland and create an entirely different entity called Vandalia or Westsylvania.

Dinosaurs Got Sore Throats And Sniffles, Apparently (Cool Weird Awesome 727)

There were cold-like illnesses and sore throats long before there were humans to catch colds and to get sore throats. A research project has found another creature that got sniffles: dinosaurs.

The Highly Photographic Life Of Frederick Douglass (Cool Weird Awesome 716)

Today is the assumed birth date in 1817 or 1818 of Frederick Douglass, who is known for his powerful writing and speeches, but was also probably the most photographed person of his time.

Bob Heft Designed The 50-Star U.S. Flag In High School (Cool Weird Awesome 698)

Today in 1942 was the birthday of Bob Heft, who designed a 50-star US flag for a high school class project as Alaska and Hawaii were on their way to statehood.

By |2024-01-19T06:17:19-05:00January 19, 2022|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , |

Stevie Wonder Went On Tour To Make Martin Luther King Jr. Day A National Holiday (Cool Weird Awesome 696)

On this Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday, we look at how music legend Stevie Wonder and his song "Happy Birthday" helped raise awareness in the effort to create a national holiday in Dr. King's honor. 

Richard Nixon Once Had The White House Guard Dress In Fancy White Uniforms (Cool Weird Awesome 690)

In early 1970 President Richard Nixon introduced new uniforms for the guards at the White House - European-style suits that Americans thought looked better for movie ushers or marching bands.

By |2024-01-09T07:16:37-05:00January 7, 2022|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , , , |

After The Civil War, William Oland Bourne And Veterans Organized A “Left-Armed Corps” (Cool Weird Awesome 654)

For Veterans Day, we have the story of the "Left-Armed Corps," Civil War veterans who'd lost right arms in battle and were re-learning to write left-handed. Poet and newspaper publisher William Oland Bourne organized penmanship contests to encourage their writing, which he believed would help them find jobs and support themselves and their families as they returned to civilian life. Plus: you can learn about the veterans of World War II through a miniature golf course in Texas. 

John Hanson, The Guy Who Was Sort Of President Before George Washington (Cool Weird Awesome 650)

Today in 1781, the first U.S. president, John Hanson, was elected. Of course, being a U.S. president in 1781 was very different from the job George Washington, the first president under the U.S. Constitution, would hold eight years later. Plus: the University of British Columbia has a robot named Robby to paint all the lines on its sports fields. 

By |2023-09-25T09:47:58-04:00November 5, 2021|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , |

Fort Blunder, The Military Installation Built In The Wrong Country (Cool Weird Awesome 646)

Today in 1816, the US military awarded to built a contract for a fort next to Lake Champlain, near the border with Canada. For years crews worked to make the fort strong, until one day when they realized there was a big problem. Plus: people on Tumblr say today is the 1000th birthday of a medieval monk's brother named Werner. 

By |2021-11-01T11:27:46-04:00November 1, 2021|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , , , , |
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