The HMS Challenger Expedition Showed The World What Ocean Life Was Really Like (Cool Weird Awesome 739)

The HMS Challenger spent years studying the world's oceans and the creatures that call them home. Today in 1875, the mission made one of its most astonishing discoveries.

By |2022-03-23T09:06:07-04:00March 23, 2022|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , , , |

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 Time Chicago Had To Be Raised Fourteen Feet

Today in 1837 an act to incorporate the city of Chicago passed. A decade or two later, thousands of workers helped raise many of its buildings up 14 feet to make way for a badly needed wastewater and stormwater system.

By |2022-03-04T06:26:49-05:00March 4, 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 |2022-01-07T08:23:32-05:00January 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 |2021-11-05T08:03:48-04:00November 5, 2021|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , |

The Undertaker Who Developed Automatic Phone Dialing (Cool Weird Awesome 648)

Today in 1892 a phone system that made automated calls - no switchboard operator - began operating in Laporte, Indiana. The first automatic dial network happened, as the story goes, because of a business dispute between two undertakers. Plus: today in 1882, the birthday of John Baxter Taylor, Jr, the first Black American to win an Olympic gold medal.

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: , , , , , , |

The Statue Of Liberty Sat In Pieces Until A Crowdfunding Campaign Got The Job Done (Cool Weird Awesome 644)

Today in 1886, the U.S. dedicated the Statue of Liberty in New York. It was hard times when Lady Liberty first arrived in the country, but eventually a 19th century-style crowdfunding efforts raised enough money to raise the statue onto a pedestal. Plus: the statue came from France, and if you head to Paris you'll see that city has a Lady Liberty too! 

By |2021-10-28T07:49:53-04:00October 28, 2021|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , , |
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