"It is true that you may fool all the people some of the time; you can even fool some of the people all the time; but you can’t fool all of the people all the time."

This quote is often attributed to Abraham Lincoln, but it is unclear if he ever said it.

Twenty wooden sculptures, each standing about 27 inches tall, have been discovered in rectangular niches in an adobe wall at the site of Chan Chan, named after the Chan Chan culture which flourished there in northern Peru. Some of the human figures carry staffs and shields. And archaeologists estimate the figurines are about 800 years old. That date makes the figures older than the Chan Chan culture, whose site they were found at. Very interesting!

In 1916, a Manhattan chauffeur George Boyden patented a new way to navigate. Installing a phonograph in the car, which would play audio recordings through a megaphone in front of the steering column. “The talking machine at the proper times will announce the directions whereby the driver will be enabled to follow a predetermined route.” So that the phonograph knows exactly where the car is, it was to be connected to the car's wheels. It would announce instructions only after the car has traveled certain predetermined distances.

“For example, if it is desired to make a record to guide the driver from Chevy Chase to the Treasury Department [in Washington, DC], the record among other things would contain the directions ‘U street turn to the left,’ and knowing the distance between Chevy Chase and the corner of 18th and U, for example, [a record of this distance would be registered with the mechanism] and the desired direction spoken into the machine. From a cylinder prepared in this manner a matrix would be made for the production of permanent records.” Boyden called his invention a "Chart for Vehicles."


"Time is what we want most, but what, alas! we use worst; and for which God will certainly most strictly reckon with us, when Time shall be no more"

William Penn, from "Some Fruits of Solitude" 1693.

Native Americans Used Tobacco Earlier Than Previously Thought

This little limestone pipe recently had a big impact: traces of nicotine detected inside suggest North Americans were using tobacco products at least 3,500 years ago! The carved limestone pipe was found in the 1930s near the Flint River in Alabama, but had been in storage at the Alabama State Repository until a recent team of chemists and archaeologists, working with the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, came looking for it as part of their work examining ancient Native American pipes with modern techniques. And boy did they hit the jackpot with this one.

Tobacco plants were first domesticated in South America, and their introduction to North American native communities was not believed to have happened until around 2,000 to 3,000 years ago. This new finding indicates that tobacco use was established much earlier than previously thought in the what is today the southeastern United States. And that's pretty far inland, suggesting tobacco reached elsewhere on the continent even earlier.

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    HISTORICAL NON-FICTION

    By Lillian Audette

    This blog is a collection of the interesting, the weird, and sometimes the need-to-know about history, culled from around the internet. It has pictures, it has quotes, it occasionally has my own opinions on things. If you want to know more about anything posted, follow the link at the "source" on the bottom of each post. And if you really like my work, buy me a coffee or become a patron!

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