The Iroquois Confederacy

It is long, but it is good. I promise. The Iroquois Confederacy, or as they called themselves, the Hodenosaunee, were an important pre-Columbian society and government. In fact, their democratic system had strong influence on today's US Constitution. But it was also a family-based system. Which is definitely NOT what today's US government is based on.

The First Animated Film Was Argentinian

Argentine Quirino Cristiani created the very first animated film in the world, El Apóstol, in 1917. The film was 70 minutes long and had over 58,000 frames. It was a political satire, and well-received, but a fire unfortunately destroyed the only known copy. Today El Apóstol is considered a lost film.

Abraham Lincoln Doesn't Mind Being Called A Fool

In fact, his sense of humor greatly facilitated his sustained relations with the testy [Secretary of War Edwin M.Stanton and the pompous [Secretary of the Treasury Salmon P.Chase. For instance, when a delegation, which he had sent to Stanton with orders to grant their request, returned and reported that not only had Stanton refused to do so, but had actually called Lincoln a fool for sending such an order, Lincoln, with mock astonishment, inquired: “Did Stanton call me a fool?” – and, upon being reassured upon that point, remarked: “Well, I guess I had better go over and see Stanton about this. Stanton is usually right.”

Quoted from "Lincolns Humor" and Other Essays, by P. B. Thomas

How Much Is This Teapot Worth?

A cracked teapot missing its lid recently sold to the Metropolitan Museum in New York City for £460,000. It was bought recently at a British auction for just £15. What??? Turns out, this teapot was made in South Carolina in the late 1700s by John Bartlam, the first American porcelain manufacturer. This piece is only the seventh example of Bartlam porcelain to have been rediscovered. And it is the only known surviving Bartlam teapot. Making it worth a pretty penny!

No More Executions

The first country in the world to abolish the death penalty for all crimes was Venezuela, in 1863. It is still in their constitution!

Magical Man Survived On 3 to 4 Hours of Sleep

Former American president Lyndon Johnson averaged only 3 to 4 hours of sleep a night and worked most of the rest; his wife once said, “Lyndon acts as if there is never going to be a tomorrow.” He would sleep from 1 am or 2 am to 5 am, work until lunch, then take a brief nap around 2 or 3 pm, before working until the early hours of the morning. These "double days" were exhausting for everyone who worked with him. And they were probably a political advantage for Johnson, who could get more work done in a day than his opponents.

He once called a congressman at 3 a.m. to discuss a piece of pending legislation. When Johnson asked, “Were you asleep?” the congressman thought quickly and said, “No, Mr. President, I was just lying here hoping you’d call.”

Human-Sloth Conflict Documented In Footprints

Fossilized footprints from a dry lake bed in White Sands National Monument, in New Mexico, divulge an extraordinary interaction between humans and a ground sloth 10,000 to 15,000 years ago. Human tracks superimposed on the prints of the giant sloth show how people carefully stalked the beast. The sloth’s trail suggests it then employed a series of evasive maneuvers and even reared up on its hind legs, likely to defend itself.

It is not known exactly why giant sloths went extinct near the end of the last Ice Age, but human hunting may have contributed to their demise.

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    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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