HISTORY Lists

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8 Things You May Not Know About Mark Twain

Check out eight fascinating facts about the world-famous author, including why his riverboat career was marred by tragedy and who served as the real-life model for Huck Finn.

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7 Failed Predictions from History

From a July 2 Independence Day to a doomed Civil War general’s last words, get the facts on seven predictions that were famously off the mark.

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7 Famous Mayflower Descendants

From Humphrey Bogart to Julia Child, find out about seven famous Americans whose relatives came over on the Mayflower.

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6 People You Didn’t Know Were WWII Spies

From baseball player Moe Berg to “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” author Roald Dahl, learn about six famous people who once were wartime secret agents.

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10 (Allegedly) Mad Monarchs

Tabloid fodder for the ages, mad monarchs have been the focal point of fascination, and controversy for as long as there have been human rulers.

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7 Early Robots and Automatons

From Leonardo Da Vinci’s android to a French-made artificial duck, learn more about seven early mechanical wonders.

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7 Historical Haunts

From an abandoned prison in Ohio to the historic Colorado hotel that inspired Stephen King to write “The Shining,” explore seven spooky spots where ghosts and other paranormal phenomena have been reported.

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6 Modern Capitals With Ancient Roots

An ancient city that manages to stay inhabited—and important—over thousands of years is a surprisingly rare occurrence. Here are six of the most fascinating examples.

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6 Historical Figures Who Were Kicked Out of School

From Edgar Allan Poe to Salvador Dalí, learn more about six historical figures who were expelled from school.

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5 Famous Company Towns

From Pullman, Illinois, to Hershey, Pennsylvania, learn about life in towns built and once controlled by a single company.

Zhu Yuanzhang after assuming power as the Hongwu Emperor

7 Things You May Not Know About the Ming Dynasty

Check out seven surprising facts about the dynasty that made China a global power.

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5 Daring Slave Escapes

From a slave who mailed himself to freedom to a husband and wife team of impostors, learn the true stories behind five of American history’s most audacious slave escapes.