Stories

The Controversy of Columbus Day

Why Columbus Day Courts Controversy

Over 500 year after he "discovered" the New World—kicking off centuries of exploration and colonization of the Americas—Christopher Columbus is still honored with a federal holiday on the second Monday of every October. As historians have continued to dig into the life of ...read more

The Exorcist

The Real Stories Behind Classic Horror Movies

How do you make a horror tale scarier? Just say it’s “based on a true story.” That’s a technique book publishers and movie producers have been using for decades, whether or not the supposedly “true story” adds up. Some movies are inspired by what might be called “real ...read more

Halloween History: Trick or Treating

How Trick-or-Treating Became a Halloween Tradition

Trick-or-treating—setting off on Halloween night in costume and ringing doorbells to demand treats—has been a tradition in the United States and other countries for more than a century. Its origins remain murky but traces can be identified in ancient Celtic festivals, early Roman ...read more