A 300-year-old hunt for the unsung hero of Salzburg.
     
He made a name for himself organizing the world’s most important economic conference, only to have it tarnished by an outrageous accusation.
     
During WWII, 36 American conscientious objectors volunteered as subjects in a brutal science experiment to measure the body's response to starvation.
     
A remote bay in Alaska is home to an odd and occasionally catastrophic geology. In 1958, a handful of people experienced this firsthand.
     
The 15th-century scholar who upset the Korean aristocracy by creating a native script for the Korean language, and thus wean it off Chinese characters.
     

Advertisment


A 1930s effort to reach the Earth's northernmost point via antiquated submarine.
     
Charles Waterton was a pioneer of conservation. He was also extremely nutty, in ways that suggest he may have over-identified with his animal subjects.
     
The tumultuous true story of the life of a fast food icon.
     
The story of the Beale Ciphers; a set of three encrypted notes from the nineteenth century purportedly describing the location of hidden treasure. Only one has been deciphered.
     
On the ancient Japanese Buddhist practice of self-mummification.
     
-027- Faxes From The Far Side by Damn Interesting
     
When women in a poorly administered Oregon town hacked an election in order to repair the town's problems.
     
A happy-tenth-birthday-to-us retrospective.
     
As night fell over the East German town of Pössneck on the evening of 14 September 1979, most of the town's citizens were busy getting ready for bed. But not Günter Wetzel. The mason was in his attic, hunched over an old motor-driven sewing machine, desperately working to complete his secret project. Wetzel and his friend H. Peter Strelzyk and their families had been working on their plan for more than a year and a half, and by now the authorities were looking for them. They were nearly out of time. Wetzel had feigned illness in order to procure five weeks off from work, and during that time he and his friend had collected the materials and laboured over the construction together. This would be their last chance. Earlier in the day, a strong wind had arisen from the north. These were exactly the conditions that the two families had been waiting for. Around 10:00pm, Wetzel put the finishing touches on the massive patchwork project, then rounded up Strelzyk and prepared to leave. Two hours later the families were en route to a predetermined clearing on a hill by way of automobile and moped. The other components of their project—a steel platform, a homemade gas burner, and a powerful fan—were already packed and ready to go. It was time to attempt the escape.
     
"I don’t think it belongs here." Such was the assessment of Bob Vinson, the graveyard shift supervisor at Harvey's Wagon Wheel Casino in Lake Tahoe, Nevada. The "here" Vinson referred to was a nook just outside the telephone equipment room in the employees-only portion of the second floor of the hotel. The "it" was a curious piece of equipment of unknown origin loitering conspicuously in the cramped side room. It was a metallic gray box about the size of a desk, with a smaller box attached on top near the rear right corner. The front face of the smaller box was an incomprehensible control panel occupied by 28 metal toggle switches in five neat rows, each labeled with a numbered sticker. All of these switches were situated in the down position except for #23, which was toggled up—an oddly ominous asymmetry. It was approximately 6:30am on Tuesday, 26 August 1980, and although Bob Vinson had been on shift all night long, he hadn't heard any large equipment delivery commotion from his nearby office, and he was sure this thing hadn't been there an hour earlier. Whoever had left the machine had taken the time to place each corner on blocks of wood, and these blocks pressed deep dimples into the red-orange carpet, suggesting that the equipment had significant mass. In spite of its resemblance to some kind of manufactured electromechanical office machine, it had no power cord, and no obvious power switch, just the 28 enigmatic toggles. To add alarm to intrigue, Vinson had found that some of the keyholes for the doors leading into the area had been hastily jammed using what appeared to be toothpicks and glue. An envelope with "Harvey's Management" typewritten on one side lay on the carpet alongside the object. Vinson was reasonably suspicious that the envelope did not contain anything as harmless as an invoice. "Stay here," Vinson instructed the custodian who had been examining the mystery object with him. "Don’t touch it. Don’t let anyone fool with it. I’ll be right back." Vinson soon returned with companions, having summoned members of Harvey's Wagon Wheel Casino security, who had subsequently summoned sheriff 's deputies and the fire department. After prodding the envelope with a broomstick to ensure it wasn't booby-trapped, those to whom it was concerned gingerly extracted three pages of typed text from the envelope. The letter claimed that this device was a bomb.
     

1 - 15 of 38