"...we should pass over all biographies of 'the good and the great,' while we search carefully the slight records of wretches who died in prison, in Bedlam, or upon the gallows."
~Edgar Allan Poe

Friday, August 4, 2017

Weekend Link Dump

This week's Link Dump is sponsored by another of our Cats From the Past!

Meet Archie.  He was my very first cat.  He was a stray--probably about a year or so old--rescued by a neighbor of ours.  When I was two years old, she gave him to me as a Christmas present.  You might say he and I grew up together.  I was a solitary child who preferred the company of animals to people (some things never change,) and I thought of Archie as my best friend.  He was an extremely intelligent guy, who always retained an air of a tough "street cat."  He was also the only cat I've ever met who loved to be bathed.  In the summer, to combat fleas, I'd give him a bath and then blow-dry him (which he also greatly enjoyed.)

He also liked sitting in kitchen cupboards.

Archie passed away at the age of about 20, after a very brief illness.  It was the first time anyone I loved died.

Where the hell is Alexander the Great's father buried?  Now we know!

What the hell is ball lightning?  Someone thinks he knows!

Who the hell was the mystery skeleton of Centralia?

How the hell old is the Sphinx?

Watch out for those haunted railroads!

Watch out for those bogus ghosts!

Watch out for the Angeles National Forest!

Watch out for those exploding zombie caterpillars!

A 300 year old ramble through London.

So, this author missed his deadline by 30 years.

Escaping the guillotine.

Shorter version:  Kids, take your smartphone and smash it with a brick.

A look at Paris in the summer of 1820.

The suicide of a party girl.

An electrifying optician.

Summer in the City, early 19th century style.

One woman's late 19th century travel journal.

It can be argued that "Little Red Riding Hood" is not for kids.

Tutankhamen's futon. 

Photos of a county fair, 1900.

The Fortean side of cholera.

Georgian era sea bathing.

Early 19th century historical re-enactments.

The busy life of Caroline of Brunswick.

In which Abigail Adams disses Alexander Hamilton.  (As a side note, I had an American history teacher who, one day, announced that he would tell us everything we need to know about Hamilton.  He opened a biography of AH, read the opening line, "Alexander Hamilton was a bastard," and slammed the book shut.  That was a fun class.)

The Age of the Bluestocking.

The man who drove blindfolded.

"I was a cat for the CIA."

Grace Darling, Victorian heroine.

The missing miner and his murdered widow.

Those magic words, "cheese knife lobotomy."  That should give you enough information to know if you want to read on or not.

In related news, this week's Advice From Thomas Morris tells how to make your very own rupture!

A murder in Regency Britain.

Ghosts of the Capitol.

Some new theories about the Mayans.

The Baldwinsville murder mystery.

Spiritualists and the insane asylums.

Ancient Romans as archaeologists.

This crow taught herself to fly, which I'll bet is more than you can say.

Staten Island cows go wild!

The "Cook's Tourists" of WWI.

A prolix funerary inscription.

The "Fasting Girl."

And that's that for this week. See you on Monday, when we'll look at one of American history's most romantic disappearances. In the meantime, here's more summer music:


  1. Oh jeez that letter from Abigail Adams. It's nice to see someone speak honestly about our new national Lord and Savior. I'm with your history teacher - Hamilton was a bastard. Of course, I had a literature teacher at OCC announce on the first day of class that Poe was a hack and we would not be bothering with him. I left class right then and dropped that one. I guess there's no accounting... For teachers I mean.

    1. That showed admirable restraint. I would have thrown something at that teacher.

  2. Archie must have been quite the teacher to a little girl growing up with him. I'm sure his lessons are still valid today.

    And moving to another hero, I often wondered what happened to Grace Darling. It's a shame she died so young. I have seen numerous images from the Victorian era of women, accustomed to the sea and the shore, rowing boats in heavy weather. These, and the fact that no one seems surprised that Grace rowed a boat in a storm - the excite was, of course, over why she was rowing - suggests that young women growing up along the coasts in those days rowed boats as a matter of course (Though I doubt that Grace was quite as lithe and slender as some description have her; one doesn't handle a boat in stormy seas with the arms of a runway model.)

    Though she is gone, may Miss Darling live forever.

  3. Congratulations on being another member of the "I Have Blow-Dried a Cat" club. I would never have tried this at home, but the very first time I rescued a litter of stray kittens, I found a pet store that would take them--on the condition that I helped give all the kittens flea baths, and (yes), blow-dried them afterwards. I have to say, they did not enjoy this experience as much as your kitty did.

    (Sorry if this comment went through twice, I am getting weird error messages from WordPress today.)


Comments are moderated. The author of this blog reserves the right to delete remarks from spammers, trolls, idiots, lunatics, jerks, and anyone who happens to annoy me on days when I've gotten out of bed the wrong way. Which is usually any day ending with a "y."