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Houdini exposes spirit trickery to New York clergymen, 1925.

Harry Houdini did not like mystics and believed (rightly) that they were frauds. These are the people who would take people’s money and claim they could contact the dead or get them in touch with long deceased relatives. What Houdini would do every chance he got was to show how everything that occurred in one of these sessions could be reproduced by clever movements of feet, hands, etc. and that it was all a trick.

 

Dunkirk Evacuation, 1940

 

Canadian Troops land at Courseulles at Juno Beach June 6th, 1944

 

Sgt. Leonard Siffleet, an Australian POW captured in New Guinea, about to be beheaded by a Japanese soldier with a shin guntō sword, 1943

 

Italian logistics in the Alps during WW1

 

Bonnie Elizabeth Parker (Bonnie and Clyde)

Bonnie, especially, was enamored by the “gangster” life. She read pulp fiction and movie magazines voraciously and she loved the movies, and thought it was all very romantic. But Clyde Barrow and his on-and-off gang members were absolutely ruthless.

Besides robbery, theft, and kidnapping, they murdered thirteen people, including multiple police officers. When they were ambushed by law enforcement on a country road on the morning of May 24th, 1934, they were hit by 167 bullets. In the trunk of the car, officers found several stolen automatic rifles, sawed-off semi-automatic shotguns, as well as different types of pistols and several thousand rounds of ammunition. Clyde always stole and drove 8-cylinder cars (such as the Ford DeLuxe) because they could outrun the police’s Model Ts, and officials also found thirteen sets of license plates from different states in the trunk, as well.

Though they considered themselves married (but never truly by law, as Bonnie was married to another man), they were buried in separate cemeteries. Bonnie’s family refused to let them be buried side-by-side. Clyde’s epitaph reads: Gone But Not Forgotten, and Bonnie’s reads: As the flowers are all made sweeter by the sunshine and the dew, so this old world is made brighter by the lives of folks like you.

 

Samir, The Iraqi-American military interpreter for Operation Red Dawn poses with a recently captured Saddam Hussain in Ad-Dawr, Iraq. Decemeber 13th, 2003.

“All these years of anger, I couldn’t stop. I tried to say the worst things I could. I told him if he were a real man he would have killed himself. I asked him: ‘Why are you living in that dirty little hole, you bastard? You are a rat. Your father is a rat.’”

In Arabic, Saddam told Samir to shut up. And when Saddam called him a traitor, an enraged Samir silenced his prisoner with a flurry of quick jabs to the face.

“I punched Saddam in the mouth.”

Read Samir’s story here

 

At a Berlin elementary school in 1934, students pay tribute to Nazi leader Adolf Hitler. ⁠

 

The woman in this 106-year-old photo wears a traditional dress that signifies she is married and part of the Mongolian nobility.⁠

 

When thalidomide was prescribed to expecting mothers as a cure for nausea, there was no way to predict the damage it would inflict. ⁠Known as the “children of thalidomide,” these babies were born with severe deformities, including flipper-like appendages, missing body parts, and malformed faces. ⁠

 

A very early photo of the Pantheon in Rome, captured in 1860.

The Pantheon is one of the best preserved buildings from ancient Rome. The current building was completed as a temple around 125AD, but turned into a church in the 7th century. The twin bell towers were removed in the late 19th century.

 

Prostitutes on display in Yoshiwara during the Meiji period, 1882

 

Prostitutes posing as “working girls” in Dawson, Canada during the gold rush 1900

 

Tauentzielgirl team (lower class prostitutes) in Weimar Berlin, 1920’s.

 

The guy on the left is named William West. The guy on the right is also named William West.

The first William West was sent to Leavenworth Prison in Kansas in 1901.

When the second William West arrived at the same prison for a minor crime two years later in 1903, he was told that he was already in prison serving a life sentence for murder.

After some confusion, the staff realised that they had two inmates with the same name that looked pretty much the same.

The two men were not related in any way, and law enforcement quickly realised that a more reliable method of identification was necessary.

The case of William West and William West changed the face of forensics. Fingerprinting soon became the standard method for identifying criminals.

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