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Dig at Malcolm X’s house finds 18th c. artifacts

An archaeological excavation at the house Malcolm X lived in during his teens and early 20s has surprisingly unearthed artifacts from the 18th century. Built in 1874, the house at 72 Dale Street in Boston’s Roxbury neighborhood belonged to Ella Little-Collins, Malcolm’s half-sister who was his guardian after his mother was committed to a psychiatric [...]

This Day in Ancient History ~ ante diem vi kalendas februarias

ante diem vi kalendas februarias 6 A.D. — dedication of the Temple of Castor and Pollux by the future emperor Tiberius 98 A.D. — death of Nerva (?); dies imperii of Trajan ca. 303 A.D. — martyrdom of Devota 1887 — birth of Carl Blegen, future excavator of Pylos (etc.)

Reviewing the Dare Stone, clue to Lost Colony of Roanoke

The first Dare Stone was found by a California grocer named Louis E. Hammond who claimed to have discovered it while looking for hickory nuts in a swamp on the east bank of the Chowan River near Edenton, North Carolina, in September of 1937. He couldn’t read the inscription which appeared to be in an [...]

This Day in Ancient History ~ kalendae ianuariae

[I don’t think I’ve posted this feature on New Year’s Day in a decade] 291 B.C.– dedication of the temple to Aesculapius on the Tiber Island 194 B.C. — dedication of the temple to Vediovis on the Tiber Island 153 B.C.– beginning in this year (if not before) the Consuls would enter office on this date 7 B.C. […]

This Day in Ancient History ~ pridie kalendas januarias

pridie kalendas januarias 192 A.D. — death of Commodus; dies imperii of Pertinax 1855 — death of Karl Friedrich Hermann (Classicist and antiquary) 1910 — birth of Jeanne Robert (Hellenist)

Lost Caravaggio Nativity recreated

On the night of the 17th or early morning of the 18th of October, 1969, one or two men broke into the Oratory of San Lorenzo in Palermo, Sicily, and stole the Nativity with St. Francis and St. Lawrence by Baroque master Michelangelo Merisi, better known as Caravaggio. They cut the monumental painting (9.7 by [...]

Met acquires Crown of the Andes

The Crown of the Andes, a rare surviving example of 17th and 18th century colonial Spanish gold work, the oldest and largest collection of emeralds in the world and the oldest surviving emerald and gold crown or tiara, has been acquired by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. Famous and coveted for [...]

This Day in Ancient History ~ ante diem v kalendas decembres

ante diem v kalendas decembres 43 B.C. — the lex Titia de triumvirato gave G. Julius Caesar Octavianus, Marcus Antonius, and Marcus Aemilius Lepidus the title of triumviri rei publicae constituendae with near-dictatorial powers for a period of five years 8 B.C. — death of the poet Horace (Quintus Horatius Flaccus) ca 110 A.D. — […]

This Day in Ancient History ~ ante diem xii kalendas decembres

ante diem xii kalendas decembres Mercatus — time to restock the cupboards after the Jupiterfest! 63 A.D. — shipwreck of St. Paul (by one reckoning) 270 (?) — birth of the future emperor Maximinus Daia (more) 284 A.D. — elevation of Diocletian to the rank of Caesar (more) 1846 — birth of Maurice Croiset (one of the […]

Royal Collection restorers find hidden pooper

A painting in the Royal Collection has been hiding a man captured in the moment of answering a call of nature for more than a hundred years. A Village Fair with a Church Behind by 17th century Dutch painter Isack van Ostade is a vibrant, bustling scene of peasants exploring market wares in a fictional [...]

1,000,000 minutes of historical news on YouTube

Remember when British Pathé uploaded their archives to YouTube last year and I was all “Smell ya later, guys. I’ma be watching newsreels for the next 48 hours straight.”? Well, those 85,000 historic films comprising 3,500 hours of footage were a modest little rabbit hole compared to this one. The Associated Press and its partner [...]

Objects from royal yacht shipwreck back in Hawaii

After years of conservation to preserve organic remains, artifacts from the wreck of the 19th century Hawaiian royal yacht the Ha’aheo o Hawai’i have returned to Hawaii. They will become part of the permanent collection of the Kaua’i Museum where they will go on display close to where they spent almost two centuries under the [...]

Exact 3D replica of King Tut’s tomb opens

An exact 3D facsimile of King Tutankhamun’s tomb opened outside the entrance to the Valley of the Kings Wednesday. This ground-breaking approach to heritage preservation and sustainable tourism has been a long time in the making. Zahi Hawass was still in charge in November of 2008 when the Supreme Council of Antiquities approved a project [...]

All of British Pathé’s film archive now on YouTube

If you thought the New York Public Library’s map release was a time sink, you’d best settle your affairs and fully stock your bomb shelter because British Pathé has released its entire archive of 85,000 newsreels, documentaries and raw footage on YouTube. British Pathé was once a dominant feature of the British cinema experience, renowned [...]

1940s Chicago in living color

A rare color film of Chicago made in the 1940s was discovered at an estate sale in the Auburn Gresham neighborhood on the south side of Chicago by a professional film colorist, fortuitously enough. The canister was labeled “Chicago Print 1? which was intriguing enough to entice Jeff Altman to spend $40 to buy the [...]

First day of the Somme in a 24-foot cartoon

The Battle of the Somme began at 7:30 AM on July 1, 1916. At the end of that first day, 20,000 British troops were dead and 40,000 injured, the worst day in British Army history. The French, their numbers weakened by Verdun, had 1,590 casualties, the Germans 10,000-12,000. These horrific figures didn’t stop the battle. [...]

Leicester group's Orpheus Project releases S.P.Q.R. - Roman inspired music CD

An ancient history resource article by Mary Harrsch © 2013 The Orpheus Project, a Leicester based early music group, have released a new CD of ancient Roman-inspired music entitled S.P.Q.R. The album is the result of four years research...Show More Summary

Too Much Johnson found in Italy

Too Much Johnson, in addition to being an irresistible double entendre, is a silent movie made by Orson Welles in 1938 as a companion piece to the eponymous 1894 play by William Gillette being staged by the Mercury Theatre, Welles’ New York City repertory company. The film, much like Gaul, was divided into three parts: [...]

18th c. wooden railway found in Newcastle shipyard

Archaeologists excavating the site of the Neptune Shipyard in Newcastle upon Tyne, northeastern England, before development have discovered a 25-meter (82 feet) stretch of an 18th century wooden railway. These rails weren’t transporting trains — they wouldn’t be invented until the next century — but rather wooden wagons, aka chaldrons, pulled by horses. This is [...]

Color films of Britain in the 1920s

A reader — he knows who he is — pointed me to this video, a remarkable color film of London in 1927 that has been making the Internet rounds the past couple of days. The uploader notes that it’s the work of British film pioneer Claude Friese-Greene using a color process invented by his father [...]

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