Historical Events

From the Age of Enlightenment to the Christmas Truce, learn about some of history's most pivotal events.

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Ridiculous History: When Artists Fooled the Nazis With a Ghost Army

Or why combat skills aren't always necessary to gain the upper hand in war.

World's Oldest Veggie Casserole Found in the Sahara Desert

Prehistoric people cooked food in ceramic pots, and the oldest known evidence of cooked vegetables has now been found in the Sahara desert.

New Discoveries Reveal a Surprisingly Important Ancient Greek City

New discoveries at ruins near the central Greek town of Vlochós suggest the area was more important in ancient times than previously thought.

How Pacifism Works

Pacifism is more than just opposition to war. There are many types of pacifism, and some peace movements have successfully changed laws. But is pacifism still a valid concept in today's world of terrorism?

Ridiculous History: London Had a Train for the Dead

From 1854 to 1941, the London Necropolis Railway carried the dead and the living who mourned them alike to the largest cemetery in the world.

10 Scare-inducing Moments in History

Here are just 10 of the countless events in our history that have stoked fear among the masses — and rightfully so.

10 Monumental Events That Were Overshadowed by Other Events

Where were you when Farrah Fawcett died? Chances are you don't remember. But if we threw out Michael Jackson's name that might ring a bell. Guess what? Both events were on the same day.

Ridiculous History: When Warships Dazzled With Psychedelic Camouflage

From more than 100 years ago and up until World War II, navies used wild "razzle dazzle camouflage" paint patterns and colors to thwart enemies.

How the Hunt for D.B. Cooper Worked

After nearly half a century capturing the attention and imaginations of millions, the infamous D.B. Cooper plane-hijacking case has been closed. Will we ever know the true culprit?

10 Things Done Completely Out of Spite

Spite is not just for kids with broken toys. Many adults have gone to unbelievable lengths to pay back someone who did 'em wrong. Here are 10 classic examples.

Ridiculous History: 150 Years Ago, Men Killed for the Eggs of These Birds

The Gold Rush-era Egg War of 1863 saw business competitors in San Francisco engage in lethal violence... over eggs?

Mysterious First Settlers of Madagascar Identified by Ancient Seeds

Linguistic and cultural clues have long suggested Madagascar's prehistoric human settlers came from Southeast Asia, but now scientists have found physical proof.

Watch: China's Ancient Buddhist Cave Art Perfectly Recreated in L.A.

A new exhibition creates exact replicas of cave art, found in a remote region along the Silk Road and spanning centuries, cultures and styles.

Ridiculous History: Bears, Raccoons — and Alligators? — in the White House

The presidential digs have housed more than a few untraditional pets through the years. Rebecca the Raccoon and Josiah the Badger are but two.

10 Terrible Cases of Mistaken Identity

Identity errors have led to a range of awfulness, from lengthy prison sentences to the wrong person being declared dead.

Queen Nefertiti in Secret Tomb Behind King Tut? It's Not That Simple

Controversies surround not just the possible existence of hidden chambers, but even the ability of Egyptologists to undertake the search for them.

Underwater Dig Finds Proof Humans Settled U.S. Earlier Than Thought

Mastodon remains and stone knives discovered in Florida show human activity predating the Clovis people, long thought to be the region's first human settlers.

Ridiculous History: That Time Wine Flowed Out of the Taps

On the first Sunday in October, a fountain in the Italian town of Marino flows with wine. One year, however, things didn't go as planned.

Shunning the Suez: Tankers Take the Long Route to Save Cash

With oil prices dropping, a report showed some cargo ships found it cheaper to sail around South Africa, rather than paying $465,000 to go through the Suez Canal.

Ridiculous History: The Great Moon Hoax of 1835

In 1835, a newspaper ran a series of articles on lunar discoveries, leading papers to fly off the shelf. There was just one problem.

Ridiculous History: Ranchers Hacked Barbed Wire Fences to Create Phone Lines

A phone call from an early-1900s rural homestead was at the forefront of communications technology, and farms were the most networked communities of the time.

Ridiculous History: When Scientists Hid Under Beds to Do Research

Imagine a researcher eavesdropping on your conversation from underneath your bed and recording it for an experiment. That really happened.

How Operation Plowshare Worked

How to go from a Bible verse to carving canals with nukes in just a few easy steps — almost. Learn how operation plowshare worked at HowStuffWorks.

Racial History: Oregon Was Whites-only Until 1926

Think systemic racism was only a problem in the Southern slave states? Think again. It was alive and well in the Northwest, too. Is it still?

Ridiculous History: The 1919 Boston Molasses Flood Killed and Injured Dozens

Imagine 2.3 million gallons of molasses pouring down city streets in a massive, lethal wave. That was the scene in Boston on January 15, 1919.