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Category: Digitized Newspapers

Elmer McCurdy: Traveling Corpse

Posted by: Heather Thomas

Dead outlaw, will travel. In life, Elmer McCurdy was a hard-drinking drifter. In death, he crisscrossed the country touring the carnival circuit, hit the Hollywood scene, and even made it to TV! The bizarre tale of Elmer’s journey from varmint to traveling corpse started in Oklahoma when he and his gang of bandits robbed the …

A child carrying a bundle of newspapers in one hand, the other arm held high with a copy of the Anchorage Daily Times, the headline reading

Have a “Safe and Sane” Fourth of July

Posted by: Malea Walker

Lost limbs and fingers, burns, blinding explosions, lockjaw and death. In the early 1900s, fireworks had not yet been perfected. Dangerous concoctions of explosives were used as an exciting way to celebrate our country’s independence, but the price was steep. Giant firecrackers, cannon fire, firearms, and rockets were just some of the loud and bright, …

Al Capone and the Lindbergh Baby

Posted by: Heather Thomas

It takes a thief to catch a thief. That was how imprisoned mob boss Al Capone proposed to bring the kidnapped Lindbergh baby home safely. On March 2, 1932, from his cell in Cook County Jail in Chicago, one day after the son of famous aviator Charles Lindbergh had been kidnapped, “Scarface” Al Capone offered …

A child carrying a bundle of newspapers in one hand, the other arm held high with a copy of the Anchorage Daily Times, the headline reading

Mabel Stark: World Famous Trainer of Big Jungle Cats

Posted by: Amber Paranick

What are you afraid of? “Subways!” Mabel Stark, renowned Bengal tiger trainer, told the New-York Tribune in 1922. “Trains roaring through the tunnel terrify me more than any beast I’ve ever met,” she said. Following a nervous breakdown, the former nurse sought a “simpler & easier” profession: training wild jungle cats for the big top.  …

Royal Weddings

Posted by: Heather Thomas

Why do we commoners get a kick out of royal weddings? Maybe it’s the garb: brides in white silk with laced veils, grooms decked out in full military dress. Or the pomp and circumstance: ancient rituals, gilded carriages, thousands of cheering spectators. Or it could be the simple desire to watch a fairy tale turn …

A child carrying a bundle of newspapers in one hand, the other arm held high with a copy of the Anchorage Daily Times, the headline reading

The Founding Fathers: Life, Liberty and…Beer!

Posted by: Arlene Balkansky

As Prohibition loomed, Budweiser ads celebrated George Washington, James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, and other “Framers of the Constitution” as “moderate” drinkers of “barley-malt brews.” Historic details specific to each Founding Father were interwoven with an overall strategy of praising them and the Constitution for guaranteeing “Religious, Commercial and Personal Liberty,” and for lauding …