History Podcasts

Bet You Didn't Know: Pirates

Bet You Didn't Know: Pirates


Bet You Didn’t Know…[Little Known Interesting Facts about WWI]

Here’s a list of little known yet very interesting facts about the century-old First World War, the first conflict fought on a global scale.

Interesting Fact 1: WWI saw the fall of corset use and the rise of bra. As a matter of fact, the lingerie industry use measurements taken from the uniforms of WWI soldiers for bra sizes UNTIL NOW.

Because of the great demand for metal during the First World War, the use of corsets waned and bra became the “in” thing.

However, ladies, if you are faced with bra size woes, that is perfectly understandable because the bra sizes used until now were based from the upper uniform measurements of WWI soldiers.

Interesting Fact 2: Of toothbrushes, razors and Kleenexes

Before WWI broke out, Americans never had much care about their oral health and brushing teeth was not regularly practiced. When the United States joined the war and men signed up for the army, officials saw many recruits with rotting teeth they declared inadequate dental hygiene a security risk to the nation.

Safety razors were invented way back in the late 18th century but only became popular when WWI broke out. It was so because Gillette approached the US Armed Forces and struck out a deal to include Gillette safety razors and blades in every enlisted man’s standard issued gear.

On the other hand, tissues manufactured by Kleenex were employed as gas mask filters during the Great War.

Interesting Fact 3: The mysterious sleepless man — WWI soldier Paul Kern.

Paul Kern was a Hungarian soldier who served during the Great War. During the said conflict, he was shot in the right temple injuring his frontal brain and doctors deemed him as good as dead because of that. However, Kern did not die. He just acquired a new ability — his inability to fall asleep.

The doctors who examined him doomed him again to an early death due to his new lifestyle spent in “wakefulness”. But over two decades came and went and Paul Kern still lived without sleeping a wink throughout those times. He became a medical marvel in his time due to that.

Interesting Fact 4: The animals’ contribution to WWI efforts

The Great War didn’t only involve men in fighting animals were also involved as well.

As a matter of fact, the number of horses who died during the First World War in the Western Front would come in par to the number of soldiers lost — about 8 million.

The Great War also had animal heroes. One such example was Cher Ami, a messenger pigeon during the conflict. One time, he saved 198 soldiers despite being wounded himself.

Another great animal hero during the Great War was Stubby, the first dog to be given rank within the US Armed Forces. Stubby had the ability to sense gas poisoning even before it was carried out, had the knack of finding wounded soldiers in no-man’s-land and once caught a German spy. He was a Purple Heart recipient and received other war decorations as well for his bravery and loyalty.

Interesting Fact 5: The youngest WWI serviceman was only 8.

Momčilo Gavrić was a corporal in the Serbian Army at the very young age of 8. At 10, he was promoted to the rank of Lance Sergeant.

Momčilo Gavrić came into the Serbian Army after his family was massacred by the Austro-Hungarian soldiers and his home set on fire during the outbreak of WWI. He is considered to be the youngest soldier to have served during the First World War.

Interesting Fact 6: There was an “attack of the dead men”, literally, during WWI.

The Osowiec Fortress became the battleground to one of WWI’s most interesting fights — the one dubbed as the “attack of the dead men”. The fight was between the Russians and the Germans.

It was in August 6, 1915 when the Germans decided to use poison gases against the Russian troops who defended the fortress. After the gassing, thinking that they had killed their enemies, the former began advancing. To their surprise and utter horror, what was left of the Russian army – just about 60 men – counter-attacked. Their uniforms were blood-stained as they were coughing up blood due to the poison gases thrown to them earlier which damaged their lung tissues.

The Germans, in fear of this “army of dead men”, ran for their lives.

Interesting Fact 7: The rise of the concrete ships

Yes, there are ships made of concrete still in existence up to this day. They date as far back as WWI and WWII. Concrete ships were built during the Great War as there was steel shortage during the said conflict.

To date, there are only ten remaining concrete ships in existence and only one of them, the SS Peralta, comes from the WWI-era. These concrete ships now serve as a huge floating breakwater on the Malaspina Strait which is situated in the city of Powell River in British Columbia, Canada.

Interesting Fact 8: Branded a coward

Parachutes were apparently already in existence during the First World War. However, he life-saving gear was not a standard issue in the British and American armies. Army officers and the pilot themselves believed it was cowardly to use a parachute and thought that the contraption only encouraged the flyers to abandon their planes when they caught fire or were attacked instead of bringing them to the ground.

Parachutes were issued to American pilots only a year after WWI ended — in 1919.

Interesting Fact 9: The need for passports

Travelers needn’t have passports before WWI broke out. They could go just about to any country without having have to bring any identifying documents.

However, when WWI broke out, borders started closing and border inspections began to be implemented. Thus, the precursor to the modern passport – an identification paper with a photograph pasted on it – was born out of that need.

Interesting Fact 10: The anomaly of numbers

Harry Patch, the last male WWI veteran died in July 25, 2009 at the age of exactly 111 years, 1 month, 1 week and 1 day. Oddly enough, the First World War also ended on the 11 th day of the 11 th month [November] at exactly the 11 th hour.


Bet You Didn't Know: Pirates - HISTORY

Thought this would be cool to start about the History of Items, Inventions or Inventors that the average person just didn't know. Just the basics.

So i'll start and that is Bet you didn't know the history of the. Electric Chair.

The father of the Electric Chair Alfred P Southwick who got this idea in 1881 when he observed an intoxicated man touch an electric generator an die of Electrocution. Since he was a dentist he got the idea after treating his patients in the dentist chair so devised it after that.

The debate then raged between Thomas Edison who pushed for DC current and Nikola Tesla who pushed AC current back then. Edison actually pushed for the AC version (Tesla's) for the procedure as he thought it show that was to lethal and scare consumers as too dangerous and select his DC form for all usages in the country.

After much debate and ranker the first ever Electrocution was set in July, 7, 1890 as William Kemmler would be the first person ever in New Yorks Auburn Prison. It was botched badly as the 2000 volts failed to kill him as they had to repeatedly shock him over eight minutes before he died. He caught fire and all his blood vessels ruptured all over him. George Westinghouse (famed inventor) stated that ''they would have done a better job with an Axe'' as he was against it.

The first women to die from it was Martha M Place in Sing Sing prison in March 20, 1899.

Anyway there's more to it but that's it in a nutshell as now you can say you know the basic history of the Electric Chair.

harry chickpea

I found it humorous that the French Guillotine was a cost cutting measure. Rather than pay a number of executioners who would have to spell each other from the strain, the machine allowed the task to fall to a single man. At the time of the Revolution, the position of executioner was held by Charles-Henri Sanson, who decapitated as many as 300 people in 3 days. FWIW, the guillotine wasn't the first such mechanism, nor was Dr. Guillotin the designer.

The thin red ribbon worn around the neck by women of the time, imitating the bloody separation of head and body, was considered a fashion statement.

The guillotine was usually run by a crew of three men. The fella that held the victim's head still was called the photographer.

The Germans used the guillotine too.

The guillotine was usually run by a crew of three men. The fella that held the victim's head still was called the photographer.

The Germans used the guillotine too.

The Gullotine didn't require anyone to hold the victim's head-that was the novel feature.

Scotland had a beheading machine called ''the Maiden'', and in Germany there was the Fallbrett, which used a wooden board to break the neck and squeeze the head off.

The improvement was the sliding, pivoting table that held the subject immobile to be positioned in the 'lunette'.

Once the condemmed was on the table, he was as good as dead-less work for the crew, though.

No one has ever been sure that the severed head lost conciousness, some blinked and moved their jaws for several minutes.

Compared to some of the horrible forms of death inflicted before, the machine was an improvement.

Betcha didn't know that the work of a Russian physicist back in 1919 to create a proximity sensor for use as a "burgler alarm" to secure buildings lead to a musical instrument that is played without touching it. Known today as a theremin, it was the darling of Lenin, Gene Roddenbury (think Star Trek theme song), and other sci-fi producers. Don't know if Mr. Spock or other Vulcans played them, but Hannibel Lector did.

I am not even going to try to explain how it works, but if you've adjusted rabbit ears on top of a TV and the picture was good as long as you stood there, then you get the idea! LOL

Let's all stop by Dr. Lecter's house for an evening of music-he says he'd be glad to have us for supper!

(Lecter's Lexicon defines an airplane as being much like a lobster-there's a lot you have to throw away, but what's inside can be quite tasty.)

The idea originated in Australia in 1924, First with Holden Coachworks (Now General Motors Holden "GMH"), Producing a vehicle known as a "Roadster Pickup", Using modified roadster bodies, That they built for Chevrolet and Dodge.

Then, In 1932..Ford Australia, Receieved a letter from a farmers wife, Complaining that her husband needed a vehicle, For farmwork and to take her to church on sundays. So the designers at Ford, Combined the new Coupe Body, With an Intergrated load well and the first "Ute", Rolled off the assembly line in 1934.


GMH didn't produce an 'Australian Built' Car/Utility, Until 1951. The 48-215 "FX" Holden, A few years later (1960), Ford Australia aquired the US Ford "Falcon" brand, Starting with the "XK".


12 Interesting Facts About ‘Jurassic Park’ We Bet You Didn’t Know!

by Aswathy Gopinath Oct 19, 2015, 5:26 pm Comments Off on 12 Interesting Facts About ‘Jurassic Park’ We Bet You Didn’t Know!

‘Jurassic Park’ is perhaps the best-known and best-loved movie of all time. Bringing together dinosaur and man, the movie creates an enthralling and equally terrifying image of what it would be like if the two creatures were to co-exist. In fact, the movie had such a great impact on people that ever since, the number of students enrolling for paleontology courses in colleges has increased exponentially. If that’s not proof enough, I don’t know what is.

However well-known the movie might be, there are still some bits of it you might not be aware of and you might be the biggest ‘Jurassic Park’ connoisseur there is. Here we present to you 12 mind-blowing facts about ‘Jurassic Park’!

1. According to NASA, Jurassic Park (1993) is the 7th most scientifically accurate film.

Image source: www.impawards.com

Other movies on the Most Realistic Films list include “Gattaca” (1997) and “Contact” (1997) �” (2009) and “Armageddon” (1998) featured in the Worst Sci-Fi Movies list.(source)

2. In the scene where the T-Rex breaks into the Ford Explorer in the movie, the screams were real the glass was not supposed to break.

In the very first attack shown in the movie, when the T-Rex slams into the Explorer, the glass wasn’t meant to break. However, it did, and the resulting screams were actually of genuine fear.(source)

3. The seemingly unrealistic computer system in Jurassic Park does, in fact, exist.

Called the “File System Navigator” – “fsn” for short – the computer system that featured in the movie, despite its seemingly impossible appearance, does actually exist, although it was never developed into a fully functional file manager.(source)

4. The T-Rex’s roar in Jurassic Park combines the sounds of a baby elephant, a tiger, and an alligator, and its breath is the sound of a whale’s blow.

Additionally, the sounds when the T-Rex was tearing apart a Gallimimus in the movie was made by a dog attacking a rope toy the sound of the T-Rex’s footsteps were made by crashing cut sequoias on the ground.(source)

5. The T-Rex in Jurassic World is the same T-Rex from the end of the 1993 Jurassic Park movie the scars on its side are from its fight with the velociraptors in the first movie.

Image credit: Universal Pictures(taken from)

Housed in the “T-Rex Kingdom” in Jurassic World, it is the only T-Rex in the jurassic park, and is one of its most popular attractions.(source)

6. It took 6 hours to capture one frame of the rain-soaked T-Rex in Jurassic Park.

The addition of rain to the scene in which the T-Rex appears in the movie took up to 6 hours per frame. Add to that the fact that the foam dinosaur on set got into the habit of soaking up water and shaking violently, scaring everyone on set, and it clearly wasn’t an easy job.(source)


Bet You Didn't Know: Pirates - HISTORY

&ldquoThere is no way the psychic could have known that!&rdquo

I have been researching psychics since 2002, and I have heard this phrase too many times to count. Mentalist and psychic expert Mark Edward would answer that with &ldquoOh yes, there is.&rdquo Let&rsquos look at ten ways psychics could know that, with real life examples. I bet you don&rsquot know them all!

1. These people are very good, slick, practiced, and fast.

Hollywood Medium&rsquos Tyler Henry claims he has already given over a thousand readings, and he is only twenty-two years old. When you look at people who have been in the psychic business for ten or more years, those people are on auto-pilot the questions and statements flow out of them naturally. To an audience member who is watching them for the first time, they appear to be making statements that seem specific, but if you watch enough of these readings you will see some of the same &ldquospecific&rdquo statements come up over and over again. Old photographs in a box, the sound of keys or coins in a pocket, a fire in the house, someone fell off a horse, a bird came into the house, a garden with roses&mdashall are generalities that seem specific.

2. They use stooges, and sometimes it&rsquos you.

I&rsquove attended several psychic group readings, and it is pretty typical to arrive early and find that the first couple rows are saved for friends and the best fans. I purchase the VIP passes to these events and never get to sit in the very front row. When I chat up these front row women (yes, they are usually women) I discover that they attend multiple shows in different cities. They talk comfortably and with statements such as &ldquohe usually does this in his shows&rdquo or &ldquoin his show a couple days ago, he said/did this&hellip.&rdquo Chip Coffey reserves a segment of his show for something called &ldquoCoffey Talk,&rdquo which is where he chats with the audience and answers questions. It was clear from the questions that several of his fans knew a lot about the TV shows Coffey had been on years ago. Some were fairly obscure questions only a true fan would know to ask. Later on, during the psychic part of the evening, he &ldquoread&rdquo one of these women with some specific statements. I guess you would call these people psychic groupies they are unaware that they are being used as stooges and are honored that their dead family members always seem to come through at each show. The regular audience who is seeing Coffey for the first time think he is really accurate and don&rsquot realize what is going on.

Also, in that same event Coffey said that he was getting a message about a psychic business one of the audience women was thinking of opening. He made it sound like he had received this information from the spirit world, but I knew he had been chatting with the woman during the break.

For Penn & Teller&rsquos Bullshit! Show &ldquoTalking to the Dead,&rdquo Mark Edward examined the incident of psychic Rosemary Althea connecting with a couple&rsquos daughter who had committed suicide. Althea snapped her fingers and said, &ldquoShe was gone like that,&rdquo and the parents nodded their heads and wiped away tears. Mark explained to the show&rsquos producer that there was something not right with that you don&rsquot want to say suicide unless you are very sure. The producer interviewed the parents, and sure enough, they said that Althea had done readings for them before and the couple was friends with Althea&rsquos publisher who brought them to this show.

At another psychic show Mark and I attended in 2017, after the event was over I chatted with a woman who was so excited that the psychic had given her a reading. She told me that this time her grandmother had come through, but last time she didn&rsquot. Did you catch that? &ldquoThis time&hellip last time.&rdquo This was a woman who had already been read by the psychic she was a stooge and didn&rsquot know it. I bet she gets read each time she is in the audience, as the psychic already knows her family. And as the woman was in her late sixties it is probably not much of a reach that at least one of her grandmothers is dead and most likely both. Even if she didn&rsquot know her grandmothers, she did have them.

During the same show, a woman in green a couple seats from us was getting a very specific reading. She was dabbing at her eyes with a tissue and was very convincing. But Mark Edward had a better view and leaned over and told me that there were no tears she was pretending. We went to the after-party where everyone was given a copy of the psychic&rsquos book, and when the psychic took the book from the woman in green to autograph it, she said &ldquoThis time spell my name right. It has an I not an E.&rdquo Hmmm&hellip. Then later in this meet and greet I asked the psychic if he had other psychics who he respected, and he said that he had several students who were very promising, and he put his hand on the woman in green&rsquos shoulder and said &ldquoThis is one.&rdquo

3. We really want to believe.

These events aren&rsquot cheap. Private readings can be in the $250 to $900 range for thirty minutes. Group shows are $40 to $180 a seat, and VIP is right up front where they want you. The farther back you sit, the less likely you are going to get a reading. Remember the goal is to hook you into getting a private reading, so the psychic is looking for people with disposable income to spend. If you are one of the few that gets called on, you are more likely to search for meaning and make the connections than to say, &ldquoThey were horrible. What a waste of my money!&rdquo

Also, why would you be there if you didn&rsquot think communication with the dead was possible?

4. You were hot-read before the event.

If the psychic can get your name before the event, then with a little Internet searching he or she can discover a lot. When you sign up for events, you give your email and some personal information. I&rsquove had two psychics contact me after the event to thank me for attending. One found me on Twitter, which was odd because the only way he could have done that was if he looked at the name on the credit card when I purchased my ticket through Eventbrite. At no time did I use my real name other than the credit card. Hmmm&hellip

Mark Edward did a cold-reading demonstration event at CSICon in 2017 the workshop was all skeptics, and you needed a separate ticket to attend. We obtained a list with about fifty names of people who would be at the workshop. All the list had was the name, city, and state. I spent about an hour going through all the names using Facebook as my guide. I had no problem finding about ten people who matched with the locations. By scrolling through their Facebook account, it was pretty obvious I had the right person.

Almost all the accounts were &ldquofriends only,&rdquo but that didn&rsquot matter to me enough of the posts were visible, and sometimes photos, favorite books, movies, and favorite groups were mentioned. If you scroll back far enough people will always start wishing you a happy birthday, congratulations, or condolences. All gold to a psychic that plans to hot-read you. Photos are also ripe with information. Are you at a wedding, prom, anniversary party? Are you on vacation, skiing somewhere or maybe at the Olympics? Who are you with? Young children, grandparents, work buddies? They can also click on your friends&rsquo accounts and get information about you from there.

When Mark did the workshop, he peppered his lecture on cold-reading techniques with interruptions from the spirit world giving him messages about people going on vacation and celebrating weddings and new babies. He relayed this information vaguely, never telling them bluntly the day, but he would say, &ldquoYou are a Leo aren&rsquot you?&rdquo or &ldquoApril is a special month for you&hellip I think you have a child born then&hellip around the middle of the month&hellip I&rsquom hearing the fifteenth?&rdquo

Mark tells of attending a show where the psychic told an audience member &ldquoI&rsquom getting something about baby clothes,&rdquo and the audience member said, &ldquoThat&rsquos amazing. I just put up a bunch of my son&rsquos clothes he has outgrown for sale on Facebook.&rdquo

Tyler Henry gave a reading to Jamie Horn, who won a reading with him by entering a contest on Facebook. Did you get that? She was a fan that entered a contest on Facebook &hellip Facebook. Henry or one of his people could have known all about Jamie just by looking at her Facebook page. She said he didn&rsquot, but then she really wanted to believe, and why should we trust what he said? He also says he is speaking to the dead.

I know if you want to get a ticket to see The Long Island Medium, Theresa Caputo, you will purchase your ticket and get to choose your seat. They also want you to log in using your Facebook or Twitter account, and then after you complete your purchase they ask you to tell your friends and give you the option to share directly to your social media. So now the psychic not only knows your name but also where you are sitting and has a link to your social media. Click, click, click, and they have all kinds of information about you, things it would be &ldquoimpossible&rdquo to know.

5. Psychics are always observing.

They are backstage with the camera crew talking to whomever they can talk to. Makeup and hair are done before the show, and guess what, they are chatting those people up also. Tyler Henry did a reading of Matt Lauer, and when they greeted each other they talked about the last time Henry was on the show a few months back. During that time, I&rsquom sure Henry used his time wisely, looking at photos, talking to the crew, and getting all kinds of information about Lauer and other cohosts, just storing that information waiting for an opportunity to relay it back in a way that would appear to be from the spirit world. In the book The Psychic Mafia, M. Lamar Keene talks about keeping index cards full of information he already knew about his repeat sitters. When he knew a sitter would be traveling to another city, he would share that information with other psychics there. It was an underground network of information sharing. Now with the Internet and computers, it is a lot simpler than ever to know what was &ldquoimpossible&rdquo for anyone to know.

I watched a clip of Theresa Caputo giving a surprise reading to a crewmember who was getting her ready for a shoot she was going to do. She mentioned initials and a date of someone close to him who had died. This was all filmed by a cameraman a bit farther away that cameraman captured footage that showed the crewmember had a tattoo with initials and a date on his arm with a large cross.

6. He pointed right at me&ndashor did he?

This is a visual example, so hopefully I can explain this well. This was something I had never thought of before but Mark Edward explained this technique when we were watching a video of a psychic reading a large audience in a casino. In this particular case, the room has about 300 people in the audience. Using the rule of large numbers, if you are vague enough, when throwing out a statement to a large group of people, you will have something stick.

Picture this scene: An audience row in that casino has ten people in it. The psychic asks the entire row to stand up, then he points at the row and makes a statement, and someone reacts to the statement. He is pointing right at that person. How is that done? Amazing, right?

It is pretty amazing if the psychic is standing in front of the ten people and they are stretched out twelve to fifteen feet across. He lifts up his arm and outstretches his finger to point at the group. Then he makes a bold statement such as &ldquoI&rsquom getting a miscarriage over here.&rdquo That&rsquos a pretty personal statement, but actually it&rsquos more common than you think. He watches all the faces for a reaction and then moves his outstretched finger to point at the person. If he is right in front of them, it will be really obvious if he has to move his arm to point at a specific person. But if he is standing off to the side of the people at an angle and makes the same statement, then when he sees the person making the reaction he only has to move his finger a fraction. The woman who says &ldquoThat&rsquos me!&rdquo will later say &ldquoHe was pointing right at me when he said he was getting a message about a miscarriage,&rdquo and it would look that way from her perspective. Also remember the rest of the audience is watching the people the psychic is pointing at, not at the psychic. Misdirection!

It takes a bit of practice by the psychic to get the moves correct to have his hand and finger already pointing in the right direction, make the statement, and quickly watch for a reaction. Remember trick #1: these people are skilled at this. And if they miss, then what? Well they always have an out. See trick #9.

7. What is missing might be more important than what was said.

In the earlier example of Caputo and the crewmember, it sure looked like a direct hit. She got the death date and the initials. But what was missing? Everything else. Who was this person? What was their name? Why did they die? She missed everything that would show she was really talking to the dead and not just reading his tattoo.

In the Tyler Henry reading of Jamie Horn he told her a lot about &ldquoa male figure&rdquo or &ldquoan older woman&rdquo who was watching over her. Jamie would later say Henry got in touch with her father and grandmother. No, Jamie, he didn&rsquot. He said &ldquoa male figure&rdquo and &ldquoan older woman.&rdquo You supplied the rest of the information. And why didn&rsquot Dad give anything specific, like his name or any other person&rsquos name? He said he was watching over a young woman who had some difficult life choices to make, but he didn&rsquot tell her anything important about those life choices. What career should she go into? What stocks should she purchase? Who should she trust? Who should she avoid? Why didn&rsquot Dad want to talk to any of the other family members?

And there is the big matter of Tyler Henry giving readings to Matt Lauer and Alan Thicke. A year after the reading, Lauer was fired from his job over sexual abuse claims. His wife divorced him and took the kids, and he is now having to sell his home. It looks like his life is in ruins, but when Henry talked to him he got in touch with Lauer&rsquos father who wanted to say how proud he was of his son. Dad also wanted to mention something about some coins&mdashthat there were two and Matt needed to look for a third one or something. And two months after Henry read for Alan Thicke, he was dead (Thicke not Henry). In the reading Henry had mentioned Thicke&rsquos blood pressure and that he should get that checked out, and they both joked about it. When Thicke died from a heart problem, Henry&rsquos fans went nuts saying he got it right. Well if that is so, then why were they joking about it and treating it like it was no big deal? Why didn&rsquot Henry call the paramedics right then sitting in his home and say, &ldquoNo man. This is very serious. If you don&rsquot take care of this right now, in two months you will be dead&rdquo?

8. They have a living to make and will use any means possible.

When you see a psychic on a reality show do readings at a beauty shop or grocery store, remember you are watching a reality show&mdashwhich is anything but reality. These places have to be approached in advance, and they have to give permission to film inside. Every person who gets a reading has to sign a waiver, and once you have the person&rsquos name and location, you know what that means: hot-reading. Theresa Caputo is famous for walking up to people out of the blue and talking to them about dead family that wants to get in touch. Who are these people? Just random strangers? Or maybe people hired off of Craig&rsquos List as extras for the show? Maureen Handcock did a TV promo a few years ago where she went into a fire station and did readings of the firemen. It turned out to be a small local fire station in her neighborhood. It was a place she knew she would be visiting maybe she did a little research in advance and learned about the history of the building? Maybe her brother&rsquos friend is a fireman at the location? Or her hairdresser&rsquos son works there and has been telling her all the gossip during her hair appointments? What is more likely? That she is talking to the dead and getting information from the other side or that she found out some local gossip from someone very much alive?

Mark Edward is always saying that the real magic happens in the editing room. These TV shows record for ninety minutes or more, but only show twenty minutes. What was cut out? Maybe all the misses? Same thing with the readings done one-on-one it has to fit into a three- to six-minute segment. Only the best makes it to the show, so if there is some kind of really great connection&mdashserious evidence of communication with the dead&mdashthen it will be on the show and not end up on the cutting room floor.

Let&rsquos talk about something else missing&mdashglaringly missing. Why are there so many missing children in the world? Why so many cold cases? Bones found without knowing who the person is? Why are bridges collapsing and people shooting up churches, movie theatres, and schools? Why isn&rsquot this psychic, or any psychic, clearing these cases up or giving clear warnings in advance? Maybe instead of doing group readings at a casino, they should be spending some time at the police station going through cold-case files.

Recently a psychic put up a video of himself and another person eating lunch inside a restaurant next to the window, then a car came crashing through, throwing their table and them backward. He put up this video on his Facebook feed with a laugh and never addressed the unspoken question of why didn&rsquot he see that coming? Chip Coffey had a post on his Facebook feed about a young girl that was missing, then a few hours later he posted that the girl had been found unharmed in the back of a neighbor&rsquos car. He was very thankful of the police and the neighbor. Funny that he didn&rsquot just know where to find the child. I read through the comments and no one mentioned this to him either. They were all &ldquohow wonderful&rdquo and &ldquoGod bless.&rdquo Looking at Chip Coffey&rsquos Facebook feed, I see him posting warnings of bad weather conditions, a tsunami scare in Alaska, and a friend who fell and broke her ankle. I just don&rsquot understand, though. Why wouldn&rsquot he know these things would happen? What kind of person has this ability but doesn&rsquot warn anyone?


Mark Edward – demonstrating hotreading at CSICon 2017 – see link for video – photo by Karl Withakay

When asked, we are told &ldquoIt does not work like that.&rdquo Well, how does it work? Or is the answer evident: it does not work at all.

9. They always have an out.

So, the psychic points at a group and says &ldquoI&rsquom getting something about a miscarriage over here&rdquo and no one reacts. The odds are in a group of 10 people that someone will have some connection to a miscarriage, either to themselves or someone they know. But if no one reacts, then possibly someone in the row nearby will say &ldquoThat is me&rdquo and they will be close enough. Or the psychic can say, &ldquoI know which one of you that it is, but this is too personal, and I know you are struggling with it. Let&rsquos just move on to someone else. Please call me for a private reading so you can heal.&rdquo

10. We are human, and our brains will always try to make the connection.

In the CSICon workshop I was telling you about earlier, Mark Edward talked to a woman in the audience (let&rsquos call her Maria) about an older woman he saw standing behind her. Remember that Mark already has done some hot-reading on the audience and already knows who he is calling on and has some facts about Maria. He told the woman, &ldquoShe was happy to see you join the military.&rdquo Afterward, I had a chance to talk to Maria and asked her what she thought of the &ldquoreading&rdquo Mark gave her. Maria told me that she didn&rsquot have a clue who the older woman might have been. Then she said, &ldquoMy mother was already dead when I joined the military, so she could not have known.&rdquo Do you see what just happened? Maria first said that she did not know who the older woman could be then seconds later she claimed the older woman as her mom. Maria&rsquos brain was trying to help her make this connection.

We do this all the time: remember the hits and forget the misses. In the Tyler Henry/Jamie Horn reading, Horn says that the psychic contacted her sister and her father. Not quite. What actually happens is that Henry said he is getting an older male and a woman who died too soon, and Horn is the one who made the connection.

What can we conclude here? Psychics are out to fool you. Yep, and they are good at it too. Don&rsquot think you are going to out-think them or show them up you are in their territory. If you act like a skeptic and point out they were wrong, the people in the audience are going to poo-poo you. You are no fun and are ruining the mood. It&rsquos best to learn the tricks and be forewarned. People who fall for these psychics aren&rsquot stupid they just want to believe and probably have never thought about it being impossible. Why should they question it when they see it all the time on TV? It all happens so fast, and when it happens in person, no one has the ability to pause, rewind, and replay. It&rsquos wonderful we have the luxury to watch these readings over and over again.

And the psychic is so nice! How could they be lying?

In the end, it is not the responsibility of the skeptics to prove that the psychic can&rsquot talk to the dead. The psychic is making the outrageous claim, so the burden of proof is on them to prove that they are communicating. If someone tells you that they can fly without any device or aid, you are going to say &ldquoShow me&rdquo not &ldquoLet me prove you can&rsquot fly.&rdquo So why is it any different with psychics? We need to start pushing the burden to prove the ability to communicate with dead. If it were true, it would change the world overnight.

For more information, here are a few of the articles I&rsquove written in more detail about the tricks of the psychics mentioned. Thank you to Julie Berents and Mark Edward for their help with this article.


Bet-you-didn't-know

The U.S. Navy bolstered the blockading fleet with several new arrivals after the battle. One was USS Galena (One of the original Union ironclad design considerations, she was a conventional broadside warship that had armor added to her. From all accounts this addition wasn't a huge success. And yep, I'm going to take a closer look at her, too.). Another new addition was U.S.R.C E.A.Stevens , an experimental two screw ironclad owned by the US Revenue Cutter Service, and loaned to the Navy. USS Minnesota had been repaired and had rejoined the blockade fleet.

Virginia's crew spent a good bit of the thirteen days they were afloat and not drydocked trying to goad Monitor's crew into a rematch. Wasn't gonna happen. Virginia's crew may have been spoiling for another fight, but Monitor, wouldn't come out to play. This had nothing to do with the collective attitudes of Monitor's crew, and most certainly had nothing to do with their courage. If anything, they were probably beyond frustrated and more than a little pissed off at the U.S.Navy brass, because they had actually been forbidden to engage Virginia .

Virginia's crew didn't know this, of course. They made several sorties out into Hampton Roads trying to draw Monitor into another battle, but the two ironclads never engaged each other in battle again, much as Virginia's crew tried. and believe me, they definitely tried. In the process of trying to get Monitor to fight and likely pushing her crew to record-busting levels of frustration, Virginia's crew still scored a minor victory or two. On April 11 th , the powers that be in the Confederate Navy decided that if the Monitor wouldn't come out and fight on her own, they'd make her come out . So, Virginia, accompanied by Jamestown and five other vessels sailed across Hampton Roads in full view of the Union squadron, figuring they'd come out and engage them. I mean the Confederate ships crews were all but thumbing their noses at the Union crews at close range. No freaking WAY they’d put up with that. Right. Well. wrong. The crews of the Union vessels, under strict orders not to engage, simply watched and very likely fumed silently.

Artists impression of Virginia exploding off of Craney island. This isn't entirely accurate as it was well after midnight when she blew up. it would have been dark rather than daylight.

In 1865 the schooner Priscilla tore her hull open on the wreck and sank next to Virginia's remains, resulting, belatedly, in the wreck being declared a Hazard to Navigation. More explosive charges were used to flatten the wreck.

Because she was on the bottom within all but wading distance of Craney Island it stands to reason that she was heavily salvaged. In 1874 B.J.Baker and Company salvaged a good bit of her, then the most extensive salvage was accomplished by Captain William West in 1875-76. In 1875, one of his lighters, loaded down with old iron and a couple of cannon (Apparently all of her guns weren't removed) sank at the Portsmouth ferry landing. In 1876, A good portion of her hull was raised, pumped out and towed to Gosport, then dry docked in Dry Dock#1. the very graving dock where she was built. Her machinery was removed, and she was broken up for scrap and souvenirs. Some of her woodwork was used to make canes. Unfortunately, no pictures of her wreck in the graving dock are known to exist.

Though this map's from 1812, this gives you a pretty good idea of what Craney Island looked like in 1862. I also added an approximation of the present day Reclamation Area, and the wreck site.
C S S Virginia's wreck site, denoted by the red oblong just to the east of the Craney Island Reclamation Area. That area, BTW, is entirely man made. The actual island, now a peninsula, is just to the south of the wreck site, and is now a U S Navy Fuel Depot (Their largest, in fact). The channel to this fuel depot was dredged to 42 feet in W W II, likely obliterating any remains of Virginia. To orient you, the wreck site's at the mouth of the Elizabeth River, and Norfolk International Terminal is immediately to the east. The bridge on the extreme left of the pic is the south end of the Monitor-Merrimac Bridge-Tunnel.

NUMA. Clive Cussler's outfit. searched for her in the late 90s, and found nothing. But the story doesn't end quite yet. In 2003, while surveying for a possible eastward expansion of Craney island, two wrecks, right next to each other were found, and speculation is that this could be the wrecks of both Virginia, and of the schooner Priscilla. A boiler was actually raised. but it can't be one of Virginia's boilers because both were raised during the initial salvage operations. So far, there has been no determination made as to just what these wrecks may actually be. SO we may never know. And if it is Virginia , it's likely that not much of her's left. But it'd be nice to think some parts of her are still on the bottom of the Elizabeth River, within sight of the waters where she made history.

While Monitor got most of the modern era glory, some artifacts from Virginia remain. This is one of the cannon that was damaged during her battle with Cumberland and Congress

Painting of The Battle of Drewry's Bluff. Monitor is visible near the far bank of the River at he beginning of the bend to the left, broadside to the gun emplacement. Her guns could not elevate high enough to engage the guns of the fort effectively. Note the obstacles just below the gun emplacement. several ships were sunk mid-river to keep Union naval forces from reaching and shelling Richmond. While most of the obstacles were removed after the war, there are still some remains of these obstacles buried beneath the mud on the river bottom. Dredging has done a pretty good job of breaking any remains up.



Same view today. The gun emplacement shown in the painting has been recreated at the site, and I was actually standing just to the right and ahead of the cannon when I took this shot. The bend in the river hasn't changed much at all in 150 years, though the area is far more wooded than it was then. Don't let the woods fool you. this is just off of Jeff Davis Highway, near Richmond, and heavily developed. note the modern industry just up-river. There's also a fuel tank farm just north of the site.

Unfortunately her design got in the way of her mission. Drewry's Bluff was and still is just that, a bluff, and gun emplacements were a good fifty feet or a bit more above the James River. Monitor's guns wouldn't elevate enough the engage the battery effectively. Fort Darling's (The actual name of the fort at Drewry's Bluff) guns, however, could rain shot and shell down on them with near impunity. The other four gunboats found this out all too well when they were turned back by the fort's guns after a battle which lasted about four hours. One little note here. one of the Union ships that participated in the battle. and actually gave the Confederate gun crews something to think about. Was USS Galena. one of the original ironclad concepts looked at by the Ironclad board. She'll be examined iun more detail ay some point.

After being turned back at Drewry's Bluff, Monitor returned to Hampton Roads and remained at anchor for the rest of the summer, backing up the blockade fleet. Then in September she went to Washington Navy Yard for an overhaul and refit (Again, the weather must have been pretty calm for both legs of this trip as she had to go up the Chesapeake Bay to the Potomac River. Trust me, the bay can get pretty rough when it wants to).

She'd been back in Hampton Roads for only a couple of months when she was ordered to Wilmington, N.C. to reinforce the blockade of that port. USS Rhode Island. a big side wheel steamer that acted as a capable Jack Of All Trades for the U.S Navy. was assigned to tow Monitor.
Rhode Island had towed several of the low freeboard Monitor class gunboats south over the preceding months with no incident, so maybe that gave them a bit of false confidence. Maybe they had forgotten just how close Monitor came to sinking while being towed from New York to Hampton Roads. Or maybe they forgot how quickly the weather could turn ugly out on the Atlantic during the winter. One thing is known for sure. this turned out to be one of the top ten bad decisions of The Civil War.

They entered the warmer waters of the Gulf Stream at about 6:30PM on the thirtieth. Monitor pulled up alongside Rhode Island and Commander Bankhead advised that if they got into trouble he'd hoist a red lantern to the top of her turret mast. then they trailed back in tow . The weather kept getting rougher and Monitor, rather than riding the waves, plunged through them, often appearing to be entirely submerged. To make matters worse one of her towlines let go, and she really began to yaw and roll. This motion, as well as the the shock of her armored raft coming down. hard. against ocean's surface as she plunged into a trough knocked hunks of oakum out of the gap between turret and deck, and water began pouring in through that opening as well as every other vent and hull opening it could find. By 8pm her bilges were full and there was an inch of water in the engine room.

Bankhead ordered her pumps started. first the small Worthington bilge pumps, then her big 3000 GPM centrifugal pump, and they kept up at first. then were breaking even. then started falling behind. Water was reaching the coal bunkers and the damp coal wasn't burning hot enough to keep her steam pressure up. Normally kept at 80lbs, it dropped to 20 lbs.

Rhode Island tried to turn her into the wind, and this seemed to help for a short time, but by 9:30 PM, she was once again plunging through deep troughs that submerged her briefly to the top of her turret. where several crew members were huddled including Ships Surgeon Grenville Weeks who was able to give a blow by blow description of Monitor's death.

Very likely the best known rendition of Monitor's sinking, with Rhode Island in the background, and the crew desperately trying to get aboard one of Rhode Island's boats as another draws near that ship.

.By 10PM, her ventilation blowers were spitting water and it was obvious that Monitor was doomed. Even with both pumps running and the big centrifugal pump tossing an eight inch thick stream of water overboard, they weren't able to keep up with the rising water. Bankhead decided to make preparation to abandon ship while she still had steam up for the pumps. He ordered the red lantern hoisted, and ordered the towline. which had sagged, making her even more unmanageable. cut. Master Mate Louis Stodder, Boatswain's Mate John Stocking, and Quarter Gunner James Fenwick immediately climbed down the side of the turret and struggled forward against the seas, Fenwick and Sticking were swept overboard, becoming the first two crew members lost in the ensuing disaster.. Stodder managed to cut the line, then somehow made it back to the turret.

The is lantern was the last thing anyone saw of Monitor before she went down. and was the first artifact recovered from the wreck site. It was found on the bottom next to the turret, amazingly intact but in very fragile condition. It was sent to the Smithsonian Institute for preservation, and spent 7 years there before being returned to the mariner's Museum for display.


At 11PM, Rhode Island's engines were stopped, and her boats were launched and their crews pulled towards the Monitor , which is riding lower in the water by the minute. Rhode Island is about to have her own problems though. At 11:30, Bankhead ordered Monitor's engine stopped so all steam could be used for the pumps. but this quickly became a moot point as water finally and inevitably poured into her furnaces, with a sizzling roar that very likely sent stinking steam throughout the ship. That, as they say, was the ball game.

Bankhead officially ordered the crew to abandon ship. Weeks and several other sailors, hanging on to the safety ropes for all they were worth, headed forward. Three of them are immediately swept away. William Keeler, whose letters to his wife gave us such detailed insight to life aboard Monitor and one the best blow by blow descriptions of the battle that exists, had to slide down a rope from the top of the turret when he found the ladder to the deck packed with terrified sailors. A wave slammed him against one of the lifeline stanchions, and he barely made it to one of the boats.

Neither ship was under power and they drifted together. literally, catching one of Rhode Island's launches between the two hulls. Miraculously the boat not only stayed afloat, but sixteen of Monitor's crew managed to scramble aboard and were taken aboard Rhode Island. but not before a little extra drama occurred aboard the paddle wheeler . Her captain, meanwhile, had ordered her engines started back up in order to pull away from Monitor, but she immediately managed to run over her towline and get it tangled in one of her paddle wheels. Rhode Island's engines were stopped, then several of her crew climbed into the wheel box to try cutting away the towline (Bet THAT was a ride in those seas!) and managed to cut it free by 12:15AM on the 31 st .

By 12:30 most of Monitor's crew had gotten aboard Rhode Island's boats, but there wasn't quite enough room and several of her crew have to hang on to the top of the turret as the boats pulled back to the paddle wheeler, discharged their passengers, and one of them, under command of Master's Mate Rod Brown, returned. They literally had to talk several of the ironclad's crew off of the top of the turret. these guys had seen several of their mates washed overboard, and it took a good half hour to pick up the remainder of Monitor's crew. Then they noticed two or three of Monitor's crew hanging on to the turret. and these guys absolutely refused to come down.

Brown promised to return for them and pulled for Rhode Island, which by now , was a good two or so miles distant. Brown and his crew made it to Rhode Island, dropped the Monitors crew members, and pulled hard for the distant, wildly swinging red lantern. Their efforts were in vain, though. Shortly after 1:30AM on Dec. 31 st , 1862 Monitor, went down by the stern and turned turtle, taking at least two, and possibly three crew members with her.


Bet You Didn’t Know: Easter Symbols, Traditions, and Their Meanings.

Despite what you may have heard, they’re not actually Pagan. Time to reclaim Christian heritage!

The picture to the left is a pre-Reformation wood cut by German artist Albrecht Dürer. As Mary and Joseph parent the baby Jesus, they are met by three rabbits, one of which bounds to a hole in the earth where a stone is rolled away. Wait, what?

Long considered symbols of spring and fertility in northern Europe, the rabbit (or hare) has a more storied history in many world religions, from Buddhism to Judaism to, yes, even Christianity. Dotted throughout Europe, especially in northwest Germany and France and southern England, are three hare motifs associated with the Trinity and the Virgin Mary. Exactly what the hare represents – perhaps from an old Jewish motif of an eagle clutching two hares without harming them (“as an eagle to her nest…” Deuteronomy 32) – we don’t know. But it’s association with Passover, Easter and new life go back a long, long time.

Ham, Lamb and the Easter Dinner

The local grocery store has hams on sale, just like they do at Christmastime. For some reason, this is the holiday meat. And that reason is actually pragmatic as can be: in the middle ages, pigs were slaughtered in the winter and the pork was salted as a preservative. Beef, fish, and poultry (Christmas goose notwithstanding) were much harder to come by. So when spring rolled around, the ham was easily there to be eaten. And anything you do for long enough becomes a tradition.

The eating of lamb is more ancient and more spiritually significant. As with the Easter egg, early Christians celebrated the Passover, which specifically called for the blood of a young lamb. John the Baptist, of course, points to Jesus as “the lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world,” and the author of Hebrews notes Christ’s sacrifice as the true Passover lamb. So Easter’s preservation as part of Passover remains.


HOLT COLLIER - Black Confederate Veteran - bet you didn't know the history of the "Teddy B

Most people have never heard about Holt Collier - but those who have heard of the "Teddy Bear" may be surprised to learn about his history.

Collier was born into slavery in Mississippi in 1848. By his 15th birthday, he had become an expert on wildlife in the Mississippi Delta and was known as one to of the best bear hunters in the American southeast.

Freed, prior to the war between North and South, Collier wanted to join up to serve the Confederacy. He was originally turned down for due to his age, but he was accepted in the 9th Texas Brigade. His service was honorable and would conclude as a trusted aide and sharpshooter under Confederate Lt. Gen. Nathan Bedford Forrest.

After the war, his fame would grow. He claimed he had killed 3,000 bears and he was the "guide of choice. in those days, leading hunts for a Who’s Who of prominent men from around the country. Once, when an angry black bear cornered one of his prized dogs inside a hollowed log, Collier climbed in. As the bear tried to crawl past Collier and escape from the log, Collier stabbed it with his knife, killing the bear. Collier suffered only minor scratches,” according to "Camp Smoke".

Men would travel miles to hunt with him as if they were learning from the very man who invented the art. In 1902, Holt received a request from none other than U.S. President Teddy Roosevelt.

“I got things ready found a beautiful campin’ place. I was boss of the hunt. Along came the President with a car-load of guards, but he left all but one of ‘em in the car. Anyway he was safer with me than with all the policemen in Washington. The President was a pleasant man when he was talking he’d stop every little while to ask other people’s opinion,” Holt later recalled.

Originally scheduled to be a 10 day hunt, Roosevelt didn't want to wait over a week to see a live bear. he wanted one the first day.

Collier delivered the bear. 'popped out of the gap' where' promised. but the "Colonel" and his party had adjourned from the blind to have lunch.

Frustrated, Collier, exhausted from his efforts fleshing out the bear, decided he but take more aggressive steps to bring the bear to the Colonel. He challenged the bear, but unfortunately, Jocko, Collier's favorite hunting dog was in the bear's clutches.

Collier saved him by clubbing the bear with his rifle, and after a fight, he subdued the bear, threw a lasso over it’s neck and tied it to a willow tree.

Collier would summon President Roosevelt to show him the bear heɽ missed earlier and to put it out of his misery. Some in the party including railroad baron Stuyvesant Fish, and Mississippi Governor Andrew Longino cheered the leader of the free world to shoot the bear.

“But Roosevelt, ever the skilled politician, knew that reporters were back in camp would have a field day with the story. His hunting had been criticized by many East Coast intellectuals and he knew the press’ judgment would be harsh. Roosevelt also knew the laws of the hunt and practiced good sportsmanship in the field. It was an injured animal and there would be nothing sporting about the kill. Roosevelt declined the shot, but ordered the bear put down to end its suffering,” according to Camp Smoke.

The "Teddy Bear" gets its name

But the greatest and longest lasting memory of this trip was the PR blitz that hit the nation when President Roosevelt refused to kill the bear that Holt rounded up for him. Most reports advertised the bear as a cub, when in actuality it was full grown. Although the animal was later put down, Teddy Roosevelt’s refusal was viewed as a noble act in the media and ‘Teddy’ Bears were the hottest item purchased throughout the nation.

Once he returned to Washington, Roosevelt sent Collier a Winchester rifle like the one he used on the trip. It would become one of Collier's favorites.

Collier would die in Mississippi 1936 at the age of 90, the year Teddy Roosevelt’s 5th cousin, Franklin Roosevelt was running for re-election for president.

Collier makes the pages of American history as one of the most respected outdoorsman in the nation. despite the color of his skin. with an interesting connection to a much loved toy of millions of American children, and a Confederate Veteran.


I Bet You Didn’t Know The Fascinating History Behind These Words

Ever wondered how languages were made? Who decided the words for different things?

Well, they were not decided by some esoteric committees. Generally, it went like this: there was this guy who enunciated that from now on we would call “this thing” as “this” and that passed on and on to generations.

Their pronunciations getting whetted as they passed through different countries that’s why Paris is Paree in France and Paris in the UK.

As they traveled, they were honed to the most easily remembered elocution (remember, writing was developed way after, before it, everything was passed on orally).

But it doesn’t mean that you can call a mouse as Chewbacca, there has to be proper roots and suffixes.

Here are some words that have some interesting history behind them:

It is a disturbed state of mind marked by restlessness, hallucinations, etc. It also means intense excitement or ecstasy.

“lir” is a root that comes from Latin, meaning the ridge between two furrows.

Between ridges and furrows, ridges are preferably harder to walk on. Therefore it is difficult to balance your body when walking over them.

Relating to the above fact, a state of delirium is one in which your mind is unable to speak, because of the mental unbalance due to alcohol, hysteria, etc.

Roman politicians were extremely conscious of their image and they were seen by the public. This escalated even more so if the politician was contesting in the elections, and they would get their togas specially made of pure white colour. The ultra white, in turn, created an aura of one being spotless and thus worthy of respect.

These politicians were also called ‘candidates’.

Anyways, the word ‘candidate’ over the course of time has developed to mean ‘aspirant’.

Echo was a Greek maiden. Zeus (Greek God of Gods) was attracted to her. In the due course, Zeus’s wife Hera became doubtful and cursed Echo that she will never be able to say anything but the words of the last person who talked to her. So she kept repeating the words that others would say to her.

Sure, you have met many annoying narcissists in your life.

Well, it comes from a Greek mythology which goes as there was a man named Narcissus, a handsome Greek youth who rejected the desirous advances of the nymph Echo, as she was unable to tell him how she felt. These advances eventually led Narcissus to fall in love with his own reflection in a pool of water. Tragic.

Hippocrates was a very famous Greek physician( Heard about the Hippocratic oath of Doctors?). According to him, human personality and traits depend on four bodily fluids:

  • Red fluid represents sanguine (lively)
  • Green fluid represents choleric (short-tempered)
  • Black fluid represents melancholic ( sad)
  • Phlegm represents phlegmatic (stoic)

The above theory is called the Four Humor Theory. It was later rejected. And if you’re rambling your imagination on this black fluid that I just mentioned then stop right there. There is no black fluid. It was one of the reasons for the rejection of this theory.

It was originally a Latin word and when the French language (one of the Romance Languages) was derived from Latin, it referred to such form of literature that exaggerated the tales of knights. Therefore, it generally meant something which is not real.

Sure the people of those times has some serious wisdom of relationships.

The word romance is now related to feelings of love or a genre of movies, play, etc where two persons fall in love with each other.

Next time you see a word, don’t just use the dictionary but try to find its etymology.

This way you will get to know some really fascinating history behind it, which you can show off to your friends.


Bet you didn't know - Overview of local gambling era presented


PHOTO FROM BAYSIDE HISTORY MUSEUM FACEBOOK PAGE

North Beach, MD - If the whole Southern Maryland region seems like it&rsquos obsessed with gambling, consider this&mdashyou should have been around 60 years ago. Back in the late 1940s, throughout the 50s and well into the 1960s, when the Maryland General Assembly pulled the plug&mdashslot machines were a hard habit to break for area businesses, residents and especially visitors.

While the history of the region&rsquos gambling heyday is hard to summarize in a one-hour presentation, Grace Mary Brady of the Bayside History Museum provided an interesting overview of one of mankind&rsquos favorite vices as it pertains to Maryland in general and Southern Maryland in particular. Brady&rsquos presentation&mdashpart of the &ldquoAt the Water&rsquos Edge&rdquo lecture series&mdashwas delivered Sunday, Jan. 14 at the North Beach Town Hall.

Noted during the presentation was the fact that the Maryland Jockey Club (MJC) was founded in 1743 in Annapolis and is the oldest continuing sporting organization in North America. The club operates or has operated venues for horse racing in Maryland. At one time that oversight covered a lot of turf in locations such as Baltimore, Hagerstown, Bowie, Laurel and Upper Marlboro. At the beginning of the 20th century a racetrack was proposed to be built in Chesapeake Beach. Brady said the track was envisioned to be a location for winter racing. The plan was never realized. Research, however, shows there was a horseracing track in Calvert County back in 1779 in Lower Marlboro.

Gambling fever really enveloped Southern Maryland in the 1940s. Brady said slot machines (aka one-arm bandits) were legalized in Anne Arundel County in 1943 and four years later, Calvert County locations had the machines as well. In fact, Brady pointed out, many Calvert venues may have had slots prior to 1947&mdashillegally. &ldquoThis was a game-changer for North Beach,&rdquo said Brady of legalized machines. An investor in the town&rsquos popular restaurant/bar/dance hall &ldquoUncle Billy&rsquos&rdquo was Charles E. Nelson, a Washington, DC bookie who became the focus of an early 1950s investigation of Kefauver Committee, which was looking into organized crime. Brady said Nelson was eventually convicted for income tax evasion.

Charles County&mdashWaldorf in particular&mdashsaw the arrival of legal slots in 1949. Waldorf&mdashwith a U.S. highway running through it&mdashbecame known as &ldquoSlot Machine Alley&rdquo and &ldquoLittle Vegas.&rdquo Brady pointed out that at one time Waldorf had slot machine revenue that exceeded the number in Las Vegas. All across the region, approximately 5,000 machines were in operation at local laundromats, barbershops, grocery stores, bars and nightclubs. The yen for slots expanded to the Potomac River and establishments in Colonial Beach were able to circumvent Virginia law by locating slots parlors on piers in the Potomac, which was under the jurisdiction of Maryland.

The slots craze cashed out in the 1960s when, amid pressure from local clergy, crusading editorial writers and Maryland Governor Millard Tawes, the Maryland General Assembly voted to outlaw slots effective June 30,1968. According to a mid-1990s story in the Baltimore Sun, the Governor Thomas Johnson Bridge&mdashconnecting Calvert and St. Mary&rsquos counties&mdashwas built by the state as a concession for the heavy loss of slots revenue.

In addition to Brady&rsquos presentation, the Jan. 14 talk also included a summation of recent controversies involving electronic gaming devices in St. Mary&rsquos County from Detective Sgt. Shawn Moses of the St. Mary&rsquos County Sheriff&rsquos Office.


Watch the video: E-40 Bet You Didnt Know Lyric Video (November 2021).