In April 1862, the Confederacy passed the first general draft in United States history. Although Lincoln initially resisted the measure, the U.S. Congress passed a similar draft calling for 300,000 troops in 1863. Two years into the Civil War, both the Union and Confederate armies were plagued by de Read more
In 1963, a group of British soldiers were given LSD by their commander, as part of an “exercise” to study the effects and potential warfare application of the increasingly widespread psychoactive drug. The results, captured on video below, are absolutely hilarious, and made all the more funny by a v Read more
In the aftermath of the Battle of Gettysburg, the Confederate Army was in full retreat, forced to abandon all of its dead and most of its wounded. The Union Army and citizens of Gettysburg had an ugly cleanup task ahead of them. Along with the numerous corpses littered about the battlefield, at leas Read more
SS-Obersturmbannfuhrer Otto Skorzeny was one of the most celebrated and feared commandos of World War II. Daring operations such as the rescue of Italian fascist dictator Benito Mussolini and missions behind enemy lines during the Battle of the Bulge made him known as “the most dangerous man in Eur Read more
The Battle of the Bulge was a Hail Mary pass by a führer who was quickly running out of options. Hitler desperately needed a decisive victory on either his Western or Eastern front. Remembering his series of victories after sneaking through the Ardennes forest in 1940, he went for a repeat in 1944. Read more
Most people are familiar with the story of the Christmas Truce of 1914, in which the First World War was briefly put on hold while men from both sides met in No Man’s Land to exchange gifts and sing carols. Now, a newly discovered diary from a WWI soldier shines light on a second Christmas truce in Read more
Struggling to find the right battle cry for the occasion? A well-timed war whoop can really help you get your point across. We’ve selected 5 of the best battle cries in human history. Take your pick. 1. “There is no land beyond the Volga!” When the Nazis surrounded Stalingrad in the summer of 1942, Read more
We spent this weekend catching up on The Man in the High Castle on Amazon—and falling into research wormholes about how the Nazi regime tried to reinvent European culture. One particularly creepy historical record we came across is this series of photographs from a Christmas party Hitler threw for m Read more
There’s an epic Medieval battle going on in Harlem. The New York Sentinels engage in a weekly “fight to the death” wearing 70 pound suits of armor. Their weapons of choice? Swords and two-handled axes. The Guardian‘s Adam Gabbatt reports: “The Sentinels fight in the Armored Combat League, which is m Read more
The McCarthy hearings continue to loom large in our national consciousness. Most of us haven’t heard of the “Lavender Scare.” Senator Joseph McCarthy came to national prominence in February 1950 when he claimed to have a list of 205 State Department employees who were members of the Communist Party. Read more
Think you already know everything about World War II? Historian Theresa Kaminski’s new book Angels of the Underground: The American Women who Resisted the Japanese in the Philippines in World War II just might convince you that there are still many amazing WWII stories just waiting to be told. Relea Read more