" The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; it is at last to set foot on one's own country as a foreign land. "
Gilbert Chesterton

Back in the day


President Taft Pardons William H. Van Schaick

Van Schaick was the captain of the General Slocum, a passenger steamship that caught fire and burned to the water line in New York's East River on June 15, 1904. Over 1,000 people died in the tragedy, making it the city's worst loss-of-life disaster until the attacks of September 11, 2001. Although seven people were indicted, only Van Schaick was convicted. He was sentenced to 10 years, but was pardoned after 3½ years. Why were most of the passengers unable to escape the fire?



Film Noir

Film noir's dark, high contrast visual style is clearly recognizable in films released as early as in the 1940s. The bleak moodiness of German Expressionism, the fatalism of French poetic realism, and Italian neorealism's focus on the everyday conditions of the working class have all contributed to the style. Who first coined the term film noir?

Born on a day like today


Reggie White

An ordained Evangelical Christian minister, Reggie White was known as the "Minister of Defense" in the National Football League. He retired as the all-time sack leader, having led the Green Bay Packers to two Super Bowls, including one victory. White towered over the league with his tremendous spirituality and sportsmanship, once playing a full game with a broken arm. In what controversial advertising campaign did he make an appearance in the late 1980s?

Last updated on Tuesday, 19th December 2006

More sponsors