" Martyrdom is the only way a man can become famous without ability. "
George Bernard Shaw

Back in the day


Ronald DeFeo Jr. Murders Family in Amityville, NY

After the DeFeo family was discovered murdered in their beds, Ronald DeFeo Jr., the family's only surviving member, was placed under police protection. Investigators initially believed a mob hit man had committed the crime, but DeFeo soon confessed and was convicted of murdering his parents and four siblings. A number of controversies surround the case, especially regarding the possible involvement of DeFeo's sister Dawn. What best-selling novel and series of films did these events inspire?



Howard Baskerville

Baskerville was an American teacher and Presbyterian missionary who led a group of student soldiers against Mohammad Ali Shah during the Iranian Constitutional Revolution in the early 20th century. He is thus often referred to as the "American Lafayette in Iran"—a reference to the French military officer who participated in the American Revolution. He was shot and killed 9 days after his 24th birthday in 1909. What did Persian artisans send his mother in recognition of his courage and sacrifice?

Born on a day like today


Edward III of England

Edward III, crowned at age 14, was one of the most successful English monarchs of the Middle Ages. After defeating the Scots, Edward laid claim to the French crown, provoking the conflict that would be known as the Hundred Years' War. Edward's long reign saw vital developments in legislature and government—in particular the evolution of the English parliament—as well as the ravages of the Black Death. How much of England's population was decimated during the plague?

Last updated on Thursday, 13th November 2008

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