" I think I shall write books, and get rich and famous; that would suit me, so that is my favorite dream. "
Louisa May Alcott

Back in the day


Peace Treaty Ends 335 Years' War

When hostilities between the Netherlands and the Isles of Scilly, an archipelago located off the southwest coast of England, ended, the warring parties recalled their troops, and the conflict was forgotten. Without a treaty declaring its end, however, the 1651 war peacefully became the world's longest, technically lasting 335 years. Despite questions regarding the validity of the declaration of war, peace was officially declared in 1986. What 45-minute war is considered the world's shortest?




Caribou, or reindeer, are wild, North American arctic and subarctic deer that are capable of traveling 3,000 mi (5,000 km) a year and reaching speeds of up to 50 mph (80 km/h). Each year, millions of caribou in northern Canada and Alaska migrate in large herds, using their wide, sharp-edged hooves to travel on snow and ice and even swim across wide lakes or rivers. Caribou derive their name from a word in the Mi'kmaq language meaning "snow-shoveler"—a reference to their habit of doing what?

Born on a day like today


Nikita Khrushchev

In the power struggle that followed Joseph Stalin's death, Nikita Khrushchev emerged as leader of the USSR. He became First Secretary of the Communist Party in 1953 and the Soviet premier five years later. He was highly critical of Stalin's rule and oversaw many reforms. Khrushchev was regarded by his political enemies as boorish and allegedly made a habit of interrupting speakers to insult them. Before his removal from office, the Communist Party accused him of mishandling what event in 1962?

Last updated on Friday, 17th April 2009

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