" Whipping and abuse are like laudanum; you have to double the dose as the sensibilities decline. "
Harriet Beecher Stowe

Back in the day


Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire Kills 146

The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory was a clothing manufacturer that occupied the top three floors of a 10-story building in New York. In 1911, a small fire flared up in a dustbin on the 8th floor and quickly spread. Tragically, a number of doors had been locked by management to prevent theft, and fire truck ladders only reached the 6th floor. Dozens of workers jumped to their deaths to escape the conflagration, while others burned alive. What sweeping safety reforms were prompted by the disaster?



Hand Grenades

The first modern, hand-thrown grenades were in use as early as the 15th century, but they fell out of favor as the increasing range and accuracy of firearms lessened opportunities for close combat. However, their effectiveness in World War I trench warfare made hand grenades a standard part of the combat infantryman's equipment once again. Though one of the more recognizable grenade models is sometimes called a "pin-and-pineapple," grenades get their name from what other fruit?

Born on a day like today


Mary Flannery O'Connor

O'Conner was an American writer, considered a master of the short story form and the Southern Gothic style. In stories that reflect her strong Catholic faith, her often grotesque characters are placed in extreme situations that impel them toward redemption. O'Conner spent most of her life on her mother's farm in Georgia, where she died of lupus at the age of 39. When she was just six years old, she became a minor celebrity for teaching a chicken to do what?

Last updated on Sunday, 25th March 2012

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