20th-Century Hot Takes

I can say very confidently that the following words, which you are about to read, are very accurate and hopefully, very interesting. – Bob, 1976 This is not Second Glance History’s mission statement, although perhaps it should be. These words were, in fact, penned in 1976 by my father, Bob, in a biographical essay he Read More

Bram’s Buddy

Inspired by a recent weekend in Dublin, I’m digging deeper into the story of Bram Stoker. Get ready for vampires! Epic battles between good and evil! And copious amounts of garlic! Whoops, wrong book. Today, he’s renowned around the world as the author of the novel that spawned a thousand teenybopper vampire romances, but in Read More

The Great Discoverer

Roundworms. Dinosaurs. Giant Sloths. No, these creatures are not residents of Old MacDonald’s farm or entries in J. K. Rowling’s Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Rather, they represent the tip of the iceberg of Dr. Joseph Leidy’s wide-ranging scientific discoveries. No matter how impressive your resume, you’ve got nothing on this 19th-century Renaissance Read More

18th-Century Public Service Announcement

On December 31, 1790, Captain Clement Lemon signed an unusual agreement with Boston merchant Thomas Ramsden. As a condition of captaining the Mary Ann on an upcoming voyage, the Revolutionary War veteran and—I like to believe—ancestor of the illustrious Liz Lemon promised: Be it Known; I Clement Lemon do hereby Agree to, and with, Thomas Read More

You’ve Got Mail

Hope your National Thank a Mail Carrier Day celebrations were first class! If you didn’t know this was a thing, perhaps your invitation was lost in the mail. In honor of this underrated holiday, I have for your reading pleasure an anecdote about a dead—that is to say, undeliverable—letter belonging to Henry Ward Beecher. If Read More