How to Break a World Record

With a little help from Second Glance History, anyone can travel, pickpocket, write, eat healthfully, break a lease, pull off a practical joke, be a Good Samaritan and even become a juvenile delinquent. But do you know what takes real talent? Breaking a world record. Happily, I’m here to help you with that as well. Read More

Clip of the Week: January 12, 2022

Too old for dolls, too young for romance, but just the right age for some tough love: Cynthia Grey’s Advice to Jealous Miss. I am a girl of 13, and am in love with a young man of 18. He goes with another girl and I am very jealous. He does not seem to care Read More

The Good Samaritan

Here at Second Glance History, I’m starting the year off with a celebration of strangers who help those in need—most especially an angelic lady named Ali, who was in the right place at the right time to rescue a certain silly blogger who got in over her head in the Pacific Ocean last month. As Read More

Clip of the Week: December 29, 2021

If you’re still looking for a New Year’s resolution, history has some suggestions for you: Some New Year Don’ts . . . Don’t try to get the better of a man who hasn’t any. Don’t snore in church. It’s mean to keep others awake. . . Don’t get married with the sole idea that misery Read More

Home Alone

‘Tis the season for not only reindeer, grinches and magical snowmen but also fearless children, negligent parents and dumb thieves. “Home Alone” may not be the first Christmas movie that comes to mind, but it turns out there’s a long and storied tradition of children left alone around the holidays matching wits against would-be robbers. Read More

Clip of the Week: December 15, 2021

A meeting of the unemployed was called for Saturday night, but it proved a great fiasco. . . The convener of the meeting unexpectedly asserted that there was plenty of work, then said there was none, and concluded by returning to his first statement and offering to get work for any who said they could Read More

No Fairy Godmother, No Glass Slipper, No Problem

Once upon a time in a not-so-faraway land, there lived a young lady. . . “Pretty Anna” is the name by which everyone knew the beautiful Bohemian Anna Witkower, who for many months was a chambermaid at the Palmer House Hotel, Chicago. . . It’s not the most creative moniker, but it’s better than “Cinderella,” Read More

Clip of the Week: December 1, 2021

Andrew Shampney of Yonkers, N. Y., has appealed to the police to make his wife stop kissing and hugging him so much. – The Day Book, July 9, 1912 Don’t worry, Andrew, something tells me your soon-to-be ex-wife won’t kiss or hug you ever again. But when the judge grants her alimony request, her divorce Read More

Count Your Blessings

After a whirlwind year, we’re fast approaching yet another holiday season that’s not quite normal. But one thing that hasn’t changed? Documents from the 19th and 20th centuries continue to be a cornucopia of 21st-century Thanksgiving blog post fodder. (Most especially those from Chicago’s renowned Newberry Library, to which I’m exceedingly grateful for digitizing, transcribing Read More

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