5 More Times Love Conquered All

Who doesn’t love a good love story at this time of year? If you couldn’t get enough of last year’s unpronounceable surnames and coffin-themed pickup lines, you’re in luck. As an early Valentine’s Day present, Second Glance History is bringing you a new assortment of chocolates, er, stories with unexpected fillings. Whether you’re googly-eyed over Read More

Beginner’s Guide to Pickpocketing

From breaking your lease and traveling for free to becoming a juvenile delinquent, Second Glance History is all about helping you use history to make good life choices. Today, I’m pleased to present yet another guide to antisocial behavior: Pickpocketing 101. Pencils out—but best keep your wallets hidden away. Wear a fashionable hat. On arriving Read More

A Narrow Escape

Despite being a healthy, privileged resident of a highly industrialized nation, I’ve had a few close calls. I nearly strangled myself at birth with the umbilical cord—I’m still sorry about that, Mom. And then there was that time a glass coffee table spontaneously shattered a foot away from me. (It’s a thing.) Plus, who can Read More

How to Travel for Free

Travel has been around as long as we’ve had legs to walk on, but in the days before budget airlines and AirBnB, what was an impoverished, wannabe globetrotter to do? Glad you asked. If you’ve read Beginner’s Guide to Travel Writing, you’re ready for John Henry Richardson’s master class on maximizing your sightseeing while minimizing 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

A Brooklyn Christmas Carol

As any child knows, stealing—especially if a creepy elf is watching from a shelf—usually lands you on the naughty list. However, in the case of poverty-stricken mother Anna Lobell, Santa Claus might want to check his list twice. Two women were arraigned. . . in Brooklyn yesterday, both charged with shoplifting. One of them was Read More

Too Much Time on Their Hands

♪ Yeah, I’m sitting by my computer, clicking like a damn fool, Got the 20th-century newspaper blues. And I’ve given up hope for an interesting headline And an amusing story. Is it any wonder I have eye strain? Is it any wonder I have carpal tunnel syndrome? ♪ Well, I’m so tired of reading—I got Read More

How to Become a Juvenile Delinquent in 5 Easy Steps

Frank Abagnale, Jr., whose youthful felonies—er, indiscretions—inspired the book and film “Catch Me If You Can,” may have slipped away from the police twice before his 22nd birthday, but Floyd Merrill could give him a run for his money, literally. In 1911, Floyd was a teenager living with his aunt and uncle in the Ballard Read More

A Sampler of Courage, Part 2

Before reading, fortify yourself with Part 1. Already read it? Full speed ahead! Whether you’re a roaring lion or a scaredy cat, welcome back to our survey of courageous people we admire and/or hope we don’t have to emulate anytime soon. Allow me to introduce you to a man who checks both of the above Read More

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