5 Times Love Didn’t Conquer All

Here at Second Glance History, it’s tradition at this time of year to share stories of love overcoming insurmountable obstacles, again and again. But in the immortal words of Patty Smyth and Don Henley, sometimes, love just ain’t enough. I’m not alone in having learned that the hard way. Patty and Don may not have 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

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

Easter Eggnog and Passover Potables

New holidays, new opportunities to revive the wholesome traditions of yesteryear. . . or count our lucky stars we’re celebrating on Zoom this year: This is an Easter reminiscence: A downtown family, wishing to celebrate the day by appropriate libations of eggnog, sat about preparing a large bowl of that seductive beverage, from time immemorial Read More

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

New Christmas Traditions

From alternative Fourth of July plans to innovative uses for your Thanksgiving leftovers, Second Glance History has made a habit of looking backwards for holiday inspiration. As this very strange year comes to an end—not a moment too soon—my gift to you is suggestions for celebrating Christmas, too. Whether you want to try out some Read More

5 Alternative Uses for Your Thanksgiving Turkey

Sure, turkey tastes delicious when it’s sitting on your Thanksgiving plate or Zoom screen, doused in cranberry sauce—or cantaloupe, if you’re 10-year-old me. (I know, I was a weird child.) However, this holiday staple is good for so much more than a food coma and a week of leftovers.  If 2020 hasn’t been strange enough Read More

“What Was Your Most Memorable Halloween?”

More than a century ago, an unnamed journalist was tasked with running around Washington, D.C. and asking notable politicians the burning questions of the day. No, not those about national politics, the burgeoning movement for women’s suffrage or even the war on the tango: Instead, this no-doubt future Pulitzer Prize winner asked U.S. cabinet secretaries Read More

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