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The Histories

The Histories
Historical writing from Andrew Murphy. This blog contains historical accounts and biographies from several different historical specialities with a focus on European history.
Articles: 1, 2

Articles

My Life Story by Thomas Davidson Murphy
2008-02-11 00:00:00
I - FIRST PERIOD I was born at Millerton, Louisiana May 3, 1884, the sixth child born to John Calvin and Laura Ann Foster Murphy , on a farm of some 300 acres. This was just 20 miles south of Magnolia, Arkansas and 20 miles north of Homer, Louisiana. These two towns were our market towns where we ...
More About: Life , Story , My Life , Thomas
Was Fanta Really Invented By The Nazis?
2008-02-11 00:00:00
There are some who claim that Fanta, a popular soft drink produced and distributed by the Coca-Cola company, was actually invented by Nazis during the Third Reich. Others go so far as the say that Coca-Cola produced this product themselves to sell in Nazi Germany when they feared the backlash that might come if ...
The Caesar Substitution Cipher Invented By Julius Caesar
2008-02-11 00:00:00
The Caesar Cipher , named for Julius Caesar who used it in his military campaigns, is one of the simplest and easiest substitution ciphers in the world. While it is rarely used by itself because of the ease with which it is broken, it is still sometimes incorporated into more complicated ciphers. A substitution cipher is a ...
More About: Substitution
John Wilkes Booth?s Conspiracy to Assassinate President Lincoln
2008-02-11 00:00:00
On the 14th of April in 1865, John Wilkes Booth shot and mortally wounded President Abraham Lincoln while the President and his wife watched “Our American Cousin” at Ford?s Theatre. Lincoln died the next day and with him died the hope of a relatively peaceful Reconstruction. Without Lincoln to push for leniency in dealing with ...
More About: Conspiracy
How Bette Nesmith Graham Invented White Out
2008-01-28 00:00:00
Although Michael Nesmith is best known as a member of The Monkees, he would have had some minor fame if he had never learned to sing or play an instrument. His mother, Bette Nesmith Graham , was the inventor of the substance known as correctional fluid or liquid paper. While he was a successful musician himself, ...
More About: White
TheHistories.com
2007-10-31 00:00:00
I just wanted to offer a word of explanation for why I have not been updating recently. I have been working on a brand new history website, http://www.thehistories.com. I am still in the process of putting the finishing touches on it, but it is ready to be seen. I will try to update this blog ...
Franklin Delano Roosevelt?s Pearl Harbor Speech
2007-10-20 00:00:00
Speech delivered on December 8, 1941 asking Congress for a Declaration of War on Japan. Click here to listen to the audio of the speech. Mr. Vice President, Mr. Speaker, members of the Senate and the House of Representatives: Yesterday, December 7, 1941 - a date which will live in infamy - the United States of America ...
More About: Pearl Harbor , Harbor , Pearl , Speech , Earl
King Leonidas I of Sparta
2007-10-16 00:00:00
King Leon idas I, whose name meant “lion-like,” was king of Spar ta between 488BC and 480BC. He is best known to history as the commander of the Spartan army at the Battle of Thermopylae during the Persian Wars. The story of his sacrifice has been an inspiration to generations and was recently brought to the big ...
More About: King , Leoni
Sir Winston Churchill?s ?We Shall Fight on the Beaches? Speech
2007-10-16 00:00:00
Speech delivered to the House of Commons on June 4th, 1940 soon after the evacuation of Dunkirk. See The Churchill Center for further reading. The image is a photograph taken around 1941 from Wikipedia. From the moment that the French defenses at Sedan and on the Meuse were broken at the end of the second ...
More About: Beaches , Fight , Winston Churchill , Speech , The Beaches
The Origins of Halloween
2007-10-16 00:00:00
Like so many of our holidays, Halloween has become commercialized by American society. It has grown to the point that few people who celebrated it a few hundred years ago would recognize it today. At the same time, most people today do not know where the Halloween tradition came from. What was its original purpose ...
More About: Ween , The O , Origin , Allo
Partrick Henry?s ?Liberty of Death? Speech
2007-10-16 00:00:00
Speech delivered to the Virgina House of Burgesses on March 23, 1775. The image is a painting of Patrick Henry by George Bagby Matthews from Wikipedia. No man thinks more highly than I do of the patriotism, as well as abilities, of the very worthy gentlemen who have just addressed the House. But different men often ...
More About: Liberty , Death , Speech
The Boston Massacre of 1770
2007-10-11 00:00:00
On the 5th of March in 1770, violence erupted between British soldiers stationed in Boston and some of Boston’s citizens. Thanks in part to patriots like Paul Revere, The Boston Massa cre [as this event came to be called] became an important piece of anti-British propaganda to support the cause of American independence. The Boston Massacre began ...
Marco Polo & Ibn Battuta
2007-10-11 00:00:00
This is a paper I wrote for one of my history classes. The assignment was to compare and contrast Ibn Battuta and Marco Polo using one of our textbooks. That textbook, however, quotes many different sources which will prove good reading if you are interested. Both images are from Wikipedia Given the difficulties and dangers of ...
More About: Marco Polo
The Truth About Christopher Columbus
2007-10-06 00:00:00
For hundreds of years, Christopher Columbus has had a special place in the history of the New World. Traditionally, history textbooks have painted him as a kind of daring, enlightened explorer who singlehandedly pulled Europe out of the superstition of the Dark Ages. The ever increasing controversy surrounding annual Columbus Day celebrations, however, indicates that ...
More About: Truth , Ruth , The Truth
The Allegory of the Cave from The Republic
2007-10-04 00:00:00
Few books have had as much influence on Western Philosophy as The Republic . In it, Plato asks questions that philosophers have been debating ever since. One of the most memorable passages in The Republic is the “Allegory of the Cave ” in which Plato uses a monologue delivered by Socrates to illustrate his beliefs about reality. In ...
The Life & Death of Sir Thomas More
2007-09-30 00:00:00
Every year, the Anglican Church celebrates the life of Sir Thom as More with an official feast day on his birthday, the 7th of February. The Roman Catholic Church does the same thing on the 22nd of June. Why is this man venerated by Protestants and Catholics alike? Sir Thomas More has become Saint Thomas More ...
More About: Life , Death , Homa
The Viking Colonization of North America
2007-09-26 00:00:00
Contrary to popular belief, Christopher Columbus was not the first European to discover North America . Almost 500 years before Columbus landed on the island of Hispaniola, the Norsemen had already established settlements on Iceland, Greenland, and even North America itself. Although the settlements did not last for long, their memory reminds us of the indefatigable ...
More About: Viking
David O Stewart Discusses the Constitutional Convention
2007-09-26 00:00:00
This is an email interview I did with David O Stewart who is the author of The Summer of 1787: The Men Who Invented the Constitution. I was fortunate enough to hear Mr. Stewart lecture at an event sponsored by The Presidential Museum in honor of Constitution Week on September 20th, 2007. I would like ...
More About: Convention , Constitutional , The Con
The Defenestration of Prague
2007-09-19 00:00:00
The Early Modern Period was a time of great upheaval in Europe. After the Protestant Reformation had undermined the religious and political power of the Catholic church, the European continent was ripe for conflict. The largest of these conflicts was the Thirty Years War which ravaged central Europe between 1618 and 1648. While the war ...
More About: The D , Prague , Stration
Was Hitler a Jew?
2007-09-19 00:00:00
Was Hitler a Jew? Since the 1920s, but especially since the fall of the Third Reich, this question has been a subject for idle gossip and even scholarly debate. While the claim that Hitler was of Jewish, not Aryan, descent seems ridiculous at face value, there is actually some evidence to support it. We should ...
The Mysterious Nazca Lines in Peru
2007-09-19 00:00:00
Between 200BC and 700AD, the Nazca people lived in a part of Peru that we now call the Nazca Desert. Little is known about them except for one remarkable fact. They created the so called “Nazca Lines ” which are some of the most intricate geoglyphic designs in the world. In so doing, they ensured that ...
More About: Mysterious , Myst
King Leonidas and His 300 Spartans at Thermopylae
2007-09-19 00:00:00
Almost 2500 years ago, an army of 300 elite warriors defied a tyrant with an army of legions and died glorious deaths on the battlefield. The legend of their unshakable courage in the face of overwhelming odds has been an inspiration to subsequent generations for two and a half millennia. This is the story of the ...
More About: King , Leon , Spar , Leoni
The Mysterious Nazca Lines in Peru
2007-09-16 00:00:00
Between 200BC and 700AD, the Nazca people lived in a part of Peru that we now call the Nazca Desert. Little is known about them except for one remarkable fact. They created the so called “Nazca Lines ” which are some of the most intricate geoglyphic designs in the world. In so doing, they ensured that ...
More About: Mysterious , Myst
King Leonidas and His 300 Spartans at Thermopylae
2007-09-16 00:00:00
Almost 2500 years ago, an army of 300 elite warriors defied a tyrant with an army of legions and died glorious deaths on the battlefield. The legend of their unshakable courage in the face of overwhelming odds has been an inspiration to subsequent generations for two and a half millennia. This is the story of the ...
More About: King , Leon , Spar , Leoni
Was Hitler a Jew?
2007-09-16 00:00:00
Was Hitler a Jew? Since the 1920s, but especially since the fall of the Third Reich, this question has been a subject for idle gossip and even scholarly debate. While the claim that Hitler was of Jewish, not Aryan, descent seems ridiculous at face value, there is actually some evidence to support it. We should ...
The Role of Jews in a Modernizing Germany
0000-00-00 00:00:00
I recently wrote this paper for my Modern Germ any class. For further reading, I would especially suggest The Pity of it All by Amos Elon. The image is a portrait of Moses Mendelssohn and is from The Berlin State Library. The transition from feudalism to democracy is never an easy one and usually involves bloodshed. This ...
More About: Jews , Role
The Saint Valentine’s Day Massacre
0000-00-00 00:00:00
The Prohibition Era was the golden age of organized crime in the United States. Trafficking illegal liquor provided a tremendous source of revenue for gangs, many of which were already involved in prostitution and gambling. Given the great profits that could be made in bootlegging at this time, violence between rival gangs was almost inevitable. ...
More About: Valentine , Massacre , Saint , Massa , Lent
The History of the Loch Ness Monster
0000-00-00 00:00:00
The Loch Ness Monster is one of the most widely known cryptids [a hypothetical species] in the world. Since the 1930s thousands of people have reported seeing “Nessie” in Scotland’s Loch Ness and some have even produced what seems to be photographic and/or video documentation of the creature. Although much of this “evidence” has proven ...
More About: History
The Declaration of Independence (1776)
0000-00-00 00:00:00
IN CONGRESS, July 4, 1776. The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America, When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws ...
More About: Independence , The Declaration of Independence , Lara , Epen
The Colossus of Rhodes
0000-00-00 00:00:00
Only one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World still stands today. That is the Great Pyramid of Giza. All the others were destroyed long ago. One of the most impressive of the Ancient Wonders, however, was probably the Colossus of Rhodes. At 100ft in height, it was the tallest statue in the world ...
More About: Odes
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