Saturday, March 11, 2023




Also known as Tutankhamen

Lived c. 1341 BC – c. 1323 BC

Was a pharaoh of nasty of ancient Egypt who ascended to the throne around the age of nine and reigned until his death around the age of nineteen.

Historically, Tutankhamun is primarily known for restoring the traditional ancient Egyptian religion of multiple gods, after its suppression by Akhenaten in favor of the one god religion. Tutankhamun was one of few kings worshipped as a god during his lifetime; this was usually done posthumously for most pharaohs.

In popular culture, he is known for his vast wealth found during the 1922 discovery of his tomb, the only such tomb to date to have been found in near-intact condition. The discovery of his tomb is widely considered one of the greatest archaeological discoveries of all time.

Tutankhamun's golden funerary mask

His father was almost definitely Akhenaten, who preceded Tut as pharaoh in the fourteenth century BC.

The identity of his mother is pretty much unknown, but recent DNA samples from his and other mummies have revealed that she was probably one of Akhenaten’s sisters.

Tutankhamun was frail and suffered from a bone disorder, perhaps due to his parentage. Incestuous relationships, weren’t out of the ordinary in ancient Egypt.


The Assassination of President Lincoln was a popular print sold in the 1860s for framing. It probably hung in many a residence and was found in even more scrapbooks.

The man sharing the private box with the president and his wife, who is shown rushing into action, is Major Henry Rathbone. President and Mrs. Lincoln specifically asked him and his fiancée, Clara Harris, to accompany them to the theatre. After Booth fired the shot, Rathbone tried to tackle him to the ground, but Booth was able to get free by slicing Rathbone in the arm with a dagger.

Rathbone was never free of the memory and guilt of that night, and he reportedly felt responsible for letting Booth get away. In the years to come, he experienced a myriad of health issues, from stomach ailments to heart palpitations, and his mental state deteriorated as well. 

On December 23, 1883 (18 years after the assassination), he attacked and killed Clara, now his wife, and attempted to kill himself. He would spend the rest of his life in a mental institution.

Henry and Clara Rathbone


The Mercy Brown vampire incident occurred in Rhode Island, US, in 1892. It is one of the best documented cases of the exhumation of a corpse in order to perform rituals to banish an undead manifestation. The incident was part of the wider New England vampire panic.

In the late 1800s, a bout of tuberculosis (then called “consumption”) struck Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Vermont, and the residents didn’t know what to make of it. Since its victims tended to look sunken, pallid, and drained, people assumed that they’d fallen prey to vampires. As a consequence, a “vampire hunt” soon commenced.

When members of an Exeter, Rhode Island family began dying of consumption one after the other, the other townspeople decided that someone in the family must be “feeding” on the others. Even after the mother, Mary Brown, and her two daughters had died, the townspeople decided to exhume the dead bodies, suspecting that one might, in fact, be “undead.”

Brown’s 19-year-old daughter Mercy had died much more recently than her family members, so her body was in much better condition. Her heart even still contained some decayed blood—a sure sign of vampirism, in those days. Her lack of decomposition was more likely due to her body being stored in freezer-like conditions in an above-ground crypt during the two months following her death.

As superstition dictated, Mercy's heart and liver were burned, and the ashes were mixed with water to create a tonic and was given to her sick brother, Edwin, to drink, as an effort to resolve his illness and stop the influence of the undead. The young man died two months later.

What remained of Mercy's body was buried in the cemetery of the Baptist Church in Exeter.


Thomas Edison experienced a failure when he tried created the first-ever talking dolls.

His 1877 development of the tinfoil phonograph was a major breakthrough in terms of sound recording, the endless possibilities for this technology not being lost on Edison.

In 1890, thanks to the development of the wax cylinder, he was able to produce a line of baby dolls. With wooden bodies, porcelain heads, and miniature phonographs in their chests, the dolls were unlike anything the world of toys had ever seen—or heard—before. The phonographs played back recordings of young women reciting nursery rhymes like “Hickory Dickory Dock” and “Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep.”

The dolls were like something out of a horror film, with eerie faces and shrill voices, which can be heard by clicking on:

Although it had spent several years in experimentation and development, the Edison Talking Doll was a sales failure, and was only marketed for a few short weeks in early 1890. A handle had to be cranked each time for it to play. Also, the ring-shaped wax records wore out quickly, and were prone to cracking and warping. Additionally, many children (and some adults) reportedly found the dolls and recordings frightening.

Finally, the dolls were expensive.


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