The Western Hemisphere before Columbus.
The Western Hemisphere before Columbus.
The stories of women who “are operating at unprecedented levels on every floor of CIA headquarters and throughout its far-flung global outposts.”
A hundred years ago, in the midst of an American food crisis, two spies who had once sworn to kill each other came together with a plan to feed America: hippo meat.
A Marxist archaeologist uncovers traces of fugitive slave settlements deep in the Great Dismal Swamp.
The lonesome death of Arnold Rothstein, notorious gambler, inspiration for the character Meyer Wolfsheim in The Great Gatsby, alleged fixer of the 1910 World Series, opiate importation pioneer, mobster.
“In some ways, joining the military is an act of faith in one’s country—an act of faith that the country will use your life well.”
Unspoken issues grip a couple's dinner along the Mississippi River.
A trip to the Museum of Jurassic Technology in Los Angeles.
The lives of elevators.
Chris Earnshaw began taking photographs of Washington, D.C. more than 40 years ago. By the time he paid a visit to a museum to tout his work, he had in his possession—in plastic bags and filing drawers—3,000 Polaroids of a city long gone.
Nobody noticed Connie Converse when she was trying to get a record deal in New York in the 1950s. Nobody stopped her when she left her life in Michigan in 1974, never to be seen again. Today, her music is heard by tens of thousands.
In the middle of a new drought, looking back at a drowned California town.
The making of Blonde on Blonde in Nashville.
David Hosack attends to a mortally wounded Alexander Hamilton.
"Hosack felt a hitching panic build, his instincts wound too tightly, overtaxed, a clockwork spring about to snap. Only Hamilton could do this to him. The frame prone before him was frail, narrow, woman-small. His coat, waistcoat, shirt, underclothes sopping him up, holding him together. Delicate embroidery sodden, delicate fingers cold with the loss of blood. Hosack had seen this man’s blood before, and the blood and vomit and delirious fever-dreams of his wife, his children. But this was—Hosack sickened, the scene before him tilting. Three years before—Hamilton’s son, Phillip, bleeding out after his own duel on the same Weehawken site. Their faces so alike, their mangled bodies. Their right sides."
Revisiting California’s grape vines more than 70 years after the publication of The Grapes of Wrath.
December 1944, Auschwitz.
On a book of photographs shot by Leni Riefenstahl in the 1950s and 1960s depicting an African tribe.
The history of a color.
On Marie-Madeline Marguerite, a 1600s French serial killer.
This is the second installment in The Hairpin's "Lady Killers" series. Previously: "The Blood Countess."</em></p>
A utopian German settlement in Chile had already turned darkly cultish by the time it became a secret torture site for enemies of the Pinochet regime.
A 42,000-word, 3-continent spanning “hacker tourist” account of the laying of the (then) longest wire on earth.
A narrator shares a philosophical discussion with the late orator.
"Cicero and I mounted a johnboat banked in the mud along this near finger of Mark Twain Lake. Neither of us wanted to do the shoving off. Our feet would have to get wet."
A brief history of the world and the late 1990s Chicago Bulls.
"This is the version of him that has no future or past. No ex-wife or kids, no off-court life. He lives in the United Center. He doesn't fuss with food or water. There are whole months in the air, between the floor and the rim. This moment of quiet and loud gets stuck on repeat. Michael Jordan shoots, swishes, but a lot of times he just stands, lit. An occasional swivel. Rotates like a figurine. Television size. He could dribble his basketball in the palm of your hand."
The beginning of Don DeLillo's Underworld, in memory of Andy Pafko.
"Pafko is out of paper range by now, jogging toward the clubhouse. But the paper keeps falling. If the early paper waves were slightly hostile and mocking, and the middle waves a form of fan commonality, then this last demonstration has a softness, a selfness. It is coming down from all points, laundry tickets, envelopes swiped from the office, there are crushed cigarette packs and sticky wrap from ice-cream sandwiches, pages from memo pads and pocket calendars, they are throwing faded dollar bills, snapshots torn to pieces, ruffled paper swaddles for cupcakes, they are tearing up letters they've been carrying around for years pressed into their wallets, the residue of love affairs and college friendships, it is happy garbage now, the fans' intimate wish to be connected to the event, unendably, in the form of pocket litter, personal waste, a thing that carries a shadow of identity -- rolls of toilet tissue unbolting lyrically in streamers."
On the hanging of James Murphy, murderer.