Best History Articles & Videos on the internet • Discoverology

History

Read the best history articles from around the internet, or watch the most insightful history videos from platforms like Youtube, Vimeo or leading history publishers like The New York Times, The Atlantic, Vanity Fair, New Yorker and many more.

The Bizarre Social History Of Beds

The Bizarre Social History Of Beds

History

Groucho Marx once joked, “Anything that can’t be done in bed isn’t worth doing at all.” You might think he was referring to sleeping and sex. But humans, at one time or another, have done just about everything in bed. And yet, they’re more of an afterthought.

The Many Lives Of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”

The Many Lives Of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”

History, Media

Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” has been covered by more than 300 other artists in virtually every genre. It’s an impressive feat by any standard, but even more so when you consider that “Hallelujah” was originally stuck on side two of an album that Cohen’s record label deemed unfit for release.

The Last Ditch Attempt To Save The USSR, August Coup Of 1991

The Last Ditch Attempt To Save The USSR, August Coup Of 1991

History, Politics, Videos

One of the most important events in the decline and fall of the USSR was the August Coup of 1991 which saw its Vice President attempt to overthrow its president, Mikhail Gorbachev. It didn’t go too well and was hastily planned but the fact that it ended peacefully is frankly nothing short of miraculous.

Bashir Sultani

Inspiration
Bashir Sultani
Buried In Sand For A Millennium: Africa’s Roman Ghost City

Buried In Sand For A Millennium: Africa’s Roman Ghost City

History, World

Timgad is a lost Roman city on the edge of the Sahara desert in Algeria that remained hidden beneath the sand for nearly a thousand years. Positively obscure compared to the international notoriety of Pompeii, this ancient city is nonetheless one of the best surviving examples of Roman town planning anywhere in the historical Empire.

The People Who Shaped The World Wide Web

The People Who Shaped The World Wide Web

History, Long Reads, Tech

Thirty years ago, the world wide web was a way for scientists to share data. Since then, it’s become a critical force for industry, and how the world connects. But this didn’t happen all at once. The web’s evolution has been shaped by the geography of its creators and users.

OK Soda Marketing History: Not Good, Not Bad, Just OK

OK Soda Marketing History: Not Good, Not Bad, Just OK

Food, History

A quarter-century ago, a really big soda company attempted to subvert itself to reach Gen X. The problem? Coca-Cola’s OK Soda was a couple of decades too early. The story about The Coca Cola Company’s failed attempts to use irony, disenfranchisement, and disillusionment to sell us subpar soda.

The Deadliest Marksman’s Cold, Brave Stand

The Deadliest Marksman’s Cold, Brave Stand

Crime, History

Eighty years ago, a freezing Finnish farm boy took aim at the unstoppable Red Army — and became the greatest sharpshooter the world has ever seen. Simo Häyhä compiled, by some accounts, a kill count in excess of 500 by sniper rifle, more than anyone in recorded history.

100 Years Ago In Photos: A Look Back At 1919

100 Years Ago In Photos: A Look Back At 1919

History, Photos

A century ago, the Treaty of Versailles was signed, as much of the world was still recovering from the devastation of World War I. Rebuilding was just beginning, refugees were returning home, orphans were being cared for, and a global influenza outbreak was being battled.

CBS News Coverage Of The Apollo 11 Moon Launch

CBS News Coverage Of The Apollo 11 Moon Launch

History, Media, Videos

The Saturn V rocket carrying astronauts Neil Armstrong, Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin and Michael Collins launched from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida at 9:32 a.m. on July 16, 1969 — and just four days later, man first set foot on the moon. The moon mission was a milestone in human history. But it was also a groundbreaking moment in broadcast television.

Nikolay Schegolev

Inspiration
Nikolay Schegolev
The Most Fascinating Riot You’ve Never Heard Of

The Most Fascinating Riot You’ve Never Heard Of

Art, Crime, History

A mob of thousands attempted to storm a theater over a performance of Macbeth, the National Guard had to be called up, 31 people were killed and more than 100 wounded all over the personal jealousies of two vain and insecure actors. This is the story of the Astor Place Opera House Riot of May 10, 1849.

Is An Island Off Cuba The Last Surviving Piece Of East Germany?

Is An Island Off Cuba The Last Surviving Piece Of East Germany?

History, World

The Unification Treaty signed in August 1990 re-Germanied the Germanies, and that West Germany (now known as “Germany”) inherited East Germany’s territories. But there may have been a tiny oversight. Turns out, there could still be a sliver of the Deutsche Demokratische Republik remaining in the Caribbean, just west of Cuba’s Bay of Pigs.

The Lost Neighborhood Under New York's Central Park

The Lost Neighborhood Under New York's Central Park

Cities, History, Videos

A story that goes back to the 1820s, when that part of New York was largely open countryside. Among them was a predominantly black community. It became known as Seneca Village. And when Irish and German immigrants moved in, it became a rare example at the time of an integrated neighborhood.

The British Once Built A 1,100-Mile Hedge Through The Middle Of India

The British Once Built A 1,100-Mile Hedge Through The Middle Of India

Economics, History, Nature

There was nothing charming about what the British built. It wasn’t meant to protect anything except imperial revenue. It grew along the Inland Customs Line, a bureaucratic barrier that the British created to impose a high salt tax on the people living on one side of the line—the relatively saltless one.

Who Owns South Africa?

Who Owns South Africa?

History, Life, Long Reads, Politics

The Glen Grey Act was the first piece of legislation to enshrine in law the residential separation of the races. It was also the basis for the notorious Natives Land Act of 1913, which in its final form allocated a mere thirteen percent of all arable land to the black majority. 

The History Of George Laurer And The Barcode

The History Of George Laurer And The Barcode

Business, History

A 67 cent packet of gum has ballooned into an enormous industry, and five billion barcodes are scanned each and every day. But how did we get to this point, and who was responsible for the UPC barcode?

In Search Of Russia's Lost Gold

In Search Of Russia's Lost Gold

History, World

Before World War I, Russia possessed the third-largest gold reserve in the world, bested only by the US and France. During the Russian Revolution, the Bolsheviks captured the entirety of Tsar Nicholas II’s family gold reserve – or so they thought.

What Was Libya Like 25 Years Ago?

What Was Libya Like 25 Years Ago?

History, Politics, Videos

Gaddafi’s 25 Years in Power (1994): A historic report filmed as Libya celebrated 25 years of Gaddafi’s rule. This short documentary challenges the West’s view of Libya and looks at Gaddafi’s struggles both at home and abroad.

Michael Crichton

Inspiration
Michael Crichton
On Harriet Tubman’s Final Escape Mission

On Harriet Tubman’s Final Escape Mission

History

There was one more dire mission to complete; she had to return to Maryland and try once again to rescue her sister Rachel and her two children, Angerine and Ben. With the exception of these three people, Harriet had pulled her entire immediate family that remained in Maryland away from slavery’s hold.

The 30 Year-Old Airline That's Never Flown

The 30 Year-Old Airline That's Never Flown

Business, History, Videos

Back in 1989, a guy by the name of Igor Dmitrovsky filed the paperwork to incorporate a small little business in the state of New York. This company would enter the metal cylinder organism transport business under the name Baltia Airlines. The airline was to fly from New York, US to St Petersburg, USSR.

The Lie That Helped Build Nintendo

The Lie That Helped Build Nintendo

Business, History, Tech, Videos

In 1981, a young Swede called Owe Bergsten strolled through Singapore to pass the time before his flight home. Passing a camera shop, he spotted a two-button LCD game called ‘Fire RC-04’ in the window. The story of a man, a lie, a video game handheld, and a business empire.

The Peruvian Corruption-Buster Bigger Than Mueller

The Peruvian Corruption-Buster Bigger Than Mueller

History, Politics

With his implacable pursuit of the presidential trio, the corruption-busting prosecutor José Domingo Pérez has established an international template for how to prosecute former heads of state on graft charges.

The Secret History Of Facial Recognition

The Secret History Of Facial Recognition

History, Long Reads, Tech

Sixty years ago, a sharecropper’s son invented a technology to identify faces. Then the record of his role all but vanished. He died on October 4, 1995. His obituary in the Austin American-Statesman made no mention of his work on facial recognition. Who was Woody Bledsoe, and who was he working for?

Before Beauty Vlogging, There Were Renaissance ‘Books of Secrets’

Before Beauty Vlogging, There Were Renaissance ‘Books of Secrets’

History, Media

So-called Books of Secrets were a new and wildly-popular literary genre during the Italian Renaissance. Written in vernacular Italian, they instructed an increasingly literate public in the pursuit of alchemy, making secrets previously circulated in Latin manuscripts amongst the educated elite more broadly accessible.

The Playboy Serbian Spy Who Inspired James Bond

The Playboy Serbian Spy Who Inspired James Bond

History, Videos

His name was Popov. Dusko Popov. As a Serbian double agent during the Second World War, Popov was an expert gambler, known womaniser and even crossed paths with James Bond’s creator Ian Fleming. But was he really the inspiration behind 007?

History Remembers These People, Just Not Their Names

History Remembers These People, Just Not Their Names

History

Throughout history, people have made a name for themselves without anyone actually knowing their name, from the protestor who stood up to a tank in Tiananmen Square in 1989, to notorious successful hijacker D.B. Cooper (almost certainly not his real name).

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