Oh Say, Did You Know?
The Secret History of America's Famous Figures, Fads, Innovations & Emblems From Ben Franklin's Turkey to Obama's BlackberryBook - 2009
Myth-debunking sidebars and fun tidbits about lesser-known historical figures are dispersed throughout the book, along with lists such as "Cup o'Canary, Wench " (long-forgotten drinks serves in colonial taverns) and "America's Ten Highest-Grossing Movies" (from Gone With the Wind to Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs ). Whether you're a history buff or a lover of miscellany, you won't be able to get enough of these fascinating anecdotes. You'll find engaging tales and facts, including these examples:
*"Gambling in the Colonies"-Gambling was a fact of life in early America, and the governments of all 13 colonies used lotteries to help finance road building and numerous other public projects.
*"The Costly Epizootic of 1872"-Less than a decade after the Civil War, a fast- moving equine influenza swept down from Canada into the United States, crippled virtually all of the nation's horses, and left the economy in ruins.
*DIDN'T HAPPEN sidebar: "Betsy Ross's Flagging Reputation"-Sheer hearsay put Betsy Ross into history books as the person who designed the American flag. The more likely designer was Francis Hopkinson, a signer of the Declaration of Independence.
*OUR NATIVE TONGUE sidebar: "Atomic Slang"-Words and terms coined in the early years include go ballistic, more bang for the buck, blast (a great party) and bombed (seriously inebriated). REVIEW
United States -- Social life and customs -- Anecdotes.
United States -- History -- Anecdotes.
National characteristics, American -- Anecdotes.