In the early 20th century, before building and safety guidelines were standard laws, one of the most bizarre tragedies in recent history befell Boston’s North End. The square-mile neighborhood was packed with over 40,000 Italian immigrants and thousands of commercial dock workers, making it one of the most densely populated places on the planet at the time. Located right on the northern corner of the city’s downtown peninsula was the Purity Distilling Company, right along a long line of heavily trafficked docks.
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Featured in the fantastic slow motion above, many evolutionary advantages contribute to the cheetah’s ability to rev from zero to sixty in under three seconds. Just what are those, you ask? The cheetah is endowed with semi-retractable claws for extra grip, enlarged nostrils and–somewhat like Lance Armstrong minus the steroids–a heart and lungs that allow for more oxygen intake to fuel its high-speed endeavors. Incredibly, the cheetah is said to take a whopping 60-150 breaths per minute in a typical chase.
Set aside by Spanish king Alfonso XII in 1876, El Yunque is the only tropical rainforest in the US National Forest System, as well as one of the oldest examples of reserves in the Western hemisphere. It was a good move, too: the rainforest is home to some of the world’s rarest and most unique flora and fauna known to man.
There are few places more beautiful than the Royal Greenhouses of Laeken. Filled with lush, blooming greenery, the stunning complex is one of the most magical greenhouses in the world. Construction on the grounds took decades, and the finished product has stood the test of time.
Nestled in the east Andes of Ecuador, records hold that the Reventador volcano has erupted a mere 25 times since 1541. With that said, however, the largest eruption (featured above) took place in 2002, where the stratovolcanic plume extended an astounding 10 miles high into the air.
TIME magazine recently asked beloved astrophysicist Neil DeGrasse Tyson to name the most astounding aspect of the universe. His response is absolutely chilling in the best way imaginable.