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Coral Castle: Everlasting Love And Mystery In Southern Florida

In general, stony coral’s razor sharp edges don’t make for prime construction material. And yet in southern Florida thousands of tons of it were used exactly for that purpose – building a castle – leaving people scratching their heads as to just how that could happen.

The construction of Coral Castle remains one of Florida’s greatest unsolved mysteries. While theories abound regarding its creation, many find it hard to explain how a 100-pound man who stood just a hair over five feet tall was able to move, carve and manipulate more than 1,100 tons of coral. Had he mastered the skills of the pyramid builders like he claimed? Or was there black magic involved, as others wondered?

In the early 1900s, Latvia native Ed Leedskalnin was set to marry the love of his life, Agnes Skuvst, who was just 16 at the time — ten years younger than her husband-to-be. But Skuvst called off the wedding the day before the festivities, forcing Leedskalnin to move to the United States alone. Skuvst remained in Latvia, and Leedskalnin spent the rest of his life building a monument to their love.


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After Genocide, Only Human Wreckage Remains

Only Human Wreckage Left In Rwanda

The body of a man, who survivors say was a primary school teacher, lies beneath a blackboard drawing of Africa at a Karubamba school, May 13, 1994. Image Source: Jean-Marc Bouju/Associated Press

From The Associated Press, May 13, 1994:

“Nobody lives here any more.

Not the expectant mothers huddled outside the maternity clinic, not the families squeezed into the church, not the man who lies rotting in a schoolroom beneath a chalkboard map of Africa.

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How Historically Accurate Is “Downton Abbey?”

Downton Abbey Series 6 History.

The cast of TV show Downton Abbey, which has just filmed its final season. Image Source: Vanity Fair

Downton Abbey has come to an end. The sixth and final season of the wildly successful costume drama finished taping last week, and a major (and perhaps surprising) motivation behind the show’s unpopular end is history itself.

Though the period drama is bidding us adieu, online and at-the-table discussions about the show continue, ranging from the accuracy of Downton table settings to the series’ costumes and corsets. In keeping with that spirit, here are four Downton plots that we think might have deserved some deeper digging:

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Helen Keller’s Hands-On Meeting With Dwight Eisenhower

Helen Keller Meets Dwight Eisenhower

Image Source: Associated Press

On November 3, 1953, Helen Keller met President Dwight Eisenhower in what was likely the most unique greeting Eisenhower had ever received. Accompanied by Polly Thomson, Keller greeted the president with her hand — except instead of placing it in his hand, Keller went for the face. According to archival footage, Keller did this so that she might “see” him.

Said Keller after she “saw” Eisenhower: “I felt the courage in thought that carried him through such great years of the world’s history.”

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