1) Skydiving Beavers.
In 1948, Idaho had a beaver problem. Mainly, there were beavers in the cities (if cities exist in Idaho) and there weren't beavers in the wild places that the state biologist Elmo Heter wanted beavers. It was the end of WWII. They had extra parachutes.
2. The Shame Flute.
Once upon a medieval time, if you were caught playing bad music in public, you would be shackled to a heavy iron flute. Your fingers were clamped to the keys to give the impression you were still playing. Also a band name: Joseph and the Trumpets of Shame
3. Taxidermy Presidents.
Charles Willson Peale painted all the early US presidents, but in 1792 young America was hungry for some national monuments, so Peale, a pioneer of taxidermy, came up with a modest proposal. He would stuff the Founding Fathers. Thank God he was rejected.
4. Blue Fugates.
Martin Fugate married Elizabeth Smith near Hazard, Kentucky in about 1820. Both carried methemoglobinemia, a rare medical condition caused by inbreeding that turns your skin indigo blue. They had four blue children and a blue great-great-great-great grandson.
5. Eel Riots.
A dutch game: You hang an live eel by a rope over a canal, then you float a boat beneath the eel and try to yank it down. Cash prizes, winner takes all. But on July 25th 1886, the Eel-grabbing game was outlawed on Lindengracht in Amsterdam. Riots ensued. 26 deaths.
6. Melting Music.
In 2004, Tim Linhart moved to Luleå, Swedish Lapland to make ice sculptures. Which became ice instruments. Which became an ice concert hall. Which became an annual festival for music made of ice. Eventually it will melt, Dali style, but dang, it's beautiful now.
7. Flea Napoleon.
Louis Bertolotto and his “Extraordinary Exhibition of the Industrious Fleas” were Victorian hits. The show featured historical parody: a recreation of Napoleon's Waterloo defeat featuring 435 fleas, dressed for battle, on golden saddles and carrying tiny swords.
8. Found Guilty.
Visart de Bocarmé wanted his brother dead, so he poisoned him with nicotine preserved in alcohol and cleaned the mess with vinegar. The mix of alcohol, poison, and vinegar was the first exact formula for proving organic poisons in a body and is still used today.
9. Ornamental Hermits.
In the 18th century, it was common to build grottoes or caves on your expansive property for strangers to live in permanently. They'd be fed, cared for, consulted for advice, and encouraged to dress up as druids for full effect. See Tom Stoppard's Arcadia
10. Pole Sitting.
Alvin "Shipwreck" Kelly was a sailor who started the 1920s fad of endurance 'pole sitting' after taking a dare from a friend. Kelly spent 20,613 hrs. of his life sitting on flagpoles, once at 225 feet in the air for 50 days straight.
11. Jell-O Brains.
In 1969, neurologist Adrian Upton demonstrated that green jello has the same EEG readings as a human brain. He was trying to make a point about the inaccuracy of EEG taken in hospitals, but his research inspired a string of "IT'S ALIVE!" Jell-O ads in the 90s.
Which is kinda a creepy way to advertise food if you ask me.
You can follow @2ndMTaylor.
Tip: mention @twtextapp on a Twitter thread with the keyword “unroll” to get a link to it.

Latest Threads Unrolled: