Navigation Menu+
Episode 43: 39 Shots (5.20.2016)
Read more

In 1979, a group of labor organizers protested outside a Ku Klux Klan screening of the 1915 white supremacist film, The Birth of a Nation. Nelson Johnson and Signe Waller-Foxworth remember shouting at armed Klansmen and burning a confederate flag, until eventually police forced the KKK inside and the standoff ended without violence. The labor organizers felt they’d won a small victory, and planned a much bigger anti-Klan demonstration in Greensboro, North Carolina....

Read more
Episode 42: The Finger (5.6.2016)
Read more

People have been giving each other “the finger” since Ancient Greece. The first documented use is said to be a photograph from 1886 in which the pitcher for the Boston Beaneaters extends his middle finger to the camera (ostensibly to the rival New York Giants). Even though it’s been around for so long, many find the gesture offensive enough to try to bring criminal charges. Courts have ruled that “flipping the bird” is a form of speech...

Read more
Episode 41: Open Case (4.15.2016)
Read more

Since 1965, there’s been an unsolved murder in Houston, Texas. The main suspect managed to disappear and police were never able to find him. The case is still considered open. In 1997, a couple of accountants decided to look into the murders, and were able to uncover evidence that the police missed. They think they’ve solved the mystery. – Learn more about Hugh and Martha’s book: The Ice Box Murders. – We’re heading to Los Angeles on May...

Read more
EPISODE 40: PAPPY (4.1.2016)
Read more

When it comes to the bourbon Pappy Van Winkle, it doesn’t matter who you are or how much money you have — you can’t get it unless you’re exceptionally lucky or willing to break the law. The Pappy frenzy has law enforcement, bartenders, and even the Van Winkle family themselves wringing their hands.   Interested in buying a bottle? http://howtobuypappy.com/ This story was produced with help from Gravy, a podcast from the Southern Foodways...

Read more
Episode 39: Either/Or (3.18.2016)
Read more

In 1983, three men were prepared to plead guilty to a violent sexual assault in Anderson, South Carolina. Defense attorneys did not want their clients to go before a jury, and arranged a plea deal. This left the sentencing in the hands of the judge, who gave the assailants a very controversial choice.   Music in this episode: “Zither Sprague” by Blue Dot Sessions. “You Know Who You Are” by Alan Singley. “Nervous Whisp” by Podington...

Read more
Episode 38: Jolly Jane (3.4.2016)
Read more

Jane Toppan was born in Massachusetts in 1857. She attended the Cambridge Nursing School, and established a successful private nursing career in Boston. Said to be cheerful, funny and excellent with her patients, nothing about “Jolly Jane” suggested she could be “the most notorious woman poisoner of modern times.”             Music in this episode: “Snowcrop” by Blue Dot Sessions.“December” by Kai Engel. “L’enclume” by...

Read more