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History Is Fun, Part 2

Dan’s magical history tour continues

As a kid, if you wanted to learn about history, it meant going to the library or remembering what you learned in school, so I’m still amazed at the amount and variety of historical information available on the web. This edition of Off the Beaten Path is a continuation of my previous entry, History Is Fun, Part 1.

Discovering New da Vinci
Leonardo da Vinci was certainly a man ahead of his time. It’s interesting to see when scientists and historians find new information within his old work.

Historical Failures
From the TV series “Modern Marvels” comes this great video (it’s a whole show) about all the interesting inventions that have flopped. Grab some popcorn and enjoy!

Little House on the Big Prairie
I thought this was a fascinating link. Whether you read the books as a kid or watched the old TV series with Michael Landon, you probably know about Laura Ingalls Wilder. Here’s a link to the REAL Laura Ingalls Wilder which includes information and actual photos of Laura, “Ma & Pa,” and the rest of the family.

Vintage Vegas
Not that we’re in a countdown to the 2017 NAB Show (still about eight months to go), but here’s an interesting link to Vegas and its history through photos. As most of us who have gone to Las Vegas for years know, they aren’t big on saving their buildings and landmarks. This web site allows you to peek back at the Vegas of yesterday. It’s a well-designed site which allows for easy searching based on the casino, hotel, year, or whether it was on The Strip or Downtown.

Disney History
Disney is an incredible piece of American history in many ways. From “Uncle Walt’s” “Wonderful World of Color” to the animation advances to the many movies and theme parks. Over the past 10 years Disney has started growing by purchasing other successful companies that fall in-line with what Disney does best. Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars are just a few of the Disney acquisitions or mergers. I’m not sure this is actually a sanctioned Disney site (it doesn’t appear to hold their marking), which is probably what makes this even more interesting. This is The Disney History Institute … and it’s awesome!

And finally …
From my old small hometown of Dover, Ohio, comes an interesting story from the local newspaper. A fellow Dover High School graduate, James Black, who went on to become a Cleveland Brown before heading off to Hollywood and becoming a very successful actor has decided to expand his horizons with producing a new sports movie.

James was a year or two ahead of me at “dear old DHS,” but we met this past year when he returned to Dover and helped out the little LPFM station I helped build last year (he went on the air to be interviewed and did some voice-over work). The story here is what caught my attention about this movie James is working on. It’s about a local basketball coach (Perry Reese) who coached at a local high school (Hiland High School) from 1984 to 2000. Coach Reese is a black man who taught at a mostly white school. To make the story more interesting, the school was mostly Amish and Mennonite … so you have not only a lot of diversity in people, you also have some extremes in culture and breaking down prejudicial barriers. I’m looking forward to James getting this project off the ground. It should be a great movie!

If you stumble across a good or unusual web site that might be of interest, please don’t hesitate to send me the link and any info you might have about it. My email address is [email protected].