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The History of Ordinary Things: Spring Means Baseball

The first official game of baseball was held in 1846 in Hoboken, New Jersey. The evolving rules of the game govern the materials, form, and dimensions of a regulation baseball bat and ball.

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The History of Ordinary Things: Victorian Hair Receiver Bowls

Do you remember the early dresser sets with the comb, brush, mirror, and the matching bowl with a hole in its flat lid? In the Victorian era, this hair receiver bowl was kept on the dressing table to store hair removed from brushes and combs.

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How Much Do You Know about Women in History?

Take this quiz and learn something about the roles of five particular women in U.S. history:

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Famous Presidential Last Words

As we celebrate Presidents Day, it is a good time to consider some of their famous last words — many remained philosophical and elegant in their final moments.

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Celebrate Valentine’s Day with These Famous Lovers

Valentine’s Day celebrates love and happiness, and although real life offers plenty of true stories with happily-ever-after endings, many of us look to literature for inspiring tales of passion’s power.

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The History of Ordinary Things: Red-Red Lipstick

Cleopatra colored her lips with red dye from the crushed shells of the cochineal bug, which is still used today to make carmine, a red food coloring.

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It Didn’t Start with the Oreo

Who doesn’t like a cookie every now and then? Cookies have a long history, but the first ones didn’t taste much like the treats we enjoy today.

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The History of Ordinary Things: Remembering One-Room School Days

Many seniors of today attended a one-room school, and many of our mothers and grandmothers were teachers for at least a short time.

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The History of Ordinary Things: The Americanization of Santa Claus

Centuries ago, European Christmas customs centered on St. Nicholas, a charitable Turkish Catholic bishop born in the fourth century. St. Nicholas was associated with gift giving to children, which occurred on Dec. 6, St. Nicholas Day.

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