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The Last Voyage of the SS Phoenix

by Kelly Vazquez, age 17

On November 11th, 1847, the steamboat S.S. Phoenix, was sailing across Lake Michigan. It carried an estimated 293 passengers, many of whom were emigrants from the Netherlands. However, many of these passengers would never go on to see their destination.

Around 4:00 am on November 21st, smoke began to escape the ship's engine room as the boilers overheated and set overhead wooden beams on fire. When the crewmen discovered the fire, the Phoenix was within seven miles of the town of Sheboygan.

Although at first, the crew managed to contain the flames, the fire raged out of control shortly after. The ship's passengers were alerted and First Mate Watts organized the crew and passengers into a bucket brigade (passing buckets of water down a line of people) in an attempt to fight the fire. The fire continued to grow. Watts ordered the ship to turn towards the shore, but the fire overwhelmed the engine room and the ship drifted until it stopped about five miles from shore and nine miles from Sheboygan. [Read More]

Rosa Parks, Civil Rights Icon

by Sol-Saray, age 11

Many people may have heard of the brave woman who stood up for herself and refused to give up her seat to a white man. That woman was known as Rosa Parks.

Rosa Louise McCauley was born in Tuskegee, Alabama on February 4, 1913. She was daughter of James McCauley, who worked as a carpenter, and Leona McCauley, who worked as a teacher. Rosa's grandparents were enslaved. Rosa grew up in times where racism and segregation was very harsh; due to Jim Crow laws in the South, Black Americans had to sit separately on the bus from white Americans.

On December 1, 1955, she boarded the bus after a long day of work. She chose to sit in the front of the bus, spots typically designated for white people. When demanded to give her seat to a white passenger, she refused and was arrested and fined shortly after. As a result of her arrest, people started boycotting the Montgomery buses in protest by walking instead of using bus transportation. The boycott lasted over a year and resulted in the U.S Supreme Court ruling in favor of ending racial segregation on buses. [Read More]

East L.A. Student Walkouts Propelled the Chicano Movement

by Valeria Moreno Lopez, age 16

The 1960s was a time of change for many underrepresented communities in the United States. Between the civil rights movement and racial conflicts occurring, many people took the opportunity to strongly voice their basic needs. An example is the East L.A. walkouts of 1968, a series of protests led by Chicano students that advocated for the improvement of their education.

Obvious flaws in the Los Angeles school systems were always apparent to Chicano students. The unfurnished buildings could not support the growing population, hence leading to overcrowding; and much of the staff were inadequately trained for teaching. The lack of education quality denied many academic and career opportunities for Latinos that were readily available to white students. Nearly 130,000 Latinos made up 75 percent of East L.A.'s student body, but due to the lack of support, the number of school drop-outs mounted to 50 percent or above. Although Chicano students contacted their school administrations to fix the flaws, nothing changed.

Students, however, were not alone in the fight against the discriminatory issues they faced. In particular, Sal Castro, a Mexican-American social studies teacher at Lincoln High School in Los Angeles, encouraged Chicano students to dwell more on their culture and take pride in their identity. In 1967, Castro, and community members, began organizing protests and helping students walk out of their classes to march in the streets. Many Chicanos from East L.A. schools and concerned parents joined. Together they created a list of 39 demands, such as employing more Latino staff, allowing bilingualism to be used in classrooms, and an increase of Mexican and Mexican-American history lessons. [Read More]

Women Pioneers in the STEM Fields

by Devika Pal, age 17

As early as the mid-19th century, women made vast contributions to astronomy. They had to fight for representation and recognition in this field. Pioneers such as Maria Mitchell and a group of women known as the Harvard Computers paved the way for the women who followed. However, even now, many women struggle to receive credit for their work.

Maria Mitchell is recognized as the first professional woman astronomer in the United States. She discovered a comet in 1847 using a small telescope, which was later named after her, Miss Mitchell’s Comet. The discovery was initially credited to Italian astronomer Francesco de Vico even though he discovered it after she did; it was not until later that it was credited to Mitchell. The first Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, Joseph Henry, even published the comet’s discovery in 1848 without mention of Mitchell’s name. His actions reflect the refusal to credit women astronomers for their achievements, a common tendency at that time. Despite being initially overlooked, she was admitted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1848, becoming the first woman to be recognized by the Academy.

During the early 20th century, Harvard Observatory Director Edward Charles Pickering put together a team of women astronomers who came to be known as the “Harvard Computers.” These women carried out astronomical calculations and invented the Harvard spectral classification, which they used to classify hundreds of stars. Over a century later, this system is still being used by modern astronomers. However, the women worked in substandard conditions, only earning 25 to 50 cents an hour, much less than the men made, while performing a similar wide range of duties. Even Annie Jump Cannon—who was central to development of the Havard classification system—was not credited by name in the title. [Read More]

The Ancient Library of Pergamum

by Hiba Al-Quraishi, age 14

The ancient library of Pergamum, located in what is now Turkey, was built in the third century B.C. by members of the Attalid dynasty. The library, constructed by a small kingdom that lasted only 150 years, is now one of the most famous libraries in antiquity.

Following the destruction of Alexander the Great’s empire, Lysimachus, a general in Alexander the Great’s army, founded the Monarchy of Pergamum or Attalid kingdom during the Hellenistic period. This kingdom was situated in what is now Turkey, in the western portion of Asia Minor.

Around 130 BC, the Roman Republic acquired the Kingdom of Pergamum. Even though this kingdom only existed for roughly 150 years, they managed to construct one of the greatest libraries ever seen in antiquity and for centuries. The large library of Pergamum remained a significant hub of study. [Read More]

How an Ancient Civilization Thrived and then Collapsed

by Emily Rodriguez, age 13

A mysterious ancient civilization on the island of Malta collapsed within two generations, despite surviving for more than a millennium.

The ancient civilization was known as the Temple Culture, it arose around 6,000 years ago on Malta and other islands in the Mediterranean sea. Groups of scientists analyzed pollen and DNA from skulls and bones that were buried deep in the Earth to find an explanation for the quick collapse. According to a tree ring analysis, the whole region was exposed to horrible climates. This analysis and other research makes up an ongoing investigation into why the civilization collapsed.

Upwards of several thousand people lived on Malta. These people built a strong and successful civilization through collaboration. The people built sacred sites, one of them being Ggantija Temple complex. Their buildings are known as some of the first free-standing buildings. The temples held the people together. Historians assumed the temples honored a mother goddess. However, recents findings led historians to believe the people focused on their worship, feasting, and rituals insteads of on a deity (god or goddess, in ancient Greek). Despite their affective lifestyle, after around 1,500 years, the civilization and its people were gone. [Read More]

Cathedral on a Hill: Ancient Structure in Turkey Might be the Oldest on Planet Earth

by Jules Da Costa, age 13

Have you ever wondered what the world’s oldest structure is? Well, archaeologists have found an answer: Gobekli Tepe.

The Gobekli Tepe, informally known as “Cathedral on a Hill,” is located east of the Mediterranean Sea in the country of Turkey. It was discovered atop a limestone plateau close to Urfa. It currently stands as humanity's oldest known structure, built over 11,000 years ago.

In 1996, German archaeologist Klaus Schmidt led an expedition on the mountaintop. After over a decade of excavations, Schmidt concluded that the monument gives further insight on when early humans switched from a nomadic lifestyle to an agricultural lifestyle. He and his team found stone tools and other promising evidence that hunter-gatherers based at the Gobekli Tepe site carved tools and built structures. [read more]

How a Library Made Baghdad the World's Most Important Center of Learning

by Mariama Bah, age 15

When hearing about grand libraries, one might think of the Library of Alexandria or the Library of Congress. However a different library was established in the 9th century as one of the world’s greatest centers of science and learning.

The House of Wisdom was founded in the city of Baghdad, Iraq during the Islamic Golden Age, which lasted from the 8th to the 14th century. The Islamic Golden Age was an important period in Islamic history characterized by a series of rapid scientific, cultural, and economic advancements.

Although the House of Wisdom was visited by scholars from all around the Middle East, it was owned by the Abbasid Dynasty, which ruled over the Islamic Empire. Details on the library’s founding are debated. Many believe it was started by Abu Ja’far al-Mansur, who collected books on the sciences. What started as one hall became an educational capital. Students regardless of gender, faith, ethnicity, or language were welcomed into the House of Wisdom. [Read More]

Catherine the Great Reformed Russia with an Iron Fist

by Haliah Berkowitz, age 12

Catherine the Great was a German princess, who married the Grand Dux Peter, and did many amazing things for her country. She also died in a way not many would imagine.

Catherine married the Grand Dux of Russia, heir to the Russian throne, and became Empress Catherine the Great. However, their relationship was one-sided. She often found Peter unattractive and weak because of various illnesses saying, ”I should have loved my new husband if only he had been willing or able to be in the least loveable.” The rift in their relationship grew bigger. They both supported different political ideas. Catherine even had an affair with the man who eventually would take over the throne.

Born a German princess by the name Sophia Augusta Frederika Von Anhalt-Zerbst, she changed her name to Catherine when she married to have a more Russian name. Her husband was a king named Peter the Great. He founded St. Petersburg, a city in Russia in 1703. He led Russia to victory against Sweden in the Battle of Poltava in 1709. [Read More]

William Bebee Pushed Barriers in Scuba Diving

by Marie Pietz, age 11

Exploring the sea is something that most of us don’t think about, but it’s important to understand the dangers of it as well as seeing how it can be successfully accomplished.

A common danger is running out of oxygen. This may happen because the diver has gone too far down underwater and does not have enough time to return to the surface. Another massive danger is the pressure underwater, which can crush and kill the diver. This may happen because the pressure is so high that it crushes the bathysphere, an old kind of submarine that was used throughout the 1930s.

William Bebee was man on a mission to break many records, especially those in the science field. William was born in Brooklyn, New York in the late 1870s, and in the 1930s he began breaking records in the New York Zoos. In 1934, he set the record for the deepest bathysphere descent at the depth of 3,028 feet. At the time many believed it was a bad idea. [Read More]

Quanah Parker Became a Famous Comanche Leader

by Sandy Flores-Ruiz, age 16

The last surviving chief of the Quahada Comanche Indian tribe was Quanah Parker. He was born in 1845 in Elk Creek, near Wichita Mountain, in what is today known as Oklahoma City. He is known for his resistance against white settlement and for his leadership in helping his community adapt to life on the reservation.

Quanah Parker’s birth resulted from a conflict between Native Americans and white settlers. His mother, Cynthia Ann Parker, was captured when she was child and later converted to the Native American way of life. She met Quanah’s father, Chief Peta Nocona, whom she later married. They had three children: Quanah, Pecos, and Topsana. However, Quanah’s childhood was a nightmare where he endured a long battle with the Texas Rangers. As a result of the battle, both his mother and sister were taken against their will. After being held captive for more than twenty-four years, Cynthia refused to re-assimilate. She committed suicide in 1871 after losing her daughter a couple of years earlier due to illness, leaving Quanah and his brother as orphans.

The Comanche tribe was very disorganized during Chief Peta Nocona’s leadership, nevertheless, many feared them. In fact, the tribe was one of the first to obtain horses from the Spanish. The Comanche established themselves as expert riders and set the pattern for nomadic horse culture life, which became common among plain tribes in the 18th and 19th centuries. When Quanah became chief, the Comanche were in almost a constant state of war with Mexico, Texas, and other Native American tribes. Quanah Parker led the tribe in a very successful battle and many believed in him because he was the son of a respected leader. [Read More]

Ghost Towns and Glaciers: The Legend of Kennicot

by Anissa Attidekou, age 13

Despite the fact that ghost stories can be scary, they are always interesting. The tale of this ghostly Alaskan glacier might give you a chill, but it will also get you hooked with its unique story.

This ghostly glacier was discovered and explored during the 1800s and site was eventually named the Kennicott Glacier. The mountains around the glacier are embedded with tons of copper. During the 1800s and 1900s, the rise of electricity and telephone use meant an increase in demand for copper wiring. After finding out about the Kennicott Glacier and its copper, several companies quickly built mines.

At its peak, these mining operations employed around 600 miners. They worked long hours every day. The miners produced a lot of copper allowing the owners of the mines to make a great amount of money. [Read More]

The Unique History of Lake Ivanhoe, Wisconsin

by Josepha Da Costa, age 18

This past summer, Lake Ivanhoe was one of 40 new historical markers to be designated in Wisconsin. It became only the 8th marker, out of 600, in the state to feature Black History. Peter Baker, a current resident who grew up in Lake Ivanhoe, “the safest place and the coolest place” he’d ever been in his life, played an important part in the process of celebrating this history. His tireless efforts for over 20 years finally made this commemoration possible.

Lake Ivanhoe was founded in 1926, in the town of Bloomfield, by three Black men from Chicago: politician Bradford Watson, business executive Frank Anglin, and attorney Jeremiah Brumfield. These men were looking for a summer vacation place to visit with their families to get away from the racial unrest in Chicago at the time, which was a result of the Great Migration. As Black people started frequently moving to the northern cities, specifically Chicago, segregation became increasingly prominent. Since Black people were not welcome in predominantly white resorts in neighboring places like Lake Geneva, they decided to create their own. This was where the first entirely Black owned community in Wisconsin was born.

The town’s streets were named after famous historical people like Crispus Attucks and Phyllis Wheatley. A large gazebo was built in the middle of town where the neighborhood families were able to hold cookouts, gatherings and concerts. For most of the 1920s, Lake Ivanhoe was a safe haven for Black families to reside and enjoy. However, after the stock market crash in the 1930s, the once lively resort quickly became abandoned. [Read More]

How One of China's Most Beautiful Attractions Saved Lives

by Sedona Afeworki, age 14

Where would be a good place to hide if something bad ever happened? The Guilin Hills is a place in China where many people hid during World War II and the following civil war when clashing armies turned the region into a battlefield. The hills also have a lot of caves, one of many ways they’ve played a role in Chinese history.

The Guilin Hills, which means “forest of cassia trees”, stands within the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region near the Li River in southern China. The Hills are part of the “limestone region”, which spreads from south-central China to Vietnam.

Between 1949 and 1973, Guilin was closed to most sightseers while Communist forces were in power. In 1973, it was reopened, and Guilin transformed into one of China’s most beautiful attractions. [Read More]

The End of Brazil's Soccer "Golden Age"

by Moore Vang, age 14

Brazil’s national team has had many achievements, beginning with winning their first-ever World Cup in 1958. Illustrator John Mulliken from Sports Illustrated wrote about their win saying, “Brazil itself went wild.” Brazil may have looked impressive, but in some people's eyes that was not the case. The French leader by the name of Charles de Gaulle in 1963 stated, “Brazil, that is not a serious country.” During this time many people doubted Brazil, but Brazil was very ambitious about soccer.

The sport first came to Brazil in 1894. The game originally came from Britain but spread to people of the lower class. A breakthrough came in 1923, when a club founded by Portuguese bankers in 1898 allowed poor black players to join their club. They went on to win a city championship that same year.

From 1938 to the 1990’s, Brazil experienced a golden era of soccer. In that time, it strengthened Brazil’s national identity. It even hosted the 1950 World Cup at the Rio Stadium, which was the world’s largest at the time. Even with the team’s great soccer skills, the country was still criticized as an underdeveloped nation. The sport of soccer elevated Brazil to a high level in the second half of the 20th century. [Read More]

From Bronx "Breaks" to L.A. Rap: The History of Hip-Hop

by Zayn Khalid, age 12

Hip-hop was created nearly fifty years ago. Many of us listen to hip-hop every day, yet many people don’t know its history.

It all started back in 1973 when, “DJ Kool Herc” threw a party for his sister in their apartment building on Sedgwick Ave in the Bronx, New York. He played a type of music called “breaks'', which included some drums, funky percussion, and bass put together. This was where hip-hop was born.

Being a DJ in hip-hop was all about moving your finger back and forth on the vinyl and being creative with it. Later it evolved. People started putting rhyming couplets, which are two-lined poems, in front of the music, then to triplets, three-lined poems, and then to multiple rhyming lines. However, people in Harlem and the Bronx did not believe that rap would ever be a real genre. That changed in 1979 when producer Sylvia Robinson gathered three kids and recorded rhymes over a beat that turned into the famous hit ”Rapper's Delight'' by Sugarhill Gang, which sold millions of copies. The lyrics in that song were stolen from lyrics they heard at parties. This angered many in the community because Sugarhill became known for something the community was already doing. [Read More]

Volcano Explosion Shoots Water into Space

by Theodore Morrison, age 15

A volcanic eruption that occurred in the Pacific Ocean on January 12, 2022 reserved itself a spot in history when it ejected its water vapor into space for the first time in recorded history.

This water vapor, erupting from the volcano Hunga Tonga, which awoke in December of 2021, disrupted the ionosphere, a layer of our planet's atmosphere, at levels emulating a solar geomagnetic storm. The water vapor, in addition to simply reaching space in an historic event, momentarily absorbed light particles. Additionally, the eruption generated unprecedented levels of lightning, generating a minimum of 400,000 lightning strikes during the event.

These findings, observed from NASA’s Global Ultraviolet Imager, were presented in a couple of scientific conferences, including some during a particular meeting in Chicago. The data shows that the eruption overpowered a geomagnetic storm in terms of effects. [Read More]

Who Created These Mysterious Pillars in Ireland?

by Jonah Smith, age 14

Strange pillars reside in County Antrim, Ireland. They have an unusual shape that appears to be man made. These tightly wedged pillars descend in tiers, in a staircase all the way down to the sea. These columns are mostly hexagonal, though the number of sides these structures have may vary. Although their shape implies that they are manufactured, the complete opposite is true.

There are similar structures such as the Giant’s Causeway in Scotland or Devil’s Tower in Wyoming. With having so many of these unexplained structures around the world, myths for how they were made arose. For the Giant’s Causeway, it is said [locally] that the Irish giant, Finn Mac Cool, drove the columns into the sea one by one so that he could walk to Scotland to fight his rival. These exciting stories theorizing their construction adds new life and attractiveness to these beautiful structures.

The creation of these abnormalities is way more complex than it might seem. During the period where North America and Europe recently split up, the new North Atlantic Ocean in between the two was still a developing feature. The northern area of both Europe and North America was in place, but the body of water still had to form the edges of these continents. The western coast of Greenland separated from Canada around 80 million years ago, but the southwestern coast was still firmly attached to the opposing northwestern coast of the British Isles. 20 million years later, these coasts began to separate and there were major volcanoes in place of a few Scottish islands. [Read More]

The Mammal that Helped Take Over the Globe

by Ayelen Flores Ruiz, age 12

Researchers have discovered a prehistoric mammal with a two to five years life cycle that they call the Manbearpig. The mammal’s short lifespan is likely due to their months-long pregnancy, a trait scientists believe helped mammals dominate the world after the extinction of the dinosaurs.

The name Manbearpig came from the features it contained: a face like a bear; a body similar to a pig; and five fingered hands. These mammals are also known by their scientific name, Pantolamba bathmodon, and were plant eaters. The Manbearpig lived about 62 million years ago. The Manbearpig was one of the largest mammals of its time and seemed to appear after the dinosaur extinction, which allowed mammals to grow to larger sizes than ever before. It was a member of the placental group of mammals, animals who do their prenatal development in the womb of their mother.

Researchers were able to discover how fast they would grow throughout their life from the enamel of their teeth, which looked different during different life stages. These mammals' lives were short and they died at a younger age than typical animals, between two and five years of life. The Manbearpig had a really short life cycle because it stayed in the womb for about seven months, a pregnancy much longer than is observed in modern marsupials, but similar to extreme modern placentals like giraffes and wildebeests. The most extreme modern placentals are usually walking within hours of birth, and usually only give birth to one baby per litter. This species nursed for one or two months after they were born. In a year, they would reach adulthood. The longest a Manbearpig was found to have lived was 11 years. [Read More]

From Modest Chateau to Palace Fit for Kings

by Ashley Mercado, age 14

King Louis XII originally chose Versailles, an area just outside of Paris, as the site for a modest hunting chateau. However, over the years it developed into something far more elegant.

“Louis” was a commonly chosen name for princes over many generations. To distinguish the different kings, roman numerals would be placed after their name to note who was who in order of their birth. Louis the XIV, also known as the Sun King, wanted to expand the chateau into a grand palace, and began construction on the project in 1661. Versailles became Louis the XIV’s permanent residence in 1682, and later the French court was established there. The heart of the building was the Hall of Mirrors—a big gallery of 17 windows that offered a grand view of the stunning gardens.

Louis XIV directed the architect Gabriel to do further work on the building, such as the addition of an opera salon and an additional palace called the Petit Trianon. Louis XVI added a library, and his wife Marie Antoinette took over the Petit Trianon. Two designers worked on Versailles. The original designer was Louis Le Vau followed by Jules Hardouin Mansart who assumed responsibility and worked on Versailles for 30 years. The one responsible for the landscaping of Versailles was Andrė Le Nȏtre. In October of 1789, revolutionaries angry at the rich due to colossal income inequality went to Versailles and caused great damage to the palace. [Read More]

The Wright Brothers: American Inventors and Pioneers of Aviation

by Max Moreno, age 10

In December 1903, Orville and Wilbur Wright, often known as the Wright brothers, built the first successful piloted aircraft. It was a propelled two-seater plane and flew 120 feet, lasting 12 seconds in the air.

As little kids, the two brothers were fascinated by a toy helicopter that functioned on a rubber band. Hoping one day to build a flying machine big enough for both of them, the brothers set out to work. Before they could work on building planes, as young men, they started in business, first at a printing press and then at a bicycle repair shop.

At this time, gliders were around, but they did not have engines. The Wright brothers then decided to start testing different engines for their plane designs. In 1899, they worked on building their planes and a year later moved from Ohio to North Carolina to test their experiments and make new changes to their designs. Finally, in 1903, they crafted a plane called the Wright Flyer 1 that took flight and made history; it was flown a few times afterward. [Read More]

How Codebreakers Turned the Tide at Midway

by Shahad Al Quraishi, age 15

The Battle of Midway was a major turning point during World War II. It was a battle that ultimately altered Japanese plans and the fluctuation of power in the Pacific. The battle took place on a small island named Midway in the Pacific Ocean. At the time, this island was home to a United States base, but it offered the perfect location for Japan to station their own forces for an attack on Pearl Harbor.

Prior to the battle, U.S. Navy cryptanalysts had been working on cracking the Japanese communication codes. The cryptanalysts, who were stationed in Hawaii, known as Station Hypo, successfully broke the Japanese codes right before the battle. The success of the cryptanalysts not only confirmed the location but also gave them the exact date of the attack.

The Japanese attacked and severely damaged the U.S. base at Midway, using four aircrafts. However thanks to the work of the cryptanalysts, the U.S. carrier forces were already stationed and ready for battle on the island’s east side. Attacks from the U.S. forces continued for two days, forcing Japan to retreat and leading the U.S. to victory. This derailed the Japanese plans to take over the Pacific because winning the battle of Midway was a significant part of taking over the Pacific. [Read More]

Behind the Deadly Hiroshima Bombing

by Hiba Al-Quraishi, age 14

On August 9, 1945, the United States ended World War II at a terrible human cost by dropping the “Fat Man” nuclear implosive bomb in Nagasaki. This was three days after the atomic uranium bomb named “Little Boy” had decimated Hiroshima.

As a part of the Manhattan Project, the United States created the atomic bomb. The United States’ decision to deploy an atomic weapon was seen as an alternative to its planned invasion of Japan in November 1945. The uranium bomb left Alamogordo, New Mexico, for Hiroshima on July 14, 1945, after undergoing a successful test.

The Potsdam Declaration was issued on July 26, 1945. The declaration stated that if Japan didn’t surrender, they’d face immediate and total annihilation. This declaration was formulated by President Truman of the United States, Soviet leader Joseph Stalin, and Prime Minister Clement Attlee of Great Britain. U.S. military leaders debated whether or not to inform the Japanese about the deadly weapon they held in their possession. In the end, it was deemed too risky to let them know in advance. Japan refused the terms of the Potsdam Declaration on July 29, 1945. [Read More]

How Early Jazz Developed in New Orleans

by Aissata Bah, age 12

There are many opinions of what is important in jazz history, specifically in New Orleans. The musical genre contains history that takes roots in colonization, slavery and much more.

New Orleans was founded as part of the French Louisiana colony in 1718. The territories were given up to Spain, but returned back to France in 1803. At the same time they were returned, Thomas Jefferson bought the territory in the Louisiana Purchase, meaning that New Orleans became part of the United States. People who could speak English began migrating to the area and extended the boundaries of the city. The massive amount of free and enslaved Black people in the area had brought elements of the blues, spirituals and rural dances to the rise of jazz music, since the early 18th century.

The region had a mix of French, Spanish, African, and Caribbean cultural heritage. The residents had an appreciation of good food, wine, music, dance, and also celebrating the many cultures and languages within the city. [Read More]

Local Observatory Renamed For STEM Pioneer Jocelyn Bell Burnell — by Mariah Justice, age 17

“Astronomy compels the soul to look upward, and leads us from this world to another,” said Greek philosopher Plato. With the renaming event on September 7 for the Bell Burnell Observatory— previously the Oscar Mayer Observatory—Madison has a new facility for cultivating the exploration of astronomy. [Read More]

The Fire that Reached From Alberta to Pennsylvania — by Dyanara Flores-Gomez, age 14

In early June of 1950, a fire started in northern Alberta, Canada, and spread through northeastern British Columbia. It burned four million acres of land. This fire became the largest fire in North America and was named the Chinchaga fire. It was also known as the Wisp fire or Fire 19. [Read More]

The Viking Tale of Gudrid Thorbjarnardóttir — by Aissata Bah, age 12

If you know who Vikings were, you might think that the men were stronger, more courageous and adventurous than the women, but that is not the case. There is evidence that suggests Viking women were just as brave and capable as the men. One of those women was Gudrid. [Read More]

2.5-Yard Elephant Tusk Fossil Discovered in Israel

Researchers in Israel recently found a 2.5-yard-long fossil that belonged to a long-extinct straight-tusked elephant. It is believed to be the largest fossil ever found at a prehistoric site in the country. [Read More]

Germany's Fairytale Castle Come to Life — by Dayanara Flores Gonzalez, age 14

Neuschwanstein is a castle that is located in Germany, which took 17 years to construct. It took 15 men to carve the king's bed and it took them 4 ½ years to finish. Neuschwanstein was a fairytale brought to life. [Read More]

Low Water Levels in Mississippi River
Expose Artifacts and History — by Owen Ayite-Atayi, age 15

The Mississippi River is the second longest river in the United States and is 2,340 miles long. Although the Mississippi River is a majestic river, there are still many mysteries in this river, especially regarding its artifacts. [Read More]

Science Fiction Writer, Octavia Butler, Recognized by NASA — by Elim Eyobed, age 11

Who is your favorite writer? Hemingway? Shakespeare? Well, one great writer you may have never heard of is Octavia E. Butler. Butler was an esteemed African American author who was recently recognized by NASA for her groundbreaking talents. NASA scientists even named a Mars landing site after her. [Read More]

From Water to Land Back to Water Again: the Evolution of the Qikitania — by Giovanni Tecuatl Lopez, age 17

There are many speculations regarding evolution and how it took place. Many think of evolution as a linear timeline; but this is not always the case and such can be seen in creatures like the Qikitania and Tiktaalik. [Read More]

The Greatness of Hank Aaron — by Owen Ayite-Atayi, age 14

Hank Louis Aaron was one of the greatest African-American Major League Baseball (MLB) players. Hank was known for breaking Babe Ruth’s Hall Of Fame and Most Valuable Player (MVP) home run record. He hit 755 career home runs, to Ruth who racked up 714 hits for the Boston Red Sox. [Read More]

The Surprising History Behind Tulips — by Abigail Gezae, age 10

Tulips are popular flowers that come in several types, 75 to be exact. If you were wondering, the name tulip comes from the Turkish language. [Read More]

Mount Everest: The Colossal Climb — by Aarosh Subedi, age 10

Mount Everest is one of the Himalayas' tallest mountains in the world and lies in the continent of Asia. [Read More]

The Deadliest Hurricane in Honduras' History — by Dayanara Flores Gonzalez, age 14

Striking in 1974, Hurricane Fifi was one of the largest and most dangerous hurricanes in Honduras’ History. Hurricane Fifi swept through more than half of the people’s homes and left more than 100,000 to 150,000 people homeless. When the hurricane struck, thousands were left without food and shelter. [Read More]

How Submarines Sparked Arctic Exploration — by Daniel Li, age 14

Built-in 1952, the USS Nautilus was the first submarine ever powered by a nuclear reactor and, coincidentally, also the first to ever reach the North Pole by traveling under ice. William Anderson, the commander of the Nautilus, wrote in his logbook, “Embarked following personage at North Pole: Santa Claus, affiliation: Christmas.” Spending multiple days underwater had not seemed to affect the commander’s sense of humor. [Read More]

History of Argentina’s “Dirty War” Era — by Valeria Moreno Lopez, age 15

History classes often overlook the history of Latin countries. Sometimes that’s true no matter how tragic events were. Nearly five decades ago, Argentina’s military government unleashed a seven-year war against its own people. In what would become known as the Dirty War, thousands of victims mysteriously “disappeared.” Most were imprisoned, tortured, and murdered. [Read More]

The Mysterious Story Behind America's Lost Snow Cruiser — by Jazmin Becerril, age 14

During the United States Antarctic Expedition Service of 1939, an amazing new vehicle – unlike any other – was used. The creator, Thomas Poulter, came up with the idea for a huge mobile vehicle base after experiencing a near-death situation in which he was stuck at an Antarctic base due to the weather. He sold his idea to the Research Foundation of the Institute of Technology in Chicago, Illinois in the mid-1930s which agreed to design the vehicle under Poulter’s supervision. [Read More]

Two Lost Ships Discovered at the Bottom of Lake Michigan — by Jeremiah Warren, age 11

Can you imagine diving in a lake and finding a shipwreck? It’s estimated that there are 6,000 shipwrecks in the bottom of the great lakes. Bernie Hellstrom, a diver, was one who found two ships – Peshtigo and St. Andrews – in the depths of Lake Michigan. Both of these ships collided more than 140 years ago. [Read More]

Historians Study in Planet Earth’s Oldest Library — by Shahad Al Quraishi, age 15

The Royal Library of Ashurbanipal, also referred to by many as the first library in the world, is considered one of the most important creations in human history. The library, which is located in present-day Iraq near Mosul, was created and built by the sixth Neo-Assyrian king, Ashurbanipal. [Read More]

Learn the Tragic Story Behind the Monstrous Medusa — by Anissa Attidekou, age 12

Medusa: the most common thought would be a hideous woman with snakes for hair. Believe it or not, Medusa was not always like this. Her story is a long and heartbreaking one. [Read More]

What Life Was Like for Wisconsin's Early People — by Max Moreno, age 9

It is challenging to think about what life was like a thousand years ago. However, how about thinking all the way back to 10,000 years ago, when Wisconsin Natives were constructing living areas, tools, and mounds. [read more]

The Life of a Young Egypt King: King Tutankhamun — by Justin Medina, age 13

King Tutankhamun, better known as King Tut, was ancient Egypt’s youngest Pharaoh being only nine years old. He was largely erased from history until his tomb was discovered in the early 1900s. His tomb and mummy continue to be studied today using high-tech tools. [Read More]

The Tragic Story of Beautiful Egyptian Goddess Isis — by Emily Rodriguez Lima, age 13

Hieroglyphics depict tragically beautiful tales of the gods and goddesses of Ancient Egypt such as Isis, whose myth brims with mystical magic, selfless healing, lethal wars, and even brooding beheadings. Historians uncovered her story through pyramid stones that date back to the 2350 and 2100 BCE period. [Read More]

Researchers Discover Secrets Within Ancient Library — by Ashley Mercado, age 13

We are still finding long-lost languages thanks to discoveries of researchers at ancient libraries. One of the world’s oldest libraries, Saint Catherine’s Monastery, is still in use today. Here, thousands of ancient texts were found. [Read More]

The History Behind Zodiac Signs — by Emily Bautista, age 13

Zodiac signs are a topic of mystery for many people. Many people do not know how they came to be or what they are used for. [Read More]

Behind Prince, the Dynamic Pop Legend — by Elim Eyobed, age 11

If you live and breathe air, you have definitely heard of Prince. His album, “1999”, almost singled him out as one of the greatest musicians of all time. Prince Rogers Nelson was born on June 7, 1958. His father, John Nelson, was a jazz pianist, and Mattie Nelson, his mother, was a vocalist. His life at home was not stable, so at the age of 12, he left and was adopted by the Anderson family. [Read More]