Page 194 - History Facts

Sergeant Stubby was a war dog who warned soldiers of mustard gas and approaching artillery!

Sergeant Stubby was the first war dog for the United States. He had an awesome name, and who could look at that precious face and not fall in love. That’s not even to mention that he was extremely useful on the front line of World War I. The brilliant dog was a Staffordshire Bull Terrier. 

No one really knows where he came from, but he showed up at Yale Field in Connecticut. Corporal Robert Conroy snuck Stubby along to France in the ship with the rest of the troops. In France, Stubby was injured by a German hand grenade. 

He was sent to the back of the lines where he was able to recover and improve morale at the same time. Stubby was a highly decorated dog, and was the only dog to “be promoted to sergeant through combat.” He learned to warn the troops around him of mustard gas and oncoming artillery. 

He also single-handedly took down a German spy. He also found injured, but alive soldiers in no man’s land, and comforted and helped rescue them. After the war, Stubby went home with Conroy. He was instantly a celebrity and received many medals for his 18 month service in the war. 


Payments in ransom and tribute to pirates amounted to 20% United States annual expenditures in 1800.


If you think the United States budget isn’t in great shape right now, it’s not much compared to what went on in 1800. Before the Declaration of Independence was signed in 1776, it was British treaties with North African states that protected American ships from pirates, specifically the Barbary corsairs. 

Naturally, when the US declared its independence, the British protection ceased. In 1777, Morocco publicly recognized the United States as an independent nation, and started seizing American vessels (this is actually what created the United States Navy). 

More Barbary states began seizing US ships, so the US managed to sign off on peace treaties that required them to pay tribute for protection. The protection fees plus the ransoms from various pirates made a 20% hole in the US expenditures by 1800. The First and Second Barbary Wars in 1801 and 1815 led to better peace terms, ending the tribute payment, but the Barbary states refused to implement this treaty until, surprisingly, the British made them do so in 1816. 

The British brought the hammer down on Barbary pirates, but didn’t extend that to non African slavery, as many Americans and Europeans were still enslaved. 



The Iliad and the Odyssey were recited orally for centuries before they were written down, despite containing more than 10,000 lines.

The epic is the oldest genre of writing, at least it is the oldest surviving genre. Even 2,000 years before the Greeks had a form of writing, epics were being created and told for entertainment. The first two tales written in Greek were Homer’s the Iliad and the Odyssey. Homer was supposedly a blind poet, who created the Iliad and the Odyssey, however, it’s not clear whether he actually existed, much less created the two epics. 

It is truly incredible how long these orally told stories were. The Iliad was more than 12,000 lines and the Odyssey was more than 15,000 lines. Bards through the years had taken it upon themselves to actually memorize these gigantic poems called epics. They maintained the stories for more than a century before they were recorded in the newly created Greek. The two epics still contain clear signs of having been orally told stories. 

For example, the bards would have used the epithets like “clever Odysseus” and “brave Achilles” repeated throughout the epic to make memorization easier. There were also several other repeated phrases in the stories. Nevertheless, memorization would have been an impressive feat! 


Some awesome lists!

In all of human history, we've only had about 250 years of world peace.

That is, in 3,400 years of documented history. Obviously, if you think back to before man set foot on this planet, there was probably exclusively what would today qualify as peace.

It certainly emphasizes the plight of those out to stop wars without violence, because if we’ve learned anything from our history, it’s that attempts at world peace aren’t being tried at hard enough. The Edo Period in Japan is notable for being a period of peace that spanned 255 years.

During the Edo Period, Japan was ruled by the Tokugawa family. The Tokugawa family ruled by enforcing strict social orders, isolationist foreign policies, and by promoting the arts, culture, and an increase in protection of the environment.

Pax Romana is also known for being a long period of peace during the 1st and 2nd centuries CE. The Roman Empire maintained this period of peace established by Caesar Augustus for about 207 years.

Throughout the histories of all countries there are periods of peace like these, but the occasions where no countries have been in war in documented history total up to only about 250 years.


The Band of the British Welsh Guards played the Star Wars Imperial March to welcome King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia to Britain.

The Welsh Guards are an institution in charge of greeting and playing for foreign dignitaries around the world upon their visit to the United Kingdom. Whenever someone of high political importance visits, it’s British tradition to have the Royal Band play for them. 

That includes ALL major political figures, including the ones who aren’t generally favored. Saudi King Abdullah was just such an example of someone unfavorable. He publicly promoted (and allegedly funded) books like “Women Who Deserve To Go To Hell,” and others with content saying homosexuals should be stoned and thrown from mountaintops. 

On top of that, he had them distributed at British mosques. Abdullah has also been known for heavy promotion of torture. Understandably, the band wasn’t really that happy about playing for him, but rather than break a centuries old tradition, they chose a song they felt was very fitting. 

The Saudi King had no idea what was going on (fortunately), and merely visited with the Queen for a while and left. There is video of the whole thing, which can be viewed at the source



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