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Nanook of the North 1922 Robert J. Flaherty's Nanook of the North (1922) was the first feature length documentary film. It was shot in the Canadian arctic between August 1920 and March 1921. This highly acclaimed silent film was a world-wide box office hit. It showed an Inuk hunter and his family as they struggled to survive in the harsh conditions of the far north. Modern day documentarians tend to criticize Flaherty because many of the film's scenes sacrficed accuracy for dramatic effect. For example, Nanook and his fellow hunters are shown armed only with spears. In reality, by the 1920s the Inuk commonly hunted with firearms. Also 'Nanook' wasn't the central subject's real name and Nanook's 'wife' in the movie wasn't his wife at all.
Tags: Nanook  of  the  North 
Added: 3rd September 2009
Views: 1345
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Posted By: Lava1964
George O Leary Resume Scandal In December 2001, the University of Notre Dame hired George O'Leary to be its new head football coach. Five days later O'Leary was fired because of falsehoods on his resume. Portions of O'Leary's resume, which had been made public by the university, claimed that O'Leary had earned a master's degree in education from NYU-Stony Brook University and three football letters from the University of New Hampshire. None of it was true. O'Leary had obtained only two credits from NYU and never graduated. Moreover, NYU-Stony Brook University does not exist. Also, records proved he had never played football at New Hampshire. The inaccuracies came to light when a newspaper reporter from New Hampshire wanted to write a favorable local-angle story about Notre Dame's new coach--and discovered that no one on the New Hampshire football team remembered O'Leary. O'Leary had successfully coached Georgia Tech to a national championship in 1991 and no one had thought to question his resume then.
Tags: George  O  Leary  Notre  Dame  resume  fraud 
Added: 3rd September 2009
Views: 13244
Rating:
Posted By: Lava1964
Hartford Circus Fire 1944 On July 6, 1944, 168 people perished in a big-top fire in Hartford, CT while attending a performance of the Ringling Brothers, Barnum and Bailey Circus. The circus tent had been treated with a combination of paraffin and gasoline for waterproofing, causing the tent to burn rapidly. The cause of the fire is unknown. Careless smoking is considered the most likely cause, though some people suspect arson. Many of those who died were trampled by the fleeing crowd. Others simply refused to leave the burning tent until they had located their friends and family. Circuses were banned in Connecticut for many years afterward. Among the 6,700 people who survived the blaze were famed clown Emmett Kelly, future Connecticut lieutenant governor Eunice Groark, and 13-year-old spectator Charles Nelson Reilly.
Tags: Hartford  Circus  Fire  1944 
Added: 22nd September 2009
Views: 4907
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Posted By: Lava1964
Toy Fun in the Spiegel Catalog Tags: Toy  Fun  in  the  Spiegel  Catalog  toss  across  rebound  cross  fire  bing  bang  boing 
Added: 25th September 2009
Views: 1613
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Posted By: Cliffy
Tragic Death of Martha Mansfield Pretty 24-year-old silent film actress Martha Mansfield met an untimely and ghastly end. Mansfield was shooting the film The Warrens of Virginia on November 30, 1923. During some outdoor scenes, while wearing a bulky Civil War-era dress, she took a break in her nearby parked car. Suddenly Mansfield's dress caught fire severely burning all but her neck and her face. Mansfield's chauffeur's hands were also badly burned trying to put the fire out. The cause of the fire is a bit of a mystery. Some claim it came from a match carelessly discarded from a passing car--which entered through the window of the car Mansfield was sitting in. Others think Mansfield was at fault for smoking--although no one had ever seen her smoking before. Whatever the case, she died in hospital 24 hours later.
Tags: Martha  Mansfield  silent  actress  death 
Added: 14th July 2014
Views: 2584
Rating:
Posted By: Lava1964
Cocoanut Grove Fire 1942 On Saturday, November 28, 1942 Boston's Cocoanut Grove nightclub was the site of one of the deadliest fires in American history. The night spot was owned by Barney Welansky who had connections to both the mayor and organized crime. It was quaintly reminiscent of Rick's Cafe Americain in the movie Casablanca--but its highly flammable tropical-style furniture and decorations made it a firetrap. There were more than 1,000 people inside although the legal capacity was 460. The fire is believed to have started when a busboy attempted to replace a light bulb in the dimly lit Melody Lounge in the lower level. He struck a match to help him see. Shortly thereafter patrons saw the palm fronds from a nearby artificial tree ignite. The fire rapidly spread along the walls and ceiling. Within five minutes the entire nightclub was ablaze. Many patrons attempted to exit through the revolving main door which quickly became jammed. Some secondary doors had been welded shut to prevent customers from leaving without paying their tabs. Other doors swung inward and made escape nearly impossible due to the crush of the crowd. All told, 492 people perished. Among the fatalities were Cowboy movie star Buck Jones and a couple who had been married earlier that same day. Welansky was convicted on multiple counts of involuntary manslaughter.
Tags: Cocoanut  Grove  Fire  1942 
Added: 29th September 2009
Views: 3954
Rating:
Posted By: Lava1964
Iroquois Theater Fire 1903 The deadliest fire in American history occurred on December 30, 1903 at Chicago's sparkling new Iroquois Theater. The death toll was staggering: 602. The theater had only been open for 37 days and was ironically advertised as fireproof. A huge crowd of mostly women and children were present for a Wednesday matinee performance of a gala show starring Eddie Foy and featuring a cast of more than 500 extras. The fire began when a spotlight shorted out and ignited the ceiling decorations. Most of the cast managed to escape through a large rear door. However, when that door opened, the new cold oxygen source created a fireball that ripped through the rest of the theater. Many people died because they were unfamiliar with the newfangled lock mechanisms on the theater's doors. Other escape routes were blocked to prevent patrons from sneaking down to more expensive seats. An investigation later showed that fire officials had been bribed to overlook safety concerns so the theater could open for business in time for the lucrative winter holidays. The only person convicted of a crime was a lone man who was found guilty of stealing posessions from the dead.
Tags: Iroquois  Theater  fire  Chicago 
Added: 29th September 2009
Views: 1895
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Posted By: Lava1964
Gig Young Murder-Suicide 1978 Actor Gig Young was outwardly debonair but he led a troubled life. Alcoholism curtailed his promising acting career and ruined more than one marriage, including a turbulent wedlock with Elizabeth Montgomery. Although he won an Oscar for his 1969 portrayal of a dance marathon emcee in They Shoot Horses, Don't They?, Young's acting jobs became increasingly scarce during the 1970s. He was fired after just one day on the set of Blazing Saddles for alcohol-related problems. His last film appearance was in The Death Game where the 64-year-old Young met 21-year-old script supervisor Kim Schmidt. Schmidt became Young's fifth wife on September 27, 1978. Twenty-two days later they were both found shot to death in their Manhattan apartment. The case was ruled a murder-suicide, with Young the perpetrator. No note was found to explain the motive. Although Young's estate was valued at about $200,000, in his will he left just $10 to his only child, a 14-year-old daughter, whom Young claimed was not actually his.
Tags: Gig  Young  murder-suicide 
Added: 10th October 2009
Views: 11181
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Posted By: Lava1964
Little Miss 1565 Mystery A few weeks ago I posted the story of the tragic Hartford Circus Fire of 1944. There were 168 fatalities in the blaze. Only six bodies were not identified. One case was particularly poignant. A little girl, whose corpse was unmarked by burns, was unclaimed by relatives. She was known as Little Miss 1565, from the number assigned to her at the city morgue. Her morgue photo was widely distributed--and yet no one came forward to claim her body. She was interred in a Hartford cemetery. Years later reseachers claimed she was Eleanor Emily Cook. She was re-buried in the Cook family plot. However, there are many doubters--and for good reason. Cook was a brunette; Little Miss 1565 was a blonde. From photos, the shape of Cook's face does not match those of Little Miss 1565, an neither do her dental records. Who is she? We'll likely never know. The best guess is that the girl's relatives wrongly identified another corpse, thus denying Little Miss 1565 of her true identity.
Tags: Little  Miss  1565  Hartford  Circus  Fire 
Added: 25th October 2009
Views: 7147
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Posted By: Lava1964
Checking In - Sitcom Flop 1981 The Jeffersons was a hugely successful spinoff from All in the Family, running for 10 seasons from 1975 to 1985. It also inspired a not-so-successful spinoff: Checking In. On The Jeffersons, Marla Gibbs played Florence Johnston, the sassy, wisecracking maid who regularly exchanged insults with George Jefferson. Her character was so well liked by viewers that CBS figured it would be a smart move to give Gibbs her own series. Accordingly, in episode #154 and #155 of The Jeffersons, a hotel manager was so impressed by Florence that he offered her the job as supervisor of maids at his St. Frederick Hotel. Florence accepted and Checking In was born. It premiered on Thursday, April 9, 1981. Larry Linville (Major Frank Burns from MASH fame) played Lyle Block, the hotel's weasly manager and, naturally, Florence's nemesis. After four weeks, though, Checking In was floundering in the ratings and CBS pulled the plug after the April 30 episode. Smartly, the network had Gibbs return to the Jeffersons' household as their maid. In her return episode, #161, Florence arrives at the Jeffersons' door explaining that the hotel burned down! (Her clothing and hair had traces of soot and fire damage to add credibility to the plot twist!) She had to compete with new maid Carmen to get her old job back. After missing just five shows, Gibbs' Florence character remained on The Jeffersons until the series ended in 1985. Marla Gibbs was nominated for an Emmy as Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series Emmy in for five stright years (1981 through 1985) for her role as Florence Johnston. Gibbs' career accomplishments are even more impressive when one considers she was married at age 13 and had three children by age 20! She still managed to graduate from Wendell Phillips High School in Chicago. A performer in amateur theatricals, Gibbs was working as a customer service agent for United Airlines when she got her role on The Jeffersons. Cautiously, she waited until The Jeffersons was a bonafide hit show before quitting her job at United!
Tags: Marla  Gibbs  checking  In  Jeffersons  sitcom 
Added: 28th August 2011
Views: 3123
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Posted By: Lava1964

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