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Twentieth Century

Has It Really Been Thirty Years? The Fall of the Berlin Wall

Thirty years ago, on November 9, the Berlin Wall fell, or more accurately was torn down.* In memory of that event, I offer a [lightly edited] version of a post I ran in 2016. Last week while we all blew noisemakers and wore party hats to celebrate the the 100th anniversary of America’s National Park…

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The Lady Who Invented Monopoly

Recently a long-time blog reader, named Jack French, reached out to me with a story for a blog post:  “Elizabeth “Lizzie” Magie Phillips, the real inventor of Monopoly, not Charles Darrow, the guy history incorrectly credits as inventing this game”.  As anyone who has read more than a few posts here on the Margins can…

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Before Sex, Drugs and Rock and Roll…

In Meredith Wilson’s 1957 hit musical The Music Man, con man Professor Harold Hill sings out about “ragtime, shameless music” as one of the pending disasters that threaten Riverside if the parents of the town don’t get their collective act together. It’s intended to be funny. In 1957, parents were facing new musical threats that…

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