Use this tag for questions that pertain to historical events, or claim whose evidence is historical in nature.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

5
votes
0answers
593 views

Did Neanderthals keep Cro-Magnons as sex-slaves?

Some time ago, it was thought that modern people came from Cro-Magnons, and Neanderthals became extinct. But after the Neanderthal genome project, we found that modern people have from 1% to 4% of ...
9
votes
1answer
514 views

Did Richard Feynman see Josef Papp's machine explode?

Josef Papp was an inventor who received patents for engine technology. Wikipedia explains: The engine continues to be considered by many scientists as a hoax. Papp's poor physics theoretic ...
4
votes
0answers
180 views

Is America's prosperity the result of slavery? [closed]

It has been claimed (see below for example) that America's relatively high prosperity is the result of slavery, which enabled the development of American capitalism, by using slaves as, well, capital, ...
1
vote
0answers
146 views

What church prayed for Hitlers survival and well-being? [closed]

In the famous debate (to me at least) between Christopher Hitchens vs. Dr. William Lane Craig, Biola University April 4, 2009, Biola University Mr. Hitchens claims the following. In Nazi Germany, ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

Did Nazi soldiers cut off their own eyelids?

My cousin says he read in a The Journal of Scott Pendleton Collins: A World War 2 Soldier that the Nazi soldiers cut off their own eyelids. The reason was allegedly to improve their ability to see. ...
9
votes
1answer
310 views

Was prophylactic appendectomy or tonsillectomy ever performed upon children?

Some people here in Russia say that there was a time when appendixes were considered so useless and potentially dangerous by USA doctors that they performed operations upon asymptomatic children to ...
7
votes
2answers
346 views

Was Walt Disney a Freemason?

There is a common claim that Walt Disney was a Freemason. For example: Walt Disney, he was a 33 Degree Freemason of the Scottish Rite and his whole life he has spun threads from the Mystery ...
19
votes
1answer
973 views

Did WW2 pilots lead a swinger's lifestyle to ensure that their friends would take care of their family if they died?

Cracked.com referenced this interview where author Christopher Ryan claims that: “World War II fighter pilots had the highest fatality rates of any division of the military. When they were back ...
8
votes
1answer
680 views

Is this quote from Margaret Sanger authentic?

This picture recently showed up on my facebook news-feed. "Colored people are like human weeds and are to be exterminated." - Margaret Sanger, Founder of Planned Parenthood. "I admire ...
12
votes
3answers
951 views

Was the word 'racist' coined by Trotsky in 1927?

According to the image below, 'racist is a made up word by Leon Trotsky in 1927'. I searched in Online Etymology Dictionary and found that racist 1932 as a noun, 1938 as an adjective, from race ...
97
votes
2answers
16k views

Is all gold ever mined able to fit in a 20x20x20 meter cube?

According to this picture/fact, all gold ever mined is able to fit in a 20x20x20 meter cube. Is there any evidence of this, as this seems like very very little gold?
23
votes
1answer
1k views

Has any programmer ever been paid per line of code?

There have been some claims that some software developers were paid per line of code written: Bill Gates was paid per line of code I heard that Microsoft has a tradition of needlessly long and ...
3
votes
0answers
254 views

Did the Roman army have more servants than soldiers?

In one of his essays Joel Spolsky (co-founder of Stack Exchange) wrote: [...] the Roman army had a ratio of four servants for every soldier. Is this true?
7
votes
2answers
445 views

Did classical Greeks claim that “children were generated solely from the fathers sperm”?

I just read on a site about Greek mythology: It may seem odd for Metis to have been pregnant with Athena but, never mentioned as her mother. This is because the classic Greeks believed that ...
3
votes
0answers
328 views

Did Emil Krebs master 68 languages?

The German polyglot Emil Krebs allegedly mastered 68 languages. Which, frankly, I find unbelievable. Unfortunately, I cannot find any reliable and convincing source. Is there solid evidence that Emil ...
3
votes
0answers
142 views

How many people died at the Tulsa Race Riot? [closed]

There is a video on Facebook by the Young Turks that claims 3000 black people were killed by the KKK, but there is a text "UPDATE" under the video that corrects it to 300. Other sources I saw online ...
9
votes
1answer
390 views

Is the practice of circumcision in the west derived from a puritantical desire to stop masturbation?

This collegehumour video claims that the practice of circumcision in the west (and particularly the US), outside of Jewish and Muslim religions, comes from the puritanical Victorian era, where it was ...
5
votes
0answers
267 views

Was the Anarchist Cookbook created by the FBI/CIA to sabotage insurgency?

My professor said that the Anarchist Cookbook (a collection of recipes for bombs, etc.) was created by the government, who inserted deliberate errors to make sure that budding insurgents would blow ...
12
votes
1answer
447 views

Is there any archaeological evidence for Norman Invasion of Britain in 1066?

This article by Joshua Berman claims that "The Anglo-Saxon conquest of Britain in the 5th century, the Arab conquest of Palestine in the 7th century, even the Norman invasion of England in 1066: all ...
22
votes
1answer
3k views

Did Edgar Allan Poe predict a shipwreck?

Edgar Allan Poe predicted the future. His only novel is about 4 shipwrecked men who run out of food and eat the cabin boy, Richard Parker. 46 years after it published, a yacht sank in real life ...
14
votes
1answer
817 views

Did the Ottoman government kill ~1 million Armenians during and after World War I?

The Armenian Genocide is explained in Wikipedia as the Ottoman government's systematic extermination of its minority Armenian subjects inside their historic homeland, which lies within the ...
3
votes
1answer
555 views

Is this photograph of Frank Sinatra as a 10 year old real?

There is an image of Frank Sinatra floating around the internet in its usual unattributed copyright-infringing fashion: No doubt there are pictures out there of Frank Sinatra as a young boy, but my ...
2
votes
0answers
195 views

Has the documentary hypothesis become invalid? [closed]

The documentary hypothesis is a hypothesis which proposes that the Pentateuch (the first five books of the Bible) was derived from originally independent, parallel and complete narratives, which were ...
26
votes
1answer
4k views

Was this Indian from British India the first to strike Berlin during World War I?

This article (since deleted, backup here) came to my eye recently. The article glosses over the exploits of a citizen of British India who, purportedly, rose from utter obscurity to becoming an ace ...
55
votes
4answers
6k views

Were Mermaid passengers shipwrecked by 5 different vessels before being successfully rescued?

In a post by dotcommerce.ro called You think you had bad luck ? Think again! this story was mentioned: It’s either a case of the worst luck in history or the best: In 1829, a ship called The ...
8
votes
0answers
238 views

Was Germany's reunification an annexation? [closed]

Russian media has reported that members of the Russian legislature have claimed that Germany's reunification was in fact an "annexation" of East Germany by the West and thus they have no right to ...
2
votes
1answer
405 views

Was Mikhail Bakunin a murderer?

I own a copy of the card game Burn In Hell by Steve Jackson Games. There is a card in the game for the anarchist Mikhail Bakunin. He is caricatured with one eye shut, bearing resemblance to ...
17
votes
2answers
4k views

Did Iraq have the use of electricity 5000 years ago?

Just I came across this tweet of which I'm skeptical of. So, I ask: Had Iraq use of electricity 5000 years ago?
7
votes
1answer
449 views

Is being a professional logician associated with serious mental health issues?

In Indiscrete Thoughts, Gian-Carlo Rota claims that: It cannot be a complete coincidence that several outstanding logicians of the twentieth century found shelter in asylums at some point in ...
9
votes
0answers
1k views

Did the Philadelphia Experiment ever take place?

The Philadelphia Experiment forms the basis for a claim that in 1943 the U.S. Navy attempted to use "speculative physics" to render a ship, the U.S.S. Eldridge, invisible. Allegedly, they were ...
21
votes
1answer
1k views

Is this a genuine 1965 literacy test?

According to the Michigan-based Ferris State University's Jim Crow Museum of Racist Memorabilia, this is an excerpt of the text of the 1965 Alabama Literacy Test: If it were proposed to join ...
2
votes
0answers
308 views

Did women in New York textile factories strike on March 8, 1857?

Some websites claim that Internation Women's Day in on March 8th to celebrate a famous strike by female textile workers in New York. e.g.: Woman Aid: 1857 The first recorded organised action by ...
3
votes
2answers
497 views

Were staff at Bletchley Park predominantly male?

In "The Imitation Game", most of the staff portrayed on-screen were male, and Joan Clarke faced sexist assumptions that because she's a woman, she was in the wrong room when she tried to go into the ...
52
votes
1answer
9k views

Did Alan Turing publish a paper called The Imitation Game (as claimed in the movie)?

I have seen a couple of Turing's papers, but never have found one called "The Imitation Game". The Imitation Game seems to be a name used by Turing to refer to his test to decide whether an ...
0
votes
1answer
208 views

Is/was there an illuminati founded in 1776?

I am pretty sure wikipedia is right about it being founded on May 1st 1776, but they don't reference this. Can someone provide a reliable website, preferably by authored by a historian, that can ...
7
votes
1answer
454 views

Did Mozart improvise?

After I had discussed the lack of improvisation in classical music with a friend, he showed me this article from WQXR.org (the website of a classical music radio station), which claimed that Mozart ...
5
votes
1answer
325 views

Did Thales conduct experiments in electricity?

Many school texts and other popular sources claim Thales of Miletus conducted experiments in electricity, showing amber to attract feathers, for example, supposedly. However, I can find no verifiable ...
24
votes
3answers
1k views

Did the Hebrew exodus from Egypt ever happen?

The Book of Exodus describes a movement of the Hebrews from Egypt, through the desert, and into the Palestine/Israel region. It also describes a number miracles, such as the ten plagues and the ...
4
votes
1answer
478 views

Was Isaac Newton responsible for the loss of Robert Hooke's work?

This Yahoo answer citing this dead source (mirror) claims: It may be a coincidence but the only known portrait of Hooke which had been housed in the President's office, was mysteriously lost as ...
2
votes
1answer
175 views

Was Licio Gelli nominated as a candidate for the Nobel Prize in Literature?

In Wikipedia it's stated that Licio Gelli In 1996, Gelli was nominated as a candidate for the Nobel Prize in Literature, supported by Mother Teresa and Naguib Mahfouz. The references give some ...
6
votes
1answer
480 views

Did James Buchanan say there were “too many educated people in the world”?

I was recently reading through a rather popular elementary/junior high school textbook A History of Us: The New Nation. On page 167, the author, Joy Hakim, says of James Buchanan (the 15th president ...
13
votes
1answer
766 views

Did Muslims discover the Americas in the 12th century A.D.?

Turkish president Erdogan recently claimed Muslims discovered the Americas in 1178 A.D. Muslims discovered the Americas more than three centuries before Christopher Columbus, Turkish President ...
-2
votes
1answer
225 views

Was swastika a popular symbol among Slavs and/or Proto-Indo-Europeans?

It seems to me that many Russian nationalists and neo-paganists currently believe that swastika was a Solar symbol or a symbol of fortune in ancient Slavic folklore. There are multiple paintings by ...
5
votes
0answers
286 views

Did priests use maces because they did not spill blood? [closed]

Many games and stories that draw upon medieval history tend to claim that priests use maces because they do not spill blood. Wikipedia provides a citation for this on the Mace page, as does the page ...
4
votes
1answer
617 views

Did stone age people have an income of slightly below $2 a day? [closed]

In his 2014 book "War! What Is It Good For?", historian Ian Morris writes: Ten thousand years ago, there were only about six million people on earth. On average they lived about thirty years and ...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

Is Obama the first President of the US to write a computer program?

According to a recent Wired article, US President Barack Obama was the first president to write code: President Barack Obama told the world that everyone should learn how to code. And now he’s ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

Did 80% of Soviet males born in 1923 die in WWII?

I found this fact on OMG Facts: 80% of Soviet males born in 1923 died in WWII. Not surprisingly, Russia was the country with the highest WW2 causalities, with over 21 million. I can't find ...
8
votes
1answer
446 views

Did men sell their wives on Wednesbury market?

To my knowledge wife sales on Wednesbury market were a bit of a family legend my great-grandfather used to tell. However, it seems to be more widely spread than that. I have found an article which ...
15
votes
4answers
4k views

Was the Emancipation Proclamation an Executive Order that bypassed Congress and freed 3 million slaves?

This should be an easy one, but I wanted to ask so we have confirmation or refutation. This image is making the rounds on facebook: So, how factual is this statement?
5
votes
2answers
412 views

When is the origin of Datura in India?

The abstract for this paper on PubMed, Historical evidence for a pre-Columbian presence of Datura in the Old World and implications for a first millennium transfer from the New World says, Datura ...