Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Pearl Harbor

Ed Johann is a retired firefighter. As a survivor of the attacks at Pearl Harbor Ed has many memories of that fateful day. However, his memories are not pleasant. While he was an apprentice seaman he spotted the Japanese planes flying toward Pearl Harbor. Ed was on a rescue boat that was one of the first to arrive at the scene of the USS Arizona after it had been attacked. When they got to the ship they saw the water filled with bodies some alive some dead, others dying. He and his rescue crew continued to carry as many soldiers as they could back and forth from the hospital. This day that dramatically affected the lives of so many people and families, changed the life of Ed Johann and continues to haunt him to this day.

Jordan B.
Period 3

Monday, December 14, 2009

I know these were due on Friday, but during the study session on Thursday he told us they were due by Monday. You can talk to him if you would like.

Earhart a Survivor?

Evidence has been found that Amelia Earhart maybe have survived the unknown crash that caused her disappearance, in the summer of 1937. Scientists have found evidence that she most likely crashed on the island of Nikumaroro. There has been evidence of a few women bones that follow traits on women of European descent, and follow the body structure of Amelia. A women shoe has been found and so has an empty bottle. It seems that a forced landing was attempted on the fat island, and Amelia and her navigator survived and lived as outcasts on the island. They became castaways, and eventually died on the island. Scientists are not able to find more proof because Sand crabs that live on the island, have most likely snatched the bones, and hare now hidden deep in the crab caves. So the real question is, Was this Amelia’s final resting place, or is the mystery still unknown?


Neil Brinckerhoff
Period 7


Saturday, December 12, 2009

WWII Veteran Donates Book Belonging to Hitler

WWII was drawing to a close, and a number of United States soldiers invaded Hitler's home in Berchtesgaden, Germany to celebrate an almost certain victory. Among them is 23-year-old John Pistone, who grabbed a thick book filled with pictures of paintings from a shelf. It is now the present, 64 years later, and Pistone is finally relinquishing his hold on this precious artifact.

The 3-inch thick, 12 pound book sat on his bookshelf for many years until a friend questioned what it is. After extensive research, the friend discovered that it could be an important relic, as the Monument's Men Foundation in Dallas had been searching for similar pictures in Germany for the past several years. Pistone offered the book to the Foundation, and after inspection, was notified that it was of true authenticity and great value. The book is part of series of books, all containing photographs of paintings. These book were logs of the paintings Hitle planned to place in his museum, Fuhrermuseum, in Linz, Germany.

The album will be returned to its homeplace through an official ceremony with Germany taking place in January. Before it makes another journey across the pond, however, it will be displayed for three months at the National World War II Museum in New Orleans.


Erica Stirckler
Period 7

Andy Chung

Galileo and His Battles With the Church

Galileo was the genius of his time. He learned the ideas of Nicolaus Copernicus, his notion that the Earth traveled around the sun not that the sun rotated around the Earth. His belief of a heliocentric theory got him into a lot of trouble, such as getting put into house arrest. He had the notion of gravity, he would take cannonballs of all weights and shapes and drop them off of the tower and time their falls. He realized that they fell at the same speeds. He threw some cannonballs and saw that they hit the ground the same time that the ones dropped were hitting the ground. He also experimented with pendulums and inclined planes. His ideas were the seeds of modern science. His ideas were used in later years by Isaac Newton.

He had to appear in front of the Inquisition to answer to his “heretical” ideas. His ideas were contrary to the church at the time so he was to be tried as a heretic. Galileo pleaded guilty to the charge of a heretic and admitted that he had argued the heliocentric theory too aggressively. The pope then has him put under indefinite house arrest in his villa in Arcetri which near Florence, where he spent the remaining years of his life.

Brian C.
Period 3

The Territorial Dispute Over Dokdo

Dokdo consists of two tiny rocky islets surrounded by 33 smaller rocks. Both Japan and Korea lay claim to Dokdo and both claim a long historical and geographical connection with the islets. In June 1947, the Japanese Foreign Ministry appealed to the U.S. occupation authorities over Japan's claim to sovereignty over both Ullungdo and Dokdo in a treatise entitled, "Minor Islands in the East Sea", hoping to influence U.S. opinion in any future deliberations concerning the island that would take place in the upcoming peace treaty negotiations. The Japanese ministers denied Korea's ownership on the grounds that "no Korean name exists for the island" and that Dokdo "is not shown on the maps made in Korea". The Japanese document also argued that the settlers on the island had just arrived recently and that the island’s development was "still in an incipient stage", and because of this, it was not within the Korean government’s ability to develop the island. And Japanese government distorted their history textbook about Dokdo that Dokdo is originally Japanese’s territory so Japanese students learning wrong history. The resolution of the dispute over Dokdo is still uncertain. However, governments outside of Japan and Korea really have no interest in getting involved in the issue.


Ji Hye J.

Period 3

Under the Ashes

Pompeii - known for its grand villas and famous fish sauce, lavish homes with beautiful courtyard gardens, heating systems and running water. It was a vibrant city and a flourishing Roman trade town, until disaster struck...

August 4, A.D. 29, a cloud of smoke shaped like a pine tree could be seen escaping from Mt. Vesuvius. As astonished Pompeians made haste to collect all of their valuable belongings and flee towards the Bay of Naples, they could already taste the ash upon their tongues. They played fugitives on the beach, hoping to wait out the blanket of ash smothering their city. They would have no idea that in the next 19 hours, Pompeii would fall into a silent darkness. Just another lost civilization.

It would be another 1,700 years in 1748 before archeologists would begin the never-ending process of uncovering and preserving this lost city. An 18-year dig in Herculaneum, a city overlooking the Bay of Naples, revealed 300 bodies excavated from 75 feet of solidified ash. These were the escapees from Pompeii, most found to be carrying with them items of value. These victims were once assumed to have died from asphyxiation (suffocation), but it is later discovered through the study of bone fractures, that these Pompieans died instantly from thermal shock after a swell of heat overwhelmed the beach area. The fugitives were killed in mere seconds without any time to react.

It was a dreary day in Naples. It was overcast and only a matter of time before the clouds would open up to the rain, yet it set the perfect mood as I set foot onto Pompeii. It was the most fascinating part of my month-long trip exploring Europe. Pompeii was rich with an inauspicious history, but these tragic events made it all the more intriguing to me. As our tour guide led us through the unveiled streets of the once invisible city, I looked from right to left at what were once store fronts, villas, and whore houses. It could only lead me to imagine what it would be like to be living prosperously and peacefully one second and nineteen hours later vanish from existence. The tour guide answered this question for me. He told us a story about Pliny the Younger, the first and only eyewitness account of the life-altering event. I found more information on him through the Discovery Channel website to refresh my memory. Pliny the Younger was at his uncle's house, known as Pliny the Elder. As Mt. Vesuvius was blowing its top off, Pliny the Elder headed for the heart of Pompeii to witness the event. He did not survive, but Pliny the Younger, who stayed behind with his mother, survived. He wrote accounts of his first hand account of the deadly event and sent it to Tacitus, a Roman historian. He describes the terrible time as a "last unending night for the world" and so frightful that "some prayed for death." The cloud of ash was described as "the black of closed and unlighted rooms. "He describes the atmosphere as so thick of ash that they "stood up and shook up the ash again and again, otherwise [they] would have been covered by it been crushed by the weight." As the smoke died down, Pliny portrays what is left as a "changed world, buried in ash, like snow."

2,000 bodies were excavated, but 10,000 lives are estimated to being lost. It is so fascinating, though, to think that some actually did survive this catastrophic event, but there is no doubt it was possible. Take this quiz to see if you would have survived. I answered 13 out of 18 questions correct and made it to safety.


Natalie P.
Period 3

Nasa uses satellite to uncover

For over 1000 years, much of the Mayan civilizations have been lost due to the rainforest’s camouflage. This is ironic because one of the main reasons the Maya fell was because of deforestation. On February 15, 2006, scientists Tom Server, and Dan Irwin teamed up with archeologist William Satturno at the Marshall Space and Flight station. The scholars used new infrared technology to virtually see through all of the undergrowth and trees, which were in the range of 60-100 feet tall. After many tests, the results were clear. The men had pinpointed locations in the rainforest that had distinct characteristics that the Maya may have left behind. The most solid evidence was the soil makeup. It was undeniably the Mayan’s signature. The three men were later rewarded for their find, and the world has finally gained more knowledge towards the history of one of the world’s most mysterious early empires in the world.


Friday, December 11, 2009

A Sinking Feeling

Many sunken treasures are still out there at sea waiting to be found, many of them from the days of Columbus when everybody was trying to strike it rich by discovering something, and the ship technology wasn't too reliable. More recent ships have also been sunk as well. The USS Shark was built in the 1820s to combat slavery and its perpetrators, but was sadly sunk after what may have been an attack by the British, or unruly slavers not wanting to give in. This altercation probably arose due to the competing claims for the Pacific Northwest of North America, which both the U.S. and England wanted a part of. This dispute was called the Oregon question, due to its location. Currently however, a piece of this ship, the cannon to be precise, was uncovered by beachcombers after years of being mistaken for a piece of moldy driftwood. This find helped lead archeologists to the dig site, where they uncovered many priceless artifacts and weaponry that lead to explanation of some of the naval culture at the time.


Ricky Mackie

Period 5

Secrets of Egypt’s Lost Queen

Secrets of Egypt’s Lost Queen reveals there has been archaeological evidence indentifying a 3,000-year-old mummy as Egypt’s greatest female hero named Hatshepsut. This finding of this could be extraordinary and it is one of the most important findings in the history of Egypt. Her reign during the eighteenth dynasty was a remarkable one. They still have not confirmed that the 3,000 year-old mummy, is Hatshepsut but they have archaeological and forensic evidence to prove that the 3,000 thousand-year-old mummy is indeed, the pharaoh. To confirm her identity, scientists will compare the mummy’s DNA to the mummies of Hatshepsut’s family. This technique will also be used in the future for Egypt.

Jason Hetland

Period 7


Holocaust Trial Still?

John Demjanjuk is eighty-nine years old and is being accused of being a guard at a Nazi death camp. If he is convicted, he will, most likely, spend the rest of his life in jail. Demjanjuk's case is being held in southern Germany.
His family claims Demjanjuk is seriously ill. However, secret footage shows him getting out of a car without struggle. Therefore, doctors examined him, and declared Demjanjuk was perfectly healthy to go on trial.
He is being charged with helping murder 27,900 Jews and other people at a mass extermination camp, Sobibor. Unfortunately, there are no actual eye-wittiness who saw Demjanjuk at the Sobibor camp because they are all dead. However, there are papers which state that Demjanjuk was a guard at Sobibor in the year 1943, from March to September. Demjanjuk's lawyer says that Demjanjuk was there against his will, so he should not be held accountable. Kurt Gutmann is a co-plaintiff whose mother and brother were murdered, and he says that "all [he] want[s] is for justice to be done."

Caves of Hell

According to an ancient Mayan myth, mystical and spiritual do lead dead spirits through a watery path inside of a deep cave, where the spirits would have to endure horrible challenges before resting in the afterlife. Surprisingly a cave was just found, containing a 300 foot, concreted road that ends at a column in front of a body of water. Though this may sound like an odd discovery, it is actually quite often that Mayan caves are found near bodies of water. The cause of this is thought to be because Mayan caves and temples that have been discovered have almost always been associated with sacrifice or death. In the newly discovered caves, reside huge columns of stone sculptures of priests. The legend describes the caves as portals to other realms, including the underworld. In order for spirits to reach the underworld, and finally rest, they had to go through phases of monsters, oozing blood, bats, spiders, and other ferocious obstacles. A Mayan expert at Boston University, named William Saturno, believes that the Mayan “dimension,” portals were built by the Mayans after the myths. Evidence of this is shown through the Mayans efforts to build the portals near bodies of water. Though this is true, the Mayans also built their portals on top of pyramids in the jungle and inside of maze temples. The Caves and portals found by recent Archaeologists have led them to believe that the myths of afterlife were one of the most important parts of Mayan culture.


Sheldon W.
Period 3

Lost Inca Gold, Ancient Mystery

The feeling of desire and anxiousness leads to the discovery of the legendary Inca gold. It is guarded by remote, mist-veiled mountains in central Ecuador. Deep inside the Llanganates Mountain range between the Andes and the Amazon, a fabulous Inca hoard hidden from Spanish conquistadors is said to be hidden. Pizarro made a deal to release Atahualpa in return for a ton of gold, but the Spaniard later changed his mind on the deal. He had the Inca king murdered before the last and largest part of the deal had been delivered. Instead, the gold was buried in a secret mountain cave. And there the legend has remained, daring others to discover it. The hidden guide of those who have tried is Valverde, a Spaniard about 50 years after Atahualpa's death who was known to have become very wealthy after finding the gold thanks to his Indian In laws. When he died, he left written directions to its location, the Derroterro de Valverde. The gold trail was very unclear in the 1850s, when English botanist Richard Spruce traveled to Ecuador to find the cinchona tree, the seeds of which were used to produce the antimalarial drug quinine. When Spruce finally returned to Britain, he reported that he had uncovered Valverde's guide and a related map, made by a man named Atanasio Guzman.


Marvin G.
Period 3

Australia Apologizes to Mistreated British Children

From 1618 to 1967 over 150,000 British children were taken from their families and shipped to Australia in search of a better life. However, once there they discovered that this good life that they were looking for was a hoax, and all of them were sent to work on plantations and go to schools where often times they were abused physically and sexually. Definitely not what they were expecting to come out of this.
On Monday November 16, 2009, however, the prime minister of Australia, Kevin Rudd, made history by apologizing for the mistreatment of these children. There was a ceremony in Canberra, in which the some 7,000 survivors attended to see the 40 year late apology take place.
Although they were making a big deal over their mistreatment, neither the British or Australian governments took any of the blame for themselves. They said “liability lay with state governments and churches that ran the institutions.” This is of course completely wrong, as it was the governments who initially took the children from their families, and put in to these terrible institutions that would flog the kids within an inch of their life.


Steven M.
Period 3

Will the World End in 2012?

The Mayans were an advanced society with a very exact calendar that has led people to believe that the world is going to end on December 21, 2012. First of all, the Mayan calendar does not even technically end on that particular date but it does mark when the new cycle of the Mayan calendar begins. So couldn't have the Mayans just decided to stop this particular year because they were getting tired of calculating it all out? Another Mayan myth is that when the world ends it will undergo a pole-shift which would happen due to a large amount of gravitational pull on the Earth. The pole-shift would lead to many disasters such as hurricanes and tsunamis that would put an end to world as we know it. Scientists do not believe this will happen but say that a small pole-shift is possible. Other thoughts to how the world will end is after galactic alignment, collision with an unknown planet, and solar storms, but again all are downplayed by scientists. The truth is that the Maya never specifically said anything was even going to happen in 2012 but we, as humans, let fear get to our heads and over exaggerated reality.


Elisabeth H.
Period 3

Thought You Were the Only One?

Believe it or not, nearly 50% Americans are said to have experienced extreme levels of stress. The great deals of stress have been brought upon us through the need to survive, and help provide for others. Although it may seem as if stress levels have been increasing drastically, there is evidence that proves that stress has been existent for quite a long period of time now. Archaeologists have followed though with tests on a body found in Cajamurquilla, Peru. The individual was dated to have lived between 550 A.D. and 1532. We are quite aware that there were only a few written accounts of the ancient people. We may be able to learn about their daily lives and routines, but it is impossible to decipher emotions from a piece of writing. Through the tests that were conducted on the body, more about the emotions of the ancient Peruvians were discovered. Archaeologists and historians were able to receive the first idea of the emotions of the ancient humans with the tests of a sample of hair from the body. In the tests, the hair showed that the ancient Peruvians were under huge amounts of stress. The hair contained high concentrations of cortisol, which is a stress hormone. Knowing the rate of hair growth, the amount of cortisol that was present in the hair was easily calculated into finding the levels of stress. This means that people have never been able to escape from the presence of stress. During this individual’s lifetime, they suffered from stress due to the worry of food availability, social and physical threats, weather conditions, safety, and many others. Although there are different reasons behind why people experience stress, it will never withdraw from the existing world. Remember, don't let the stress kill you!


Janis C.
Period 3

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Easter Island Red Hat Mystery Revealed

Today, a team of British archaeologists believe they have solved the mystery of how the giant stone statues of Easter Island, known as moai, acquired their red hats. This mystery was solved with the discovery of a nearby road on the small island. This road is constructed out of cement made from red scoria dust and has a raised platform along one side. The hats were constructed in a hidden quarry, known as Puna Pau, inside the crater of an ancient volcano. Dr. Sue Hamilton, of University College London, said that “The hat quarry is inside the crater of an ancient volcano and on its outer lip. A third of the crater has been quarried away by hat production”. There is also evidence that the quarry had been used to create statues before it had been used to build the hats. Once they were finished, the hats were rolled down the road either by hand or on top of logs to the current site of the statues. These hats were moved to their current location between 500 and 750 years ago. Once the hats were near the moai, they were lifted up and placed on the heads of the carved human statues. The moai themselves were standing upon large stone platforms that circle the island’s coast. However, we have yet to determine how the red hats, which weighed several tons, were raised and attached to the top of the human figures.


Tyler L.
Period 5

Maya "Painted Pyramid" Reveals 1st Murals of Daily Life

Mayan Murals depicting a Mayan's daily life have been discovered on the exterior of a Mayan pyramid. The murals show the empire from about 620 to 700 AD. The paintings were discovered in 2004 at the site of Calakmul. This pyramid had many murals of Mayans living their day to day life. Other paintings that have been found of the Mayans are of royalty and other sacred traditions, but these paintings are of a common Mayan's lifestyle. The murals show people of all different social classes. The pictures show what kind of clothes the people wore and the food they ate. These murals show a lot about what food was important to the Mayans and how they prepared it. The painting shows the "salt person" and the "tobacco person" and it also shows people making foods out of corn. These paintings also show the fashions of that time period. These murals are unique because other murals have only been discovered inside the pyramids, but these are painted on the exterior so the public could view them. These murals have been helpful because researchers can see what the Mayan's valued in their culture, and how they survived.

-Mikaela Y.
Period 5


Will the world really end in December 2012? Some people seem to think so, basing their claims off of the ancient Mayan calendar. However, not everyone thinks that the world will be affected in a negative way. The world is just to be changed as we know it, but it could be for the good of the human population.

One theory is that, in December 2012, the sun will align with the black hole at the center of the galaxy, and this will throw our entire solar system “off kilter”. This could cause the sun to experience more, and more intense, solar flares, sending a wave of solar particles towards Earth. This could change the direction of the magnetic field of the planet, disrupting all communications, and creating natural disasters worse than ever seen before. However, other’s say good events may happen. When the sun passes through a dark band of the Milky Way called the “Great Rift” and that this will cause us all to “reconnect with our cosmic hearts”.

Many people claim that monuments like Stela 25, a temple, were designed to predict what the sky would look like at the end of the Long Count calendar. However, it has been noted that the northward orientation occurs every year, and would not be specific to just 2012. This is the case with many other theories that link temples and other monuments to the heavens and the end of the long count calendar. So far, no one has found any true evidence that the Mayans predicted the end of the world, and then left a monument to warn us about it.


-Ana S.

Period 5

A Crashed Hellcat Rises Again…From Lake Michigan?

A F6F-3 Hellcat was recently lifted out of the 250 feet deep waters in Lake Michigan. This is the latest of a series of Navy aircraft recovered from the lake, including a recently discovered SBD Dauntless. The Hellcat was designed as a replacement for the F4F Wildcats which were far inferior to their rival, the Japanese Mitsubishi AM6 Zero. The F6F Hellcat improved on the Wildcat as it provided a much more powerful and maneuverable platform than the aging F4Fs. The pilot of the Hellcat, Lieutenant Walter Elcock, was attempting a practice landing aboard the USS Sable, a steamship converted into a training carrier by the US Navy when it was acquired in 1942, and was later sold for scrap after the end of the war. Elcock stated that while trying to land aboard the carrier during the fairly routine training mission, he lost the lift under his wings and was forced to ditch his plane in the lake. Instances like this are somewhat common while landing aboard an aircraft carrier, especially without fly-by-wire controls available in today’s jets. It is very difficult to land a moving object on another moving object, both of which are going dramatically different speeds. It is most likely that Elcock descended too fast and flared his nose up too much and the Hellcats 2000 horsepower Pratt & Whitney R-2800 engine simply could not sustain the 13,000 lb airplane’s altitude. Lt. Elcock, now 89, survived the crash landing and lives in Atlanta. The plane is destined for substantial restoration as 60 years at the bottom of a lake destroys the instrumentation, corrodes the metal, and most likely affects the plane’s structural integrity, delegating it to the role of a static display at an air museum.


-Daniel Q

Period 5

Navajo Code Talkers: World War II

The Navajo code talkers played a vital role in every assault the U.S. Marines carried out in the Pacific from 1942 to 1945. They were used to transmit messages by telephone and radio in their indigenous language, a code that the Japanese never broke. The Navajo language met the military requirement for an undecipherable code, for the reason that Navajo is an unwritten language of tremendous complexity. Its sentence structure and tonal qualities, not to mention vernacular, make it incomprehensible to anyone without widespread exposure and training. This language contains no alphabet or any symbols, and is only spoken on the Navajo territories of the American Southwest. It is estimated that less than 30 non-Navajos, could understand the language during World War II, none of which were Japanese. A test was staged under simulated combat situations to test the Navajos effectiveness. This test revealed that Navajos could encode, transmit, and decipher a three-line English letter in 20 seconds while the machines of the time took half an hour to perform the same function. The Marine Corps was convinced, and it was recommended that the Marines recruit 200 Navajos. After completing their training, Navajos were sent to a Marine unit, stationed in the Pacific. The code talkers' main task was to talk, transmitting information on strategy and troop activities, commands and other imperative combat zone communications over telephones and radios. Major Howard Connor, 5th Marine Division signal officer, acknowledged, "Were it not for the Navajos, the Marines would never have taken Iwo Jima." The Japanese were skilled code breakers, they were able to decipher the codes utilized by the U.S. Army and Air Corps, yet they remained baffled by the Navajo language used by the Marines. The Navajo code breakers were recently recognized for their skill and courage, which saved both military engagements and American lives.


Leandro Praseli
Period 5

It is All in the Eyes

Nefertiti’s name translates to “the beautiful one has come.” The Egyptians valued her eye shape and it became a cultural phenomenon, symbolizing beauty, wealth, and power. Mummies were discovered in a tomb in the Valley of the Kings, that upon closer inspection, had a similar almond shape look to the eyes for 3 of the 7 coffins found. Art of during her reign is known for its realism. These coffins might be relatives of hers, because she might have had a number of different syndromes that could have caused an epicanthic fold, a piece of skin from the upper eyelid covering the inner edge of the eye, to appear. This feature is found not just in people of East Asian descent, but also in individuals with some different genetic defect. However, the distinctive eye shape led to the symbolism of royalty and the coffins might be trying to impersonate her. Since Queen Nefertiti’s tomb has not been found, the world may never know.


-Mika B.

Period 5

Buried Coins Speak of Population Declines in Ancient Rome

During the period of time after Julius Caesar's assassination, Rome's government and peoples were in turmoil. But according to records, it it hard to tell whether Roman population declined or increased during that period due to discrepancies on who was counted in censuses at that time. Recently, Peter Turchin, a theoretical biologist, decided to answer the population question with buried coins. Apparently, during times of trouble, people would bury their wealth for safety until they could come back to it. However, if they where killed in the resulting trouble they would be unable to come back for the coins. So now it becomes possible to guess at population changes by counting the number of stashes that are, or where, still buried at that time. More buried coins could indicate population loss. The coin model when used for known populations in Rome proves that it is accurate. The large amounts of coins found from the questionable period in Rome, shows that the population was most likely on the decrease. “It is very difficult to see how a population could grow during such a period of such violence...” said Turchin.

-Niki S.

Period 5

The Return of a Genius

A thumb and forefinger as well as a tooth have been found and proven to belong to the famous physicist, astronomer, mathematician, and philosopher of the Scientific Revolution, Galileo Galilei (1564-1642). At an auction, there was a wooden box and inside there was an 18th century blown glass container with the two fingers and a tooth contained inside which were noticed by a collector. These were removed from the genius’ body when he was being moved from an unconsecrated grave to a Florentine church, the Santa Croce, in 1737, nearly 100 years after his death. During the ceremony when Galileo was being dug up and about to be transferred, Giovanni Targioni Tozzetti took out a knife and removed the fingers and tooth as soon as the coffin lid was raised. Galileo’s middle finger and vertebra were also removed on this occasion and can now be viewed on display at the Galluzzi museum located in Florence. Galileo is well known for his observations of solar spots, his invention of the thermometer, and the modification of and studies made with the telescope. He used the telescope to come to the conclusion that the Earth revolves around the sun. However, at the time such radical ideas were seen to threaten the power of the church, and this great thinker was convicted of heresy and spent the last nine years of his life on house arrest. After they had been removed from the body, the fingers and tooth traded hands through various owners and eventually disappeared from view completely about a century ago, only to be discovered again recently. Galileo was parted from his fingers under the reason that he had created and unearthed many ideas with them in his life and they therefore needed to be kept as symbolic representations of his great works. The question is whether it is morally ethical to separate a person from their body parts and put them on display after their death.


Yasmine B.
Per. 5

New Amusement Park...of History?

In the peaks of Switzerland, a new amusement park, called Mystery Park, has just opened. However, this park isn't like anything we're used to with rides, carnival games, and characters ready to take your picture. No this amusement park is defanitly the opposite to what we'd ever gone to, this park is half amusement park half museum.

This unique tourist attraction is credited to Erich von Däniken. In his Mystery Park, you'll find yourself transported to a place of history and aliens. That's right aliens. As you explore some of the best known landmarks of all time, like the Egyptian pyramids, Easter Island heads, and the Temple of the Feathered Snake, there are different attractions with most of them consiting of alien encounters. Though Mystery Park is not the first place to spend your money for fun, it does give you a whole new experience about history.


Lindsay Scott

Period 7

A New Painting by Leonardo Da Vinci?

A painting of a young woman, known as the “Profile of the Bella Principessa,” was always believed to be a nineteenth century German painting. However, in 2007 different thoughts arose among the art collector, Peter Silverman, and his Swiss friend. Silverman’s friend first spotted this lovely painting in the Ganz gallery of New York. He observed that the style of the painting was not of the nineteenth century, but possibly a work of Leonardo Da Vinci. He convinced Silverman to buy the painting, and they immediately began to research it. During this process, they found a fingerprint on the painting. After having the fingerprint examined, it was confirmed that the fingerprint belongs to Leonardo Da Vinci. While several art experts support the notion that this is a true artwork of Leonardo Da Vinci, many people still doubt it.


Angela B.
Period 5

Liar, Liar

A great, brilliant, brave, and noble man. These are the words that some use to describe Marco Polo, 'The man who traveled the world.' Or atleast this is the illusion he tried to create.
Over the years, Marco's claims of traveling to lands far and wide, such as China, are being re-evaluated. This man says he went to China but in the many years he claimed to have spent there, he did not pick up on their language, or even one of their most popular past times, drinking tea. Along with that, no Chinese record mentions his name even though he claimed to have played an important role in China's government.
Although, when he went back to Europe and told the westerners about his amazing journey, they embraced his story with open arms. His book, "The Travels of Marco Polo" became the most read book in Europe. Even though the book used Persian terms to refer to many people and things. The other ironic thing about his book is that he wrote it with the help of a fiction writer.
So what do you think? Did the alleged hero really go to China or did he pull the greatest trick of all time?

-Jasmeen R

Period 5

Cannibalism in Germany?

Herxheim in southern Germany shows remnants of many butchered skulls. About 7,000 years ago the Germans took war prisoners and slaves and used them for ritual sacrifice and they were killed as if they were animals. Boulestin, an anthropologist at the University of Bordeaux, has found evidence that several hundred people were all eaten in a short period of time. Miriam Haidle and Jorg Orschiedt have discovered that the bodies were buried, and then they took the bodies apart and removed the flesh from the bones, and then reburied them. Another cannibalism sight was in France and these people were butchered as well, but the answer could have been reburial, and not cannibalism. Herxheim was excavated from 1996-1999 and ditches have been found that contain both human and dog bones. Many human skulls and limbs were found; the bones contain many incisions. Boulestin's team thought that possibly bodies were brought to Herxheim to be buried, but the bones show otherwise. There are chew marks on the bones and the bones are opened at the ends, so that the marrow could have been removed. It is very possible that these Neolithic people could have been cannibals, because the skulls of these people had been crushed as if the Germans held an uncontrollable hatred against them.


Stefanie Studen
Period 7

Who is the Real Gandhi?

When thinking about world peace and nonviolence, the name Mahatma Gandhi comes to mind. Students have been taught that Gandhi used his peaceful hunger strikes to defy British Raj, or British Reign, in India around the time period of 1859 to 1947. Although, when Mr. G. B. Singh finished twenty years of research on the unedited information on the life of Gandhi, the truth was revealed about how Gandhi really became widely known as a promoter of peace. It all began when white Christian clergy, in an attempt to convert the great influence of India, spread misinformation that convinced the West that Gandhi was "The Greatest Man Since Jesus Christ". These clergy are the reason that people still today believe Mahatma Gandhi to be a peaceful person. The clergy made an attempt to convert the so called apostle at the height of his popularity in order to introduce Christianity to the many Hindu followers of Gandhi. Along with this propaganda is the fact that when working as a lawyer for the natives of South Africa, Mohandas Gandhi, who closely followed the Hindu caste system, believed Africans to be of a lower status than the Untouchables, the lowest level of the system. In an instance where Gandhi was put into jail with the Africans, he revealed his true racist self by refusing to live with the very people he was fighting for in courts. In the end, the biggest lie that Gandhi won Indian freedom without violence. It was in fact that, because of the harshness of World War II on Britain, all of the links to their colonial powers had to be severed. After being told the other half of the story of Mohandas Gandhi, one must be curious to know more about the man behind the mask of divinity.

Kainaat K. Bajwa

Period 7‏

Da Vinci da man

Due to new scientific fingerprinting techniques, a new painting of a nineteenth century German girl is said to be one of Leonardo da Vinci's. Purchased by Peter Silverman, an art collector, in 2007 for around 19,000 dollars, it is now worth around 150 million. Biro, the forensic art expert, claimed that the fingerprint on this painting matched fingerprints on many of his other famous paintings. The fingerprints used were easily readable due to da Vinci's frequent use of his fingers. Biro also noticed how the style of da Vinci was repeated in the new painting. Biro also believes this painting to be priceless seeing as how it is uncommon to find an artist as good as Leonardo. Silverman bought the painting for his Swiss friend and began researching it but was skeptical of it being a da Vinci painting. However, all his research brought him back to Leonardo. A year ago, Silverman met Nicholas Turner, an art expert, who, along with many other experts, claimed it was a da Vinci painting. The painting was confirmed to be da Vinci's after the fingerprint test results came in.


Alex Moniz
Period 7

Which came first the Chicken or the European?

Columbus seemed to “stumble” upon the Americas, in his quest to reach the East Indies, but was he really the first to make it? Polynesians traveled to South America before Columbus, and brought their chickens with them. These chickens, had to be brought by humans, and were carbon dated back from about 1304 to 1424. Genetic sampling of this type of chicken also matches that of the Polynesians breed, instead of the Europeans. Some scientists speculate that this could never come to be, however, in 1947 Thor Heyerdahl a Norwegian scientists built a rudimentary boat, and sailed the Pacific. He built the same style boat the Polynesians used, and was able to accomplish his goal. The evidence goes to show that the Polynesian chicken really did come before the European.

Harrison Hucks

Period 7

Machu Picchu: A Pilgrimage

The “Lost City of the Incas” is now being suggested as not actually a city. Machu Picchu, the city that sits atop a giant mountain, is now being researched as a pilgrimage site instead of a settling city. It is said that the city was used for the inhabitants to make their spiritual pilgrimages to find their souls and gain a closer relationship to God. This place had a very important sanctuary which possessed a rock which was claimed to be the “Birthplace of the Sun”. Although this myth has never been proven, it is said that the people come to the city to cleanse the mind and gain spirituality.

Machu Picchu is perched at more than 8,000 feet into the clouds and is definitely very hard to get to. It is believed to be a place of pilgrimage because of its geographical location and challenges in the journey to arrive there. This historical suggestion poses many more question that still have not yet been answered


Erin Davis

Period 7

Ancient Twilight

Believe it or not, this is not the first time entire societies have had a completely ridiculous obsession with vampires. The people of the middle ages would much rather hunt vampires and perform exorcisms than make cheesy movies about them but they were, nonetheless, obsessed. The decomposition of human bodies was not a process that was widely understood at the time, which pushed most commoners to believing in blood sucking monsters. The decomposition process makes a body look as if blood is coming out of its nose and mouth so people immediately assumed it was from the monsters latest snack.
Lazzaretto Nuovo is a small island near Venice where the first evidence of an exorcism was found. The woman’s jawbone had a brick pushed into it, which was a technique used on suspected vampires. Inserting bricks or s4tones into the “vampires” mouth was said to stop the creature from spreading the plague. It isn’t often that archaeologists are able to diagnose something they find as being “undead”, but Matteo Borrini was first to get the chance.

Keely O'Brien
Period 7

Easter Island Red Hat Mystery Revealed

The questioning of how these statues received their mysterious red hats has been solved. These giant statues are found on Easter Island and British archaeologists believe that it all started with the discovery of a road on the tiny Pacific island. University of Manchester and University College, London provided a team that found a hidden quarry, known as Puna Pau, where the hats were built. The quarry was located in an ancient crater of a volcano and they analyze that the hats were rolled to the statues either by hand or using tree logs. Polynesians moved the hats between 500 and 750 years ago to where the statues are located. The hate were made of a red scoria, similar to pumice-like volcanic rock and weighed several tons. They were places on the heads of the moai, another name for the human like figures, which encircle the island’s coastline. The question that remains is how they were raised on top of the figures. Keep in mind the hats weigh several pounds, how could that be possible?


Tamara Eckert

Period 7

'Mini-Colosseum' Excavated in Rome

Since the 16th century, a “mini-Colosseum” has been hidden below Rome's Fiumicino airport in Portus, a harbor used in the second century. But not until the 1860’s was it seriously excavated by Rodolfo Lanciani. This 138 foot by 125 foot arena was believed to be used as a private venue by high status officials and possibly even emperors. Compared to the 50,00 people the Colosseum can hold, this mini arena can only hold up to 2,000. However, the purpose of it still remains unclear . Because it is shaped like an amphitheater, it’s suspected that it was used for a variety of events such as gladiator fights or the staging of mock sea trials. By the discovery of this arena, not only have archaeologists discovered that Portus was one of the most immense maritime foundations of the ancient world, but they also have come across luxuriously decorated rooms, a marble head that could possibly be of the Greek hero Ulysses, and also a column filled garden. Some people even believe that this discovery is so important that it should be ranked among the wonders of the world.

Clarisa Hernandez

Period 7

The last of the Aztec Warriors

In Mexico city, 49 adult indigenous Mexican people were found in the remains of a pyramid in Tlateloco square, (destroyed by the Spanish). The pyramid was a mass grave, and many had already been found in it, buried haphazardly. However, these 49 were different because they were buried neatly, were all adult males, were tall, and some had bones that were previously broken. They are though to be some of the last Aztec warriors who fought the Spanish conquistadors (lead by Hernán Cotréz) during the conquest of Tlateloco square in 1521, which lasted for 76 days. Interestingly, these warriors not only buried neatly, but were also lying on their backs with their arm crossed (this is how Christians traditionally bury the dead). This indicates that the Christian Spanish did the burying. However, they burial also contains Aztec elements -- incense, animals, and copper necklaces, leading historians to hypothesize that the burials were ordered by the Spanish, but carried out by Aztecs.Overall, this discovery creates "more questions than it answers".

Jeffrey Seyfried

Period 7

Maya “Painted Pyramid” Murals Reveal Daily Life

Recently discovered pyramid in the Mexican Jungle has helped historians learn more about the daily life of Mayans. These Mayan wall murals with hieroglyphic captions are different from other previous murals found, which depicted ruling elites, defeats in battles, and religious themes. They also differ because the newly discovered murals are located on the exterior of the pyramid instead of hidden inside, “…they were public” says Mayan expert Michael D. Coe. The new murals illustrate ordinary Mayans doing day to day activities, during 620 A.D to 700 A.D. These murals were most likely based off the people in Calakmul, the capital of Snake Kingdom, which at the time were the most influential cities of the Mayan Empire. These murals show common food such as corn, which was essential to the Mayan diet. They also depict clothing and jewelry worn by all different classes. But what is most surprising about these murals, is that they are freely displayed on the exterior of the pyramid. The pyramid’s burial has successfully preserved the unusual artwork of the Mayans.

Marissa Romeri
Period 7


As World War II came to a close, there were a select few U.S. soldiers who entered Hitler's home in the Bavarian Alps. John Pistone was among them. As a souvenir, Pistone took an album with photographs of paintings while searching the dictator's home.
Jump forward 64 years. Pistone, now 87, has finally learned what the album was intended for. The Paintings depicted in the album were to be showcased as part of a series in in Hitler's "Fuehrermuseum," a planned museum in Linz, Austria.
This 3-inch thick, 12-pound book is going to be formally returned to Germany in a ceremony in January. Germany has found 19 other albums that were apart of a 31-collection to be or to be considered being shown at the Linz museum

Maggie Herlocker

Period 7

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Ancient Tablets Decoded; Sheding Light on Assyrian Empire

In present day southeast Turkey, clay tablets were discovered in an ancient palace. The tablets were inscribed with cuneiform, the common written language of the early Middle East. The tablets were made by scribes in the royal courts; they were taking notes on intricate parts of the Assyrian government never before known. The tablets are dated back 3,000 years to 1000 B.C.E. This creates a link between governments of today, to those of ancient empires. While these tablets are being deciphered, archeologists can only image what other details they contain. These tablets could be used to look more deeply at the Assyrian empire, looking past their brute force that would often display by putting the head of conquered leaders at the gates of a conquered city.
JT Janowski
Period 7

Justice is Served

When Adolf Hitler rose to power in Germany, the destruction and mass murdering of many innocent people was imminent. In order to help facilitate this, many concentration camps were created which were run by guards. Even after the many years from the Holocaust to the present, the repercussions of this blight on world history are still taking place.
Eighty-nine-year-old John Demjanjuk is being put on trial for committing the serious crime as being a suspected guard at a Nazi concentration camp. It is believed that Demjanjuk was a guard at the Sobibor network of camps located in Poland, and may have been responsible for the deaths of 27,900 Jewish people. He denies being a guard at Sobibor, but there are records showing his name and transfer orders located at this camp. As there are no living eyewitnesses to have seen Demjanjuk at this camp, prosecutors will not have the testimonies of anyone. If Demjanjuk is convicted of this heinous crime, he will most likely be subjected to spend the rest of his life behind bars. However, if he does escape this fate, he may possibly be alienated, as he is without a passport, and no country wants to be associated with him. This riveting, nail-biting trial is likely to be the last Holocaust trial to receive a lot of public attention. Even if Demjanjuk is not imprisoned, he will always be a prisoner to the potential regret that may plague his thoughts.


-Jackie G.
Period 7

Jesus Enters the Modern World

“The Last Supper” is one of the most revered works of art of all time, for its nearly accurate portrayal of Jesus, the event itself, and for its vivid and life-like detail and color. Since 1498, when the painting was first created, it has tremendously deteriorated and faded. Although its quality has deeply declined in the past few centuries, it has still been wildly appreciated by millions, and the attempts to preserve it have not been disappointing. Recently, Mario Taddei was accompanied by fellow scientists at Milan’s Leonardo3 to digitally recreate the masterpiece, in order to give insight to the original artwork’s beauty, full quality, and to enhance the recent portrayals of it.
Using the remains of the original, poor-quality work of art, other interpretations and recreations of it, and science, these scientists were able to successfully recreate the world’s treasured masterpiece. They used a long, tedious analytical process of taking each pixel, and closely analyzing it for the exact color, texture, and pigment levels of each stroke. These scientists also had the ability to add the forgotten piece of “The Last Supper”, the lower half which contained Jesus’ feet, which had been cut off centuries ago when the painting was used for a door. This had been done by the analyzing of many contemporary portrayals of the painting. This new digital creation is meant to be cherished and treasured, just as DaVinci would have wanted to impact the world.


-Rebecca W.
Period 7

Rare Darwin Book Found Near Toilet

Charles Darwin was one of history’s most remarkable men. He was born on February 12th, 1809, interestingly, also the date Abraham Lincoln was born. Darwin’s book, The Origin of the Species set out his theory of evolution by which species develop from generation to generation through the process of natural selection. The first printing of the book was in 1859, when 1,250 copies were printed. How much do you think a copy of the first edition would be worth today?

A family in the Oxford area in Great Britain has found the answer to that question. Apparently, the family bought the book about forty years ago “for a few shillings” and kept it on their book case in their guest bathroom. The son-in-law of the current owners was at an exhibition on Darwin and saw a picture of the book. He realized the book in the bathroom matched the binding of Darwin’s book. The book was promptly put up for sale. On Tuesday November 24th, 2009, the 150th anniversary of the book’s original publication, the green-cloth volume was purchased by an anonymous bidder for 174,000 dollars. I wonder what Darwin would be more surprised about, that his book was kept in a bathroom for forty years or how much the copy sold for today.


Sara P.

Period 7

3,000 Year Old Mystery Gets One Step Closer to Being Solved

Recently, Dr. Zahi Hawass and a team of archeologists discovered "Egypt's Lost Queen". They used process of elimination with the use of advanced computer programs to tell which of the thousands of corpses had physical traits similar to Hatshepsut. After finally coming down to two corpses, the scientists scanned a box they found with Hatshepsut's name inscribed. Inside was a tooth, which perfectly matched a missing spot in one of the mummy's mouths. The scientists thus concluded that this corpse was the great leader Hatshepsut.

Dr. Kara Cooney believes that this discovery is more of a "resurrection of Hatshepsut's image." For 3,000 years, Queen Hatshepsut has been erased form history and remained unknown to most people. Back when she was alive, Hatshepsut stole the throne from her stepson, dressed and acted as a man, then announced herself Pharaoh. She was greater than any female ruler with her rule stretching far across Egypt and having a prosperous reign. However, Hatshepsut was killed and completely erased from history. Her monuments were destroyed, any record of her was ruined, and her corpse was removed from her tomb. "The discovery of the Hatshepsut mummy is one of the most important finds in the history of Egypt," said Dr. Hawass. "Her reign during the 18th Dynasty of ancient Egypt was a prosperous one, yet mysteriously she was erased from Egyptian history. Our hope is that this mummy will help shed light on this mystery and on the mysterious nature of her death."

Jenn Cardoza

Period 7

Roman Statues Found in Blue Grotto Cave

Many ancient Roman statues stand under the island of Capri in southern Italy in the waters of the Blue Grotto. The cave used to be a swimming pool used by Emperor Tiberius, and the statues are thought to be depictions of sea gods. The magnificent blue tone of the water and the silvery light that shines through makes this cave one of the top attractions in Capri. This island happened to be the capitol of the Roman empire between 27 and 37 A.D. because Tiberius took advantage of the mild climate and secluded area. Archaeologists recovered a statue of the sea god Neptune, and two statues of he Greek god Triton in the Blue Grotto. Trinton carried a twisted conch shell and he blew it to calm or raise the waves. Divers found seven bases in the waters at a depth of 150 meters, so they suggest that four other statues may be found on the cave's sandy bottom. They are now preserving the natural wonder of the cave so that it is in similar condition to how it was in ancient times.
Cailyn Prewitt
Period 7

Fingers and Tooth Recovered

In Florence, a tooth and two fingers of Galileo Galilei have been found inside a case from an auction. Because the church did not agree with his findings, he was only allowed to be buried in unsacred ground. So he was later exhumed and transferred to a mausoleum in Santa Croce. There he would lay to rest along with some other famous people like Michelangelo. However, when his coffin was raised during the ceremony, naturalist Giovanni Targioni Tozzetti cut off Galilei’s thumb and forefinger with his pocket knife. Later, he also got the middle finger, the fifth lumbar vertebra and a tooth. These two fingers were kept because they were the fingers that wrote great works. The two fingers and tooth will be on display at the Galileo Museum, which was originally the Museum of the History of Science in Florence.


David Leung

Period 7

Do you see what I hear?

There is a real Da Vinci code hiding within the painting of “The Last Supper” created by Leonardo Da Vinci. According to musician Giovanni Maria Pala, he discovered that there is a musical number hidden within this controversial painting. Pala states that "[He has] always been intrigued by the possibility of finding a (piece of) music in the Last Supper, but [he] would have never imagined to find [him]self decoding a secret message by Leonardo." Leonardo was also a successful harpist and enjoyed hiding puzzles and paintings within his paintings. Pala claims that music piece found within Leonardo’s work is a sacred hymn and text. He declares that the horizontal and vertical lines on the tablecloth represent a music staff while the pieces of bread represent music notes. Each piece within the painting had some musical representation. Pala was able to decipher the time of the music by viewing the three "Apostles" representing a 3/4 time signature. He also realized that the way the notes were placed were a form of ancient manuscript. Pala then proceeded by having Father Luigi Orlando read the music and Father Luigi confirmed this sentence was written in Hebrew, and it meant "with Him consecration and glory." Pala also discovered that the church where he painted "The Last Supper", Santa Maria delle Grazie, was incorporated in the painting by a chalice. There are so many enigmas surrounding the controversial painting "The Last Supper", only causing people to want to find out more about the painting and what it hides.

-Tasha Pineiro, Period 7

Sunday, November 29, 2009

The Last Stand of the 50,000

The remains of 50,000 Persian soldiers all thought to have vanished with out a trace may finally be coming to light after 2,500 years. According to the ancient Greek historian Herodotus the soldiers disappeared in 525 BC on their way to destroy the oracle located at Siwa. Persian King Cambyses II, the son of Cyrus the Great, sent 50,000 soldiers from Thebes to attack the Oasis of Siwa and destroy the oracle at the Temple of Amun after the priests there refused to legitimize his claim to Egypt. After marching in the desert for 7 days the army was supposedly swallowed in a sand storm. No trace of the soldiers has ever been found, until now.

The archeologists worked on a hypothesis that the army had actually traveled an indirect route, because it was not likely that the Persians would have had conceived a military campaign for taking all of the desert oases under Egyptian control on the way to the oracle. After several expeditions over a 13-year period looking along the route, and deciding to follow an ancient story that thousands of bones had been on covered by the wind in a large valley, the archeologists found what they were looking for. Under natural shelters, they found thousands of sun-bleached bones and personal effects and other weapons. It was found that the army had dispersed during the sandstorm over a wide area. Many agree that though much has been found a more in-depth exploration of the area is needed.

The Persian King Cambyses II was not the only military leader that sought recognition as a god from the great oracle of Amun at Siwa. A century after Herodotus wrote his account, Alexander the Great made his own pilgrimage to the oracle in 332 B.C. Alexander was confirmed that he was the divine son of Zeus, the Greek god equated with Amun.

Ben S.

Period 3

Sunday, November 8, 2009


Famed French conqueror of Europe, at first glance Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821) is not an intimidating person. Standing short at not much more than 1.6 meters (5-and-a-half feet) Napoleon needed a way to portray himself in a more respectable manor. This was done whenever he had a portrait of himself painted. He would have one of his hands tucked into his coat. This was a common trend for men to do at that age whenever posing in order to show their dominance, a pose often seen in classical Roman sculptures as well. People who do did not know this would wonder why such an odd posture. Some speculations included such far fetched as Napoleon's hand being deformed, a secret code among his colleagues, having itchy fingers, or that the painters did not even know how to paint hands.None of these cases are true, however. Thank goodness, Bonaparte doesn't need a second set of nickname beside "Shrimp", "Shortstop", and "Pipsqueak".

Chaiz T.

Period 7

Stolen Priceless Artifacts are finally returned

Today (Oct. 9) was a turnig point for the rights of Egyptian Artifacts. Five stolen Egyptian relics were finally returned back to Egypt after more than 10 years. Sometime in the 1980's, 5 relics,chipped out of the wall, were illegally taken from a tomb dating back to the 18th dynasty in Egypt. The priceless artifacts were then sold in various actions in 2003 and 2000. Somehow, through many sales and shippings, these artifacts ended up in the Louvre. After many years, the louvre officials have decided to give the artifacts back to Egypt. Although it took many protests, these relics are going home.
Ryan Root Period 7

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

King Tut’s Little Girls?

Two mummified female baby fetuses were found in King Tutankhamun’s tomb. At least one of the fetuses is the offspring of the famous Pharaoh. The fetuses have been stored at the Cairo University's Faculty of Medicine under examination. Howard Carter discovered them in King Tut’s tomb in 1922. There was a lot of debating whether these stillborn babies belonged to this king or not and if they were placed in the tomb as a symbolic meaning for the afterlife. The fetuses will soon undergo DNA and CT scans to determine their relation to the famous king. There were examinations taken shortly after the discovery of the babies, it was concluded that no body parts or innards were removed, even their umbilical cords remained. The smaller fetus examined by Howard Carter in 1925 is about 5 months old. The bigger fetus is about 9 months old. Colleagues from Cairo University, suggested that the older stillborn fetus displayed what could have been the earliest evidence of Sprengel's deformity, a relatively rare and congenital skeletal disorder where a scapula sits too high on one side. The smaller fetus is said to have vertebral dislocation, spina bifida and scoliosis. When DNA is examined the fetuses might help identify "the lineage and the family of King Tutankhamun, particularly his parents." Many people believe that the two female fetuses must belong to King Tut because of the relevance of them sharing the tomb. Until December when the test results should be finished no one will know for sure who the biological parents of the stillborn babies are.

Lindsay M.

Period 5

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Seven Year Old Killing Machines

Many Spartan babies that were thought to be not strong enough were left to perish. Because of their unique training, Spartans became dominant figures in war tactics. This training transformed regular boys into killing machines. At age seven, every Spartan boy is taken from his mother to begin his training. Starting at the age of seven, they were taught not to cry but to council pain. A game was played in which Spartan boys would stand in a circle, be flogged, and the one who lasted the longest was the winner. The Spartan society was designed to strip people of their individual identity. As they got older there was and increasing level of violence. Training became more and more intense. Spartans were reminded of their heritage as they were worked to death. By early teens Spartan boys are given wooden staffs and tipless spears. Even though these were games, many boys died from them. This is just a small example of how the Spartans prepared their troops for battle.

Lucas H.
Period 3

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Playing With Fire

New finds suggest that after a huge ice age about 75,000 years ago, sites in South Africa made tools using a heated silcrete stone. This was 50,000 years earlier than when scientists initially believed fire was used to make weapons. Further studying of this has scientists even concluding that in order to pass this technique from generation to generation, language was created in these societies in order for this skill to be passed on. Professionals believe that this heat rock treatment may have made the tools more likely to shatter instead of making them stronger. This maybe allowed more efficient hunting. When the arrows pierced the skin of the animals the tool would shatter on impact making hunting easier. In addition with the use of heat rock treatment, they were much more likely to be able to better adapt to their environments which allowed them to expand. Along with this, humans designed jewelry in the caves nearby. This jewelry may even be some of the oldest jewelry ever designed on earth.


Matt G.

Period 5

Ancient Mesoamericans had…Grillz?

A recent archaeological study shows that Mesoamerican dentists possessed both profound and sophisticated dentistry. Gems had been found in the teeth of the ancient people going back as far as 2,500 years ago. Ancient inhabitants of southern North America went to the dentist to drill semi-precious gems into their front teeth. This practice of dentistry did not classify the rich and the poor, but was merely for decoration. Most royal leaders of the time were found to not have the special treatment, while it was common for the lower class to posses the ancient “grillz.” It was said that even “royals of the day- such as the Red Queen… [didn’t] have teeth decorations.” The early dentists used a drill-like device that was made of obsidian and strong enough to puncture bone. Complex herbal anesthetic was said to be applied to the mouth before the actual studding to reduce any pain. The stones itself were attached to the teeth with natural adhesives such as plant sap mixed with different chemicals and bones. Impressive enough, the dentists had a very high understanding of the anatomy of the mouth and never corrupted the inside of the tooth. The Mesoamericans made many groundbreaking accomplishments in their time of reign, and now from recent discovery teeth studding can be added to the list of their impressive ancient attributes.

Kayce T.

Period 5