Lincoln’s Tomb

In 1876, a gang of Chicago counterfeiters hatched a bizarre plan to steal the corpse of President Abraham Lincoln and use it to spring one of their members from jail. During the Civil War, both the Union and the Confederacy tried to undermine each other’s economy by counterfeiting currency. Naturally it wasn’t long before ordinary … More Lincoln’s Tomb

1908 Race Riots

In 1908, one of the worst anti-African-American race riots in US history happened in the town of Springfield IL—the hometown of Abraham Lincoln. On August 13, 1908, two African-American residents of Springfield IL were arrested for two separate crimes. George Richardson was accused of raping a white woman, and Joe James was charged with attempting to rape … More 1908 Race Riots

Life in the Van: Ice Fans and Swamp Coolers

[NOTE: I’ve blogged all these “how-to” posts before, but am gonna re-run them on occasion, since folks may have missed them, and many of them have been updated or expanded since they were first posted.] Fortunately, modern technology has invented a device that uses energy to pump the heat out of an enclosed area and … More Life in the Van: Ice Fans and Swamp Coolers


It’s not hard to tell what this town’s claim to fame is. Everywhere in town are historical markers: “Lincoln’s first law office was here”, “Lincoln’s dentist was here”, Lincoln’s horse carriage was built here”. I’m surprised there is no “Lincoln took a shit here”.   🙂 I got here just in time for a cold front, … More Springfield