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As a youngster, Fibonacci traveled with his father to African trading posts, where he met foreign merchants who introduced him to Hindu-Arabic numerals.

Today, few people know his name; however, his contribution to modern civilization is evident in virtually every aspect of daily life. Next to the wheel, it is quite possibly the most important instance of foresight and innovation in human history.

Kathrine Switzer poses with a replica of her first Boston Marathon bib, number 261.

The starting line of the seventy-first Boston Marathon was a sea of gray. The weather that day was brutally cold and snowy, so many competitors had decided to run the race in their warm-up gear. In 1967 “warm-up gear” meant baggy gray sweat suits. 

A platoon in Vietnam.

Consider the world’s earliest literature. Homer’s Odyssey and Iliad. Virgil’s The Aeneid. Beowulf and the legend of King Arthur.

All of these tales, mainstays of the Western cannon, are also war stories. As a genre, the war novel is one of the most enduring literary forms. For every warrior, there is a war story. Here are some of the best. 

Fran DiBacco in his Vintage Magazine Shoppe.

 

Fran DiBacco remembers the moment as if it were yesterday. It was June 1942; he was four and a half years old, standing by his mother’s side when she read the telegram.

His older brother Vince was dead—killed during the Battle of Midway. “I can still see my mother grabbing her head with both hands and falling over like a tree,” he says.

(From left) Michelle Obama, Laura Bush, Hillary Clinton, Barbara Bush, and Rosalynn Carter during the dedication of the George W. Bush Presidential Library in 2013.

Help wanted: Manage office with an annual budget of $1.5 million and a staff of 25-40 people; oversee international social events; represent the official interests of the U.S.; preside over turkey pardons, Christmas tree lightings, and Easter egg rolls; direct events staff with regard to style and presentation of menus, floral design, and social correspondence.

Artist's concept of what the surface of the planet called TRAPPIST-1f might look like.

It has been a while since NASA has put a human being into space, but the federal agency still has its eyes on the stars. Since the 2015 discovery of a faraway star system using the TRAPPIST (Transiting Planets and Planetesimals Small Telescope) ground telescope in Chile, the term extraterrestrial life has come up quite a bit.

Vinyl record on a turntable

Odds are, you have a cell phone. Perhaps you also have a personal computer and an MP3 player. There’s a good chance your recent photographs are digital and you may even do much of your reading on a tablet or e-reader. 

The "Christy Girl."

He was one of America’s greatest illustrators—every bit as much an artist as better-known luminaries like Norman Rockwell. Yet, while he was a household name in his time, Howard Chandler Christy is almost forgotten today.

Samuel Pepys' diary is considered the best first-person record of Restoration London.

 

The diary has existed in some form for millennia. From the caveman’s wall drawings of a successful hunt to the Internet blogger's opinions on the recent presidential election, people throughout time have readily indulged their inherent need to spill their guts about everyday occurrences.