Hometown History

Shane L. Waters

Welcome to Hometown History, where the forgotten past comes alive. Our mission? To unearth the hidden gems of history that do not make it into the textbooks. Whether it's a local legend that's been overlooked, a historical event that shaped a small town, or a mysterious occurrence lost in the annals of time, we dig deep to bring you the untold stories that deserve to be heard.

Tune in as we travel back in time, uncovering the history you thought you knew and introducing you to the stories you never knew existed. Let's rewrite history, one hometown at a time.

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Episodios

139: The Truth About May Day
29-04-2024
139: The Truth About May Day
In today's Hometown History episode, we explore the true essence of May Day, an emblem of workers' rights and social justice, born from the strife of the late 19th-century Industrial Revolution. Workers faced daunting challenges: grueling hours, meager pay, and hazardous conditions. This episode dives into the labor movement's rise, galvanized by dire need for change, and the crucial Haymarket Affair of 1886, which became a watershed moment for labor rights.Following the Haymarket Affair's fallout—marked by tragedy, trials, and global solidarity—May Day emerged as a powerful symbol of unity and the struggle for equitable labor practices. This episode highlights how May Day transcends mere celebration, embodying the resilience and collective strength of workers worldwide. Join us on Hometown History as we uncover the enduring legacy of May Day, a reminder of the labor movement's impact and the continuous journey towards a just society.Magic Mind: They have a limited offer you can use now, that gets you up to 48% off your first subscription or 20% off one time purchases with code HOMETOWNHISTORY20 at checkout.You can claim it at: https://www.magicmind.com/hometownhistoryVisit me online at itshometownhistory.comOur Sponsors:* Go to badlandsranch.com/hometown to get up to 50% off your regular-priced dog food order with a 90-day money-back guarantee.Advertising Inquiries: https://redcircle.com/brandsPrivacy & Opt-Out: https://redcircle.com/privacy
138: America's Greatest Conspiracy Theory: The Disappearing Ship
22-04-2024
138: America's Greatest Conspiracy Theory: The Disappearing Ship
In this episode of Hometown History, we unravel the enigma of The Philadelphia Experiment, a story shrouded in mystery and conspiracy against the backdrop of World War II. At the center is the USS Eldridge, alleged to possess invisibility amidst a top-secret operation. Through stormy nights and clandestine experiments, we explore the boundaries between ambitious scientific endeavors and their unforeseen consequences, delving into a narrative where technology meets the unknown.As the saga of the USS Eldridge unfolds, from supposed teleportation to its crew's harrowing ordeal, skepticism meets intrigue. This episode challenges listeners to sift through history, eyewitness accounts, and scientific rationale. We examine the human intrigue with the unexplained, presenting a story that oscillates between military secrets, potential hoaxes, and legends. Tune into Hometown History as we navigate the murky waters of one of America's most captivating conspiracy theories, prompting reflection on the distinction between fact and fiction in the annals of history.Visit me online at itshometownhistory.comEpisode Sponsor:Head to http://FACTORMEALS.com/hometownhistory50 and use code hometownhistory50 to get 50% off!Our Sponsors:* Go to badlandsranch.com/hometown to get up to 50% off your regular-priced dog food order with a 90-day money-back guarantee.Advertising Inquiries: https://redcircle.com/brandsPrivacy & Opt-Out: https://redcircle.com/privacy
136: The Female Pirates of the Caribbean
08-04-2024
136: The Female Pirates of the Caribbean
Welcome to another episode of Hometown History, where we dive deep into the lesser-known corridors of our past, bringing to light the stories that shaped our world in ways we seldom acknowledge. Today, we're setting sail on the turbulent waters of the Caribbean, far from the Hollywood glamorization of pirates, to uncover the real lives of two of the most formidable pirates who ever hoisted the Jolly Roger: Anne Bonny and Mary Read. These women defied the norms of their time, challenging not only the law but societal expectations, proving that the high seas were not just a domain for men. Their tale is not just one of piracy and adventure but a testament to the indomitable spirit of women who dared to take control of their destiny in a world that offered them little.The Golden Age of Piracy is often romanticized in literature and film, but the true story of piracy is much grittier, and at times, more incredible than fiction. Through the lives of Anne Bonny and Mary Read, we are offered a glimpse into the complexity of pirate life, where loyalty, love, and betrayal were as common as the loot they sought. From Anne's fiery defiance that led her to the pirate life, to Mary's extraordinary journey from soldier to pirate, their stories are interwoven with moments of fierce bravery, cunning, and ultimately, a fight for survival against all odds. As we unravel the myths and delve into the realities of these pirate queens, their legacy challenges us to look beyond the stereotypes and recognize the profound impact women have had throughout history, often hidden in the shadows of their male counterparts. Join us as we navigate the high seas of history, uncovering the tales of Anne Bonny and Mary Read, whose lives remind us that sometimes, the most extraordinary stories are hidden beneath the surface, waiting to be told.Visit me online at itshometownhistory.comOur Sponsors:* Go to badlandsranch.com/hometown to get up to 50% off your regular-priced dog food order with a 90-day money-back guarantee.Advertising Inquiries: https://redcircle.com/brandsPrivacy & Opt-Out: https://redcircle.com/privacy
135: The Whiskey Ring of 1875
01-04-2024
135: The Whiskey Ring of 1875
In the shadowy corridors of post-Civil War America, the Whiskey Ring scandal of 1875 emerges as a riveting saga of corruption, intrigue, and the battle for justice. This episode of Hometown History transports listeners to St. Louis, a city pulsing with the spirit of commerce and the undercurrents of political scheming during the presidency of Ulysses S. Grant. As we peel back the layers of this historical event, we delve into a world where secret societies and high stakes converge in a scandal that threatened to topple the very foundations of trust and integrity in the government. The narrative unfolds against the backdrop of a nation striving to mend the rifts of the Civil War, highlighting the complexities of governance, the allure of power, and the ethical dilemmas that define the human condition.The tale of the Whiskey Ring is not merely a chronicle of tax evasion and clandestine plots; it is a reflection on the challenges of leadership and the perennial fight against corruption. Through meticulous research and compelling storytelling, this episode sheds light on the individuals at the heart of the scandal—from the whiskey distillers and government officials ensnared in the web of deceit, to Secretary of the Treasury Benjamin Bristow's relentless pursuit of justice. As we journey through the intricacies of the investigation and the dramatic courtroom battles that ensued, listeners are invited to ponder the lessons of the past and the enduring quest for integrity in the public sphere. Join us on Hometown History as we explore the Whiskey Ring of 1875, a story of ambition, betrayal, and the quest for redemption in America's tumultuous post-war era.Visit me online.Our Sponsors:* Go to badlandsranch.com/hometown to get up to 50% off your regular-priced dog food order with a 90-day money-back guarantee.Advertising Inquiries: https://redcircle.com/brandsPrivacy & Opt-Out: https://redcircle.com/privacy
134: The Real Stories of Project Blue Book
25-03-2024
134: The Real Stories of Project Blue Book
In today's episode of Hometown History, we pull back the curtain on the secretive Project Blue Book, an effort by the United States Air Force to explore the unknown: unidentified flying objects (UFOs), from 1952 to 1969. Tucked away at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio, this project aimed to shed light on the many mysterious sightings in our skies. While most of these turned out to be everyday objects or natural phenomena, a handful of reports remained unexplained, sparking curiosity and speculation about what might be out there.Our journey through the story of Project Blue Book is filled with twists and turns. Starting with Captain Edward J. Ruppelt's leadership, we dive into the project's ambitious goal to categorize UFO sightings and make sense of the unexplainable. Despite its scientific endeavors, Blue Book was often caught in a storm of controversy, facing criticism for its methodologies and the skepticism surrounding extraterrestrial life. Yet, beyond the disputes and debates, Blue Book's legacy lives on, not just in the annals of history but in the realm of pop culture, inspiring TV shows and keeping the conversation about UFOs alive. As we explore the fascinating chapters of this project, we're reminded of humanity's unending quest for knowledge and the allure of the mysteries that lie beyond our understanding. Join us on Hometown History as we uncover the enigma of Project Blue Book and celebrate the spirit of curiosity that drives us to look up at the sky and wonder.Visit me online at itshometownhistory.comOur Sponsors:* Go to badlandsranch.com/hometown to get up to 50% off your regular-priced dog food order with a 90-day money-back guarantee.Advertising Inquiries: https://redcircle.com/brandsPrivacy & Opt-Out: https://redcircle.com/privacy
133: The Winchester Mystery House
18-03-2024
133: The Winchester Mystery House
In this episode we delve into the enigmatic world of the Winchester Mystery House, a sprawling Victorian mansion in San Jose, California, shrouded in intrigue and lore. Constructed by Sarah Winchester, the widow of gun magnate William Wirt Winchester, the mansion is an architectural anomaly, featuring doors that lead to nowhere, staircases ending at the ceiling, and windows overlooking other rooms. Sarah's relentless construction, driven by the belief that she needed to appease the spirits of those felled by Winchester rifles, transformed her home into a labyrinthine puzzle.As we explore the mansion's mystifying design and the tragic life of Sarah Winchester, we uncover the blend of fact and fiction that has captivated historians and paranormal enthusiasts alike. From the alleged advice of a medium that led Sarah to build her confusing home as a means to elude spirits, to the modern-day fascination that keeps the mansion a popular tourist attraction, the Winchester Mystery House remains a monument to one woman's grief and the legacy of the Winchester name.Join us as we step into the corridors of this historical enigma, where every turn reveals a new mystery, and the walls whisper secrets of the past.Visit me online at itshometownhistory.com.Our Sponsors:* Go to badlandsranch.com/hometown to get up to 50% off your regular-priced dog food order with a 90-day money-back guarantee.Advertising Inquiries: https://redcircle.com/brandsPrivacy & Opt-Out: https://redcircle.com/privacy
Illuminating the Past: A Time Travel Tour of Downtown Wabash, Indiana
11-03-2024
Illuminating the Past: A Time Travel Tour of Downtown Wabash, Indiana
Welcome to a special bonus episode of Hometown History, where I'm doing something a bit different. Join me for a historical guided audio tour, an immersive journey through the heart of a city that shines bright with tales of innovation, inspiration, and historical milestones. As the first electrically lighted city in the world, Wabash is not just a place on the map; it's a beacon of human ingenuity and resilience. Whether you're walking the streets of Wabash as I guide you, or sitting comfortably at home, this episode promises to be a unique exploration of a small town with a grand legacy.Visit this tour online at itshometownhistory.com/tour.Things to know about this tour if attending in person:Start on Market Street, across from the parking lot, under the Alley Walk sign that says "Market"Walk at a slow comfortable paceStop at intersections and wait for instructionsTour lasts 35 minutes, the walk is a little over 1/2 mile, no hills and is stroller and wheelchair friendlyLearn more about Wabash at these organizations:Downtown WabashVisit Wabash CountyWabash County MuseumThis is the first time I've created a historic guided walking tour, I hope you enjoy it. If you have a location you'd like to see covered please reach out at itshometownhistory.comOur Sponsors:* Go to badlandsranch.com/hometown to get up to 50% off your regular-priced dog food order with a 90-day money-back guarantee.Advertising Inquiries: https://redcircle.com/brandsPrivacy & Opt-Out: https://redcircle.com/privacy
131: The Lost Colony of Roanoke
04-03-2024
131: The Lost Colony of Roanoke
In today's episode of Hometown History, we delve into the Lost Colony of Roanoke, a mystery that has puzzled historians and enthusiasts for centuries. This story takes us back to the late 16th century, when a group of English settlers vanished without a trace from Roanoke Island, leaving behind a legacy of questions and the mysterious word "Croatoan" as their only clue. Our journey explores the initial establishment of the colony under the leadership of John White, the hardships faced by the settlers, and the fateful expedition that left them awaiting a return that would never happen.As we unravel the layers of this historical mystery, we examine the various theories that have emerged over the years, ranging from integration with local Native American tribes to more far-fetched speculations involving aliens and zombie plagues. Despite numerous investigations and the discovery of tantalizing clues like the Dare Stones and archaeological findings at potential settlement sites, the fate of the Roanoke colonists remains an enigma.Join us as we explore the facts, the folklore, and the fanciful theories surrounding one of America's oldest and most captivating mysteries, reminding us of the profound challenges faced by early settlers and the enduring allure of unsolved historical puzzles.Visit me online at Itshometownhistory.comOur Sponsors:* Go to badlandsranch.com/hometown to get up to 50% off your regular-priced dog food order with a 90-day money-back guarantee.Advertising Inquiries: https://redcircle.com/brandsPrivacy & Opt-Out: https://redcircle.com/privacy
130: The Monkey Trial: A Nation Divided
26-02-2024
130: The Monkey Trial: A Nation Divided
Hello friend, today we are exploring the Scopes ‘Monkey’ trial, a riveting legal battle that erupted in the small town of Dayton, Tennessee, during the sweltering summer of 1925. This episode delves into the heart of a national debate that questioned the intersection of science, religion, and education. The trial, triggered by the Butler Act which prohibited the teaching of human evolution in schools, put a young teacher, John Thomas Scopes, under the legal microscope. His indictment for teaching evolution became the catalyst for a historic courtroom showdown, drawing in iconic figures like William Jennings Bryan and Clarence Darrow, and igniting a nationwide discussion on academic freedom and the role of religion in public education.Beyond the courtroom drama, this episode uncovers the wider implications of the trial, from its influence on American Christianity and the anti-evolution movement to its lasting impact on science education and the legal landscape. The Scopes Trial, with its blend of legal strategy, public spectacle, and philosophical debate, not only challenged the boundaries between faith and science but also set the stage for ongoing discussions about educational content and religious belief in the United States. We explore how this landmark case continues to resonate nearly a century later, reflecting the complexities of balancing personal belief with public education.Itshometownhistory.comOur Sponsors:* Go to badlandsranch.com/hometown to get up to 50% off your regular-priced dog food order with a 90-day money-back guarantee.Advertising Inquiries: https://redcircle.com/brandsPrivacy & Opt-Out: https://redcircle.com/privacy
129: The Leopold and Loeb Case
19-02-2024
129: The Leopold and Loeb Case
In this episode we delve into the sinister world of Nathan Leopold and Richard Loeb, two prodigiously intelligent young men from affluent backgrounds who believed themselves to be above the law. Their story unfolds in 1924 Chicago, a city alive with the Jazz Age's vibrancy but also a backdrop to one of the most chilling chapters in American criminal history. With minds sharpened by privilege and education, Leopold and Loeb embarked on a dark journey, culminating in a crime that aimed to assert their perceived superiority and challenge the moral fabric of society.As we navigate through their meticulously planned act and the subsequent unraveling of their facade of invincibility, this episode not only explores the depths of human depravity but also the societal and psychological intricacies that led to their downfall. The case of Leopold and Loeb is a haunting reminder of the consequences of arrogance and the illusion of omnipotence, serving as a profound narrative on the limits of intellect when detached from humanity. Join us as we dissect this landmark case, reflecting on its implications and the enduring fascination it holds in the annals of true crime.Visit me online at itshometownhistory.comSupport the podcast by becoming a Patron - Join the Black Label at Patreon.com/itshometownhistoryOur Sponsors:* Go to badlandsranch.com/hometown to get up to 50% off your regular-priced dog food order with a 90-day money-back guarantee.Advertising Inquiries: https://redcircle.com/brandsPrivacy & Opt-Out: https://redcircle.com/privacy
128: Hollywood Used to be in Florida
12-02-2024
128: Hollywood Used to be in Florida
In this intriguing episode we uncover a forgotten chapter of the American film industry that places Jacksonville, Florida, at the heart of early 20th-century movie-making. Before the glitz and glamour settled in California, Jacksonville was the burgeoning center of silent films, dubbed the "Winter Film Capital of the World." We delve into the reasons filmmakers flocked to this sunny locale, from the advantageous warm climate, diverse architecture, and abundant natural light to the less restrictive filming environment compared to Thomas Edison's tightly controlled industry in New York.As the episode unfolds, we explore the rise and fall of Jacksonville's film era, marked by innovative productions, the establishment of over 30 silent film companies, and the creation of significant films that left an indelible mark on cinema history. Yet, despite its early successes, we learn why Jacksonville's film industry declined, giving way to Hollywood's rise. This story is not just about the shift of a geographical location but also about the evolution of an industry that reflects broader cultural and technological changes. Join us as we pay tribute to this nearly lost history and recognize the legacy that Jacksonville's film era has left behind.Itshometownhistory.comOur Sponsors:* Go to badlandsranch.com/hometown to get up to 50% off your regular-priced dog food order with a 90-day money-back guarantee.Advertising Inquiries: https://redcircle.com/brandsPrivacy & Opt-Out: https://redcircle.com/privacy
127: The Teapot Dome Scandal
05-02-2024
127: The Teapot Dome Scandal
In this episode, we dive deep into the murky waters of the Teapot Dome Scandal, a pivotal moment in American history that epitomizes the intersection of politics, greed, and corruption in the early 20th century. As we peel back the layers of this complex story, we explore how the scandal unfolded, from the secretive leasing of oil-rich public lands to private companies, to the intricate web of bribery and deceit that reached the highest levels of the U.S. government. This gripping tale not only sheds light on the individuals involved but also on the broader implications for American politics and the public's trust in their leaders.Through meticulous research and compelling storytelling, we bring to life the characters, settings, and events that made the Teapot Dome Scandal a landmark in the annals of American history. From the bustling oil fields captured in the sepia tones of our episode artwork, to the backdoor dealings and courtroom dramas, listeners will be transported back in time to experience the gravity of these events. As we analyze the scandal's impact on subsequent policy reforms and its lasting legacy on American political discourse, this episode promises not only to educate but also to captivate those who are fascinated by the lessons history continues to teach us about power, corruption, and the importance of transparency and accountability in government.Time travel with us on ⁠Hometown History⁠.Our Sponsors:* Go to badlandsranch.com/hometown to get up to 50% off your regular-priced dog food order with a 90-day money-back guarantee.Advertising Inquiries: https://redcircle.com/brandsPrivacy & Opt-Out: https://redcircle.com/privacy
125: In the Shadow of Power: Edith Galt, the Secret President
22-01-2024
125: In the Shadow of Power: Edith Galt, the Secret President
Whispers of a 'petticoat government' reverberated through the corridors of the White House during Woodrow Wilson's presidency, but how much truth was there to the rumors? It is said that for a time, the most powerful nation on Earth was steered not by the elected commander-in-chief, but by a woman no one had voted for—Edith Galt Wilson. In today's episode, we unravel the secrecy and speculation that shrouded the twilight years of Wilson's administration and explore the enigmatic role played by his second wife, Edith.Edith's journey from a socialite widow to a 'First Lady acting as president' raises the curtain on a pivotal yet largely untold story in American politics. Following President Wilson's debilitating stroke in 1919, Edith Galt Wilson found herself in a position of unprecedented, unelected influence. Critics called her "Mrs. President," while supporters lauded her as a protective spouse preserving her husband's health and his office. We'll delve into the constitutional crises, personal trials, and political intrigues that paint the portrait of a time when a woman's command came from behind the scenes, casting a long shadow on the power structures of the day.Time travel with us on ⁠Hometown History⁠. Our Sponsors:* Go to badlandsranch.com/hometown to get up to 50% off your regular-priced dog food order with a 90-day money-back guarantee.Advertising Inquiries: https://redcircle.com/brandsPrivacy & Opt-Out: https://redcircle.com/privacy