This week: political conventions, Labor Day, the KKK, Caligula, astronaut trivia, and industrialization in eleven minutes.
• A classicist asks what the ancient Greeks would make of the modern Olympics.
• Rome’s most legendarily depraved emperor turns 2000.
• Two interesting posts from Smithsonian magazine: the history of yearning for legendary utopias; and the rise and fall of D. C. Stephenson, the leader of the Ku Klux Klan during its resurgence in the 1920s.
• The death of Neil Armstrong inspired lots of good posts on the history of the space race. Two nuggets: the per diem that Armstrong, Aldrin, and Collins received as government employees; and the speech written for Pres. Richard Nixon in the event of a “moon disaster” in July 1969.
• Historian-political columnist Geoffrey Kabaservice on the decline of the American political party convention.
• And a new installment in the “Crash Course in World History” series of videos covers industrialization in eleven minutes.