Funerary Chullpa Towers and the Aymara People

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Chullpas are ancient Aymara funeral towers originally built for nobles and their families. They are found across the Altiplano in Peru and Bolivia. They can be cylindrical or rectangular, low or tall, and made of stone or adobe. The tallest are about 40 feet high. All of the chullpas have small openings facing east, towards the rising sun. Corpses in each tomb were typically placed in a fetal position along with some of their belongings...
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1952 Volga–Don Shipping Canal vs. 1649 Canalis

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There is this Volga-Don canal in Russia. It connects the Volga river with the Don river. It was officially built between 1948 and 1952. Technically the construction started before 1941, but it was interrupted by the Second World War. The length of the waterway is 63 mi, with 28 mi through rivers and reservoirs.
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The City of Harbin or the Battle for Cambalu?

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Harbin is the capital of Heilongjiang, China’s northernmost province. The city grew in the late 19th century with the influx of Russian engineers constructing the eastern leg of the Trans-Siberian Railroad. The city's Russian architecture includes its green-domed Saint Sophia Cathedral, an Eastern Orthodox church now a local history museum.
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Babylon, Baghdad, Lake Tharthar: what and where was the real Babylon?

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Babylon is the most famous city from ancient Mesopotamia whose ruins lie in modern-day Iraq 59 miles southwest of Baghdad. The name is thought to derive from bav-il or bav-ilim which, in the Akkadian language of the time, meant 'Gate of God' or 'Gate of the Gods' and 'Babylon' coming from Greek.
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Old and New Washington State Capitol Buildings in Olympia

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Modern-day visitors to Olympia’s capitol campus are justly impressed by the main Legislative Building’s 287-foot-high dome and the equally broad-shouldered edifices that surround that central structure. Architecture critics have called the arrangement a watershed in American capitol construction. Yet building the Washington state capitol was in no way an easy task. Not only were there daunting costs and delays involved, but even upon its...
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Was previous Jerusalem located in England?

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The stolen and perverted writings of Homer and Ovid, of Plato and Cicero, which all men ought to contemn, are set up by artifice against the Sublime of the Bible; but when the New Age is at leisure to pronounce, all will be set right, and those grand works of the more ancient, and consciously and professedly Inspired men will hold their proper rank, and the Daughters of Memory shall become the Daughters of Inspiration. Shakespeare and Milton...
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1862: Experimental Ironclad USS Keokuk

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USS Keokuk was an experimental ironclad screw steamer of the United States Navy named for the city of Keokuk, Iowa. She was laid down in New York City by designer Charles W. Whitney at J.S. Underhill Shipbuilders. She was originally named Moodna, but was renamed while under construction. USS Keokuk was one of the first warships to be of completely iron construction. Her hull construction consisted of five iron box keelsons and one hundred...
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Fortress of Mongatz aka Palanok Castle aka Mukachevo Castle. Who built it?

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The fortress is located on a former 68 meter high volcanic hill. There is no accurate data on the circumstances of its construction. Archaeological research shows that the area was already inhabited in the Neolithic era, and that in the Bronze and Iron Ages there was a fortress on the site of today's castle. At the time of the conquest, a fortress built from piles stood at the top of today's castle hill. The castle complex consists of three...
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How old is the Aral Sea?

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The shallow Aral Sea was once the world’s fourth largest body of inland water. The remnants of it nestle in the climatically inhospitable heart of Central Asia, to the east of the Caspian Sea. The Aral Sea and its demise are of great interest and increasing concern to scientists because of the remarkable shrinkage of its area and volume that began in the second half of the 20th century - when the region was part of the Soviet Union - and...
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Missing photographs of the existing drawings. Where are they?

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The first photograph published in an American newspaper - actually a photomechanical reproduction of a photograph - appeared in the Daily Graphic on March 4, 1880. Before that time it was common practice for American editors to enlist artists to sketch and report on news events, from steamboat explosions to the battles of the Civil War. It was not until 1919, with the launching of New York's Illustrated Daily News, that American newspapers...
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1860s Submarine: Ictíneo II by Narcís Monturiol

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Ictíneo II was a pioneering submarine launched in 1864 by the Spanish engineer Narcís Monturiol and was the first air independent and combustion powered submarine and was the first submarine to overcome the basic problems of machine powered underwater navigation. The Ictíneo II was originally intended as an improved version of the handpowered Ictíneo I. The Ictíneo II made her maiden voyage under human power on 20 May 1865, submerging to...
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Victory Columns were Airship Mooring Masts?

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A mooring mast, or mooring tower, is a structure designed to allow for the docking of an airship outside of an airship hangar or similar structure. More specifically, a mooring mast is a mast or tower that contains a fitting on its top that allows for the bow of the airship to attach its mooring line to the structure. When it is not necessary or convenient to put an airship into its hangar between flights, airships can be moored on the...
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1783 Calabria Earthquake Phenomena. Was it a deliberate attack?

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The 1783 Calabrian earthquakes were a sequence of five strong earthquakes that hit the region of Calabria in southern Italy (then part of the Kingdom of Naples), the first two of which produced significant tsunamis. The epicenters form a clear alignment extending nearly 100 km from the Straits of Messina to about 18 km SSW of Catanzaro. The epicenter of the first earthquake occurred in the plain of Palmi. The earthquakes occurred over a...
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Ancient Greek Juan de Fuca - who was he?

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In April 1596, English merchant Michael Lok and Apostolos Valerianos, a Greek pilot and mariner, meet in Venice to discuss a voyage that Valerianos had taken in 1592. The mariner, who was better known as Juan de Fuca, describes how he sailed from Mexico, north along the Pacific Coast in search of the Strait of Anian, later called the Northwest Passage. Juan de Fuca says that he had reached 47 degrees latitude, turned east, and sailed into the...
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1906: Seattle Central Library. Demolished in 1957.

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The structure is 200 feet long, having its main front on Fourth Avenue, or towards the west. It is set back 40 feet from the street line, where it rises from a terrace that breaks the grade of the incline and forms a desirable setting for the building. A foreground of 20 feet is allowed on either side and is contemplated for the rear after the erection of future extensions. ... The main floor is reached by a monumental stairway from the...
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1770s: Seattle, Tsunami, Earthquakes, Lake Washington and Underwater Forests

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A major earthquake occurred on the Seattle Fault about 900 C.E., creating multiple forms of evidence that led to the discovery of the fault and its description in Science in 1992. The landslides on heavily wooded land created "bizarre submerged forests" of old-growth timber, preserved by the cool water and low oxygen in the deep lake. These sunken forests were known to early European settlers of the Seattle area, for whom the snags could be a...
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Underground Seattle - How and When did it get Buried

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The Great Seattle Fire was a fire that destroyed the entire central business district of Seattle, Washington on June 6, 1889. The conflagration lasted for less than a day, burning through the afternoon and into the night, and during the same summer as the Great Spokane Fire and the Great Ellensburg Fire. Seattle quickly rebuilt using brick buildings that sat 20 feet (6.1 m) above the original street level. Its population swelled during...
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19th Century: Public & Private Steam Transportation

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Regular intercity bus services by steam-powered buses were pioneered in England in the 1830s by associates of Sir Goldsworthy Gurney and by Walter Hancock among others, running reliable services over road conditions which were too hazardous for horse-drawn transportation. Steam carriages were much less likely to overturn, and did not "run away with" the customer as horses sometimes did. They travelled faster than horse-drawn carriages. They...
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1892 Pioneer Building in Seattle: how and when was it built?

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The Pioneer Building is a Richardsonian Romanesque stone, red brick, terra cotta, and cast iron building located on the northeast corner of First Avenue and James Street, in Seattle's Pioneer Square District. Completed in 1892, the Pioneer Building was designed by architect Elmer Fisher, who designed several of the historic district's new buildings following the Great Seattle Fire of 1889. Constructed at a cost of $270,000, the Pioneer...
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19th Century: The Boynton Bicycle Railroad

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The Boynton Bicycle Railroad was a monorail in Brooklyn on Long Island, New York. It ran on a single load-bearing rail at ground level, but with a wooden overhead stabilizing rail engaged by a pair of horizontally opposed wheels. According to the Scientific American of 28 March 1891, the steam locomotive and cars were in regular and continuous operation for passenger service during several weeks in the summer of 1890. The service was provided...
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