This Day in Esoteric Political History

By Jody Avirgan & Radiotopia

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Subscribers: 838
Reviews: 7

k327
 Aug 17, 2021
First year was fantastic. Learned a lot about obscure events in history. It's gotten really, really focused on blaming everything on white supremacy and racism. I'm not downplaying the issue, but there's a hundred podcasts on that already.

Texas
 Jun 27, 2021
Well produce show, love the banter between the guest and I always learn something in an entertaining fashion.

Matt E B
 Apr 27, 2021
The first season was great. very cool factoids and throughlines. Now seems to just be SJW trying to identify less Woke times of US history

Stuart Lutz
 Feb 5, 2021
I listen to these fascinating historical podcasts a few times a week - I always look forward to the next episode.

knnnn
 Aug 29, 2020
Learn something new every time I listen. Great hosts and guests.

Description

We’re living in unprecedented times. Maybe. In this show, Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer and Kellie Carter Jackson (and guests) take one moment, big or small, from that day in U.S. political history and explore how it might inform our present –– all in about fifteen minutes. New episodes release Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays. Find us at ThisDayPod.com. We’re also posting about moments from the past @thisdaypod on Twitter and Instagram. If you have a suggestion for a topic, get in touch. This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of the Radiotopia podcast network from PRX.


Episode Date
'21 Favorite: Drafting the Confederate Constitution (1861)
17:49

This Thanksgiving week, we’re running some favorite episodes from the year that you may have missed. We’ll be back with new episodes the Tuesday after Thanksgiving.

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This episode originally ran on March 11th. This day in 1861, the Confederate States of America ratifies its own constitution. It’s largely based on the United States constitution, but with some key changes.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss what values were expressed in the constitutional do-over, and why the similarities between the two documents might mean more than the differences.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Nov 28, 2021
'21 Favorite: Oprah's Beef Beef (1996)
21:26

This Thanksgiving week, we’re running some favorite episodes from the year that you may have missed. We’ll be back the Tuesday after Thanksgiving.

////

This episode originally aired on April 15th. On this day in 1996, Oprah Winfrey hosted a segment on her show about “Mad Cow Disease” and proclaimed that she would no longer eat beef. That same day, cattle futures plummeted, and she was soon sued by the cattle industry.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the power of Oprah, the “veggie libel laws” and how she turned the trial into both television and a free speech crusade.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Nov 25, 2021
'21 Favorite: Instant City (1889) w/ Sam Anderson
27:14

This Thanksgiving week, we’re running some favorite episodes from the year that you may have missed. We’ll be back the Tuesday after Thanksgiving.

////

This episode originally ran on April 22nd. This day in 1889, tens of thousands of people gathered in the middle of “unassigned territory” to wait for the signal at high noon — at which point they rushed to claim their free land in what would, overnight, become Oklahoma City.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie are joined by Sam Anderson of the New York Times Magazine to talk about the Oklahoma land rush, the chaos of those first few days, and how the forming of OKC represents modern America.

Sam’s book about Oklahoma City is called “Boom Town.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Nov 23, 2021
'21 Favorite: The Kerner Alarm (1967) w/ Jelani Cobb
21:27

This Thanksgiving week, we’re running some favorite episodes from the year that you may have missed. We’ll be back the Tuesday after Thanksgiving.

////

This episode originally aired on July 27th. This day in 1967, LBJ convened the “Kerner Commission” to look into the roots of violence and unrest in America, largely in Black and brown communities around the country.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by The New Yorkers Jelani Cobb to discuss the convening of the Kerner commission and the report that came out the next year, which offered a frank and damning assessment of the complicity of white Americans.

Jelani Cobb is the author of an updated version, “The Essential Kerner Commission Report,” out now.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Nov 21, 2021
Milhouse's Missing Minutes (1973)
12:29

It’s November 18th. This day in 1973, the major revelation that there are 18 1/2 minutes missing from the secret recordings Richard Nixon was making in the Oval Office as he discussed the Watergate break-in.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie discuss how the missing minutes supercharged the Watergate scandal, created loads of theories and conspiracies — an whether what’s on those tapes will ever be recovered.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Nov 18, 2021
Murkowski's Write-In Surprise (2010)
14:57

It’s November 16th. This day in 2010, Alaskan Senator Lisa Murkowski prevailed in her re-election effort — one in which she was forced to mount a write-in campaign after losing the primary.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss how hard it is to get a successful write-in campaign going, and what the Murkowski story says about the way in which parties and voters can moderate themselves.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Nov 16, 2021
Why Sherman Marched (1864) w/ Anne Sara Rubin
27:03

It’s November 14th. This day in 1864, Union General William Tecumseh Sherman left Atlanta and began destructive march to the sea, burning buildings and supply lines in his attempt to “break the back” of the Confederacy.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by Anne Sarah Rubin of UMBC to talk about why Sherman’s March endures as such a powerful story of “total war,” and how the story of the march has been reframed over the years.

Anne’s book is Through the Heart of Dixie: Sherman’s March and American Memory.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Nov 14, 2021
Bootlegger Biplane Bombings (1926)
14:59

It’s November 11th. This day in 1926, members of the Shelton gang in southern Illinois commandeered a biplane to drop homemade bombs on the hideout of their main bootlegging rivals, the Birgers.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie discuss the scheme, how the Shelton-Birger feud reached this level, and where this story fits in to the history of aerial bombings on American soil.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Nov 11, 2021
"The Enemy Is The Knife" (1974)
16:37

It’s November 9th. This day in 1974, Dr. Connie Redbird Uri testified at a hearing about the practice of forced sterilization at Indian Health Services clinics. She sounded the alarm about the large numbers of women who were given hysterectomies and other procedures without their consent.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie discuss the long and shameful history of forced sterilization in this country, usually among poor and marginalized communities.

Nov 09, 2021
Snatching Lincoln's Body (1876)
16:49

It’s November 7th. This day in 1876, a group of Chicago-area men attempt to steal Abraham Lincoln’s body from his grave in Springfield, Illinois, hoping to hold it ransom to release one of their colleagues from prison. It does not go well.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the harebrained scheme, the larger context of grave-robbing in the 19th century, and what ended up happening to Lincoln’s body.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Nov 07, 2021
Carol Moseley-Braun Wears Pants (1992)
16:06

It’s November 4th. This day in 1992, Carol Moseley-Braun of Illinois is elected Senator, becoming the first Black woman elected to the Senate, the first African-American senator from the Democratic party, the first woman to defeat an incumbent senator in an election, and the first female senator from Illinois.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss Moseley-Brauns impressive list of firsts, and how her first term was both consequential and fairly quickly dragged down by scandal and allegations of corruption.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Nov 04, 2021
A Minimum Minimum Wage Increase (1977)
16:27

It’s November 2nd. This day in 1977, Jimmy Carter signed legislation to raise the minimum wage to $3.35.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the relatively short history of the minimum wage in this country — one in which the rate was increased fairly regularly, until a generation ago.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Nov 02, 2021
Spy vs. Spy in Louisiana (2015)
20:45

It’s October 31st. This day in 2015, the campaign of Louisiana Senator David Vitter is in a tailspin after reports of a bungled spying attempt on his opponent, Bel Edwards.

Jody, NIki and Kellie discuss why the Vitter campaign had sent a spy into a coffee shop to record conversations among Edwards supporters — and what happened when word got out that there was another spy in that same room.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Oct 31, 2021
Godless Americans (2008)
16:15

It’s October 27th. This day in 2008, an ad endorsed by Elizabeth Dole is running in North Carolina accusing Senate candidate Kay Hagan of being a “godless American.”

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss how the ad was deceptively edited, why it created such a backlash, and why the charge of “Godlessness” is so stick in American politics.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Oct 28, 2021
Central Park's Black Village is Demolished (1857) w/ Bobby Wooten
20:28

It’s October 26th. In October of 1857, the residents of Seneca Village, a community mostly comprised of formerly enslaved African-Americans, were forcibly removed in order to make room for the construction of Manhattan’s Central Park.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie are joined by musician Bobby Wooten to discuss the forgotten history of Seneca Village, the use of eminent domain, and how to go beyond signs and placards in terms of repairing the damage done to the residents.

Bobby is the bassist in David Byrne’s broadway show “American Utopia” and also produced a history series on Instagram called “America Learn Your History.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Oct 26, 2021
Lennon's FBI File (1971) w/ Hrishikesh Hirway
27:33

It’s October 24th. This day in 1973, former Beatle John Lennon sued the U.S. government, demanding to know whether he was under FBI surveillance.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by Hrishikesh Hirway of Song Exploder to discuss Lennon’s post-Beatles political life, his personal evolution, the threat of deportation he faced, and what was in his FBI file.

Check out Hrishi’s new music, his TED Talk, Song Exploder episode with John Lennon, and lots more here.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Oct 24, 2021
Billy Beer (1978)
22:35

It’s October 21st. In October 1978, the Falls City Brewing Company ceased production of Billy Beer, a cheap brew endorsed by the younger brother of President Jimmy Carter.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the rise and quick fall of Billy Beer, why Billy Carter was an ongoing headache for the Carter administration, and the role of presidential siblings in general.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Oct 21, 2021
The Textbook Wars Spiral Out of Control (1974)
22:45

It’s October 19th. This day in 1974, Kanawha County, West Virginia is embroiled in an increasingly violent battle over a slate of new textbooks being added to the local school curriculum. Over the course of a few weeks, there would be shootings, bombings, conspiracies to attack school buses full of children, and more.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss why the textbook battle got so out of control, what it says about the rise of backlash politics, and echoes to today’s violent political discourse.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Oct 19, 2021
Why Lincoln Grew A Beard (1860)
17:48

It’s October 17th. This day in 1860, in the run-up to the next month’s presidential election, Abraham Lincoln received a letter from an 11-year-old girl urging him to grow a beard and improve his prospects.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie read from the incredibly charming exchange between Lincoln and Grace Bedell of Westfield, NY.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Oct 17, 2021
The President Who Cried Swine Flu (1976) w/ Jim Hamblin
26:33

It’s October 14th. This day in 1976, President Ford invited cameras into the White House as he got his vaccination for the influenza strain that was commonly referred to as “swine flu.” It was part of a big effort from the White House to avoid a health disaster — a pandemic that never actually came to pass.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by Dr. James Hamblin to talk about the swine flu response, whether political factors played into the administration’s response, and the parallels to the current pandemic.

Check out Jim’s new free newsletter “The Body,” and his books “Clean” and “If Our Bodies Could Talk.”

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Oct 14, 2021
Perot Crashes The Debate (1992)
15:54

It’s October 12th. This day in 1992, Ross Perot joined Bill Clinton and incumbent George HW Bush on stage for the first three-person debate in modern presidential election history.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie discuss Perot’s candidacy, how he was able to destabilize both Clinton and Bush on stage — and whether he was actually a “spoiler” in that election.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Oct 12, 2021
The HoJo Incident (1957)
14:02

It’s October 10th. This day in 1957, Ghanaian finance minister Komla Gbedemah was refused service at a Howard Johnson’s restaurant in Delaware. The incident led to an apology from president Eisenhower and a meeting at the White House, which paved the way for American investment in a major infrastructure project in Ghana.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the incident, how American racism effected the U.S. standing on the global stage, and the rise of economic colonialism.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Oct 10, 2021
The Access Hollywood Tape (2016) w/ Roy Wood, Jr
26:35

It’s October 7th. This day in 2016, the Washington Post published excerpts of a tape of Donald Trump talking to Access Hollywood host Billy Bush about how he commits sexual assault.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie are joined by The Daily Show correspondent Roy Wood, Jr. to talk about the impact of that tape, the way the Trump campaign quickly reacted by arranging for the release of Hillary Clinton’s emails, and other memories of that moment.

Check out Roy on tour this fall, and listen to “The Run,” the podcast Roy is hosting about the 2016 Chicago Cubs, produced by Jody.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Oct 07, 2021
Borking (1987) w/ Jay Willis
24:57

It’s October 5th. This day in 1987, the Senate Judiciary Committee advanced the Supreme Court nomination of Robert Bork to a full senate vote — with the recommendation that he be struck down. Later that month, after an incredibly contentious hearing, Bork would be denied a seat on the court.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie are joined by Jay Willis of Balls and Strikes to talk about what is misremembered regarding the Bork fight — and how “borking” lives on in conservative legal circles.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Oct 05, 2021
Earl "Rusty" Butz Gets Weirdly Racist (1976)
13:48

It’s October 3rd. This day in 1976, Secretary of Agriculture Earl Butz hands in his resignation after a media firestorm over racist comments he made on an airplane in front of Pat Boone, Sonny Bono, and former Nixon White House Counsel John Dean.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie discuss Butz’s very baroque form of racism, and what to make of the argument that there’s no connection between what someone says in private and who they really are.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Oct 03, 2021
The Congressional Page Scandal (2006)
16:50

It’s September 30th. This day in 2006, Florida Congressman Mark Foley resigned after inappropriate messages he’d sent to underage congressional pages were made public.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie discuss how rumors about Foley’s behavior persisted for years before the scandal broke, and how this story has so many of the hallmarks of future scandals. Plus, why Foley has still been able to maintain his standing within the Florida GOP.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Sep 30, 2021
Lincoln's Spiritualist Stumper (1864)
16:29

It’s September 28th. This day in 1864, in the midst of the civil war and the run-up to the election of 1864, the notable spiritualist Emma Hardinge Britten gave a series of lectures in support of Lincoln's reelection.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss why Britten transitioned into politics and the rise of spiritualism in the midst of national tragedy.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Sep 28, 2021
The War on Rats (1977)
19:33

It’s September 26th. This day in 1977, a Chicago alderman offered a $1 bounty to every one of his constituents who presented him with a severed rat tail.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss how bad the rat problem got in Chicago in other cities throughout the 1970s, and how rodent infestations reflect larger questions of local government and services. Plus: everyone shares their most traumatizing rat stories.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Sep 26, 2021
Atlanta Massacre (1906)
19:19

It’s September 23rd. This day in 1906, racialized mob violence broke out in Atlanta, GA, as part of a growing post-Reconstruction wave of violence and rioting around the country.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the familiar mix of factors that led to the rioting — but also how these events are uniquely Atlanta.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Sep 23, 2021
DADT No More (2011)
16:17

It’s September 21st. This day in 2011, President Obama repealed the Clinton-era policy of “don’t ask don’t tell,” regarding openly gay military service members.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss why the repeal took almost twenty years, and the push and pull between cultural shifts and policy change.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Sep 21, 2021
Charlie Chaplin's Exile (1952)
18:30

It’s September 19th. This day in 1952, during a trip abroad, the U.S. attorney general announced an inquiry into whether Chaplin would be allowed to return to the country. He would stay in Europe for the next 20 years.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie discuss how Chaplin’s political views evolved, and how he was caught up in red scare fears during the 1940s and 50s.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Sep 19, 2021
Calendar Confusion (1752)
12:30

It’s September 16th. Or is it? We recently got an email from a listener asking us which calendar we are using when we discuss episodes prior to 1752.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie look at the switchover from the Julian to the Gregorian calendar that took place in the mid-1700s, how it got politicized, and how it continues to lead to mass confusion.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Sep 16, 2021
Attica (1971) w/ Heather Ann Thompson
28:44

It’s September 14th. This day in 1971, the Attica Prison uprising was coming to a close. Over the prior four days, a massive riot had rocked the facility, killing dozens of prisoners and guards.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by Heather Thompson to discuss how the story of Attica has been manipulated through the years — from the very first moments — and what lessons there are for prison reform today.

Heather Thompson’s book is called Blood in the Water: The Attica Prison Uprising of 1971 and Its Legacy

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Sep 14, 2021
Ship of Gold (1857)
15:46

It’s September 12th. This day in 1857, the SS Central America, a ship loaded with 30,000 pounds of gold, sank to the bottom of the ocean in a hurricane off the coast of South Carolina.

Jody, Niki and Kellie discuss the ship’s sinking and how the loss of the gold destabilized the world economy and may have even had implications for the civil war.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Sep 12, 2021
Monkey Business (1987) w/ Matt Bai
28:24

It’s September 9th. This day in 1987, former Colorado Senator Gary Hart gave an interview on Nightline where he, finally, admitted that he’d been unfaithful to his wife. But it was too little, too late.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by Matt Bai, author of “The Frontrunner,” to discuss the infidelity scandal that brought down Hart’s campaign, and changed political journalism forever.

Matt’s book was also turned into the movie “The Frontrunner” starring Hugh Jackman.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Sep 09, 2021
McKinley Shot (1901)
15:58

It’s September 7th. This day in 1901, President William McKinley is in Buffalo, NY when he is shot twice in the chest. He would succumb to the injury a few weeks later.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss McKinley’s assassination and how it came at a moment when the nature of the presidency and American politics were shifting radically.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Sep 07, 2021
The Condom On Jesse Helms's House (1991)
18:21

It’s September 5th. This day in 1991, members of the group ACT UP erected a giant yellow condom over the home of North Carolina Senator Jesse Helms to protest his stance on AIDS research and awareness.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie discuss the stunt, why Helms was a target, and just how you go about removing a two-story condom.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Sep 05, 2021
Camp Casey (2005)
19:12

It’s September 2nd. This day in 2005, Cindy Sheehan embarks on a tour around the country to protest the Iraq War, where her son Casey had died the prior year.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss Sheehan’s protests, the “Camp Casey” encampment she established outside of George W. Bush’s Texas ranch, and how public opinion around a number of issues was starting to shift in late 2005.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Sep 02, 2021
Fred Korematsu's Internment (1942)
17:15

It’s August 31st. This day in 1942, a judge upholds the arrest of a Japanese-American man named Fred Korematsu.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss how Korematsu tried to resist the detention of Japanese-Americans in the wake of Pearl Harbor, and the legal battles that broke out after the Roosevelt administration moved hundreds of thousands of people to concentration camps along the west coast.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Aug 31, 2021
Teacher In Space (1984)
16:55

It’s August 29th. This day in 1984, NASA and the Reagan administration announced a “Teacher in Space” program intended to find one American teacher who would join a shuttle mission.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie discuss the program to reinvigorate interest in space travel, some of the criticism it received — and the tragic conclusion two years later with the Challenger explosion.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Aug 29, 2021
Capitol for A Day (1814)
16:58

It’s August 26th. This day in 1814, the small town of Brookeville, MD becomes the Capitol of the United States — for one night.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss why Brookeville became the seat of government amidst the chaos of the War of 1812. Plus, a bonus conversation about another story on this day, from 1970 — the bombing of a research facility at the University of Wisconsin.

Thanks to Ana and Chris, the listeners who wrote in to suggest these two stories!

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Aug 26, 2021
The Battle of Blair Mountain (1921) w/ Anna Sale
17:15

It’s August 24th. This day in 1921, tensions are mounting in southwestern West Virginia, where some 10-15,000 miners are going on strike to protest working and economic conditions. Eventually, this would lead to a violent showdown with the mining companies, local police, and federal forces — including bombs dropped from airplanes on the protesters.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by Anna Sale, West Virginia native and host of the podcast “Death, Sex & Money” to discuss the Battle of Blair Mountain.

Find DSM wherever you get your podcasts — and check out Anna’s book “Let’s Talk About Hard Things.”

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Aug 24, 2021
Nat Turner's Community (1831) w/ Vanessa Holden
18:58

It’s August 22nd. This day in 1831, Nathaniel “Nat” Turner is leading a rebellion in Southampton, Virginia — what would become perhaps the most famous slave revolt in the Antebellum South. But there’s a hidden story.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by Vanessa Holden of the University of Kentucky to discuss how it was the larger community in Southampton, particularly women, who made the rebellion possible.

Vanessa is the author of Surviving Southampton: African American Women and Resistance in Nat Turner's Community — find it wherever you get your books!

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Aug 22, 2021
Banneker's Sneaky Letter (1791)
19:04

It’s August 19th. This day in 1791, Benjamin Banneker sent an advance copy of his almanac to Thomas Jefferson. Along with the almanac, he included a letter pleading with Jefferson to recognize slavery as a moral wrong.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss Banneker’s enlightenment-era appeal, Jefferson’s reaction, and how the correspondence between the two helped galvanize the abolitionist movement.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Aug 19, 2021
Leo Frank and the KKK's Resurgence (1915)
19:03

It’s August 17th. This day in 1915, a Jewish man by the name of Leo Frank was kidnapped from jail and hanged by a mob in Marietta, Georgia.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss how the incident helped galvanize a resurgent Ku Klux Klan, and how much anti-Semitism should be part of the story of lynchings and mob violence in the early part of the 20th century.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Aug 17, 2021
The Flag, Elvis, Aliens (1977) w/ Josh Levin
27:41

It’s August 15th. This episode, we discuss three notable events from this day in 1977: a young woman’s protest over the pledge of allegiance; a scramble for photos of Elvis’s dead body; and possible alien contact.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by Slate’s Josh Levin, host of the new series “One Year.” He has an episode devoted to these three events, and the series as a whole takes a look at why 1977 was such a consequential and interesting year.

You can listen to “One Year” from Slate right now, wherever you get your podcasts. And make sure to catch the episode on Alex Haley’s “Roots,” which features our own Kellie Carter Jackson!

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Aug 15, 2021
Lizzie Borden, Axe Murderer, Maybe (1892)
13:29

It’s August 12th. This day in 1892, Lizzie Borden is arrested for the murder of her father and step-mother, accused of hacking them to death with an axe in a gruesome murder that caused a media sensation.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss why the story of Lizzie Borden has continued to fascinate Americans, from articles to movies and podcasts, right up through the present — and what that says about our obsession with true crime.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Aug 12, 2021
"Macaca" (2006) w/ Peter Hamby
26:00

It’s August 10th. This day in 2006, Virginia Senator George Allen is caught on tape referring to S.R. Sidarth, a young man filming his event, as “macaca.” This video became an early viral moment and helped lead to Allen’s defeat later that fall — showing how viral video could transform politics.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by Peter Hamby of Snapchat and Puck News to discuss the incident, how the internet was changing politics in the mid-2000s, and whether Allen’s comments would have been so controversial today.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Aug 10, 2021
East Africa Bombings (1998) w/ Karen Greenberg
21:13

It’s August 8th. This day in 1998, two massive truck bombs detonated outside American embassies in Nairobi, Kenya and Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania. They were the work of Al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by Karen Greenberg of the Fordham Law School Center on National Security to discuss why the embassies were targeted, the massive intelligence response, and what clues were missed about the rise of Al-Qaeda.

Karen is the host of the “Vital Interests” podcast and her new book is “Subtle Tools: The Dismantling of American Democracy from the War on Terror to Donald Trump.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Aug 08, 2021
Reagan Fires Air Traffic Controllers (1981)
15:48

It’s August 5th. This day in 1981, President Ronald Reagan fired more than 11,000 air traffic controllers, who had gone on strike over failed negotiations for a new contract. In addition to firing them, he banned the workers from ever holding federal jobs again.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss how this moment reflected and shifted a moment when American unions were in decline and employers — both at the federal and private level — were being emboldened in their negotiations with workers.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Aug 05, 2021
Garvey's Great Gathering (1920)
16:47

It’s August 3rd. This day in 1920, the Universal Negro Improvement Association is holding a massive convention and rally in New York City, pushing a pan-African vision of economic empowerment for Black people.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the UNIA’s leader, Marcus Garvey, and how he fits into the long history of abolitionist and militant efforts in America and beyond.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Aug 03, 2021
The Black Tom Explosion (1916)
14:00

It’s August 1st. This day in 1916 (July 30th, in fact) a massive explosion rocked New York Harbor, shattering windows in Times Square and causing tremors as far away as Philadelphia.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the explosion on “Black Tom Island,” and what we came to learn about the German spy network that caused it. This explosion also led to the rise of the FBI and national intelligence efforts to more proactively anticipate crimes.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Aug 01, 2021
The U.S. Rewrites the Haitian Constitution (1915) w/ Jelani Cobb
19:10

It’s July 29th. This day in 1915, U.S. troops arrived in Haiti as the country’s political leadership is thrown into chaos by assassinations and violence. The U.S. would quickly rewrite the Haitian constitution and establish an occupying presence that lasted for decades.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie are joined by Jelani Cobb of the New Yorker to discuss the political and economic justification for this intervention, and how you can’t understand Haitian history without understanding the history of U.S. meddling.

Jelani Cobb is the author of an updated version, “The Essential Kerner Commission Report,” out now.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jul 29, 2021
Kerner and the "Long Hot Summer" (1967) w/ Jelani Cobb
21:02

It’s July 27th. This day in 1967, LBJ convened the “Kerner Commission” to look into the roots of violence and unrest in America, largely in Black and brown communities around the country.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by The New Yorkers Jelani Cobb to discuss the convening of the Kerner commission and the report that came out the next year, which offered a frank and damning assessment of the complicity of white Americans.

Jelani Cobb is the author of an updated version, “The Essential Kerner Commission Report,” out now.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jul 27, 2021
The Beer Summit (2009)
19:06

It’s July 25th. This day (July 24th in fact) in 2009, President Obama extended an invitation to Henry Louis Gates, Jr and Sgt James Crowley to discuss an incident in which Crowley arrested Gates on his own doorstep.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the incident that sparked this attempt at reconciliation, and how Obama’s handling of the moment was a turning point for many white Americans in how they viewed his presidency.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jul 25, 2021
The Lost Robert E. Lee Oath Theory (1975) w/ John Reeves
23:15

It’s July 22nd. This day in 1975, Congress voted to restore citizenship to Robert E. Lee, more than a hundred years after his death.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie are joined by author John Reeves to talk about why this vote took place, how it tied into a false theory about a missing citizenship oath, and what the myth of Lee says about how the Confederacy has been restored in the public imagination.

John Reeve’s book is “The Lost Indictment of Robert E. Lee: The Forgotten Case against an American Icon”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jul 22, 2021
Vanessa Williams Loses Her Crown (1984)
13:49

It’s July 20th. This day in 1984, the Miss America pageant issued an ultimatum to Vanessa Williams, the first Black Miss America, to relinquish her title, over the impending publication of nude photographs.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie discuss the moral panic over the photographs, how a photographer misled Williams, and the intersection of race, sexuality, and pornography.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jul 20, 2021
Detroit Goes Bankrupt (2013)
17:09

It’s July 18h. This day in 2013, the city of Detroit declared bankruptcy.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie discuss how a city that was once the country’s fourth-largest ran out of money, and the way the path to recovery pitted civic interests against each other.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jul 18, 2021
Mary Lincoln's Money (1870)
15:01

It’s July 14h. This day in 1870, Congress authorized a yearly pension of $3000 for Mary Todd Lincoln.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss why it took years for the pension to be rewarded, and the many competing narratives about Mary Lincoln and money.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jul 15, 2021
A Native-Confederate Alliance (1861)
12:35

It’s July 13th. This day in 1861, a treaty is signed between the Choctaw and Chickasaw tribes and the Confederate States of America.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss why some Native American tribes aligned with the Confederacy, how this complicates the story of the Civil War, and more.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jul 13, 2021
FDR Wants More (1940)
16:21

It’s July 11th. This day in 1940, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt has a conversation with a supreme court justice to explore whether it would be legal for him to run for a third term.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the rationale for seeking another four years — and another four years after that — plus how the convention of two-term presidencies eventually became established law.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jul 11, 2021
The Roswell Crash (1947)
14:05

It’s July 8th. This day (July 7th actually) in 1947, two ranchers stumbled across a downed flying object in the middle of the Nevada desert.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the discovery of the “mysterious” object (it was a weather balloon) and why it tapped into a rising tide of conspiracies about UFOs and alien visits.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jul 08, 2021
The Death of Marsha P Johnson (1992)
15:19

It’s July 6th. This day in 1992, the body of Marsha P Johnson was found floating in the Hudson River off of New York City.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the death and life of Johnson, who for decades had been a central part of the drag scene in New York City and a key activist for gay rights, AIDS awareness, and more.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jul 06, 2021
Garrison's 4th of July Defiance (1854)
17:02

It’s July 4th. This day in 1854, abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison burned a copy of the constitution at a rally in Boston, calling it a “covenant with death and an agreement with Hell.”

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss Garrison’s act, and how it folded into a fierce debate about whether the constitution is a pro- or anti-slavery document, or somewhere in between.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jul 04, 2021
Old Enough To Fight, Old Enough To Vote (1971)
18:54

It’s July 1st. This day 1971, North Carolina voted to ratify the 26th amendment, which lowered the national voting age from 21 to 18.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie discuss the long fight to lower the voting age, and how it was often tied to an argument about the age at which Americans were sent to war. Plus: should the age be 17 or 16 or even lower?

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jul 01, 2021
Moneybomb! (2008)
19:50

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It’s June 29th. This day (actually, June 30th) in 2008, Hillary Clinton raised over $6 million online in one day, part of a growing trend of fundraising events known as “moneybombs.”

Jody, NIki, and Kellie discuss how internet giving changed political fundraising, even for candidates who weren’t thought of as particularly online.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jun 29, 2021
Joseph Smith's Assassination (1844) w/ Spencer W McBride
21:26

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It’s June 27th. This day in 1844, Mormon leader Joseph Smith was killed by a mob that stormed a jail in Carthage, Illinois. Earlier that spring, Smith had announced his candidacy for president.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie are joined by Spencer W McBride to talk about Smith’s political ambitions, his surprisingly progressive platform, and his assassination.

Spencer W. McBride’s latest book is “Joseph Smith for President.” You can find his work at spencerwmcbride.com

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jun 27, 2021
Sanford Hikes the Appalachian Trail (2009)
16:38

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It’s June 24th. This day in 2009, South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford is exposed for having an affair with a woman in Argentina.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie discuss how the scandal unfolded, and how Sanford’s team tried to use the feeble excuse that he was “hiking the Appalachian trail” when he was in fact in Buenos Aires.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jun 24, 2021
Mandela in Boston (1990)
16:11

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It’s June 22nd. This day in 1990, South African leader Nelson Mandela visited Boston, Massachusetts, as part of a worldwide “thank you” tour after being released from prison.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie discuss the anti-apartheid movement in the United States, how it tapped into domestic civil rights battles, and why Massachusetts in particular help a special place for Mandela.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jun 22, 2021
The Len Bias Law (1986) w/ Adam McKay
20:29

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It’s June 20th. This day in 1986, news of the death of basketball star Len Bias is starting to spread around the country. Bias died of a cocaine overdose just days after being drafted by the Boston Celtics.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie are joined by director and producer Adam McKay (The Big Short, Anchorman) to talk about how Bias’s death fueled a narrative about the dangers of cocaine and crack. Later that summer, politicians would rush through punitive drug laws that created mandatory minimum sentences and huge disparities between how crack and powder cocaine were treated.

Adam recently hosted a podcast series “Death at the Wing” which features an episode on Len Bias. Jody served as executive producer. Listen to it wherever you get your podcasts! https://www.threeuncannyfour.com/show/death-at-the-wing/

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jun 20, 2021
A Rumor, An Exhumation (1991)
17:09

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It’s June 17th. This day in 1991, authorities in Louisville, KY dug up the body of former president Zachary Taylor, who had died in 1850. They were trying to put to rest a rumor that Taylor had been poisoned.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss why one woman’s theory that Taylor was killed was able to convince everyone to go forward with the exhumation, the gruesome details of Taylor’s death, and what the body revealed when it was dug up 140 years later.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jun 17, 2021
Borat Before Borat (1970) w/ Jill Lepore
26:06

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It’s June 15th. This day in 1970, Russian television reporter Valentin Zorin aired an episode of his series “Masters Without Masks.” For decades, Zorin was the primary source by which Russians understood what life in America was like.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by historian Jill Lepore to discuss Zorin’s influence and his mix of truth-telling and propaganda — and whether there are any voices like his today.

Zorin’s story is the subject of an episode in the latest season of Jill Lepore’s excellent podcast “The Last Archive.” Check it out here: http://podcasts.pushkin.fm/thisday

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jun 15, 2021
Congressional Baseball Shooting (2017)
23:30

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It’s June 13th. This day (actually June 14th) in 2017, a shooter opened fire on a GOP practice for the annual congressional charity baseball game.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the incident, carried out by a left-wing activist, how it quickly became politicized, and how the conversation about this recent era of violence reflects our deeply tribal politics and culture.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jun 13, 2021
The Case of the Cussing Parrot (1845)
14:03

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It’s June 10th. This day in 1845, at the funeral of Andrew Jackson, his parrot “Poll” had to be removed from the room for excessive swearing.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss Poll’s uncouth behavior, what kinds of swear words may have been uttered, and the history of other notable presidential pets.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Our team: Jacob Feldman, Researcher/Producer; Brittani Brown, Producer; Khawla Nakua, Transcripts; music by Teen Daze and Blue Dot Sessions; Julie Shapiro, Executive Producer at Radiotopia

Jun 10, 2021
Those Pesky Fenians (1866)
15:27

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It’s June 8th. This day in 1866, a series of raids by Irish-Americans is taking place, starting in Vermont and headed across the border to attack British outposts in southern Canada.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the “Fenian raids,” and the efforts to destabilize the British empire in the middle of the US Civil War. Was there actually a chance of establishing a sovereign Irish republic in America?

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Jun 08, 2021
Ollie! (1994)
21:18

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It’s June 6th. This day in 1994 (June 4th, in fact) disgraced former National Security Council advisor Oliver North wins the GOP primary for the Virginia Senate race. He would go on to lose in an extremely close election.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss North’s second act, how the 1994 campaign was an extremely modern and ugly affair, and how there are indeed second acts in American life.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Jun 06, 2021
Zoot Suit Riots (1943) w/ Emily Spivak
21:58

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It’s June 3rd. This day in 1943 marked the start of the “Zoot Suit Riots,” a series of skirmishes and attacks in Los Angeles targeting Mexican-Americans, who were often identified by their flashy ensembles.

Jody, Niki and Kellie are joined by Emily Spivack of “Worn Stories” to discuss the causes of the riots, how the zoot suit became a political symbol, and whether super-baggy clothes are on their way back.

Check out Emily’s “Worn Stories” book and the new series on Netflix!

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Jun 03, 2021
Harriet The Spy (1863)
17:34

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It’s June 1st. This day in 1863, Harriet Tubman led Union soldiers on a nighttime to free some 700 enslaved people in South Carolina.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the Combahee River Raid, where it fits into Harriet Tubman’s long and varied life, and whether Tubman’s legacy has become flattened and distorted.

Jun 01, 2021
The Day Before The Tulsa Massacre (1921) w/ Cord Jefferson
24:45

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It’s May 30th. This day in 1921 was the day before a white mob descended on the Greenwood neighborhood of Tulsa, Oklahoma, burning hundreds of buildings to the ground in what was known as “Black Wall Street.”

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by Cord Jefferson, writer for the HBO series “Watchmen,” which opens during the massacre and helped to introduce the story of Tulsa for many viewers. They discuss what Greenwood looked like just before the riots, and how the massacre led to generations of lost wealth for Black Oklahomans.

May 30, 2021
Voyage of the Damned (1939)
15:17

It’s May 27th. This day in 1939, authorities in Cuba turned away the SS St. Louis, a ship full of Jewish refugees escaping Nazi persecution in Germany. The U.S. and Canada would also turn the ship away, which had to eventually return to Europe.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the voyage of the St. Louis, and how it helps us understand the way the U.S. has treated refugees throughout history.

It’s the Radiotopia Spring Fundraiser! Your support helps foster independent, artist-owned podcasts and award-winning stories.

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May 27, 2021
The Unabomber Gets His Start (1978)
17:32

It’s May 25th. This day in 1978, a suspicious package mailed to a university in Chicago blows up.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the start of what would be a 15-year campaign by Ted Kaczynski to mail packages to universities, airlines, and other people he saw as causing the advance of modernity and the destruction of the environment. Kaczynski would eventually be captured and be known as “The Unabomber.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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May 25, 2021
A Texas Dem Split (1944)
13:54

It’s May 23rd. This day in 1944, Texas Democrats hold two competing conventions ahead of the fall’s election, with the party split over FDR’s policies and larger civil rights issues.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the roots of the split, and the way in which internal fractures within a party can plant the seeds for political re-alignment.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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May 23, 2021
Slow Your Roll (1901)
16:51

It’s May 20th. This day in 1901, Connecticut passed the first ever speed limit law for automobiles in the United States.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the chaos of the city streets, the rise of automobile regulation, and how anxieties over speed help define us.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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May 20, 2021
Dan Quayle vs Murphy Brown (1992)
17:09

It’s May 18th. This day in 1992, Vice President Dan Quayle gave a speech about the erosion of “family values” in America, and towards the end criticized the TV show Murphy Brown, in which the main character had recently become a single mother.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the ensuing controversy, and how it mirrors the culture wars of today.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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May 18, 2021
The First Radio Debate (1948)
17:09

It’s May 16th. This day in 1948, New York Governor Thomas E Dewey and former Minnesota Governor Harold Stassen were preparing for the first nationally broadcast presidential debate.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie discuss how the debate came together and the way in which it centered around one provocative question.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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May 16, 2021
The MOVE Bombing (1985) w/ Gene Demby
23:20

It’s May 13th. This day in 1985, the Philadelphia police department ended a standoff with the MOVE group by dropping two firebombs from a helicopter on a rowhouse, which eventually led to an entire city block burning to the ground and 11 people being killed.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by Philly native Gene Demby of NPR’s “Code Switch” podcast to discuss the incident and its aftermath.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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May 13, 2021
Dust, Everywhere (1934)
12:05

It’s May 11th. This day in 1934, a massive dust storm swept across the Great Plains, lifting up millions of tons of topsoil and spreading it as far as 300 miles off the coast of New York City.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the causes of the storm, the way it affected the economy and migration patterns — and the environmental efforts that finally brought the Dust Bowl era to an end.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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May 11, 2021
Sitting Bull in Canada (1877)
13:20

It’s May 9th. This day in 1877, Lakota leader Sitting Bull leads a large group into Canada to seek refuge from the U.S. Army, which had been pursuing him after he defeated the U.S. in the Battle of Little Bighorn.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss Sitting Bull’s reasons for leaving Canada and why he eventually returned with a much smaller group.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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May 09, 2021
Kennedy's Pulitzer Controversies (1957)
22:13

It’s May 6th. This day in 1957, Senator John F Kennedy of Massachusetts was awarded the Pulitzer prize for his book “Profiles in Courage.”

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the book, which profiled courageous acts by members of Congress throughout American history — many of which have been re-evaluated in the decades since. Plus, a ghostwriting controversy!

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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May 06, 2021
SEAL Team Six (2011) w/ Dan Taberski
24:36

It’s May 4th. This day (May 2nd, in fact) in 2011, a group of Navy SEALs raided a compound in Pakistan and killed Osama bin Laden.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by Dan Taberski to discuss the details of the raid, how the news spread across the globe — and what the moment meant for Navy SEALs. Dan’s new podcast series “The Line” explores the physical and psychological pressures on Navy SEALs and why they have started to be more public facing in recent years.

Be sure to listen to “The Line” on Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your shows.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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May 04, 2021
MISSION ACCOMPLISHED (2003) w/ Noreen Malone
19:21

It’s May 2nd. This day in 2003 (actually, May 1st) President George W. Bush gave a speech about the Iraq War on the USS Abraham Lincoln in front of a large banner reading “Mission Accomplished.”

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by Slate’s Noreen Malone to discuss the stagecraft of the speech, and how it came at a moment when many people inside and outside the administration still felt as if the Iraq War was a justified and successful effort.

Be sure to listen to the new season of SLOW BURN, hosted by Noreen, all about the run-up to the War in Iraq.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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May 02, 2021
The First HBCU* (1854)
19:48

It’s April 29th. This day in 1854, the Ashmun Institute in Pennsylvania is chartered, the first (depending on how you count) university devoted to African-American students.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the founding of Ashmun, which later changed its name to Lincoln University, and the rise of HBCUs throughout the late 19th century. Plus, Kellie tells us why her alma mater Howard University is (clearly) the best HBCU.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Apr 29, 2021
Hinckley's Insanity (1982)
19:18

It’s April 27th. This day in 1982, John Hinckley went on trial for the attempted assassination of President Reagan. Hinckley’s lawyers would mount a successful insanity defense, based on his fixation with actress Jodie Foster.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the way the trial played out, why Foster was forced to testify, and how this trial played into the larger conversation — and criminalization — of mental health conditions in the 1980s.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Apr 27, 2021
Our Library (1800) w/ Kerri Greenidge
21:12

It’s April 25th. This day in 1800, President John Adams approved the appropriation of $5000 for the initial collection of the Library of Congress.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by special guest Kerri Greenidge of Tufts to discuss the founding of the library, how the collection kept being lost to fire — and what it means fro something to be included or not included in a nation’s library.

Kerri Greenidge’s latest book is “Black Radical: The Life and Times of William Monroe Trotter.” Check it out now!

Apr 25, 2021
Boom Town (1889) w/ Sam Anderson
26:19

It’s April 22nd. This day in 1889, tens of thousands of people gathered in the middle of “unassigned territory” to wait for the signal at high noon — at which point they rushed to claim their free land in what would, overnight, become Oklahoma City.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie are joined by Sam Anderson of the New York Times Magazine to talk about the Oklahoma land rush, the chaos of those first few days, and how the forming of OKC represents modern America.

Sam’s book about Oklahoma City is called “Boom Town.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Apr 22, 2021
The Franklin Cent (1787)
12:03

It’s April 20th. This day in 1787, Congress authorized the production of the country’s first coin.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the “Fugio cent,” designed — some say over-designed — by Ben Franklin, and what it meant for a new country to have a proper coin.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Apr 20, 2021
John Freeman's Freedom (1809)
14:54

It’s April 18th. This day in 1809, a man by the name of John Freeman writes a letter to Thomas Jefferson, asking that Jefferson transfer his indentured servitude contract to incoming president James Madison.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie talk about the life of John Freeman, the role of enslaved people in building the White House, and the star-crosssed-lovers story at the heart of it all.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Apr 18, 2021
Oprah's Beef (1996)
20:50

It’s April 15th. On this day in 1996, Oprah Winfrey hosted a segment on her show about “Mad Cow Disease” and proclaimed that she would no longer eat beef. That same day, cattle futures plummeted, and she was soon sued by the cattle industry.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the power of Oprah, the “veggie libel laws” and how she turned the trial into both television and a free speech crusade.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Apr 15, 2021
The CIA LSD Experiments (1953)
18:44

It’s April 13th. This day in 1953, the CIA started the secretive MK Ultra program, which experimented on unwitting subjects to determine the effects of LSD and other drugs.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss some of the program’s tactics, the intelligence community’s obsession with “mind control,” and the legacy of the secretive program.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Apr 13, 2021
Pets are People (1866)
21:38

It’s April 11th. This day in 1866, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals is founded.

Jody, Niki, Kellie and special guest Anne Helen Petersen discuss the rise of animal welfare groups, and how they reflected a growing conversation about morality, labor, child cruelty, and more.

Be sure to subscribe to Anne’s excellent newsletter “Culture Study” https://annehelen.substack.com/

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Apr 11, 2021
Go Ahead, Make Me Mayor (1986)
19:09

It’s April 8th. This day in 1986, Clint Eastwood is elected mayor of Carmel-by-the-Sea, a wealthy town of 4,000 in California.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss why Eastwood decided to get into politics, how he want about improving the town, and his political life in the decades since.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Apr 08, 2021
NYC Revolt (1712)
17:34

It’s April 6th. This day in 1712, a group of enslaved people start a fire in New York City aimed at sparking a larger rebellion.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the slave rebellion of 1712, the landscape of slavery in New York City at that time, and the brutal crackdown to the revolt.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Apr 06, 2021
MLK at Riverside (1967) w/ Peniel Joseph
17:41

It’s April 4th. This day in 1967, Martin Luther King, Jr delivers his “Beyond Vietnam” speech at Riverside Church in New York City.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by Peniel Joseph of UT-Austin to discuss the speech, King’s anti-war stance, and the reaction to his remarks at the time.

Peniel’s latest book is “The Sword and the Shield.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Apr 04, 2021
Blowing Smoke
17:34

It’s April 1st. This day in the early 1980s, a surprising discovery at Mt Vernon.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie talk about George Washington, conspiracy theories, and more.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Apr 01, 2021
The Rosenbergs (1951) w/ Jamelle Bouie
19:16

It’s March 30th. This day in 1951, Ethel and Julius Rosenberg are convicted of spying in order to share nuclear secrets with the U.S.S.R. They would be sentenced to death and eventually executed.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie are joined by Jamelle Bouie of the New York Times to discuss the case, whether the Rosenberg’s were railroaded, and the larger red-scare context of the time.

This is the one-year anniversary of the show! Thanks to everyone who has supported us throughout the year.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Mar 30, 2021
Three Mile Meltdown (1979)
14:23

It’s March 28th. This day, in 1979, a partial meltdown at the Three Mile Island nuclear facility outside Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss what led to the crisis, and how poor communications after the fact caused high levels of panic and misinformation. Plus, Jimmy Carter’s unexpectedly competent response.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Mar 28, 2021
I'm On A Boat (1933)
12:51

It’s March 25th. This day in 1933, the USS Sequoia is commissioned as a presidential yacht.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the long and strange history of presidential boats, from anti-rum-running efforts to secret negotiations and sketchy parties.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Mar 25, 2021
Illinois Blazes A Trail (1872)
15:08

It’s March 23rd. This day in 1872, the Illinois becomes the first state to pass a law guaranteeing equal employment for women.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss why the state was so far ahead of the rest of the country, and the life and career of would-be-lawyer Myra Bradwell. Plus, some thoughts on the anniversary of the passage of the ACA.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Mar 23, 2021
La Masacre de Ponce (1937) w/ Alana Casanova-Burgess
15:40

It’s March 21st. On Palm Sunday, 1937, a peaceful march in Ponce. Puerto Rico was attacked by police who shot and killed 19 Puerto Ricans, including a seven year old girl and wounded over 200 others.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by Alana Casanova-Burgess, host of “La Brega,” to discuss the incident and its place in Puerto Rican independence efforts — and crackdowns by U.S. government.

Find Alana’s podcast “La Brega” wherever you get your podcasts.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Mar 21, 2021
Terri Schiavo's Right To Die (2005)
17:04

It’s March 18th. This day in 2005, a feeding tube was removed from Terri Schiavo for the final time. She would die later that month.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss why Schiavo case became such a media sensation and political cause.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Mar 18, 2021
3000 Troops To Honduras (1988)
14:14

It’s March 16th. This day in 1988, President Reagan ordered 3000 US troops to Honduras, along the border with Nicaragua.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the decision in the context of the larger Iran-Contra scandal — this move took place the very same day that two key Reagan officials were indicted.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Mar 16, 2021
The Newburgh Conspiracy (1783)
13:55

It’s March 14th. This day in 1783, George Washington gave an address to his troops camped in Newburgh, NY, that averted a possible coup attempt.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss why Washington’s troops were upset in the last year of the war, whether the “coup” plot was legit, and how much to believe the story that it was the sheer power of Washington’s words that averted catastrophe.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Mar 14, 2021
The Confederate Constitution (1861)
17:24

It’s March 11th. This day in 1861, the Confederate States of America ratifies its own constitution. It’s largely based on the United States constitution, but with some key changes.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss what values were expressed in the constitutional do-over, and why the similarities between the two documents might mean more than the differences.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Mar 11, 2021
The Murder of Dr. Gunn (1993)
14:51

It’s March 9th. On this day in 1993, Dr. David Gunn was murdered outside the women’s clinic at which he worked by an anti-abortion protester.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the incident and how it marked a turn towards a more violent, with-us-or-against-us, chapter in the abortion debate.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Mar 09, 2021
Know-Nothings Steal The Pope's Stone (1854)
13:53

It’s March 7th. On this day in 1854, vandals broke into the construction site at the Washington Monument, made off with the “Pope’s Stone,” and threw it in the Potomac River.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie discuss the incident, why it was part of rising anti-Catholic sentiment in the United States, and the very rocky construction of the Washington Monument.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Mar 07, 2021
Florence Nightingale, Huge Nerd (1855) w/ Tim Harford
27:01

It’s March 4th. This day in 1855, a British sanitary commission arrived in Istanbul to inspect a field hospital where soldiers were dying at alarming rates. Among the nurses treating the soldiers was Florence Nightingale, who would go on to make one of the most famous data analysis of the conditions at the hospital.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by writer Tim Harford to discuss Nightingales findings and how they influenced the world of data visualization — plus the perils of compelling graphics.

Tim’s podcast “Cautionary Tales” has a new season out now, which features the story of Nightingale. His newest book is “The Data Detective.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Mar 04, 2021
The Weather Underground Bombs the Capitol (1971)
20:47

It’s March 2nd. This day, in 1971, the leftist group The Weather Underground carries out a bombing at the US Capitol.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the bombing, and the rise of more violent direct action coming out of the late 1960s protest movements.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Mar 02, 2021
Sickles, American Weirdo (1859) w/ Wright Thompson
21:03

It’s February 28th. This day in 1859 (February 27th, actually) a New York representative named Daniel Sickles shot and killed Phillip Barton Key, the son of Francis Scott Key, in a dispute over an affair that Key was reportedly having with Sickles’s wife.

Jody, Niki, Kellie and special guest Wright Thompson discuss the shooting in broad daylight, and the many twists and turns of Daniel Sickles’s life.

Wright’s latest book is “Pappyland,” his TV show is TrueSouth, and his podcast series is called “Bloodlines.” Check out all his work!

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Feb 28, 2021
The Canuck Letter and Muskie's Tears (1972)
18:45

It’s February 25th. This day in 1972, Democratic frontrunner Edmund Muskie of Maine was embroiled in a “scandal” that would ultimately sink his candidacy.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the various twists and turns of the scandal, from a fake letter to possibly fake tears.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Feb 25, 2021
The Polio Vaccine Arrives! (1954)
19:40

It’s February 23rd. This day in 1954, children in Pittsburgh began to receive vaccines as part of the first clinical trials for Dr Jonas Salk’s polio eradication efforts.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the arrival of the vaccine, the initial distrust, and the inequities in development and distribution of the vaccine to various communities.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Feb 23, 2021
Betty Friedan's Critique (1963) w/ Nichole Perkins
20:46

It’s February 21st. This day in 1963 (actually, it was the 19th), Betty Friedan published her enormously influential book “The Feminine Mystique.”

Jody, Niki, and Kellie are joined by Nichole Perkins to discuss the publishing of the surprisingly-academic book, the kind of women it addressed, and the women who were left out of the conversation around second wave feminism

Check out Nichole’s new podcast “This Is Good For You.” Her forthcoming memoir is called Sometimes I Trip on How Happy We Could Be.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Feb 21, 2021
The Chippendale's Conundrum (1984)
14:53

It’s February 18th. On this day in 1984, a New York State liquor board is holding hearings on the all-male strip club Chippendale’s.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the way in which Chippendale’s subverted and reinforced ideas about men, women, sex, and empowerment. Niki is a producer on the new podcast series “Welcome to Your Fantasy,” all about the wild history of Chippendale’s. Check it out now!

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Feb 18, 2021
US vs Pirates (1804)
12:40

It’s February 16th. On this day in 1804, US Marines carried out a mission to destroy a ship that had been captured by enemy forces off the coast of Tripoli.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the first Barbary War, why the US (and Sweden!) were involved in a Mediterranean battle, and tensions between naval warfare and westward expansion.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Feb 16, 2021
A Fascist Coup Plot (1935)
18:04

It’s February 14th. On this day in 1935, a Congressional committee released a report acknowledging what came to be known as “The Business Plot,” a scheme by Wall St financiers to stage a violent coup and replace Roosevelt with a military dictator.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the coup scheme, how it was not taken seriously at the time, and how seriously to take talk of fascist schemes today.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Feb 14, 2021
Ike's Vietnam (1954)
11:58

It’s February 11th. On this day in 1954, President Eisenhower expressed deep skepticism about US involvement in Vietnam. That would, of course, come to change.

Jody, NIki, and Kellie discuss how Eisenhower tried to avoid involvement, but also established the “Domino Theory” approach to viewing Vietnam that may have set up an inevitable US intervention.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Feb 11, 2021
Martial Law in Seattle (1886)
14:52

It’s February 9th. On this day in 1886, a mob descended on Seattle’s Chinatown, amid growing tensions between white and Chinese workers.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the events of the day, and the role of Chinese immigrant and Chinese-American workers in building the West — and how labor unions were often used to drive wedges between different ethnic groups.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Feb 09, 2021
The Mayflower of Liberia (1820)
15:24

It’s Februrary 7th. On this day in 1820, 86 freed slaves boarded a ship from New York City headed to a region in West Africa that would soon come to be known as Liberia.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the “reverse Middle Passage” journey of the ship, the American Colonization Society, and tensions between anti-slavery groups and abolitionists.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Feb 07, 2021
Nixon Saves The Eagle (1973)
13:30

It’s February 4th. On this day in 1973, president Richard Nixon signed the Endangered Species Act.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the legislation, how it fit into the growing environmental movement of the time, and whether Nixon gets enough credit for his green efforts.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Feb 04, 2021
Harding's Lust Letters (1920)
16:36

It’s February 2nd. On this day in 1920, Senator Warren G Harding pens a letter to his long-time mistress, laying out the terms under which they could break off their affair.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss Harding’s affair, why the racy letters took so long to be made public, and what to make of Harding’s disastrous presidency.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Feb 02, 2021
The 13th You May Not Know (1865)
14:52

It’s January 31st. On this day (actually, February 1st) 1865, the House passed the 13th Amendment, which abolished slavery and involuntary servitude in the United States.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss the 13th — especially the parts of the story that may be lesser known.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Jan 31, 2021
Delaying The Civil War (1850)
10:34

It’s January 28th. This day in 1850, Senator Henry Clay introduced a series of resolutions aimed at trying to build compromise and forestall the Civil War.

Jody, Niki and Kellie discuss the series of bills, also known as “The Compromise of 1850,” and how the question of slavery was so tied up with the project of territorial expansion.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Jan 28, 2021
Run Margaret Run (1964)
13:27

It’s January 26th. On this day in 1964, Margaret Chase Smith announced that she was running for the GOP nomination for president.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss Smith’s trailblazing run, the legacy of women inside Republican politics, and the power of “symbolic” candidates.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Jan 26, 2021
Fluoride Scare (1945)
16:11

It’s January 24th. On this day in 1945, the town of Grand Rapids, Michigan became the first town in the country to add fluoride to its drinking water.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss how the program was a huge success when it came to public health, but nevertheless spawned a generation of conspiracy theories about fluoridation.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Jan 24, 2021
"Blood In The Air" at the Capitol (1861)
12:58

It’s January 21st. On this day in 1861, Mississippi Senator Jefferson Davis gave a farewell address in the Senate, announcing that his state (along with several others) would be seceding from the United States.

Jody, Niki, and Kellie discuss how Davis tried to position the move, and how this dramatic moment fit into the run-up to the Civil War.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Jan 21, 2021
Inauguration Day Special (and Kellie's First Show!)
23:45

On this Inauguration Day 2021, we look back at some notable other transition ceremonies, and discuss whether the day is pure symbolism or if it actually matters.

Plus, a big announcement about the show — Kellie Carter Jackson is joining as a third host! Find out more about her, Jody Avirgan, and Nicole Hemmer on our website.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Jan 19, 2021
The Pets.Com Implosion (2001) w/ Julia Furlan
18:31

It’s January 17th. On this day in 2001, the company pets.com was in the process of liquidating its assets, after just 18 months in existence.

Jody and Niki are joined by Julia Furlan to discuss the 2000 dot-com bubble, why companies like pets.com got so big and went so broke; and what lessons there are about the difference between the stock market and the real economy.

Julia is the host of the Vox podcast series “Go for Broke.” The first season is all about the 2000 bubble.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Jan 17, 2021
Ford's (Second) Assassin (1976)
18:50

It’s January 14th. On this day in 1976, Sara Jane Moore was sentenced to life for her attempt to assassinate President Gerald Ford.

Jody and Niki discuss Moore’s life, motivations, and the landscape of apocalyptic political violence that extended from the late 60s into the mid-70s.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Jan 14, 2021
Victory Sausages (1943)
16:11

It’s January 12th. On this day in 1943, the US announces limits to the amount of meat Americans could eat, as well as a re-working of the meat content in sausages and other products.

Jody and Niki discuss the rationing in WWII, and the wartime re-branding efforts of a lot of common American items.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Jan 12, 2021
Vatican Ties (1984)
17:12

It’s January 10th. On this day in 1984, the United States and the Vatican established formal diplomatic relations for the first time in 117 years.

Jody and Niki discuss the history of anti-Catholic sentiment in the United States, and how the fear of Communism finally brought Ronald Reagan and Pope John Paul II together.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Jan 10, 2021
Bush Vomits on the Japanese PM (1992)
16:25

It’s January 8th. On this day in 1992, President George HW Bush, on a diplomatic trip to Japan, ate some bad food and vomited during a state dinner, right onto the lap of the Japanese Prime Minister.

Jody and Niki discuss the event, the larger context of US-Japan relationships, and what counts as a gaffe in American politics. Plus, some thoughts on other embarrassing political moments.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Jan 08, 2021
The Nixon Recount Committee (1961)
17:35

It’s January 5th. On this day in 1961, Vice President Richard Nixon, acting as President of the Senate, certified the electoral college results of the 1960 election, which he had lost to John F Kennedy. But this was after a long fight and lots of questions, conspiracy theories, and efforts to throw the election result into contest. Sound familiar?

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Jan 05, 2021
2020 Favorite: "Coya Come Home" w/ Harry Enten
13:05

To wrap up 2020, and give ourselves a week off, we’re re-running some of our favorite episodes from the year. Thanks for listening all year, and we have lots more in store for 2021!

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On May 7th, Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Harry Enten of CNN discussed the “Coya Come Home” letter — a public letter written by the husband of MN representative Coya Knutson, demanding that she leave office and return to domestic life.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Jan 03, 2021
2020 Favorite: Dukakis on the Tank w/ Amy Walter
20:48

To wrap up 2020, and give ourselves a week off, we’re re-running some of our favorite episodes from the year. Thanks for listening all year, and we have lots more in store for 2021!

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On September 13th in 1988, Democratic nominee Michael Dukakis boarded an M-1 tank in order to set up a photo op, ostensibly to make him look tough on defense. It backfired horribly.

Jody and Niki are joined by Amy Walter of the Cook Political Reporter and The Takeaway to discuss the tank photo, huge polling collapses, and the power of attack ads.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Dec 31, 2020
2020 Favorite: Wyoming's Suffrage w/ Maeve Higgins
13:16

To wrap up 2020, and give ourselves a week off, we’re re-running some of our favorite episodes from the year. Thanks for listening all year, and we have lots more in store for 2021!

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On July 23rd, 1890, Wyoming celebrated its entry into the United States. And it was doing so as a state that granted women the right to vote.

Jody and Niki are joined by Maeve Higgins of the New York Times and the podcast Mothers of Invention to discuss the suffrage movement on the American frontier.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Dec 29, 2020
2020 Favorite: Obama's Tan Suit w/ Sam Sanders
14:31

To wrap up 2020, and give ourselves a week off, we’re re-running some of our favorite episodes from the year. Thanks for listening all year, and we have lots more in store for 2021!

/////

On August 24th in 2014, President Barack Obama gave a press conference about Ukraine and ISIS and foreign policy — but much of the political chatter was about his choice of tan suit.

Jody and Niki are joined by Sam Sanders of NPR’s “It’s Been A Minute” to discuss the “scandal” and what it how it represented a shifting moment in political coverage.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Dec 27, 2020
The War On Christmas (Part 2) w/ Michael Hobbes
26:32

It’s December 24nd. This Christmas week, we’re doing something a little different — a two-part special on the history of The War on Christmas.

In part two, Jody and Nikki are joined by Michael Hobbes of “You’re Wrong About” to go back in time and explore the surprising roots of the War on Christmas, from the Puritans to the Egg Nog Riot to the Red Scare.

Michael Hobbes’s podcasts are “You’re Wrong About” and “Maintenance Phase.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Dec 24, 2020
The War On Christmas (Part 1) w/ Michael Hobbes
27:26

It’s December 22nd. This Christmas week, we’re doing something a little different — a two-part special on the history of The War on Christmas.

In part one, Jody and Nikki are joined by Michael Hobbes of “You’re Wrong About” to discuss the recent history of the War, beginning with a Bill O’Reilly segment on Fox News in December 2004.

Michael Hobbes’s podcasts are “You’re Wrong About” and “Maintenance Phase.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Dec 22, 2020
Back On The Montgomery Bus (1956) w/ Christina Greer
18:56

It’s December 20th. On this day in 1956, the Montgomery, Alabama bus boycott ended after 381 days.

Jody and Niki are joined by Christina Greer of Fordham University to discuss what brought the boycott to an end, and the hard work that took place on the ground to maintain pressure and de-segregate the public bus system.

Christina Greer is a co-host of “FAQNYC” and her new podcast with The Griot is “What’s In It For Us.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Dec 20, 2020
Ellis Island Opens (1900) w/ Brian Lehrer
25:10

It’s December 17th. On this day in 1900, the Ellis Island immigration center in New York harbor opened its doors.

Jody and Niki are joined by Brian Lehrer of WNYC to discuss the new wave of immigrants that entered the country in the first decades of the 1900s, and how the story of American immigration has evolved over the years.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Dec 17, 2020
Boss Tweed Goes Down (1871)
19:02

It’s December 15th. On this day in 1871, William “Boss” Tweed is arrested in Manhattan while returning to the city to, reportedly, see the Christmas lights.

Jody and Niki discuss what this moment means for Boss Tweed and the notorious Tammany Hall power structure in New York City. Tweed spent much of the 1860s pulling the puppet strings in NYC, and would spend much of the next decade on the run from the law.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Dec 15, 2020
Trump the Moderator (2011) w/ James Poniewozik
26:22

It’s December 13th. On this day in 2011, Donald Trump wrote a letter announcing that he was bowing out of moderating (!) a Newsmax presidential debate.

Jody and Niki are joined by James Poniewozik of the New York Times to discuss Trump’s flirtation with both moderating a debate and running for president, and how the conservative media ecosystem has evolved over the last 10 years.

James’s latest book is “Audience of One.” Nikki’s book i “Messengers of the Right.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Dec 13, 2020
The Great Toledo War (1836) w/ Hanif Abdurraqib
20:58

It’s December 10th. On this day in 1836, the final days of the “Great Toledo War,” a conflict over a strip of territory between the state of Ohio and the territory of Michigan.

Jody and Niki are joined by Hanif Abdurraqib to discuss the origins of the battle, whether it qualifies as a “war,” and what to make of the ongoing Ohio-Michigan rivalry.

Hanif is the host of the latest season of the excellent music podcast “Lost Notes.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Dec 10, 2020
The ANTI-Suffragettes (1915) w/ Kimberly Hamlin
21:02

It’s December 8th. On this day in 1915, newspapers reported a “near riot” at a meeting of the Democratic party, when pro- and anti-suffrage women debated each other over the right to vote.

Jody and Niki are joined by Kimberly Hamlin of Miami University to discuss the “ANTIs” — women who fought against the right to vote.

Kimberly’s most recent book is “Free Thinker: Sex, Suffrage, and the Extraordinary Life of Helen Hamilton Gardener”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Dec 08, 2020
United States vs One Book Called Ulysses (1933) w/ Kurt Andersen
21:52

It’s December 6th. On this day in 1933, a judge ruled that James Joyce’s “Ulysses,” which had been effectively banned in the United States, was not obscene.

Jody and Niki are joined by Kurt Andersen to discuss the ruling, the history of obscenity laws in the United States, and what to make of the current debates over free speech.

Kurt’s recent books are “Fantasylad” and “Evil Geniuses.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Dec 06, 2020
US, Meet UN (1945)
18:06

It’s December 3rd. On this day in 1945 (technically, December 4th), the United States Senate voted to ratify an agreement to have the US join the United Nations.

Jody and Niki discuss the domestic politics that led to this moment, the lessons from the failed entry of the US into the League of Nations, and whether FDR gets enough credit in this story.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Dec 03, 2020
John Brown's Body (1859)
20:06

It’s December 1st. On this day in 1859, abolitionist John Brown was awaiting his execution by the Commonwealth of Virginia.

Jody and Niki discuss John Brown’s raid on Harper’s Ferry, how much he wanted to spark revolution in his lifetime or become a martyr in death; and how contemporary depictions of Brown have reflected the politics of the time.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Dec 01, 2020
Harvey Milk is Assassinated (1978)
18:02

It’s November 29th. On this day in 1978, San Fransisco is in mourning, and there is violence in the streets, in the wake of the assassination of Harvey Milk, a board of supervisors member and gay rights advocate.

Jody and Niki discus the legacy of Harvey Milk, his evolution as a gay rights advocate, and the so-called “Twinkie Defense.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Nov 29, 2020
Franksgiving! (1939) w/ Adam Conover
23:07

It’s November 26th. On this day in 1939, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt had declared that Thanksgiving would take place a week earlier than usual. Americans were not happy.

Jody and Niki are joined by Adam Conover of “Adam Ruins Everything” and the podcast Factually to discuss why FDR tried to move the holiday, how it became politicized, and what Thanksgiving means to us in 2020.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Nov 26, 2020
The Alcatraz Occupation (1969) w/ Julian Brave Noisecat
19:17

It’s November 24th. On this day in 1969, Native American activists have staged an occupation of Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay.

Jody and Niki are joined by Julian Brave Noisecat to discuss the 19-month occupation, often considered the birth of the modern Indigenous rights movement — and how exactly the protesters managed to pull off the occupation of the island.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

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Nov 24, 2020
Queen of Code (1943) w/ Mar Hicks
22:09

It’s November 22nd. On this day in 2016, Barack Obama awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom to computer programmer Grace Hopper, who entered the Navy in the mid-1940s and helped pioneer a lot of modern electronic computing.

Jody and Niki are joined by Mar Hicks of Illinois Tech University to discuss Hopper’s legacy, her knack for storytelling, and the other women whose stories may not be as popular.

Hick’s book is Programmed Inequality

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Nov 22, 2020
The US Rejects A Peace Treaty (1919) w/ Christopher McKnight Nichols
21:12

It’s November 19th. On this day in 1919, the US Senate rejected the ratification of the Treaty of Versailles.

Jody and Niki are joined by Christopher McKnight Nichols of the University of Oregon to discuss why the US rejected the peace treaty and what it says about how the country saw its role in the world in the wake of World War I.

Christopher’s book is Promise and Peril: America at the Dawn of a Global Age

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Nov 19, 2020
The Governator (2003)
14:53

It’s November 16th. On this day in 2003, Arnold Schwarzenegger was sworn in as Governor of California, after having won a recall election that ousted former Governor Gray Davis.

Jody and Niki discuss how Schwarzenegger came to power, California’s recall system, and the legacy of celebrity politicians crashing the GOP.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Nov 17, 2020
The Occupy Encampment (2011)
23:18

It’s November 15th. On this day in 2011, the NYPD issued orders to clear the encampment at Zuccotti Park in lower manhattan, that had been the site of the Occupy Wall Street protests since the fall.

Jody and Niki discuss the roots of the encampment, and how Occupy helped introduce ideas of income inequality into the modern political discourse.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Nov 15, 2020
The Vietnam Memorial Controversy (1982)
14:13

It’s November 12th. On this day in 1982, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial opened in Washington, DC.

Jody and Niki discuss the controversy over the memorial’s design, the additions over the years, and how we memorialize forever wars.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Nov 12, 2020
The Obama Transition (2008)
16:11

It’s November 10th. On this day in 2008, President-Elect Obama stepped into the Oval Office for the first time for a meeting with President George W Bush.

Jody and Niki discuss the lessons from that 2008 transition, why the lame duck period is as long as it is, and what makes for a smooth transition, especially during a moment of crisis.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Nov 10, 2020
GOP Latinos (1973) w/ Geraldo Cadava
23:42

It’s November 8th. On this day in 1973, a many by the name of Ben Fernandez testified during the Watergate hearings. Fernandez was a Nixon fundraiser but also a major organizer around Latinos within the Republican Party.

Jody and Niki are joined by Geraldo Cadava of Northwestern to discuss the history of conservative Latinos, and the narratives emerging around how Hispanics swung hard towards Donald Trump in the 2020 election.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Nov 08, 2020
Special: What Moment Are You Thinking Of? (2020) w/ Kellie Carter Jackson
37:30

In the wake of the 2020 election, we have been thinking about and asking “What historical moment are you thinking about in this moment?” Jody and Niki are joined by Kellie Carter Jackson of Wellesley College to share their thoughts and read your emails.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Nov 06, 2020
Quick Update, Question, Recommendation (2020)
02:23

Jody with a quick update on our post-election coverage. We’re recording on Friday morning with the question “What historical moment are you thinking about in this moment?” Email us thisdaypod@gmail.com or find a form at thisdaypod.com

In the meantime, if you’re looking for something to listen to, check out the latest episode of Radio Diaries, about the history of the concession speech. It’s great.

https://www.radiodiaries.org/how-to-lose-election/

Nov 05, 2020
When Black Voters Went Blue (1936) w/ Leah Wright Rigueur
25:27

It’s November 3rd. Election Day! On this day in 1936, FDR won his second term for president in a landslide. But it was the first election since the Civil War in which African-American voters voted for Democrats.

Jody and Niki are joined by Leah Wright Rigueur of Brandeis to discuss the shift, and how the election would preview the modern Democratic coalition, and the way in which Republicans would try to seize the Black vote back.

A quick note about our next show: We’ll be recording a special show for Thursday around the question “What historical moment are you thinking of in the aftermath of the election?” Email us or tweet us with your thoughts.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Nov 03, 2020
Election Sunday: Election Night Info w/ Jad Abumrad
41:58

It’s November 1st. On this Sunday before election day, we mix it up a bit and look at number of moments from history that teach us about how election results have been conveyed, from the origins of “news flash” to the New York Times’ election-night needle.

Jody and Niki are joined by Jad Abumrad of WNYC’s Radiolab to discuss how the pressure to get results as quickly as possible has increased over the last century, and how that could complicate things for 2020’s very a-historical election.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Nov 01, 2020
Witches (1693) w/ Josh Gondelman
18:14

It’s October 29th. On this day in 1693, the Salem witch trials came to an end when a superior court decided it would no longer hear “spectral evidence.”

Jody and Niki are joined by comedian Josh Gondelman to discuss what the witch trials were really about, and what they teach us about conspiracy theories.

Josh’s podcast is “Make My Day.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Oct 29, 2020
Reagan's "Time for Choosing" (1964)
14:38

It’s October 27th. On this day in 1964, Ronald Reagan gave a televised speech that marked him as the leading voice of American conservatives.

Jody and Niki discuss the “Time for Choosing” speech, Reagan’s long political evolution, and how the remarks set the stage for his eventual presidency.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Oct 27, 2020
Election Sunday: Wellstone Plane Crash (2002)
19:36

It’s October 25th. On this day in 2002, Minnesota Senator Paul Wellstone died in a plane crash, eleven days before the midterm election.

Jody and Niki discuss the impact of his death on the midterm election that year, and the political legacy Wellstone left behind.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Oct 25, 2020
Ike's Heart Attack (1955) w/ Will Hitchcock
19:10

It’s October 22nd. On this day in 1955, President Eisenhower was recovering from a serious heart attack the month before.

Jody and Niki are joined by William Hitchcock of UVA to discuss the incident and how a president’s inner circle handles the press and questions of succession when the Commander In Chief is sick.

Will Hitchcock’s new podcast is called “Democracy In Danger.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Oct 22, 2020
Are You, Or Have You Ever Been... (1947) w/ Will Hitchcock
23:29

It’s October 20th. On this day in 1947, the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) began hearings to root out communist sympathizers in Hollywood.

Jody and Niki are joined by William Hitchcock of UVA to discuss the long history of HUAC and how Congress has tried to define “un-American.”

Will Hitchcock’s new podcast is called “Democracy In Danger.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Oct 20, 2020
Election Sunday: Podium Protests (1968) w/ Joel Anderson
21:14

It’s October 18th. On this day in 1968, US Olympians Tommie Smith and John Carlos raised their fists in a Black power salute on the podium in Mexico City.

Jody and Niki are joined by Joel Anderson of Slate to discuss the backstory to the protests, the symbolism in their act, and what athletes risk when they take a political stand.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Oct 18, 2020
Million Man March (1995) w/ Joel Anderson
22:06

It’s October 15th. On this day in 1995 hundreds of thousands of Black Americans descended on Washington DC for the Million Man March.

Jody and Niki are joined by Joel Anderson of Slate to discuss the march, respectability politics, and the cultural moment that led to the march. Plus, why it’s so hard to estimate crowd sizes.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Oct 15, 2020
A Bull Moose Gets Shot (1912) w/ Alex Schmidt
17:37

It’s October 13th. On this day in 1912 (well, technically the 14th), Teddy Roosevelt is shot as he’s on his way to a speech in Milwaukee. He still gave the speech.

Jody and Niki are joined by Alex Schmidt to discuss the incident, the wild election of 1912, and violence in politics.

Alex’s podcast is called “Secretly Incredibly Fascinating” and is available wherever you get your podcasts.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Oct 13, 2020
Election Sunday: Anita Hill's Testimony (1991) w/ Farai Chideya
19:28

It’s October 11th. On this day in 1991, Anita Hill provided testimony during the confirmation hearings for Clarence Thomas to the Supreme Court. Hill alleged that Thomas sexually harassed her while they were colleagues.

Jody and Niki are joined by Farai Chideya to discuss the hearings, the changing (and not changing) nature of the sexual harassment conversation, and Joe Biden’s role in the matter.

Farai’s new public radio show is called “Our Body Politic” and will be running on stations around the country this month, and is also available as a podcast.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Oct 11, 2020
Anthrax Letters (2001)
12:48

It’s October 8th. On this day in 2001, the FBI opened an investigation into a series of letters containing anthrax powder that were mailed to news organizations and politicians.

Jody and Niki discuss the case of the anthrax letters, why it remains somewhat unsolved, and why this story doesn’t get better remembered.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Oct 08, 2020
Fallout Shelters (1961)
14:55

It’s October 6th. On this day in 1961, President Kennedy penned a letter urging the country to prepare fallout shelters and take other steps in anticipation of nuclear warfare.

Jody and Niki discuss the fear that pervaded the era and what it teaches us about how we prepare for disasters.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Oct 06, 2020
Election Sunday: A Great Debate Zinger (1988) w/ Mike Pesca
24:48

It’s October 4th. On this day in 1988, Lloyd Bentsen delivered one of the most memorable debate lines of all time when he told his VP opponent Dan Quayle that he “was no Jack Kennedy.”

Jody and Niki are joined by Mike Pesca, the host of Slate’s “The Gist,” to discuss why Benson’s line worked so well and what it can teach us about other great debate moments.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Oct 04, 2020
REPOST -- The President Catches The Virus (1919)
09:37

With the news that President Trump has COVID, we are reposting our episode from early April about the time that President Wilson caught the Influenza virus in 1919.

We’ll be back with a new episode this Sunday.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Oct 02, 2020
Shutdown (2013) w/ Steve Kornacki
22:37

It’s October 1st. On this day in 2013, the United States government shut down after the Congress was unable to agree to a new budget proposal, that had been saddled with provisions that would have defunded Obamacare.

Jody and Niki are joined by NBC/MSNBC correspondent Steve Kornacki to discuss the shutdown, how Ted Cruz used it to increase his profile, and why we may be suffering from shutdown fatigue.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Oct 01, 2020
Goodbye 538 (1970) w/ Steve Kornacki
19:42

It’s September 29th. On this day in 1970, the United States Senate came six votes shy of voting for an amendment that would have scrapped the Electoral College system in favor of a much more straightforward popular vote.

Jody and Niki are joined by NBC/MSNBC correspondent Steve Kornacki to discuss the context for that amendment push, the way the Electoral College has been politicized, and whether it will ever go away.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Sep 29, 2020
Election Sunday: Contract with America (1994) w/ Kristen Soltis Anderson
22:19

It’s September 27th. On this day in 1994, Republicans in the House of Representatives gathered on the steps of the Capitol to announce the “Contract with America,” a plank of ten policy points that they pledged to uphold if they seized back power in the upcoming midterm elections.

Jody and Niki are joined by pollster Kristen Soltis Anderson of Echelon Insights to discuss how the contract helped propel New Gingrich to stardom and brand the new Republican party.

Kristen’s book is “The Selfie Vote.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Sep 27, 2020
The Republic of West Florida (1810) w/ Kristen Soltis Anderson
16:50

It’s September 24th. On this day in 1810, a band of rebels took control of a fort in Baton Rogue and shortly thereafter established “The Republic of West Florida,” which would last for… just under 50 days.

Jody and Niki are joined by pollster Kristen Soltis Anderson of Echelon Insights to discuss the breakaway republic, and the very weird history of the Gulf Coast region.

Kristen’s book is “The Selfie Vote.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Sep 24, 2020
Dueling Lincoln (1842) w/ Alexis Coe
13:55

It’s September 22nd. On this day in 1842, Abe Lincoln almost duels, using swords, with a man named James Shields, but manages to get out of it.

Jody and Niki are joined by historian Alexis Coe to talk about why the duel isn’t part of the Lincoln mythology, and how scores were settled in the 1840s.

Alexis Coe’s book is called “You Never Forget Your First.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Sep 22, 2020
Election Sunday: Carter's Lust (1976) w/ Alexis Coe
16:53

It’s September 20th. On this day in 1976, Democratic presidential candidate Jimmy Carter gave an interview to Playboy magazine in which he admitted that he has “lust in his heart” for women.

Jody and Niki are joined by historian Alexis Coe to talk about how the comments set off a firestorm, in several different directions, and how Carter was never able to fully balance his authentic self with his political life.

Alexis Coe’s book is called “You Never Forget Your First.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Sep 20, 2020
Khrushchev Comes to America (1959)
14:04

It’s September 17th. On this day in 1959, Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev was in New York City as part of his goodwill tour of the United States.

Jody and Niki discuss the visit by Khrushchev, the protests against it, and the difference between political and cultural diplomacy.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Sep 17, 2020
A Dead Candidate (1992)
16:58

It’s September 15th. On this day in 1992, the congressional district on Manhattan’s west side held its Democratic Primary. Incumbent Ted Weiss won handily. There was just one catch — Weiss had died of heart failure the day before.

Jody and Niki discuss the aftermath of Weiss’s death which saw Jerry Nadler assume the seat. They also look at the incumbency advantage in American politics, and why there has traditionally been so little turnover in Congress.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Sep 15, 2020
Election Sunday: Dukakis on the Tank (1988) w/ Amy Walter
20:19

It’s September 13th. On this day in 1988, Democratic nominee Michael Dukakis baorded an M-1 tank in order to set up a photo op, ostensibly to make him look tough on defense. It backfired horribly.

Jody and Niki are joined by Amy Walter of the Cook Political Reporter and The Takeaway to discuss the tank photo, huge polling collapses, and the power of attack ads.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Sep 13, 2020
Bank War (1833) w/ Jacob Goldstein
19:14

It’s September 10th. On this day in 1833, President Andrew Jackson announced that the U.S. government would no longer be keeping its money with the Second Bank of the United States.

Jody and Niki are joined by Jacob Goldstein, host of the “Planet Money” podcast, to discuss Jackson’s showdown with the country’s official bank, and how it fits into the long history of distrust in banking institutions in America.

Jacob’s new book is called “Money: The True Story of a Made Up Thing.” Buy it now!

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Sep 10, 2020
The Obama Star Trek Theory (2004) w/ Ian Chillag
16:29

It’s September 6th. On this day Star Trek debuted. We are discussing Star Trek because of a convoluted theory that if the actress Jeri Ryan had never been cast on the series Star Trek: Voyager, Barack Obama would never have become president.

Jody and Niki are joined by Ian Chillag, host of Everything Is Alive, and fan of this convoluted theory. Ian walks us through it and we discuss how much luck plays in political trajectories.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Sep 08, 2020
Election Sunday: The Stars and Stripes and Sports (1918) w/ Jason Concepcion
19:07

It’s September 6th. On this day in 1918, during the seventh inning stretch of a World Series game between the Chicago Cubs and Boston Red Sox, a band played the “Star Spangled Banner” for the first time at a major sporting event.

Jody and Niki are joined by Jason Concepcion of The Ringer to discuss why we now sing the national anthem at virtually every sporting event, and how sports, patriotism, and militarism have intertwined in the 100 years since.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Sep 06, 2020
Recy and Rosa (1944) w/ Danielle McGuire
16:47

It’s September 3rd. On this day in 1944, a woman by the name of Recy Taylor was raped in Abbeville, Alabama.

Jody and Niki are joined by Danielle McGuire to discuss how Taylor’s case became one of the most notable cases in the early modern civil rights movement — and an important chapter in the political life of Rosa Parks.

Danielle McGuire’s book is “At the Dark End of the Street: Black Women, Race and Resistance -- A New History of the Civil Rights Movement from Rosa Parks to the Rise of Black Power.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Sep 03, 2020
Tax The Rich (1862)
12:00

It’s September 1st. On this day in 1862, the Internal Revenue Act went into effect.

Jody and Niki discuss how the act codified many of the systems and precepts of our tax code — including the idea that the rich should be taxed at a higher rate than the poor; and that certain “vice” items should be subject to a sales tax.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Sep 01, 2020
Election Sunday: Carter and the Killer Rabbit (1979) w/ Sam Sanders
15:11

It’s August 30th. On this day in 1979, newspapers around the country reported on an encounter President Jimmy Carter had earlier that summer with a rabbit while fishing.

Jody and Niki are joined by Sam Sanders of NPR’s “It’s Been A Minute” to discuss how the Carter vs. Rabbit narrative spiraled out of control and turned into a genuine scandal.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Aug 30, 2020
Obama's Tan Suit (2014) w/ Sam Sanders
14:04

It’s August 27th. On this day in 2014, President Barack Obama gave a press conference about Ukraine and ISIS and foreign policy — but much of the political chatter was about his choice of tan suit.

Jody and Niki are joined by Sam Sanders of NPR’s “It’s Been A Minute” to discuss the “scandal” and what it how it represented a shifting moment in political coverage.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Aug 27, 2020
The 19th (1920) w/ Kellie Carter Jackson
13:44

It’s August 25th. On this day in 1920, Secretary of State Bainbridge Colby signed papers that ratified the 19th amendment, which stated that the right to vote would not be denied “on account of sex.”

Jody and Niki are joined by Kellie Carter Jackson of Wellesley to talk about the passage of the amendment, the intersectional nature of the suffrage movement, and why it wasn’t another 45 years until all women were really free to vote.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Aug 25, 2020
Election Sunday: Fannie Lou Hamer vs Lyndon B Johnson (1964)
20:46

It’s August 23rd. On this day in 1964, Mississippi activist Fannie Lou Hamer gave a speech at the Democratic National Convention about her efforts to be recognized as part of the MS delegation. President Lyndon B Johnson, sensing that Hamer’s speech was getting attention, scheduled impromptu remarks.

Jody and Niki are joined by Kellie Carter Jackson of Wellesley to talk about Hamer’s remarks, legacy, and whether dramatic showdowns like this are even possible at modern conventions.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Aug 23, 2020
Rockefeller Republicans (1974)
12:19

It’s August 20th. On this day in 1974, Gerald Ford announced Nelson Rockefeller of New York as his pick for Vice President.

Jody and Niki discuss how the pick of Rockefeller represented Ford’s attempt to find a moderate in the wake of the Watergate scandal and Nixon’s resignation — and whatever happened to the “Rockefeller Republican” wing of the GOP.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Aug 20, 2020
The Dakota War and the Mankato Hanging (1862)
12:47

It’s August 18th. On this day in 1862, fighting broke out in southern Minnesota between Dakota Indians and the United States. Later in the year, 38 Dakota men would be hanged in Mankato, the largest mass execution in US history.

Jody and Niki discuss the conflict, how it fit into the context of the Civil War, and why it’s been largely written out of history.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Aug 18, 2020
Election Sunday: Adlai and The Always-Rans (1952) w/ Harry Enten
22:02

It’s August 16th. On this day in 1956, Adlai Stevenson accepted the nomination for Democratic candidate for president. It was the second election in a row that he would go up against Eisenhower — and Stevenson was almost nominated again the following cycle.

Jody and Niki are joined by Harry Enten of CNN to talk about Stevenson and other figures who keep popping up in American politics.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Aug 16, 2020
Ebola (2014) w/ Andy Slavitt
18:24

It’s August 13th. On this day in 2014, deaths from Ebola passed 1,000 in four West African nations. Over the summer and fall fears about Ebola would grow around the world and in the US.

Jody and Niki are joined by Andy Slavitt, former Acting Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, to talk about the response then and what it says about the response now.

Andy is the host of the “In The Bubble” podcast. Check it out!

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Aug 13, 2020
RBG Arrives (1993) w/ Dahlia Lithwick
17:52

It’s August 11th. On this day in 1993, Ruth Bader Ginsburg spent her first full day on the Supreme Court.

Jody and Niki are joined by Dahlia Lithwick of Slate to discuss Ginsburg’s nomination and how she went from measured incrementalist to feminist icon.

Be sure to listen to Dahlia’s special series on RBG in the Amicus podcast feed.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Aug 11, 2020
Election Sunday: How Third Parties Happen (1848)
13:27

It’s August 9th. On this day in 1848, former President Martin Van Buren was nominated as the presidential nominee for the breakaway Free Soil Party. The party was short-lived, but influential, and partly responsible for the Republican party’s anti-slavery stance.

Jody and Niki discuss the FSP, MVB, and what conditions it takes for a viable third party to arise in American politics.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Aug 09, 2020
The Case Of The Missing Judge (1930)
15:39

It’s August 6th. On this day in 1930, NY Judge Joseph Force Crater disappeared after getting dinner and heading to a Broadway show. He was never seen again, and his case has been a vacuum for conspiracy theories in the years since.

Jody and Niki discuss Crater’s disappearance, and what his life tells us about the Tammany Hall of corruption and graft in New York City.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Aug 06, 2020
Braceros (1942)
11:53

It’s August 4th. On this day in 1942, the US started an immigration program for “braceros,” agricultural workers from Mexico who came to work on farms using temporary visas.

Jody and Niki discuss how the program forged ties between the US and Mexico, and what it teaches us about borders.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Aug 04, 2020
Election Sunday: Reagan's Dog Whistle (1980)
23:42

It’s August 2nd. On this day in 1980, Ronald Reagan kicked off his 1980 presidential general election campaign with a speech at the Neshoba County Fair in MS. During the speech he used the phrase “states rights,” which was widely seen as a racial dog whistle.

Jody and Niki are joined by Kevin M Kruse of Princeton to discuss Reagan’s campaign, the significance of that kick-off speech, and the long running Southern Strategy.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Aug 02, 2020
How We Got "In God We Trust" (1956) w/ Kevin M Kruse
16:25

It’s July 30th. On this day in 1956, Congress approved a bill to adopt “In God We Trust” as the official motto of the United States, mandating that it appear on paper currency and elsewhere.

Jody and Niki are joined by Kevin M Kruse of Princeton to discuss why the 1950s was the era in which so much religion was codified into American political and society. Kevin’s book about the subject is “One Nation Under God.”

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Jul 30, 2020
A Major Watergate Vote (1974) w/ Leon Neyfakh
15:21

It’s July 28th. On this day in 1974, the House of Representatives Judiciary Committee voted 27-11 to recommend the impeachment of Richard Nixon on counts of obstructing justice. The vote would be followed by several other counts and, a few weeks later, Nixon’s resignation.

Jody and Niki are joined by Leon Neyfakh, host of FIASCO and host of the first season of Slow Burn, all about the Watergate scandal.

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Jul 28, 2020
Election Sunday: Chappaquidick (1969)
16:04

It’s July 26th. On this day in 1969, Massachusetts Senator Ted Kennedy pled guilty to leaving the scene of the crime following a car accident on the island of Chappaquidick.

Jody and Niki are joined by Maeve Higgins of the New York Times and the podcast Mothers of Invention to discuss the legacy of the scandal, the Kennedy family’s impunity, and how Mary Jo Kopechne has been erased from the story.

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Jul 26, 2020
Why Wyoming (1890) w/ Maeve Higgins
12:50

It’s July 23rd. On this day in 1890, Wyoming celebrated its entry into the United States. And it was doing so as a state that granted women the right to vote.

Jody and Niki are joined by Maeve Higgins of the New York Times and the podcast Mothers of Invention to discuss the suffrage movement on the American frontier.

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Jul 23, 2020
Small Step For (A?) Man (1969) w/ Maeve Higgins
15:13

It’s July 21st. On this day in 1969, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin rode the Apollo 11 lunar module down to the moon’s surface — while their pal Michael Collins stayed behind.

Jody and Niki are joined by Maeve Higgins of the New York Times and the podcast Mothers of Invention to discuss whether we have going-to-the-moon like projects anymore.

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Jul 21, 2020
Election Sunday: Convention Speeches (1980s)
24:50

It’s July 19th. In our first special Sunday show, Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss some notable convention speeches from the 1980s, and what makes for a good speech in the room and on TV. We’re doing special Sunday shows from now through Election Day.

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Jul 19, 2020
Riots Sweep NYC (1863)
15:28

It’s July 16th. On this day in 1863, riots are raging in New York City. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss how the unrest shifted from Civil War protest to a race riot, and what it says about the North’s role in the conflict.

Reminder! We are adding a third episode each week, starting this Sunday. Be sure to tune in, and spread the word.

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Jul 16, 2020
The Pandemic We Forget (1968) w/ Leon Neyfakh
16:56

It’s July 14th. On this day in 1968, reports of a new strain of influenza. The “Hong Kong Flu” would spread worldwide and kill upwards of a million people, including 50-100,00 in the United States.

Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer are joined by Leon Neyfakh, host of FIASCO and original host of Slow Burn, to discuss why we don’t remember this pandemic as part of the story of 1968.

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Jul 14, 2020
VP Gore (1992) w/ John Dickerson
17:15

It’s July 9th. On this day in 1992, Bill Clinton announced Al Gore as his selection to be his Vice Presidential running mate.

Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer are joined by John Dickerson of 60 Minutes to discuss why Clinton went with another young Southerner, and whether VP selections even matter.

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Jul 09, 2020
Welcome Alaska (1958) w/ John Dickerson
13:09

It’s July 7th. On this day in 1958, President Eisenhower signed the Alaska Statehood Act, bringing Alaska on as the 49th state.

Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer are joined by John Dickerson of 60 Minutes to discuss how states get added, and whether we think we will be adding a new one in this country anytime soon. John’s new book is “The Hardest Job In The Room.”

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Jul 07, 2020
The Man Who Didn't Sign The Declaration (1776) w/ John Dickerson
13:02

It’s July 2nd. Today, the story of John Dickinson, who attended the Continental Congress, was witness to the drafting of the Declaration of Independence, but abstained from voting for or signing the document.

Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer are joined by John Dickerson of 60 Minutes to discuss the story of the “forgotten founder.” John’s new book is “The Hardest Job In The Room.”

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Jul 02, 2020
Newspaper Strike! (1945) w/ Jane Coaston
10:57

It’s June 30th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer are joined by Jane Coaston of Vox to discuss the NYC newspaper strike of 1945. There were eight daily newspapers serving millions and millions each day. When delivery workers went on strike, it revealed a lot about the media environment, labor, and more.

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Jun 30, 2020
The Great Reunion (1913) w/ Jane Coaston
11:47

It’s June 25th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer are joined by Jane Coaston of Vox to discuss “The Great Reunion” of 1913. 50 years after the Battle of Gettysburg, Civil War veterans returned to swap stories and shape the story of how America remembers that conflict.

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Jun 25, 2020
Resurrection City (1968) w/ Jane Coaston
13:26

It’s June 23rd. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer are joined by Jane Coaston of Vox to discuss “Resurrection City,” an encampment that occupied the National Mall in Washington DC for six weeks in the summer of 1968.

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Jun 23, 2020
Juneteenth (1865)
11:09

It’s June 18th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss the history of Juneteenth — which is tomorrow, June 19th! It started as a Texas commemoration of the end of slavery, and has slowly spread throughout the country, and appears to be on its way to becoming an official holiday.

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Jun 18, 2020
Getting The New Deal Done (1933)
14:20

It’s June 16th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss the passage of the first raft of legislation that would come to be known as The New Deal. History remembers the entire era as one of sweeping reform, but there was traditional politics at play in its passage, too.

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Jun 16, 2020
One Of Those Days (1963) w/ Josh Levin
16:56

It’s June 11th. We’re breaking format a bit today. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer are joined by Slate’s Josh Levin to talk about a day in 1963 where four massive events all happened together. Alabama Governor George Wallace tried to block two black students from entering a building at the University of Alabama. In response, President Kennedy federalized the Alabama national guard. That same night, civil rights activist Medgar Evers was assassinated. And in Vietnam, Buddhist monk Thích Quảng Đức set himself on fire in a Saigon street.

Josh Levin is the host of the latest season of the Slate podcast “Slow Burn.” Listen now!

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Jun 11, 2020
David Duke The Democrat (1988)
15:54

It’s June 9th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer are joined by Slate’s Josh Levin to talk about neo-nazi David Duke, who ran for the Democratic presidential nomination in 1988, and continued to seek office throughout the 80s and 90s. Duke is the subject of the latest season of the excellent podcast “Slow Burn,” hosted by Levin.

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Jun 09, 2020
Shirley Shows Up (1972)
13:05

It’s June 4th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss the California democratic debate of 1972, which features Shirley Chisholm — the first woman to appear on a presidential debate stage. She was also the first African-American woman elected to Congress.

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Jun 04, 2020
The Steel Strike Showdown (1952)
14:09

It’s June 2nd. Before the show, some words about the protests and violence over the weekend. Then, Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss a massive steel strike in 1952, and the way it pitted President Truman, unions, and the Supreme Court against each other.

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Jun 02, 2020
Ain't I A Woman (1851) w/ Akilah Hughes
14:02

It’s May 28th. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Akilah Hughes (What A Day podcast) discuss Sojourner Truth’s famous “Ain’t I a Woman” speech. It tells us a lot about how myths are made, and historical figures are flattened over time.

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May 28, 2020
Hands Across America (1986)
12:43

It’s May 26th. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Akilah Hughes (What A Day podcast) discuss “Hands Across America,” the charity event that tried to get Americans to line up from coast to coast in order to raise awareness about homelessness and hunger.

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May 26, 2020
Treason! (1807)
12:20

It’s May 21st. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Joanne Freeman (Backstory Radio) discuss the treason trial of Aaron Burr. It pitted Burr against Thomas Jefferson, for whom he had served as VP, and posed lots of questions about what our young democracy would look like.

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May 21, 2020
The Caning Of Sumner (1856)
12:45

It’s May 19th. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Joanne Freeman (Backstory) discuss one of the more notorious incidents in U.S. political history — when Senator Charles Sumner was severely beaten with a cane by a political opponent inside the Congressional chamber.

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May 19, 2020
Ron Paul Bows Out (2012)
13:25

It’s May 14th. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Harry Enten of CNN discuss the career of Ron Paul. He ran in several Republican primaries, capturing a part of the electorate that would come to play a big role in future elections on both sides of the aisle.

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May 14, 2020
The Killer Ds (2003)
13:00

It’s May 12th. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Harry Enten of CNN discuss the incident where over 50 Texas legislators fled across the boarder to Oklahoma, to avoid having to vote on a redistricting proposal.

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May 12, 2020
Coya Come Home (1958)
12:39

It’s May 7th. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Harry Enten of CNN discuss the “Coya Come Home” letter — a public letter written by the husband of MN representative Coya Knutson, demanding that she leave office and return to domestic life.

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May 07, 2020
The Forgotten Crash (1893)
11:51

It’s May 5th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss the crash of 1893. It was the result of a rapidly changing economy, heavy debt, and slow-footed governmental response. And it ushered in a new era in American politics.

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May 05, 2020
Bernie Jumps In (2015)
12:01

It’s April 30th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss the moment Bernie Sanders entered the 2016 Democratic primary. He was relatively unknown, but the issues he was championing were already gaining momentum.

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Apr 30, 2020
The East Coast Dims Out (1942)
11:05

It’s April 28th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer talk about the “dim outs” of 1942, when businesses and residents along the east coast were asked to turn off their lights to protect from enemy submarines. It’s a moment of collective effort during WWII that has lots of lessons for today.

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Apr 28, 2020
Howard Stern For Governor (1994)
11:30

It’s April 23rd. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Alexis Coe (You Never Forget Your First) discuss when shock-jock Howard Stern secured the Libertarian Party nomination for New York Governor. His platform included just four items.

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Apr 23, 2020
Adams Doesn't Want To Be VP (1789)
10:26

It’s April 21st. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Alexis Coe (You Never Forget Your First) discuss America’s first Vice President, John Adams. He was inaugurated nine days before George Washington, and was complaining about playing second fiddle from day one.

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Apr 21, 2020
Letter from a Birmingham Jail (1963)
10:11

It’s April 16th. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Jamelle Bouie of the New York Times discuss Martin Luther King’s Letter from a Birmingham Jail, in which he rejected calls to go slow and appease moderates in his civil rights efforts.

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Apr 16, 2020
The Lincoln Coup (1865)
09:52

It’s April 14th. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Jamelle Bouie of the New York Times discuss the assasination of Abraham Lincoln, and what parts of the story history tends not to consider.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Apr 14, 2020
The Amendment That Changed The Senate (1913)
09:56

It’s April 9th. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Jamelle Bouie of the New York Times discuss the passage of the 17th amendment. It changed the way that senators are elected, and the fundamental mechanics of our democracy.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Apr 09, 2020
Obama's "Bitter Clinger" Comments (2008)
11:03

It’s April 7th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss the scandal that erupted after candidate Barack Obama made comments at a fundraiser ahead of the Pennsylvania primary. His remarks about “bitter” voters who “cling to guns and religion,” and the controversy that erupted, in many ways previewed the politics of the next decade.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Apr 07, 2020
Wilson Gets The Flu (1919)
08:40

It’s April 2nd. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss the Influenza pandemic of 1918-1919. In the spring of 1919, President Wilson got sick on his way to Paris for talks to bring a close to World War I.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Apr 02, 2020
LBJ Isn't Running (1968)
09:54

It’s March 31st. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss President Johnson’s surprise announcement that he isn’t running for re-election, and how politics can be upended in a tumultuous year like 1968.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Mar 31, 2020
Introduction: This Day In Esoteric Political History
02:50

This Day In Esoteric Political History is hosted by Jody Avirgan, with historian Nicole Hemmer of Columbia. Our researcher and producer is Jacob Feldman.

Find us online at thisdaypod.com. Follow us on Twitter and Instagram @thisdaypod

This Day in Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Mar 23, 2020