Jack Kelly is a noted author who writes both novels and nonfiction. His most recent book, Gunpowder--Alchemy, Bombards, and Pyrotechnics: The History of the Explosive That Changed the World, was released in 2005.
Organized crime? Mafia? A lot of people, including J. Edgar Hoover, said it was mere folklore—until one day in 1957 an alert New York state trooper set up a roadblock in a small town. What followed was low comedy with high consequences.
During a single decade Chicago invented modern organized crime and saw John Dillinger, the most famous of the hit-and-run freelancers, die in front of one of its movie houses. For those who know where to look, quiet streets and sad buildings still tell the story of an incandescent era.
Panamanians gather in the streets after the riots in 1964. (Michael Rougier/Time Life Pictures/Getty Images)
Few Americans know that January 9 is a national holiday in Panama, and even fewer know why. Today is Martyrs’ Day—commemorating an outbreak of violence between Panama and the United… Read more >>
. . . Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. That mantra, a Supreme Court justice once estimated, is familiar to two billion people around the world, mostly from its regular recitation in television crime dramas. Of all the rights guaranteed under our Constitution, no… Read more >>
Martin Luther King Jr. addresses a crowd from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial on Aug. 28, 1963.
On this day in 1963, at a mass gathering on the Mall in Washington, D.C., Martin Luther King, Jr., gave a speech that would become a beacon of the civil rights movement and that historians would… Read more >>