May I submit UTOPIAN TURTLETOP?

In 1955, while attempting to find a name for their hugely anticipated new car, Ford decided to approach the most unlikely of people to assist in the matter: Pulitzer Prize-winning poet, Marianne Moore. Moore, who was known by the wife of one Robert Young, an employee in the car manufacturer’s marketing research department, was soon

I embrace you with all my heart

On November 7th 1913, in French Algeria, author Albert Camus was born. The second son of Lucien and Catherine Camus, he was just 11-months-old when his father was killed in action during The Battle of the Marne; his mother, partially deaf and illiterate, then raised her boys in extreme poverty with the help of his heavy-handed

A book is a sneeze

In September of 1952,  a few weeks before the publication of Charlotte’s Web—the now-classic tale of a pig, Wilbur, who becomes friends with a heroic spider named Charlotte—its author, E. B. White, was asked to explain why he wrote the book by his editor at Harper & Row, Ursula Nordstrom. On the 29th of that month,

She was the music heard faintly at the edge of sound

Detective novelist Raymond Chandler‘s wife of 30 years, Cissy, died on December 12th, 1954 after a long and painful battle with pulmonary fibrosis during which the author wrote The Long Goodbye. As can be seen in the following touching and affectionate letter, written to friend Leonard Russell shortly after Cissy’s passing, Raymond was deeply affected by the loss

Don’t ever call me a liberal

Today would have been the 90th birthday of Norman Mailer, a Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist and journalist who also happened to write some enormously entertaining letters in his lifetime. Below are just three of the many thousands. The first was sent to one of his writing idols, Ernest Hemingway, along with a copy of The Deer Park;

America is like that second kind of Christmas

In November of 1959, as a shocked American public were hit with the news that a number of their favourite quiz shows had in fact been rigged for some time, author John Steinbeck wrote the following letter to his friend, politician Adlai Stevenson, and spoke of his concern at such a morally bankrupt turn of

Eddie’s House

After his death in 1959, following an illustrious, 70-year career during which he designed upwards of 1000 structures and completed over 500 buildings, Frank Lloyd Wright was recognised by the AIA as the “greatest American architect of all time.” He was, by all accounts, a true master of his craft. His smallest and perhaps most unusual project came in

The Heinlein Maneuver

In 1962, as he gave his Guest of Honor speech at the World Science Fiction Convention in Chicago, science fiction author Theodore Sturgeon delivered the following anecdote about writer’s block and fellow novelist, Robert Heinlein: “I went into a horrible dry spell one time. It was a desperate dry spell and an awful lot depended on me

I shall always be with you

On June 8th of 1950, nine months after being arrested by the Czech secret police on suspicion of leading a plot to overthrow the Communist regime, 48-year-old socialist politician Milada Horáková was found guilty of “high treason” following a show trial that was broadcast on national radio, and in which she remained defiant. On the 27th of that

This is my son. He speaks Greek.

In 1957, at 18 years of age, future billionaire and founder of CNN, Ted Turner, informed his father that he would be majoring in Classics after being inspired by a professor at Brown University. His father was furious to say the least, and responded to his son’s announcement with the following despairing letter — a letter which Ted

Yours in distress, Alan

Alan Turing was a human being of exceptional intelligence — a mathematical genius — and worked as one of the leading code-breakers during World War II. He is also considered to be the “father of modern computing” thanks to his pioneering work in the field of computer science. In 1950, before the term “Artificial Intelligence” had been coined, he posed

If I’m not a writer then I’m nothing

In October of 1949, while working in public relations at General Electric, 27-year-old aspiring writer Kurt Vonnegut sold his first story to Collier’s; just over a year later, he quit said job and began life as a freelance writer. The following two letters, both from Vonnegut, offer an intriguing glimpse into his mind during that period

They pay brisk money for this crap?

Writing to his agent, H. N. Swanson, in 1953, detective novelist Raymond Chandler takes a break from penning what would be his final novel, Playback, and parodies science fiction writing — a genre which, judging by the letter’s final sentence in particular, he had little time for. Also amusing is the appearance of something, or

He’s here, living and vivid and unforgettable forever

On September 30th of 1955, less than a month before his most celebrated turn as Jim Stark in Rebel Without a Cause graced the screens, 24-year-old James Dean died shortly after his Porsche collided with another car at high speed. His funeral was held nine days later in Fairmount, not far from the farm on which he

Airman Thompson

In 1956, not long after enlisting with the United States Air Force, 19-year-old Hunter S. Thompson landed a job as Sports Editor for The Command Courier, Eglin Air Force Base‘s newspaper, and immediately began to ruffle feathers. The memo below was sent the next year, at which point his exaggerated reporting and rebellious attitude were causing

DO NOT be so bloody vulnerable

It was in 1935 that movie stars Noel Coward and Marlene Dietrich first spoke, thanks to an unexpected phone call from Dietrich in which she complimented him on his starring role in The Scoundrel. For the next 38 years, until Coward’s death, they remained close friends and wrote regularly, the topic of discussion often Dietrich’s

A pantomime Aslan would be blasphemy

December, 1959: C. S. Lewis writes the following letter to BBC producer Lance Sieveking and praises the recent radio adaptation of his Narnia story, The Magician’s Nephew. He then clearly states that he is “absolutely opposed” to the idea of a TV adaptation of the novels and that, to him, a pantomime Aslan would be “blasphemy.”

Hitchcock for Bond?

In September of 1959, as he began to assemble a cast and crew for the first James Bond movie, Ian Fleming sent the following telegram to fellow novelist Eric Ambler, and asked him to find out whether his friend, Alfred Hitchcock, would like to direct. Hitchcock, who had recently wowed audiences with his action-packed thriller,

C. S. Lewis on Writing

Considering he wrote The Chronicles of Narnia, one of the most popular collections of children’s literature of all time, it’s no real surprise that C. S. Lewis received thousands of letters from youngsters during his career. What’s admirable is that he attempted to reply to each and every one of those pieces of fan mail,

You children write illiterate letters

In 1958, a schoolboy named Robert Leifert wrote to the author and humourist, James Thurber, and asked for some assistance with a school project. Sadly for Robert (or luckily for Robert, depending on your viewpoint) it seems he caught Thurber on a bad day, and before long the youngster was the proud owner of the following delightfully

I have no ancestors of that gifted people

In 1938, some months after the initial publication of The Hobbit, J. R. R. Tolkien and his British publisher, Stanley Unwin, opened talks with Rütten & Loening, a Berlin-based publishing house who were keen to translate the novel for the German market. All was going well until, in July, they wrote to Tolkien and asked for proof of

A book is like a man

During the nine months of 1951 that saw him working on his novel, East of Eden, author John Steinbeck began each day of writing by penning, in his notebook, a brief letter to his editor and good friend, Pascal “Pat” Covici. Early-1952, with the book finished, Steinbeck wrote him a final letter — a dedication to Covici in

She doesn’t answer the phone

In 1951, E. B. White — the novelist responsible for, most notably, Charlotte’s Web and Stuart Little — was accused by the ASPCA of not paying his dog tax and, as a result, “harboring” an unlicensed dog. He responded by way of the following delightful letter. (Source: Letters of a Nation; Image: E. B. White with

I am a lousy copywriter

British-born David Ogilvy was one of the original, and greatest, “ad men.” In 1948, he started what would eventually be known as Ogilvy & Mather, the Manhattan-based advertising agency that has since been responsible for some of the world’s most iconic ad campaigns, and in 1963 he even wrote Confessions of an Advertising Man, the

Nothing good gets away

John Steinbeck, born in 1902, was one of the most acclaimed authors of his generation, responsible for a body of work that boasts, most notably, The Grapes of Wrath, East of Eden, and Of Mice and Men—all classics which have been read and adored by many millions in all corners of the globe, and which

A flabby mass of clichés

Back in 1950, Alfred Hitchcock hired Oscar-nominated screenwriter Raymond Chandler to pen the script for his next project, Strangers on a Train — a thriller based on Patricia Highsmith‘s novel of the same name. Almost immediately their ideas clashed, and before long their working relationship deteriorated beyond repair, apparently culminating with Chandler remarking loudly one

Scratching the Back of the Hand that Feeds You

In December of 1958, advertising executive Leo Burnett — a hugely influential force in the industry who had a hand in creating, amongst many other things, the Jolly Green Giant, Tony the Tiger, and Marlboro Man — sent the following memo to all staff within his agency, and reminded them of their unwritten duty to at least try

I would like to get out of this world

Back in 1950, looking to publicise a new exhibition named “Conquest of Space,” the Hayden Planetarium in New York publicly announced that they were accepting reservations for the first trip into space, whenever that may be. Unsurprisingly, in the coming weeks and months applications from all corners began to arrive at the museum, from would-be

Pornography is an attitude and an intention

Ever since it was first published in France in 1955, Lolita — Vladimir Nabokov‘s novel about a middle-aged man’s obsession with, and seduction of, a young teenage girl — has, unsurprisingly, courted controversy. The following letter was written by the author in 1956 to a friend named Morris Bishop, and offers in its third paragraph

Dear Princeton Law School

Early-1957, Harvey Wax — a young man hoping to one day become a lawyer — sent an application letter to Princeton University‘s Law School and crossed his fingers. A short time later, he received the following rejection letter. It never fails to amuse me. It’s worth noting that Mr. Wax subsequently applied to Harvard’s Law

The delusion

A grieving father named Robert S. Marcus — then-Political Director of the World Jewish Congress — was the recipient of the following letter of condolence in 1950, not long after his son succumbed to polio. It was written by Albert Einstein. Transcript follows. Image courtesy of On Being. Image: On Being Transcript February 12, 1950

THE INFERNAL MACHINE

In July of 1954, just a few months after the release of Live and Let Die, Ian Fleming wrote the following letter to his publishers, Jonathan Cape, and suggested some names for the next installment in the James Bond series. “The Infernal Machine” was named as his favourite, but clearly not for long. At the foot

Please ask Ike to bring Elvis back

The following pleading letter is just one of thousands sent by desperate fans of Elvis Presley to the White House in the late-1950s, in an effort to have the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll returned to the United States from Germany, where he was posted with the U.S. Army. This particular missive was sent by

For your confidential information

Ian Fleming caused quite a stir in 1957 with the release of From Russia with Love, due in no small part to what seemed to be the death of James Bond at the novel’s close. In fact, so concerned were 007 fans that the author quickly amassed thousands of worried letters. Ever the storyteller, Fleming

Handy Nervous Breakdown Avoider

Irving Hoffman was a busy man in the 1950s and as a Broadway publicist, columnist for the Hollywood Reporter and cartoonist, he reportedly wrote and received hundreds of letters each week to and from all manner of people. However, he only had so much time. For those occasions when a personally written reply just wasn’t possible, Hoffman instead

I have no personal knowledge of computers

June, 1956: Co-founder of Hewlett-Packard, Bill Hewlett, writes to then-Provost at Stanford and the man widely considered to be one of the “Fathers of Silicon Valley,” Fred Terman, “I have no personal knowledge of computers nor does anyone in our organization have any appreciable knowledge.” Terman was a member of the US Army Signal Corps‘ advisory board

You are directly responsible for the loss of our son’s life

The following angry letter was sent to then-U.S. President Harry Truman in 1953 by the father of George Banning, a young soldier who had recently been killed whilst serving in the Korean War. When Truman passed away 20 years later, this letter was discovered in his desk along with Banning’s posthumously awarded Purple Heart. Transcript follows.

You are an “eight ulcer man on four ulcer pay.”

On the evening of December 5th, 1950, a carefully selected 3500-strong audience filled Washington’s Constitution Hall to witness a singing performance by Margaret Truman, the only child of then-U.S. President Harry Truman (also in attendance), and, despite the generally held consensus that her singing talents were lacking, a wave of positive reaction greeted her after the

May I suggest that Mr. Bond be armed with a revolver?

Late-May of 1956, James Bond author Ian Fleming received a politely critical letter from a firearms expert named Geoffrey Boothroyd. It began: I have, by now, got rather fond of Mr. James Bond. I like most of the things about him, with the exception of his rather deplorable taste in firearms. In particular, I dislike

I am volunteering for the “Man in Space” program

On May 5th of 1961, Alan Shepard became the second person — and first American — to enter space, just three weeks after Yuri Gagarin orbited Earth. The following amazing letter was written by Shepard to his parents two years before, and marks the very first announcement of his plans to volunteer for the “Man

I want us to break up the act

At their peak during the late-60s/70s, Morecambe and Wise were arguably Britain’s most celebrated comedy act. The duo regularly attracted the biggest names in showbiz to appear on their show (Elton John, The Beatles and Tom Jones, to name but a few); the Morecambe & Wise Show Christmas Special of 1977 famously pulled in a record-breaking audience

Jim is fundamentally a respectable citizen

Two letters today, both of which concern Jim Morrison, frontman of The Doors, but each at different stages of his tragically short life. The first was lovingly penned by Morrison in 1954, then just 10 years of age, and is an incredibly sweet letter of thanks to his mother for having helped him “face all the

Being an actor is the loneliest thing in the world

A dispirited James Dean hand-wrote the following note as he sat in a restaurant in 1952, months after moving to New York in a bid to further his acting career. Full-time auditioning in the Big Apple clearly left Dean feeling a little isolated. Two years later, Dean would reluctantly move to L.A. to shoot East

Scientists have a special responsibility

On the 5th of April, 1955, Nobel laureate Bertrand Russell sent the following letter to Albert Einstein along with a rough draft of what would soon be known as the Russell-Einstein Manifesto – a written warning to the world’s population on the dangers of nuclear weapons, and a plea for all leaders to avoid war when faced with

Love, Buddy

From November of 1956 we have an endearing letter from then-20-year-old Charles Holley; the highly influential performer – better known to most as Buddy Holly – who tragically died in a plane crash exactly 52 years ago, on February 3rd, 1959. The letter was written in Nashville where Buddy and band were recording after recently being signed by

In search of a Komodo dragon

Between the years of 1954 and 1963, in what was his first major presenting job at the BBC, David Attenborough fronted Zoo Quest, a documentary series that saw him traipse around the globe in search of various animals; the objective being to bring them back to London Zoo where they would then be homed. Viewers

It’s all too exciting

23rd August, 1957: With his wife, Felicia, currently many miles away visiting family in Chile, an overjoyed Leonard Bernstein writes her a letter and reports on the successful trial run of West Side Story in Washington, D.C. The composer’s relief is almost palpable, his genuine excitement infectious, as he recalls positive reviews; the regular attendance of dignitaries;

A drunken evening with Groucho Marx

On December 17th of 1957, having recently attended the world premiere of Peyton Place, the ever-witty Groucho Marx sent the following brief letter to the movie’s producer, Jerry Wald. Essentially a congratulatory note of thanks, Groucho’s unflagging sense of humour shines through as, after first mentioning the ongoing Leonard Ewing Scott murder case, he proceeds

Your products are stronger than the atomic bomb

On August 6th of 1945, at 08:15hrs, the Enola Gay B-29 bomber dropped an atomic bomb over the Japanese city of Hiroshima. 43 seconds later, it detonated. Tragically, very little survived the explosion, including many thousands of the city’s inhabitants and countless buildings, but the letter seen below–sent five years later by the manager of

Playboy #1

In November of 1955, collector John Basil aimed for the top and wrote to Playboy‘s founder, Hugh Hefner, and offered him $5.00 in a bid to get his hands on the only issue he didn’t own: Playboy #1; originally published December, 1953, and starring Marilyn Monroe as centrefold. Below is the kind reply he received a

Wind up the world the other way…

From the pen of the late-Charlie ‘Bird’ Parker – a veritable musical genius and one of the world’s greatest, most innovative saxophonists – comes an apologetic but undeniably poetic handwritten love letter, penned to long-term lover Chan Woods. Parker’s adult life was a turbulent one, his musical brilliance often affected by his addiction to both

Wow! Am I fucked up

On April 8th of 1954, less than two years before his untimely death at the age of 24, promising young actor James Dean left New York and headed for Los Angeles in order to prepare for his first starring role in a Hollywood movie, as Cal Trask in East of Eden. The change of scene was

“I told you so!”

In October of 1945, an article titled “Extra-Terrestrial Relays — Can Rocket Stations Give Worldwide Radio Coverage?” was published in Wireless World magazine, in which world-renowned science fiction author Arthur C. Clarke discussed the idea that, in the near future, artificial satellites placed in a geostationary orbit (now sometimes known as a “Clarke Orbit”) could be used

A tomb of the mind and a dungeon of the body

Deafblind author Helen Keller spent her lifetime campaigning on behalf of various causes, in particular the American Foundation for the Blind. It was therefore with great satisfaction for Keller that, in 1950, a committee specifically dedicated to the study and support of the deafblind population was set up within the AFB, and in typical fashion Keller immediately set about

This letter opens it wide for any con man to destroy us

Today, a humorously paranoid letter from late-author Ernest Hemingway in 1955, to a representative of his bank: Morgan Guaranty Trust Company. Hemingway was clearly worried about potential con men ringing the bank in his name, and therefore proposed a fresh identification process to foil any such attempts. The letter ends with a post-script that was

The Little Rock Nine

On September 25th of 1957, under the watchful eye of the U.S. Army’s 101st Airborne Division, nine black teenagers nervously entered the previously all-white Little Rock High School to become students. A similar but unguarded attempt weeks earlier had been alarmingly unsuccessful, and even this subsequent military intervention – ordered by President Eisenhower no less

Come on now Marlon, put up your dukes and write!

Late-1957, with his newly released novel attracting near-universal praise from critics, Beat author Jack Kerouac aimed for the sky and wrote the following passionate letter to Marlon Brando in an effort to bring his work to the big screen. The novel in question was On the Road, and Kerouac — desperate to capitalise on the incredibly

Walt Disney’s 25 million reasons to re-release Snow White

Here’s a quick, easily digestible business lesson, brought to you by Walt Disney. It was 1952, and a recent visit by Walt to a local hospital had inspired one of the young patients to subsequently send him an inquisitive letter. The child, Blaine, simply wanted to know why Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs – originally

My position concerning God is that of an agnostic

In 1954, in a much-debated letter we featured here back in October, Einstein wrote, ‘The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weakness, the Bible a collection of honorable, but still purely primitive, legends which are nevertheless pretty childish’. Today we have another of Einstein’s letters, again concerning

And the answer was Aslan

In 1958, after reading and thoroughly enjoying The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C. S. Lewis, a young fan by the name of Janet wrote to the author to let him know. To her surprise, Lewis – also a renowned Christian apologist – responded. Below is his handwritten reply, in which he thanks

I’m trying very hard to be a regular soldier

It was 1959, and not long ago the unspeakable had happened: Elvis Presley had been called up for national service. Now stationed in Friedberg, Germany, many miles from home, he was finding it difficult to cope with the constant stream of mail reaching him from all corners of the globe; many of his fans still

I can’t remember ever being without you

In 1952, Ronald Reagan and Nancy Davis married. In 1972, prior to their 20th anniversary, Reagan — then Governor of California — wrote the following letter to his wife. Transcript follows. Source Transcript State of CaliforniaGOVERNOR’S OFFICESACRAMENTO 95814 RONALD REAGANGOVERNOR My Darling Wife This note is to warn you of a diabolical plot entered into

Burroughs has gone insane

Early 1957, Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg travelled to Tangier to join William Burroughs; their mission to assemble and edit Burroughs’ many fragments of work to form a ‘readable’ Naked Lunch manuscript. Kerouac arrived early and, during a break from socialising with Burroughs, the ‘old familiar lunatic’, wrote to Lucien Carr and his wife Francesca in order to update them on

For your future information…

An offer of $600 from Reader’s Digest to reproduce one of his stories elicited the following response from Ernest Hemingway in November of 1952. Just two months previous, on September 1st, a week prior to its release in book-form, Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea was published in its entirety in LIFE Magazine, and over

Respectfully yours, Clint Eastwood

On October 26th, 1954, 24-year-old aspiring actor Clint Eastwood — yet to make his debut on the big screen — penned the following extremely polite letter to Billy Wilder and warned the director of his poor performance during an on-screen interview; footage he feared Wilder would use in lieu of a screen test. The week

What does all this stuff about flying saucers amount to?

It wasn’t until 1947, following an apparent mid-flight sighting by respected pilot Kenneth Arnold, that the American public were introduced to the term ‘Flying Saucer‘. Other sightings were reported almost instantly, and within weeks the whole world was awash with stories of contact from other planets. Five years later, following another intense bout of activity

President Einstein

On November 17th of 1952, following the death of Israel’s first President, then-Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion decided to offer the job to Albert Einstein by way of the following letter via the Embassy of Israel in Washington. As we now know, the offer was declined; the response can also be read below. Less than three years later, Einstein passed away. Transcript follows. (Source:

You gave me a valuable gift: you took me seriously

During an illustrious career which saw him win multiple awards and worldwide recognition, Theodore Geisel published over 60 books, the majority of which he wrote and illustrated under the pen name Dr. Seuss. Despite his busy schedule, and just months after the release of The Cat in the Hat, Geisel set aside time to write

The Ax

On November 30th, 1954, a character by the name of Charlotte Braun made her debut in the much-loved comic strip, Peanuts. Loud, brash and opinionated, “Good Ol’ Charlotte Braun” quickly annoyed the strip’s readers and on February 1st, 1955 — after just 10 sightings — she appeared in a storyline for the last time. 45

It’s with regret, Mr. Warhol…

As we all sit back in our chairs, bathing in hindsight, the temptation to laugh and cringe at Alfred Barr‘s decision to turn down a piece of art from Andy Warhol is almost overwhelming. But then it wasn’t until the ’60s that Warhol began producing the Pop Art he’s now famous for, and in fact he

The birth of Roger Thornhill

Late theatre critic and arts editor Otis L. Guernsey wrote the following letter to Alfred Hitchcock in 1957. In it, he effectively handed over the rights to a movie idea he had already suggested to the director in the early 1950s, the treatment of which Hitchcock subsequently bought from Guernsey for $10,000. This ‘fake masterspy’

Whatever you do, don’t touch his hair

On January 8th, 1957, a press conference confirmed millions of music lovers’ worst fears: that Elvis Presley would soon be drafted into military service. For the next 14 months – at which point his induction took place – countless Presley fans became consumed with panic and spent much of their time speculating about the King

The Johnny Appleseed of LSD

Sandoz Pharmaceuticals – the company who first synthesised LSD – sent this letter to ‘Captain’ Alfred Hubbard in 1955 along with forms enabling him to clear 43 boxes of LSD-25 ampules through customs. Hubbard (a.k.a. The Johnny Appleseed of LSD) was an intriguingly mysterious man who, due to his relentless promotion of the drug, is

I cannot swagger out in these shirts

Whilst working at the public relations department of Levi Strauss, a Mr. Art Roth received the following letter from Cary Grant in 1958. In it, Grant thanks Roth for the shirts delivered to his home and then politely makes it known that the designs are far too offbeat for his conservative tastes. A great letter,

Vote for me I will help you out

When 13 years of age and a pupil at Perkins School for the Blind, John Beaulieu wrote the following Braille letter to then President Dwight D. Eisenhower after winning a mock stump speech contest in school. With assistance from his teacher – she wrote out the words above the Braille – John’s letter even illicited

The word God is the product of human weakness

In January of 1954, just a year before his death, Albert Einstein wrote the following letter to philosopher Erik Gutkind after reading his book, “Choose Life: The Biblical Call to Revolt,” and made known his views on religion. Apparently Einstein had only read the book due to repeated recommendation by their mutual friend Luitzen Egbertus

A striptease with clothes on

The following letter, composed May 16, 1956, was written by the editor of the La Crosse Register – a newspaper published by the Catholic Diocese of La Crosse – in response to an Elvis gig which took place in the area’s Sawyer Auditorium just two nights previous. It was sent to then Director of the

I sure miss Mr Hardy

Until their final film in 1950, much-loved comedy act Laurel & Hardy appeared in over 100 movies together. Following a number of strokes Oliver Hardy passed away August 7th, 1957, and as a result Stan Laurel decided never to act again. From that point until his own death in 1965, Stan endeavoured to personally respond

Do Not Lose This Letter

At the height of the Cold War in 1957, the following, horrific letter was issued to key personnel working on the biological weapons program (BW) at Fort Detrick, this particular example having landed in the lap of someone within the Atmospheric Sciences division. In a nutshell, anyone who received a letter similar to this one

All of this is nonsense

Leave It To Beaver was an American sitcom which ran from 1957 through to 1963. During a particular episode of the show’s second season, Theodore Cleaver brought a letter home from school, written by his principal. For a fleeting moment as Theodore’s father reads the letter, the text is visible on screen. Thankfully (courtesy of

TO A TOP SCIENTIST

In 1957, following the announcement that the Soviets had trumped the U.S. with the successful launch of Sputnik 1, Australian schoolboy Denis Cox sent this urgent letter to the Royal Australian Air Force’s Rocket Range at Woomera, in an attempt to enter Australia into the Space Race. Much to Denis’ dismay, his letter, addressed to

17 million Negroes cannot wait for the hearts of men to change

Jackie Robinson was an exceptionally talented baseball player. In fact, such was his talent that on April 15th, 1947 he obliterated an unwritten policy within baseball that had, until that point, prevented players of African descent from joining teams in either the minor or major leagues. After his baseball career ended, Robsinson took an active