How did a figure like Hitler emerge so quickly and so forcefully onto the world stage? How, in what was thought to be an enlightened and civilized society, did such demagoguery manage to incite an army to commit one of history's greatest atrocities?

Alice Collins Plebuch

Unearthing family history -- one saliva sample at a time.

This hour: how low-cost DNA testing helped spawn an industry and, with it, a new wave of genealogical sleuthing.

Ancestry.com, 23andMe, Family Tree DNA -- how far are you willing to go and how much are you willing to spend to better understand your roots? 

Mike Dunphy.

She grew up knowing more about "farming than feminism." Now she serves as leader of the oldest women's foundation in the country. 

This hour: a conversation with Teresa Younger, President and CEO of the Ms. Foundation for Women.

It's the fourth installment in Connecticut Public Radio's “Making Her Story” series highlighting prominent women with ties to Connecticut. 

Francisco Osorio / flickr

According to mytho-historical accounts, the ancient Amazons wore pants while riding into battle. But the trend this tribe of warrior women set was short lived. For nearly two millennia after their demise, the notion of women wearing pants was steeped in controversy.

Library of Congress

Chances are you’ve never heard of Constance Baker Motley.

Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks, and Thurgood Marshall are all known for their historic work in the Civil Rights Movement, but Motley -- who was right there with them -- isn’t. 

"The Second Amendment."

If you've lived in America, you've heard those words spoken with feeling.

The feeling may have been forceful, even vehement.

"Why? The Second Amendment, that's why."

The same words can be heard uttered in bitterness, as if in blame.

"Why? The Second Amendment, that's why."

Or then again, with reverence, an invocation of the sacred — rather like "the Second Coming."

Green Fuse Films Inc.

On the one hand, obituaries are an amalgam of a bunch of different kinds of journalism: they're feature stories, they're profile pieces, they cover history, and they're hard news too.

On the other hand, the subject is always... dead.

yardenxanthe / flickr

Slime is not something we often think about. But there are plenty of reasons why that should probably change: From the theory that life on Earth may have have first emerged from a primordial ooze, to the current slime-making craze that's sweeping the internet.

Library of Congress

This hour: As Black History Month draws to a close, we draw attention to a Connecticut native who was integral in the campaign for civil rights -- Judge Constance Baker Motley.

Coming up, we take an in-depth look at Judge Motley's life and talk about her legacy both inside and outside of the courtroom.

Plus: Suzan-Lori Parks’ Father Comes Home From the Wars Parts 1, 2 & 3 opens at Yale Repertory Theatre next month.

We learn more about the production and find out how the Theatre’s ongoing WILL POWER! initiative is exposing students to the arts. 

Babe Ruth in his first year with the New York Yankees in 1920.
Paul Thompson / Public Domain

Seventy years after Babe Ruth's death, a long-lost radio interview with the baseball legend has turned up in the archives of Cheshire Academy, a private school in Connecticut. It's part of a collection of interviews donated two decades ago by sports announcer Joe Hasel, an alumnus of the school.

Josh Nilaya / WNPR

Take a look at at any early 20th century photograph and you'll see them: Hats! From Beavers and Bowlers to bonnets and baseball caps, for hundreds of years hats were the essential accessory for any fashionable and upstanding citizen.

Eleanor Roosevelt (second from left) and Lorena Hickok (far right)
Franklin D. Roosevelt Library / Wikimedia Commons

Eleanor Roosevelt was a woman with a huge historical footprint—First Lady, first U.S. delegate to the United Nations General Assembly. She was dubbed “The First Lady of the World” by Harry Truman. 

But how much is known about Eleanor’s personal life beyond the politics and activism? This hour, we sit down with Connecticut author Amy Bloom. Her new book, White Houses, is a fictional novel that explores Eleanor’s real-life romantic relationship with female journalist Lorena Hickok.

Christel Øverland Preteni / flickr creative commons

humor = tragedy + time

Okay, but then the logical next question is: How much time?

If it's okay, at this point, to joke about, say, The Spanish Inquisition... what about, for instance, the Holocaust? Or AIDS? September 11th? The #MeToo movement?


Charles Bulfinch / Creative Commons

Legend holds that years after the the Hartford Convention, a visitor from the South was touring the Old State House and asked to be shown the room where the Convention met. Ushered into the Senate chamber, the southerner looked at the crimson in the face of George Washington in the Gilbert Stuart portrait hanging here and said, "I'll be damned if he's got the blush off yet."

A bike from Ascari Bicycles in Brooklyn, NY.
NAHBS 2018

Handmade bicycle builders and enthusiasts gather in Hartford this weekend for the North American Handmade Bicycle Show. It's the first time the show has been held in New England.