Subscribe to the OSS Weekly Newsletter!

Would Dorothy and the Cowardly Lion have Passed an Emerald City Entrance Drug Test?

20 Mar 2017

Not if it tested for morphine, as long as we let L. Frank Baum get away with a little poetic license. In the 1939 movie classic The Wizard of Oz, the Wicked Witch of the West conjures up a poppy...

The Case of "Saltair Sally"

20 Mar 2017

In October 2000, while walking along the shores of the "Great Salt Lake" near Salt Lake City, two hunters made a gruesome discovery. In a plastic bag, they found a white sock, a shirt, a few bones...

Whales at a party?

20 Mar 2017

An 1861 Vanity Fair cartoon depicted whales celebrating at a party. Celebrating what, you may ask? The discovery of oil in Pennsylvania!

Why Black Hair Dye Became Popular in 1930s Detroit

20 Mar 2017

Well, because Henry Ford decided that younger men could work more productively on his automobile assembly line and so began to fire older workers and higher younger ones. This prompted some of the...

What is the link between diamond, graphite and buckyballs?

20 Mar 2017

They are all composed only of carbon. What determines the properties of any substance? Simple. The properties of any substance depend on the type and number of atoms they are composed of, and of...

X-Rays and Hair Removal

20 Mar 2017

In 1895 Wilhelm Roentgen made one of the most famous medical discoveries of all time when he noticed that a beam of electrons passing through a partially evacuated tube gave off invisible rays that...

What natural substance was the first local anesthetic to be introduced into medicine?

20 Mar 2017

Cocaine. Credit for the discovery of cocaine as a local anesthetic is usually attributed to Dr. Carl Koller, an Austrian opthamologist who in 1884 demonstrated that dropping a solution of cocaine...

Treatments for Baldness

20 Mar 2017

Aristotle used goat urine and Hippocrates recommended pigeon droppings, as a treatment for baldness.

Snorting Things to Survive Smallpox?

20 Mar 2017

A powder made from the scabs of pustules on the skin of people who had survived smallpox. The eradication of this horrific disease, which is thought to have first appeared around 10,000 B.C., is...


Back to top