America's Lost Treasures: Episode 9 Facts

Video highlights from America's Lost Treasures


  • Buttons have been around for many centuries and have been made from stone, pottery, gade-stone, jet, bone, wood, shell, flint, horn of deer or stag, ivory, bronze, argent and gold.
  • Jack London grew up in relative poverty and was introduced to the likes of Tolstoy & Flaubert by a librarian named Ina Coolbirth at the Oakland Public Library. Much of early reading was done in this setting.
  • Arthur Putnam’s career as a sculptor was cut short at the age of 36 after he had an operation for a brain tumor. He was left paralyzed on the left side of  his body and never sculpted again.  
  • Most of Arthur Putnam’s early work was destroyed in the fire that followed the Great 1906 San Francisco Earthquake.
  • The Battleship Maine was not raised until nearly 14 years after the explosion and sinking. Once raised it was towed to the Gulf of Mexico and sunk with Naval Honors.
  • The Maine weighed in at 6,682 tons.
  • Although New York State required automobiles to have license plates for the first time in 1901 the owners themselves had to make their own plates. Massachusetts was the first state to issue license plates in 1903 to help maintain order on the roads.
  • When Engineer John Anderson visited the first world’s fair hosted by America he expressed concerns about America’s power when it came to industry an innovation. He conceded that it was making Great Brittan look bad to the rest of the world to be out done by the America.
  • The 1876 World Expo in Philadelphia introduced to the public for the first time typewriters, Bell's telephone, and Edison's telegraph. These became part of the collection in the Smithsonian Institution’s new Arts and Industry Building.  
  • The bone bed known as Shark Tooth Hill was formed between 15,200,000 and 15,900,000 years ago.


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