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Wiki Walks

54 EpisodesProduced by Chris GriesemerWebsite

Wiki Walks is a short podcast devoted to some of the more intriguing and, “huh! Who knew?” articles you can run across in the seemingly unending cavalcade of bizarreness that is Wikipedia. New episodes every Tuesday and Thursday.

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Ep.54 – The Night Witches

August 3rd, 2021


With the might of the Soviet military during WWII, you'd think the most highly decorated regiment within their air force would be a group of highly …

Ep.53 – Zombie Frank Hayes

July 29th, 2021

During a steeplechase event at the famed Belmont Park in NY, jockey Frank Hayes set a record that has never been duplicated. And that's probably a really, really good thing.

Frank Hayes Wiki

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Ep.52 – America's First (and only) Emperor

July 27th, 2021


A fed up and down on his luck San Francisco businessman, Joshua Norton, declared that he was the new Emperor of the United States, and the people sort of...just went with it. He passed laws and issued his own currency, …

Ep.51 – Ship of Theseus

July 23rd, 2021


What makes a thing a thing? What makes How much can you change something before it stops being that thing? Just one tweak? Or all tweaks but one? The Ship of Theseus is a classic Greek thought experiment that …

Ep.50 – Bat Bombs

July 20th, 2021


World War II was a time of technological marvels and revolutionary new weaponry that changed the world as we know it. However, one military project …

Ep.49 – Bluetooth

July 13th, 2021

Episode Notes

The ubiquitous piece of technology that connects everything from headphones to toothbrushes is named after a Scandinavian king who had …

Ep.48 – Sarah Rector

February 5th, 2021

Episode Notes

After her family was sold to the Creek Indians and moved to Oklahoma in the early 1900s, Sarah Rector was given land at the age of 4 …

Ep.47 – The Last Civil War Widow

February 3rd, 2021

Episode Notes

The crazy story of Helen Jackson, the 101 year old Missouri woman who died just a few weeks ago in December of 2020. Oh, quick note on …

Ep.46 – America's Oldest Ally

December 10th, 2020

Episode Notes

America was short on allies after its founding, and its Navy was getting absolutely thrashed overseas by pirate states. However, one …

Ep.45 – The Forbidden Island

November 6th, 2020

Episode Notes

The Kingdom of Hawaii's Ni'ihau Island was purchased in the 1860s by Elizabeth Sinclair, a Scottish woman by way of New Zealand looking to find land to raise sheep and her family. Since then, "The …

Ep.44 – Operation Babylift

November 4th, 2020

Episode Notes

In the closing days and hours of the end of the Vietnam War, as Saigon began to crumble, the American military attempted to evacuate as …

Ep.43 – Auto-Brewery Syndrome

October 9th, 2020

Episode Notes

Well this is a bizarre thing. There exists a bonafide, honest to goodness medical disorder wherein your gut bacteria will ferment with the addition of carbs and turn the contents of your stomach …

Ep.42 – America's Rabbit Assassination Attempt

September 25th, 2020

Episode Notes

In 1979, America was suffering through a hostage crisis, a gas crisis, and a President deemed as weak and ineffectual by his rivals. That image was not helped when a photo was released that showed US …

Ep.41 – The Starlight Barking

September 23rd, 2020

Episode Notes

You may know that 101 Dalmatians was originally a 1950s children's book. You may not know, however, that it had a sequel (not named 102 Dalmatians, by the way) based on comatose humans and alien dogs with …

Ep.40 – The Slave Pirate Who Became a Congressman

September 15th, 2020

Episode Notes

One of the most thrilling and fascinating stories of the Civil War and its aftermath. During the war, Robert Smalls escaped from slavery by stealing a Confederate ship, piloting it through …

Ep.39 – America's Youngest Diplomat

September 8th, 2020

Episode Notes

The amazing story of young Samantha Smith, a 10 year old girl from Maine, who, in 1983, wanted to know why the head of the USSR wanted …

Ep.38 – The Boy Who Stole Queen Victoria's Panties

September 3rd, 2020

Episode Notes

Celebrity stalkers these days are old news. But back in Victorian England, a 14 year old named, "The Boy Jones" loved nothing more than …

Ep.37 – Alice Roosevelt

September 1st, 2020

Episode Notes

We can debate all day who was the most impactful first lady, but it’s unlikely we’ll find a more captivating first daughter than Alice …

Ep.36 – The Resolute Desk

August 25th, 2020

Episode Notes

The desk you see on TV whenever they show the Oval Office has a crazy history. From being encased in Arctic Ice, to helping avoid …

Ep.35 – Waffles!

August 20th, 2020

Episode Notes

Everyone loves waffles, right? But how did such a distinctive looking food come to be? Why do the Belgians seem to have a stranglehold …

Ep.34 – Princess Caraboo

August 18th, 2020

Episode Notes

The TRUE, bizarre, and downright charming tale of Princess Caraboo. In 1800s England, a mysterious and beautiful woman randomly …

Ep.33 – Capgras Delusion

August 13th, 2020

Episode Notes

Those who suffer from Capgras Delusion believe that their friends, family members, even lovers, have been replaced by uncanny imposters. Today we delve into the bizarre and frightening world of unusual …

Ep.32 – The Bhopal Disaster

August 11th, 2020

Episode Notes

In 1984, the Union Carbide pesticide chemical plant had a major gas leak that caused a huge poisonous cloud to descend over the town of Bhopal, India during the middle of the night. The sun rose on a town …

Ep.31 – The Radioactive Boy Scout

July 30th, 2020

Episode Notes

David Hahn was just your normal teen in the 90s. He loved sports, science experiments, the Boy Scouts...and he built an actual working nuclear reactor in a garden shed and got shut down by the FBI. The …

Ep.30 – Lawnchair Larry

July 28th, 2020

Episode Notes

In 1982, LA resident Larry Walters took a 45-minute flight in a homemade airship made of an aluminum lawn chair and …

Ep.29 – The Lioness of Brittany

July 23rd, 2020

Episode Notes

In the 1300's, French noblewoman Jeanne de Clisson's husband is wrongfully executed by France for treason. Enraged, Jeanne sells …

Ep.28 – The Straw Millionaire

July 21st, 2020

Episode Notes

The Japanese Buddhist folk tale of The Straw Millionaire tells a story where a peasant is able to, through a series of trades, move up …

Ep.27 – The First Vaccine

July 16th, 2020

Episode Notes

Smallpox has been one of, if not THE, biggest killers in medical history. Hundreds of millions died as the result of the miniature …

Ep.26 – The Ben Franklin Effect

July 14th, 2020

Episode Notes

Ben Franklin discovered that he was able to ingratiate himself to his most ardent enemies and critics by asking them to do him a favor. This outrageously counterintuitive strategy is the most famous …

Ep.25 – The Colossus of Roads

July 9th, 2020

Episode Notes

Scotsman John Macadam is the man who took us from rutted-out dirt roads to the tar covered boulevards we know today. His invention is …

Ep.24 – Jack the Railway Baboon

July 7th, 2020

Episode Notes

A double peg-legged South African railway employee teaches his pet baboon to throw the switches when trains come through his signal house, while the railway managers are none the wiser to this brilliant …

Ep.23 – Van Halen's M&Ms

July 2nd, 2020

Episode Notes

Musicians are notorious for including insane riders in their contracts when it comes to live shows. Kanye demands a barber chair in his dressing room, for example. But rock gods Van Halen had a …

Ep.22 – The Boston Molassacre

June 30th, 2020

Episode Notes

An industrial accident in Boston caused a massive tidal wave of molasses to descend upon an unsuspecting neighborhood, killing 21 …

Ep.21 – The Hungriest Man in History

June 25th, 2020

Episode Notes

The absolutely bonkers story of Tarrare, a deranged Frenchman who could not stop eating anything and everything he could get his hands …

Ep.20 – The Tiny Building with 285,000 Businesses Inside

June 23rd, 2020

Episode Notes

Thanks to some beneficial corporate tax laws in the state, one forgettably single story building in Delaware is the legal home to nearly ever large US company you've ever heard fact, over 285,000 …

Ep.19 – The Loneliest Whale in the World

June 18th, 2020

Episode Notes

There Is one unidentified whale who has been singing a song and trying to communicate for 31 years In a frequency that only he/she can understand. This Is the story of the Loneliest Whale In the World.

Ep.18 – The Drug Detective

June 16th, 2020

Episode Notes

In the 1960s, FDA scientist Dr. Frances Kelsey refused to approve the sleep-aid medicine Thalidomide, because clinical trials had not proved to her that it was safe for pregnant women to take. Soon, the …

Ep.17 – The Incredibly Stupid One

June 11th, 2020

Episode Notes

United States Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Douglas Hegdahl is captured by the Vietnamese, but pretends to be an absolute idiot and ends …

Ep.16 – The Double Irish with a Dutch Sandwich

June 9th, 2020

Episode Notes

Tech giants like Google and Apple have taken advantage of an offshore corporate tax loophole that passes money from the USA to Bermuda …

Ep.15 – The Tulsa Race Massacre

June 4th, 2020

Episode Notes

The Tulsa race massacre of 1921 took place on May 31 and June 1, 1921, when mobs of white residents attacked black residents and …

Ep.14 – The CAPTCHA

June 2nd, 2020

Episode Notes

The super annoying test you have to take when creating a new account, where you have to spell out the crazy letters or numbers In order to prove you're a human, has a fascinating history In not only …

Ep.13 – The Manhattan Wire

May 28th, 2020

Episode Notes

A thin metal wire, called an "eruv", is strung up and run around nearly the entirety of the island of Manhattan as a loophole to Jewish …

Ep.12 – Thomas Midgley Jr.

May 26th, 2020

Episode Notes

The most environmentally destructive organism to ever grace the face of our fragile planet, was a Pennsylvanian chemist named Tom. The crazy and horrifying tale of unintended consequences concerning the …

Ep.11 – The Double Sunrise Flights

May 21st, 2020

Episode Notes

The longest commercial flights ever recorded were nightmarish 32 hour journeys from Australia to Sri Lanka via a hollowed out sea plane …

Ep.10 – The Fast of Angus

May 19th, 2020

Episode Notes

In 1965, a hefty young Scottish lad, in his quest to lose some pounds, decided to just be done with food. Like, completely. He didn't put another bite in his mouth for 382 days, and lived to see his goal …

Ep.9 – Fritz Haber

May 14th, 2020

Episode Notes

Fritz Haber was a brilliant mind who is considered "the father chemical warfare," but also made discoveries in agriculture that are …

Ep.8 – The Crash at Crush

May 11th, 2020

Episode Notes

In 1896, a marketing stunt from the braintrust at the Katy Railroad pits two 35-ton locomotives against each other in a 50mph head-on …

Ep.7 – The Chicken Tax

May 8th, 2020

Episode Notes

Have you ever wondered why there are so many foreign auto makers on the road when it comes to sports cars, sedans, coupes, etc...but when it comes to pickup trucks, its mostly American produced vehicles? …

Ep.6 – Mad Jack Churchill

May 7th, 2020

Episode Notes

"Mad" Jack Churchill was a British hero and legend during the second World War who would storm the beaches playing the bagpipes while …

Ep.5 – Dirk Willems

May 4th, 2020

Episode Notes

Two stories of honorable men meeting very different ends. The tragic tale of Dirk Willems.

Support Wiki Walks by …

Ep.4 – The Great Stork Derby

May 4th, 2020

Episode Notes

One Canadian lawyer's death lead to the birth of hundreds of babies in Depression-ravaged Toronto. This attorney had both a rock solid …

Ep.3 – The French Fistula that Made Diapers Cool Again (Slightly NSFW)

May 3rd, 2020

Episode Notes

Louis the XIV's swollen backside changed how surgery is performed, made diapers cool in public, and gave us the British national …

Ep.2 – The Grandsons Tyler

May 2nd, 2020

Episode Notes

President John Tyler...born in 1790...has two living GRANDSONS. In 2020. A quick walk through the insane progeny of one of our earliest presidents.

Ep.1 – Interstate 19

May 1st, 2020

Episode Notes

Here's a quick walk through America's only remaining metric highway!

Support Wiki Walks by contributing to their …

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