Frank Jacobs's User Profile - Atlas Obscura
strange maps

Uneven Gravity Makes You Weigh More in Illinois Than in Indiana

A number of factors cause you to be lighter or heavier in different parts of the world.
September 22, 2023

Is Mordor Based on the Himalayas?

Much of Asia seems to be riddled onto the Lord of the Rings map of Middle Earth.
September 15, 2023

The Center of the Earth Has an Imaginary Island and One Floating Soul

Fact and fiction blend together at zero latitude and zero longitude.
September 8, 2023
strange maps

The Father of Medieval Geography Is Unfairly Blamed for One Very, Very Bad Map

He also made the most accurate world map of that time—and left out the sea monsters.
September 1, 2023

The Little-Known Land Fraud That Changed American History

Without this now-obscure land investment scheme, the Yazoo Land Affair, Georgia might have been a "super state."
August 25, 2023
strange maps

The Anti-Monopoly Board Game That Promoted a 'Soviet America'

In 1934, American Communists translated a Stalinist book about revolution into a children’s game. Curiously, it didn't catch on.
August 18, 2023
strange maps

What Do King Charles III, the Pope, and the Canadian Inuit Have in Common?

Meet the world's largest landowners.
August 11, 2023

A Map of the 'Disunited States' Shows the Fears of Civil War–Era America

A nation divided into not two—but four—took the idea of secession to an extreme.
August 4, 2023
strange maps

Mongolia’s 'Forbidden Zone' Is Guarding an 800-Year-Old Secret

Is the vast Khan Khentii Strictly Protected Area the final resting place of Genghis Khan?
July 28, 2023
mental health

There Are at Least 10 Cities With Their Own Psychological Disorders

Stockholm Syndrome is the most famous, and most relate to tourism or hostage-taking.
July 21, 2023
solar system models

There’s an Entire Solar System Hiding In Sweden

Get ready for the most peculiar road trip that will help you understand the vastness and emptiness of the solar system—and Sweden.
July 14, 2023

Sea Cucumber Crime Is a Thing, and This Is Where It’s Happening

A "seafood mafia" is plying the waters between India and Sri Lanka to satisfy China's appetite for an increasingly rare delicacy.
July 7, 2023

What Are the World’s Roundest and Most Rectangular Countries?

Mind-boggling as it is, they're often one and the same.
June 30, 2023

Explore the View From Humanity’s Most Distant Spacecraft

Launched in 1977 and now nearly 15 billion miles from the Sun, Voyager 1 continues its journey at 38,000 miles per hour.
June 23, 2023
strange maps

The Most Popular Person in European Street Names Is a Woman

Can you guess who it is?
June 16, 2023

Octopuses (and Their DNA) Suggest Antarctica Will Melt Again

Two geographically separate populations of cute cephalopods once mated a very long time ago.
June 9, 2023

A 19th-Century Family Portrait of Comets

The thrills and horrors of strange heavenly bodies, condensed into one attractive snapshot.
June 2, 2023
strange maps

The Coast-to-Coast American Road Trip Is 120 Years Old

In 1903, a Vermont doctor bet $50 that he could cross America by car. It took him 63 days, $8,000, and 600 gallons of gas.
May 26, 2023
strange maps

Why Does America Have So Many Towns With Classical Names?

There are nearly 100 named "Troy."
May 19, 2023

The Mysterious Dodecahedrons of the Roman Empire

The first of many of these puzzling objects was unearthed almost three centuries ago, and we still don't know what they were for.
May 12, 2023
witch burnings

Explore This Map of More Than 3,000 Scottish Witches

An Edinburgh University project uses data to track the victims of Scottish "witch-prickers" in the 16th and 17th centuries.
May 5, 2023
strange maps

The Strange Tale of SS Warrimoo, the Ship That Existed in Two Centuries at Once

On New Year's Eve 1899, the captain of this Pacific liner steamed into history. Or did he?
April 28, 2023

How Did the Chess Pieces Get Their Names?

One player’s pawn is another’s farmer. And at one time, the queen was the virgin, and rather powerless.
April 21, 2023

Colorado Is Not a Rectangle—It Has 697 Sides

The Centennial State is technically a hexahectaenneacontakaiheptagon.
April 14, 2023