Catalina Island: A Tale of Chewing Gum, Grave Robbing, and Movie Stars

On Sunday, Patrick and I finally made it over to the little island of Catalina. If you aren’t familiar with California geography, Catalina is a small island, roughly 30 miles off the coast of Long Beach, accesible by ferry from a handful of ports on the mainland. At just under 75 square miles, about 4,000…

The Buffalo Soldiers: Multi-Talented Defenders of Westward Expansion

On September 21, 1866, a brand new regiment was formed. The 10th Calvary Regiment was comprised of Black men, and was given the nickname, The Buffalo Soldiers. The nickname was given to them by the Native Americans, due to their hair reminding them of the top of a buffalos head. The regiment served in the…

Bill Pickett: The Rodeo Innovator that History Forgot

Bill Pickett was born the second of thirteen children on December 5th, 1870 in Williamson County, Texas. Pickett’s bloodline was of Cherokee and Black. In the 5th grade, he left school to be a ranch-hand, and he learned all there was to know about being a cowboy. He invented the technique known as Bulldogging, which…

The Mysterious Horror Hostess that Reportedly Cursed James Dean

The inside of a “dingy frame house” on Larrabee Street in West Hollywood looked more akin to a “witch-doctor’s shack in the wilds of Haiti.” Scattered were “objects of the kind associated with Black Magic” and stuck to the wall by a small golden dagger were cut-outs of  James Dean’s eyes and ears. On the…

The Pink Pussycat College of Strip Tease Where Yesteryear’s Strippers Learned Their Craft

Imagine you are a woman living the high life in early 1960s Hollywood, you have a great husband, who after working hard as a door-to-door salesman, elevates himself to running a haberdashery in Beverly Hills and then enters the nightclub business. It’s a classy life. Then, one day, your loving husband comes home and tells…