ON THIS DAY
Unmasking Mardi Gras

New Orleans witnessed its first modern Mardi Gras procession – kick-started by a group of students eager to revive the traditional masquerade, banned for six decades – on 27th February, 1827. 

The city’s parades and revelry can trace their origins back to ancient pagan festivals and European traditions, cemented by the arrival of French-Canadian explorer (and MASSIVE ‘Fat Tuesday’ fan) Jean-Baptiste Le Moyne de Bienville into Louisiana in 1699. 

In this episode, The Retrospectors Krewe dig into the celebration’s impact on revenue and refuse; consider the discriminatory practices that accompanied the festivities until the late 20th century; and get angry about the British equivalent: Pancake Day… 

Further Reading:

ON THIS DAY
Unmasking Mardi Gras

New Orleans witnessed its first modern Mardi Gras procession – kick-started by a group of students eager to revive the traditional masquerade, banned for six decades – on 27th February, 1827. 

The city’s parades and revelry can trace their origins back to ancient pagan festivals and European traditions, cemented by the arrival of French-Canadian explorer (and MASSIVE ‘Fat Tuesday’ fan) Jean-Baptiste Le Moyne de Bienville into Louisiana in 1699. 

In this episode, The Retrospectors Krewe dig into the celebration’s impact on revenue and refuse; consider the discriminatory practices that accompanied the festivities until the late 20th century; and get angry about the British equivalent: Pancake Day… 

Further Reading:




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OLLY MANN

Olly Mann made his name with another trivia-wielding podcast, Answer Me This! with Helen Zaltzman – and now presents The Modern Mann, The Week Unwrapped, and Four Thought for BBC Radio Four. He also has an A-Level in History, so Dan Snow beware.

REBECCA MESSINA

Rebecca got a passion for podcasting  working at The Week magazine and a passion for trivia appearing on University Challenge in 2011, making The Retrospectors her natural home.

ARION MCNICOLL

Arion started out in satirical news in Australia, then moved to the UK to work for ostensibly serious publications including The Times, CNN, and The Week… before realising that since around 2016 the news has all been satire really.

Do you have a day of note that we should cover? Or would you or your business like to support the podcast? Get in touch!

    27 Feb: Unmasking Mardi Gras

    New Orleans witnessed its first modern Mardi Gras procession - kick-started by a group of students eager to revive the traditional masquerade, banned for six decades - on 27th February, 1827. The city’s parades and revelry can trace their origins back to ancient pagan festivals and European traditions, cemented by the…

    26 Feb: Woodrow Wilson and the Grand Canyon

    President Woodrow Wilson finally signed into law a bill establishing The Grand Canyon as the USA's 15th National Park on this day in 1919.Although preservation orders had given the Canyon some protection prior to this moment, it had been 37 years since Benjamin Harrison had first attempted to enshrine its…

    23 Feb: The Plot To Kill The Cabinet

    The Cato Street Conspiracy - a plot to assassinate Prime Minister Lord Liverpool and the entire Cabinet as they attended a private dinner party - was foiled on February 23rd, 1820.  Thwarted by an informant within their ranks, the conspirators were exposed, and either deported or executed.Arthur Thistlewood and his…

    21 Feb: When Polaroid Changed Photography

    Edwin Land unveiled the world's first instant camera to the Optical Society of America on 21st February, 1947.Snapping a quick black-and-white selfie, Land astonished onlookers as the image emerged within 60 seconds. Despite its initial high price and complex development process, Polaroid cameras became a sensation, selling out on their…

    20 Feb: Let's Colonise Florida

    Departing from Puerto Rico with grand plans to establish a new colony, Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de León set out on his ill-fated second expedition to Florida on February 15th, 1521. Ponce de León's reputation as a conquistador preceded him, with tales of his brutal conquests in Hispaniola preceding his quest…