Extraordinary Stories of Ordinary Life
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Featured story: Podcast: Fly Girls

In the early 1940s, the government launched an experimental program to train women pilots. They were known as the WASPs, the Women Airforce Service Pilots.

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Featured story: Claudette Colvin – A Teenage “Rosa Parks”

What makes a hero? Why do we remember some stories and not others?

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Featured story: First Kiss

“What I have here is an envelope on which this girl Nicole wrote down instructions on how to kiss. It says: ‘pucker lips, slowly open mouth, slowly slide tongue in, repeat steps 1, 2, and 3.’ She made that list for me because I made out with her and she said I was doing it wrong.”

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History
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Diaries We give people tape recorders and help them document their own lives in their own words

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Going Home: Cristel’s Diary

At 15, Cristel attacked a classmate with a razor blade. After 3 years of incarceration, she’s being released.

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Melissa’s Diaries: Teen Mom / Raising Issaiah

Melissa never meant to get pregnant. But now, after 12 years of living in the foster care system, she’s trying to build the family she never had.

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Portraits Extraordinary stories from ordinary places

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Walter Backerman, Seltzer Man

Once there were thousands of seltzer men in New York City. Today, Walter Backerman is one of the last.

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Selma Koch, Bra Saleswoman

94-year old Selma Koch runs the Town Shop, one of New York’s last old-style bra fitting shops.

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Histories Weaving together oral histories and archival tape to bring the past to life

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March of the Bonus Army

In 1932, 20,000 WWI veterans set up a tent city in Washington. They called themselves the Bonus Army.

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Identical Strangers

Paula Bernstein and Elyse Schein were both born in New York City and adopted as infants. When they were 35-years-old, they met, and found they were “identical strangers.”

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