Extraordinary Stories of Ordinary Life
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Featured story: The Last Civil War Widows

Daisy Anderson and Alberta Martin were two of the last surviving Civil War widows.

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Featured story: The Border Wall (Updated)

What happens when, instead of people crossing the border, the border crosses the people?

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Featured story: Strange Fruit and the Inauguration

British Singer Rebecca Ferguson wanted to sing Strange Fruit at Donald Trump’s Inauguration. This is the story behind the song.

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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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Amanda’s Diary: Girlfriend

Amanda is gay. Amanda’s family is Catholic. And she’s having a hard time convincing her parents that this is not “just a phase.”

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Josh: 16 Years Later

In high school, Josh documented his life with Tourette’s Syndrome, a neurological disorder that causes uncontrollable tics and involuntary verbal outbursts. Sixteen years later, Josh records a new diary about trying to live a normal adult life with a brain that often betrays him.

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Portraits Extraordinary stories from ordinary places

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The Last Man on the Mountain

In the 1990s, Arch Coal began mining Pigeonroost Hollow. Now Jimmy Weekley is the last person left there.

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

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Miss Subways

Beauty pageants promote the fantasy of the ideal woman. But for 35 years, the Miss Subways contest in New York City celebrated the everyday working girl.

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Ballad for Americans

How a ten minute operatic folk cantata managed to unite Democrats, Republicans and Communists.

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