Author: Hope Thompson

Hope Thompson is the editor and publisher of Unmasked History Magazine. She has been a freelance journalist for seven years and has published articles for popular media websites such as CandidSlice.com. Her focus has been on the hidden history, Native American culture, activism, politics and Appalachian and Southern folklore and traditions.

Murder Mystery: 50 years later, Van Auker slaying remains unsolved in small North Carolina town


Chatham County, N.C. The residents of Twin Falls, Idaho expressed shock after hearing a prominent and well-known member of their community had been murdered while on a business trip to Siler City, North Carolina. More than 50 years later, the baffling murder mystery still remains unsolved.

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Flu Masks and Onions: Wacky Cures and Remedies During the 1918 Spanish Influenza Pandemic


Between 1918 and early 1919, Spanish influenza became the deadliest plague since the Black Death of the Middle Ages. 

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Folklife: The little wartime pamphlet that sold over 3 million copies in 1943


The best selling book of 1943 was a little pamphlet entitled “Victory Garden” published by the Department of Agriculture. With the recent events of “The Great Pause” of 2020, quarantined families are beginning to get back to gardening and growing their own food. With possible food shortages amid the COVID19 pandemic on the rise, this is nothing new for Americans.

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Richard Petty and North Carolina’s Last NASCAR Dirt Track Race


The State Fairgrounds Speedway, located in Raleigh, North Carolina was a half-mile oval dirt racetrack that sponsored auto races for NASCAR’s top series in 1955, 1969 and 1970.  Now known as “The King” of NASCAR Hall of Famer, Richard Petty won the last Grand National race on the dirt track.  Although the track is no longer used as a motor speedway, the grandstand, now called the Sam G. Rand Grandstand, still remains and is used today for events held at the North Carolina State Fair.

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Johnny Carson and the Great Toilet Paper Shortage of 1973

Through a comedy of errors, this mostly forgotten piece of history concerns Johnny Carson, toilet paper and millions of fearful Americans.

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Folklife: The Forgotten Custom of Women Proposing to Men During Leap Year

The custom of women proposing to men during Leap Year is traced back to a legend of St. Patrick. So girls get out your scarlet flannel petticoats and make a date with your local justice of the peace!  No worries fellas! You can blame the Scots for declaring it open season on bachelors.

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Appalachian Legend: The Wild West Stagecoach Bandit Who Couldn’t Ride a Horse

An Appalachian legend in his own right and Kentucky native George Brittain Lyttle aka Dick Fellows aka Richard Perkins, turned out to be the most famous stagecoach bandit of the wild west that couldn’t ride a horse!   

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Photo Stories: Jean Addie Bissett Bostock playing tennis on ice skates!



Jean was an international tennis player and ranked in the world top ten in 1947 and 1948. (1940 – Photo Courtesy of National Archives Britain)

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Robbed and Murdered: The Slanderous Tombstone That Accused an Innocent Man


Many pages of history have been recorded from old epitaphs of tombstones which frequently reveal not only a person’s death but how and whether the end was peaceful. 

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