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I Read the News Today

Weird and wonderful, it all happened in March

BRING OUT THE BIG GUNS

1918 ’BIG BERTHA’ BOMBS PARIS

The Paris Gun, mistakenly identified asthe notorious ’Big Bertha’ by French citizens, begins its five-month siege of Paris - from 75 miles away. Residents of the city initially assumed they were being attacked by a high-altitude zeppelin, as no gun blast was heard.

COLD-CALL

1867 USA BUYS A NEW STATE

At a price of $7.2 million, which amounted to around two cents per acre, the US finally reached an agreement to purchase Alaska from Russia. The Russians, struggling with debt from the disastrous Crimean War, had tried selling off this enormous chunk of wilderness - just 55 miles from Siberia, across the Bering Strait - on several occasions. However, it wasn’t until a year after the Civil War had ended that the Americans were ready to negotiate for the vast territory.

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About BBC History Revealed Magazine

Discover the real King Arthur with our exclusive article from archaeologist Miles Russell, who believes that the legendary figure was in fact a Dark Age warlord. Elsewhere, Anne Boleyn and Thomas Cromwell go head to head, take a look at life on the Thames in the Victorian era, and learn about the forgotten storyteller who wrote one of our most-loved fairytales.