Untold Story of Cities in the USA – 35 Facts – Part 2

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The wacky waving inflatable arm flailing tube men are banned in Houston for being a “blight on the aesthetic environment.”

2. Oak Ridge was a city built in the U.S. in 1942. 100,000 people lived and worked there doing very specific tasks, most of whom with no idea of what they were working towards. In 1945 they saw news reports of the atomic bombings of Japan and realized they’d been working on the bombs all along.

3. The city of Los Angeles is the 3rd most productive oil field in the U.S., but most of the oil wells are camouflaged inside of fake office buildings and even sculptures.

4. The world’s largest book was lost by the city of Cleveland. It was called The Golden Book of Cleveland; and it was as large as a mattress. It was misplaced in 1936.

5. Jacksonville, Florida, was the winter filming capital of the early US movie industry but conservative residents objected, a mayor was elected on anti-movie platform, and so the industry moved on to Southern California.

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Levi’s doesn't know the significance of most of their historical trademarks, including their three-digit model numbers (e.g. 501) or the arc design stitched on their back pockets. This is because all of their records were lost with their headquarters in the 1906 San Francisco fire.

7. In 1891, Chicago issued a challenge to all engineers to build a structure that would surpass The Eiffel Tower. The engineer who won proposed a giant rotating wheel that will lift visitors high above the city. The inventor of this giant wheel’s name was George Ferris.

8. Indianapolis has a volunteer program called ‘no one dies alone’ (NODA). Their volunteers keep a continuous bedside vigil for dying people who do not have family members to visit them.

9. World’s largest concentration of nukes is housed 20 miles North West of Seattle and it is defended by trained dolphins.

10. Blue Mustang is a 32-foot tall sculpture of a blue horse at Denver International Airport. It was designed by sculptor Luis Jiménez who was unable to complete the project after the sculpture’s head fell on him and severed an artery in his leg, killing him. His staff and family finished the job for him.

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Portland has started generating clean energy by replacing some water pipes with pipes that contain turbines. The turbines generate electricity from water that the city gets from the surrounding mountains. The energy generated by the system comes out of the excess pressure that they previously required other pieces of equipment to deal with. The pipes are expected to generate $2 million worth of renewable energy capacity over 20 years.

12. San Diego County Inspectors, through the use of 'Secret Shoppers', found that Target overcharges customers on 10.3% of the items they ring up; Brookstone: 10.6% and Sears: 15.7%.

13. When the city of Austin, Texas asked people online to rename their Solid Waste Services Department, the winner was “The Fred Durst Society of the Humanities and Arts.”

14. Light bulbs in the New York City subway system screw in “backwards” (i.e. with left-handed threads) so that people won’t steal them to use at home.

15. Despite it being common practice for casinos to ban card counters, a 1979 New Jersey Supreme Court decision banned all Atlantic City casinos from doing so, making them the only state in America where a casino is forbidden from throwing out skilled blackjack players.

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There is a city in Washington named 'George'. Every year, George, Washington celebrates the 4th of July by baking the world's largest cherry pie.

17. While planning his comeback in Las Vegas in 2007, Michael Jackson wanted to build a 50 foot tall robot replica of himself that would roam the desert under the flight paths of incoming planes, shooting lasers out of its eyes in order to get the attention of the tourists flying into the city.

18. Arizona legislators once hired a prostitute to distract a colleague from voting against a bill making Phoenix the capital of Arizona. That night she swallowed his glass eye, without which he refused to be seen in public, after he took it out to sleep. The bill passed the next day by one vote.

19. Washington D.C. police once ran a fake hip-hop studio to attract criminals and record proof of their illicit deals. “Manic Enterprises” made 70 arrests, snagged $7.2 million in cocaine, and confiscated 161 illegal weapons. Cops shut it down after they heard a gang planned on robbing the studio.

20. In June 2017, a tire shop in Fort Worth, Texas, was robbed so often that the owner bought a guard dog. The next time the shop was robbed, the intruders stole the dog.



When George Washington moved to Philadelphia to serve as president, he rotated his slaves in and out of Pennsylvania in order to circumvent a law that freed slaves being held in the state for longer than 6 continuous months. The rotation itself was illegal, but no one opposed him.

22. Seattle's first openly-gay bar, Shelly’s Leg, was founded using settlement money after Shelly, a dancer, lost her leg in a glitter cannon accident at a Bastille Day parade.

23. In Boston if you a report a pothole, you get back both a photo of the filled pothole and a photo of the team that filled it.

24. There is a plane that flies above Los Angeles every single day releasing thousands of sterile fruit flies from 2,000 feet in the air to combat the invasive Mediterranean Fruit Fly. Up to 125,000 flies per square mile are released each week in what’s called “biological birth control.”

25. 1980, Detroit gave Saddam Hussein a key to the city out of recognition of donations he made to local churches.

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