Samantha Franco

Samantha Franco is a Freelance Content Writer who received her Bachelor of Arts degree in history from the University of Guelph, and her Master of Arts degree in history from the University of Western Ontario. Her research focused on Victorian, medical, and epidemiological history with a focus on childhood diseases. Stepping away from her academic career, Samantha previously worked as a Heritage Researcher and now writes content for multiple sites covering an array of historical topics.

In her spare time, Samantha enjoys reading, knitting, and hanging out with her dog, Chowder!

Articles by Samantha Franco:

Gerda Weissmann Klein: The Holocaust Survivor Who Fell In Love With Her American Liberator

Gerda Weissmann Klein standing at a podium

While two people destined to fall for one another may seem like a thing of fiction, the story of Gerda Weissmann and Kurt Klein might…

USS Recruit (1917): The Wooden Dreadnought In Manhattan’s Union Square

USS Recruit (1917) in Manhattan's Union Square

Amid the bustling streets of Manhattan’s Union Square in World War I, an extraordinary sight met passersby. The USS Recruit (1917), a wooden landship constructed…

Philip Toosey Served As the Inspiration for Lt. Col. Nicholson In ‘The Bridge on the River Kwai’

Alec Guinness and Sessue Hayakawa as Lt. Col. Nicholson and Col. Saito in 'The Bridge on the River Kwai' + Military portrait of Philip Toosey

The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957) was a sensational film so well-received that it earned several Academy Awards. What most people don’t realize is…

‘The Battle of Algiers’ Is So Realistic That Guerrilla Groups Took Training Notes From It

French paratroopers marching along a street + Close-up of a man's face

The Battle of Algiers (1966) is a powerful and provocative film directed by Gillo Pontecorvo. It covers the Algerian struggle for independence from French colonial…

The ‘M*A*S*H’ Death That Stunned America

Cast of 'M*A*S*H'

In an episode titled “Abyssinia, Henry,” the producers of M*A*S*H (1972-83) decided that McLean Stevenson’s character, Henry Blake, was to depart from the show. It…

KAI T-50 Golden Eagle: The Supersonic Trainer That Took Out Rebels In the Philippines

KAI T-50 Golden Eagle in flight

The KAI T-50 Golden Eagle is one of few supersonic trainers in the world and the first developed for the Republic of Korea Air Force…

Sherman’s Neckties: The Ingenious Union Tactic That Immobilized the Confederates

Sherman's Necktie laid out on the grass + Military portrait of William Tecumseh Sherman

Sherman’s Neckties – also known as Sherman’s Bowties, Jeff Davis’s Neckties and Sherman’s Hairpins – were railway destruction tactics used by the Union Army during…

Alan Alda and Jamie Farr – The ‘M*A*S*H’ Stars Who Earned Their Stripes In Korea

Cast of 'M*A*S*H'

M*A*S*H (1972-83) centers around the Mobile Army Surgical Hospitals during the Korean War. Although the television show is based on fictional characters, a lot of…

Before Playing a POW In ‘The Great Escape,’ Donald Pleasence Was One In Real Life

Still from 'The Great Escape'

British actor Donald Pleasence became one of the most popular antagonists in television and film, and is probably best known for portraying a prisoner of…

Zheng of Qin: The Chinese Emperor Who Escaped Assassination By Running Around a Pillar

Zheng of Qin peeking out from behind a pillar

Zheng of Qin, who reigned as the first emperor of China’s Qin Dynasty from 221-210 BC, survived several assassination attempts, including some that occurred while…

The Best War-Themed Historical Fiction Films Ever Released

Tom Hanks as Capt. John H. Miller in 'Saving Private Ryan' + Felix Kammerer as Paul Bäumer in 'All Quiet on the Wester Front' + Brad Pitt as Achilles in 'Troy'

History is full of incredible war stories that Hollywood has beautifully reimagined for the silver screen. However, directors will sometimes tweak facts here and there,…

Before He Was Britain’s Most Popular Leading Man, Kenneth More Served with the Royal Navy

HMS Aurora (12) at sea + Kenneth More as Second Officer Charles Herbert Lightoller in 'A Night to Remember'

Kenneth More was one of Britain’s greatest actors, both on-stage and on the silver screen. He became a household name, but only after he served…