Elbridge Gerry signed both the Declaration of Independence and the Articles of Confederation. Gerrymandering is the drawing of political districts to give a particular party or group an advantage or disadvantage, and it's named after him.
Brown was born into slavery and escaped in an astonishing way. His story of gaining his freedom was so sensational that he basically spent the rest of his life making a living talking about it in one form or another.
The Highland Clearances were a long, complicated, messy series of evictions in the Highlands and western Islands of Scotland, when tenant farmers were forced from their homes to make way for sheep pastures.
Carnegie was a child of poverty who became one of the richest men on Earth. But his life, while largely charmed, had a massive scar of bad judgment on it. He also decided that the most important thing he could do with his money was to give it away.
Ignaz Semmelweis made a connection between hand hygiene and the prevention of childbed fever in the 19th century. He wasn’t taken seriously then, but today he’s known as everything from the father of infection control to the conqueror of childbed fever.
Cassie Chadwick (born Elizabeth Bigley) committed fraud at a level that would be almost impossible to pull off in today’s world of instant communication. Her biggest con was convincing banks that she was the illegitimate daughter of Andrew Carnegie.
At a time when many women sought husbands to ensure financial stability, Anne Lister was looking for a wife. She was also writing thousands of pages of diaries, including sections written in code about her relationships.