Jonathan Miller

On the same day that fellow Oxbridge smart-arse Clive James checked out, we waved goodbye to Jonathan Miller. Born into an agnostic Jewish family of writers, Miller went to Cambridge to study natural sciences. While there he got involved in the Footlights, the university’s amateur theatrical club, and went on to direct their landmark musical […]

William Ruckelshaus

The so-called “Saturday Night Massacre” took place on October 20, 1973. It ended with three “deaths” on the night, but led inexorably to a significantly bigger casualty down the line, eventually claiming the scalp of President Richard Nixon. Nixon had urged Attorney General Elliot Richardson (died 1999) to fire special prosecutor Archibald Cox (died 2004) […]

Don “Nick” Clifford

An estimated 400 workers were employed between 1927 and 1941 at Mount Rushmore, carving the faces of four American presidents into one of the country’s most-famous landmarks. And until last week, Don “Nick” Clifford was the final surviving carver. His speciality was drilling holes for dynamite positioning, helping to shift large chunks of cliff-face in […]