Welcome to America Comes Alive!, a site I created to share little-known stories of America's past. These stories are about Americans - people just like you - who have made a difference and changed the course of history. Look around the site and find what inspires you. Kate Kelly

Heroes & Trailblazers

First Rearview Mirror Marketed as “Cop-spotter”

The first widely distributed rearview mirror for automobiles was sold as the “Cop-spotter” by a fellow... continue »

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer: Its Origin

Today Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is the star of a popular holiday television special and a live stage show. The song, based on the story,... continue »

Japanese American WWII Vet Receives Medal of Honor Belatedly

George T. “Joe” Sakato (1921-2015) served in the American infantry during World War II. Like many other Japanese Americans, he faced many obstacles in his... continue »

Ace Pilot Pete Fernandez: Korean War

Ace pilot Pete Fernandez was one of the top fighter pilots in the Korean War, but he almost didn’t see combat. He was so valuable... continue »

Smoky, Yorkshire Terrier and WWII War Dog

Smoky, a four-pound Yorkshire terrier, went to war by happenstance. She was found in New Guinea near... continue »

Grover Cleveland’s Dogs and Other Pets

Grover Cleveland holds a unique place in American history. He is the only person... continue »

Pancho Barnes: Pioneering Aviator and Legendary Woman

Pancho Barnes (1901-1975) was a fearless pilot and aviation pioneer, flying at a time when flight was in its infancy. She went on to work... continue »

Baseball Catcher’s Mask: How It Was Invented

In today’s game of baseball, the catcher’s mask is a fundamental piece of equipment. The player positioned behind home... continue »

Escaped Slave Arthur Crumpler Took Pride in Learning

Arthur Crumpler escaped slavery and overcame the fact that slaves were prevented... continue »

First Animal Shelter in U.S. Due to Caroline Earle White

The first animal shelter in America came about due to the efforts of Caroline Earle White (1833-1916) of Philadelphia. White was also the power behind... continue »

Dorothy Arzner, First Female Director in Hollywood Studio System

Dorothy Arzner (1897-1979) was a Hollywood film director.  A woman director was a rarity in the early days of filmmaking. She directed films from 1926-1943... continue »

Grace Wisher, African American Helped Make Star Spangled Banner

Grace Wisher, age 13, was an indentured servant in the home of flag maker Mary Pickersgill of Baltimore. Pickersgill, who had taken over the business... continue »