Filed under Trivia

Trivia: Meet Kate Somerville, Revolutionary Skin Care System

Kate Somerville, Skin HealthBy Kate E. Stephenson

Ok, so if you are like me, you are wondering wasn’t acne supposed to go away after my teens?For about five years between 20 and 25 I had amazing skin and then it was like I had reentered puberty. My chin, cheeks and forehead all started to break out again. I have subsequently tried just about everything I could get my hands on. I have found most products simply too harsh for my skin. But today I have hope again that a Kate will bring my skin back to its glowing healthfulness… Meet Kate Somerville!

Kate Somerville is an esthetician who began her career working with doctors and plastic surgeons to improve the appearance and feel of patient skin. Her line has slowly taken off and is now available through QVC and Sephora. Her line seems so comprehensive that there must be a solution for all skin types (fingers crossed). Not that I purchase based on endorsements, but you have to admit that when celebrities who appear to have gorgeous skin say I use this, it is mighty tempting. And really, just take a look at Kate Somerville herself.

Kate SomervilleHer skin is ridiculously flawless. Check out the video:

So I say to you, I just might give this a try. The summer kit is just in time to combat the scorching summer sun. If you try it, let me know how it works for you.

Trivia runs on every Monday at 10:30am. It is written by the insanely knowledgable Kate E. Stephenson. Read much more about Kate here, and click here to follow her on Twitter. While this column is a repeat of a 2012 favorite, stay tuned for brand new pieces in 2013.

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Trivia: Kate Shelley, Railroad Heroine

Kate Shelley, book

By Kate E. Stephenson

Kate trivia is quickly becoming my favorite kind. You simply never know what kind of fantastic Kate-fact you will find next. And this week, we meet another Kate who saves the day (this is definitely becoming a recurring theme).

Meet Kate Shelley. Kate Shelley

Catherine “Kate” Shelley was born in Loughaun, Moneygall, County Offaly, Ireland. Transcriptions of Irish records show her parents, Michael Shelley and Margaret Dwan, married on February 24, 1863 and Kate’s tombstone indicates she was born on September 25, 1865 and died January 21, 1912. She immigrated to the US with her parents as a baby, and her parents became farmers. Ok, you might be asking yourself so what? right about now. I know, I know. So here’s the story:

On the afternoon of July 6, 1881, heavy thunderstorms caused a flash flood of Honey Creek, washing out timbers that supported the railroad trestle. A pusher locomotive sent from Moingona to check track conditions crossed the Des Moines River bridge, but plunged into Honey Creek at about 11 p.m., with a crew of four: Ed Wood, George Olmstead, Adam Agar and Patrick Donahue. Continue reading

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Trivia: Kate the Great, Comic Strip

Kate the Great, comic strip introduction

By Kate E. Stephenson

This lovely Monday, I have something to tickle your fancy. Meet Kate the Great Comic Strip by Wayne Bartholomew and Jaime Garcia. From the archives it appears this is a new comic started on May 17, 2013. Published every Monday and Friday the escapades of Kate and her oddball cadre of friends will start and end your work week off with a smile.

Here’s today’s installment:

Kate the Great, comic strip

Comics Sherpa gives us insight into Kate the Great and her creators: Continue reading

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Trivia: Revolutionary War heroine, Mammy Kate

Mammy Kate

By Kate E. Stephenson

On this Monday after the Fourth of July Holiday, I wanted to remember a Revolutionary War heroine. For those who have been reading this column for a while, it may be a repeat—but somethings are worth repeating. The idea of Mammy Kate sticks with me, and makes me remember that courage happens every day all around us. It’s sometimes the small things that make the big difference. And never underestimate a Kate!

The year was 1779 when a woman affectionately called Mammy Kate rescued Stephen Heard, the governor of colonial Georgia, from a headless future. On February 14th, Gov. Heard—along with 22 other patriots—were captured by the Loyalist Tories during the Battle of Kettle Creek. Transferred to Fort Cornwallis in Augusta, Georgia (some 50 miles away) he was imprisoned, pending public hanging for his treason against the British Crown.

Enter Mammy Kate, an unlikely heroine in this crusade.

Towering over 6 feet tall and reported to be as strong as she was fearless, Mammy Kate was legally considered Heard’s property, Mammy Kate was an enslaved servant in his household. We know little of her background; the records seem to indicate that she was of pure African blood and by her own testimony the daughter of a king. Her actions during the aftermath of the Battle of Kettle Creek show her to have been a shrewd and valiant warrior worthy of such noble status. Continue reading

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Trivia: Kate Over the Overland Trail

Overland Journey

Overland Trail, 1960 American Western series. (Wikipedia)

By Kate E. Stephenson

In researching for today’s Trivia, I had my eye on the Fourth of July holiday; and while I didn’t find what I thought I might, I happened upon a true American Kate tale.

Clare O’Brien published The Diary of Kate Dunlap blogsite in 2011 as the product of a a research project for History 327: Women’s History to 1870 at the University of Mary Washington. The subject a pioneering woman Kate Dunlap who, with her husband Samuel, embarked on the Overland trail to Bannack, Montana. Continue reading

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Trivia: Kate Millet Fest, June 24, 2012

Kate Millet, The Politics of Sex

By Kate E. Stephenson

On this day one year ago, Kate Millet was honored in a fest sponsored by the Veteran Feminists of America for her lifetime body of work and unwavering passionate feminist stand. Okay, so this might pose three questions for you, as it did for me: Who is Kate Millet and why does she deserve a festival? Who are the Veteran Feminists of America (VFA)? And why should I care? Totally understandable. Let’s start with the easier question, who is the VFA?

The VFA states its mission on its website:

VFA is a nonprofit organization for veterans of the Second Wave of the feminist movement. The goals are to enjoy the camaraderie forged during those years of intense commitment, to honor ourselves and our heroes, to document our history, to rekindle the spark and spirit of the feminist revolution and act as keeper of the flame so that the ideals of feminism continue to reverberate and influence others.

Ah ha, so the VFA is keeping that 1960s feminist movement fervor alive as best they can. Awesome. All you and lovers are probably down with that (maybe without even knowing). I certainly am down for women’s equality and liberation (although is it weird that I really do still appreciate a man opening the door for me—it makes me all bubbly inside). Continue reading

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Trivia: Calamity Kate: Winslet panned for conceiving within wedlock

Kate Winslet

By Kate E. Stephenson

This week I return to one of my favorite Kate Trivia subject—Kate Winslet. Miss Hat Trick herself is still making waves in the media, but not for her serious acting abilities. There is something sensational about the personal lives of our revered celebrities. And even bonafied talents such as Winslet often fall prey to the microscope effect—everyone minding your business on the microscopic level.

Now it’s rare that I present celebrity news as trivia, and this installment is not an exception. Rather I would like to offer the conversation about morality and mores that Kate Winslets third marriage and corresponding third child has started.

Emma Young posted an opinion piece in the Sydney Morning Herald on June 10th entitled “‘Calamity Kate’ talk highlights double standards” responding to a piece released by Judith Woods in the Telegraph on June 6th. This piece is what got my attention and pulled me into pondering modern morality. Here’s a little snippet:

 Have you heard Kate Winslet is a whore? … Continue reading

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Trivia: Happy Mother’s Day!


By Kate E. Stephenson

This week, on behalf of the entire team, I hope all the mothers out there had a very special Mother’s Day! I may be a day late, but in saying thank you, you can never be a dollar short. So I want to say thank you to moms everywhere for bringing us into and introducing us to the world. Moms come in different ways, some by birth, others by circumstance, and others simply by love. To all those moms who work miracles everyday, we salute you!

Now, here’s a little trivia about Mother’s Day. Did you know:

  • Mother’s Day is an international holiday celebrated by over 55 countries around the world (although the official date differs from country to country). Continue reading
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Trivia: St. Catherine’s Day

St. Catherine of Siena

By Kate E. Stephenson

If you’re like me this Monday morning—searching for strength and motivation to get this week started—then today’s Trivia may be just what you need.

Today, April 29, is the feast day of St. Catherine of Siena. As stated by, “The value [St. Catherine of Siena] makes central in her short life and which sounds clearly and consistently through her experience is complete surrender to Christ.” does not advocate any one religion, deity or creed. Yet St. Catherine’s steadfastness may offer all of us, regardless of dogma or doctrine, a ray of hope and sunshine. This morning after waking up with a headache, finding out one of my projects was delayed, and being brushed off by a client, I realized my morning was not a great start to the week. Then at the moment I enjoyed the entire hot contents of my coffee mug spilling all over me and my desk, I realized something else—I have no control over this day. The question is what to do now? Sopping wet, sticky, and watching the dark liquid glide over papers, keyboard, shoes—everything!—I started to cry and crawl back into bed. Continue reading

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Trivia: The Kate (Katherine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center)

Katherine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center

By Kate E. Stephenson

In honor of The Great Kate, the residents of Katherine Hepburn’s native town and state have opened a cultural arts center in her name. In 2009 the Katherine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center, affectionately known as The Kate, opened its doors to welcome eclectic performing artists and discerning culture aficionados of all ages. The website is brimming with information about the new center, events, artists and links to all things Kate.

About the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center

The Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center is a non-profit performing arts organization located in an historic theatre/town hall on Main Street in Old Saybrook. Originally opened in 1911 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Center has been renovated with public funds from the Town of Old Saybrook and donations raised by the Trustees of the Center. It includes a 250-seat theatre and a small museum honoring Katharine Hepburn, Old Saybrook’s most celebrated resident. As befits an organization born of such a public/private partnership, programming is eclectic, offering something for all ages and income levels on the Connecticut shore and in the lower river valley. Continue reading

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Trivia: Kate Warne, First Female Dick

Kate Warne, Pinkerton_We Never Sleep

By Kate E. Stephenson

I was tempted to title this Trivia installment “Kate Warne, First Female Private Eye” but it just couldn’t express the extraordinary life of this Kate, the early feminist power that Ms. Warne exhibited during her life and the portion of the glass ceiling she broke through. So I avoided the conservative temptation because Kate Warne’s life was so the opposite of conservative, she was a powerhouse.

Before women gained the right to vote; before “respectable” women worked outside of the household; before the Civil War and the Emancipation Proclamation that finally provided legislative guarantee that all people of the United States are free; before it was conceivable that women had the ability, much less the agency to think for themselves—On the morning of August 23, 1856, Kate Warne became the first known female detective in the United States at the famed and enduring Pinkerton Detective Agency (now Pinkerton Government Services, Inc.).

Warne was born in New York around 1830 in the tiny town of Erin in Chemung County, New York. While it is not exactly known who her family was, notably there was a single Warn[e] family living in Erin in the 1830 census—Israel and Elizabeth (nee Hurlbut). They had a little girl by 1830, but her name is unknown. The family had moved to Illinois by 1856, when the couple’s oldest son, Allan, married a woman there. Whether this was Kate’s biological family or not is uncertain.

What is fairly certain is that Warne was married and widowed early in life. When Kate Warne first entered his office, she undoubtedly didn’t stir much of a response. But that would quickly change. Allan Pinkerton describes Kate in his Criminal Reminiscences and Detective Sketches, as Continue reading

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Trivia: Meet Kate Boggiano, Custom Clothing for Women

Kate Boggiano BlousesBy Kate E. Stephenson

This week’s Trivia comes in a little late, but I tell you it’s a find. Hundreds of thousands of Americans are becoming more and more aware of a major reason for our recent economic downturn—manufacturing. While the United States has maintained its dominance in many areas of industrial manufacturing and engineering, the everyday consumer had all but forgotten what it was like to see a Made in USA sticker.

World News with Diane Sawyer started a segment a few years ago called Made in America that brought this phenomenon into the primetime spotlight. Items that we use all the time like our clothing, eye glasses (yes, I’m a nerd), cell phones, electronics, furniture, tableware (the list goes on and on…) all seem to announce themselves born in China, in all her various provinces. Alas, even most designer brands have outsourced to Chinese production (take a look in your most recent clothing by and tell me it ain’t so…).

But there are still champions of domestic production and craftsmanship. And one of them is named Kate.Kate Boggiano

Continue reading

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