Here are some one liners...
"Let Slip the Dogs of War!" -- The Battle of Fort Sumter.
Left Brain, Right Brain -- A French doctor discovers the speech center of the brain... and I talk about my own brain. (They did a scan and found nothing!)
The Land of the Free and the First US Income Tax -- It is a flat tax... at first. I talk about the suspension of habeus corpus... all due to logistics.
In Other News -- The unification of Italy, the Gatling gun and the Pony Express.
"Let Slip the Dogs of War!"A line in the sand is being drawn.  Six more slave states secede from the Union BEFORE president-elect Abraham Lincoln can take his oath of office. The Confederacy of America is established with Jefferson Davis as its President.  Federal properties are seized while President Buchanan  does nothing. Fort Sumter in South Carolina was not seized because it's construction had not been completed due to budget cuts. Only a single Union soldier guarded it gates. Nearby Fort Moultrie was manned but it was not considered a threat since it was poorly positioned. So... late last year, the Union commander at Fort Moultrie, Major Anderson, exercised his contingency orders and took possession of Fort Sumter. And here we are. South Carolina is outraged... because... well... President Buchanan PROMISED! (Don't get me started.) Fort Sumter holds a commanding position over Charleston Harbor, but it needs food and wood for heat! Buchanan sends the Star of the West to resupply, but it is turned away. After Lincoln takes office, he informs the governor that several small supply boats will be landed. He doesn't tell President Davis because THERE IS NO CONFEDERACY! But this is a battle for honor. General Beauregard asks respectfully for Major Anderson's surrender of the Fort. Anderson declines. After 39 hours of bombardment, General Beauregard offers to evacuate the Fort. (NOT SURRENDER.) Honor has been served. Anderson agrees on the condition that his men offer a 100 gun salute to the Union flag. In the midst of the salute, a spark catches a pile of cartridges, killing Private Daniel Hough and Private Edward Galloway, the first casualties of the war. Major Anderson carries away the flag of Fort Sumter. The War between the States has begun.      
Left Brain, Right BrainA French surgeon, Paul Broca, dissects the brain of a man called Tana. He was called Tana because that was the only sound he could make. He discovers damage to the left side of the brain caused by a cyst. After investigation of people with similar symptoms... that is... an inability to articulate their speech, he sees a trend. Each has damage on the left side of the brain. He concludes that the left side handles verbalization. He also notices that damage to the left side of the brain causes some paralysis of the right side of the body. This is the first anatomical proof of the location of a brain function, and the doctor introduces the idea of a left-side/right-side brain coordination. Obviously their must be come cross-coordination of the two sides. In later years, doctors will notice a problem with the cross-coordination that causes seizures in epilepsy sufferers. Cutting the connections between the left and right brain can reduce these seizures, but it can cause a strange result. Neuroscientist Michael Gazzaniga noticed that when he put an object into the right hand of such a patient, the patient could name the object and describe it, but when he put the same object into the patient's left hand, he could neither name it nor describe it. Clearly, the cross connections between left and right brain are used and needed.   
The Land of the Free and the First US Income TaxYep. It's a flat tax of 3 percent on income over $800 dollars. It is introduced to fund the war effort. The big problem at the beginning of the War between the States is not getting enough volunteers to fight for the Union, but getting enough money to equip the soldiers and feed them properly. Logistics, Logistics, Logistics. By next year it will be replaced by a so-called "progressive income tax" which makes no logical sense. A flax tax is progressive because the more money you make, the more money you pay. Then again, this is government and logic has very little to do with it.
- "One of the greatest perplexities of the government, is to avoid receiving troops faster than it can provide for them. In a word, the people will save their government, if the government itself, will do its part"
- -- Abraham Lincoln on the problem of funding an army.
In Other News
- The Kingdom of Italy begins the unification process. The northern and southern kingdoms formally declare their unity this year, but someone didn't get the memo. They aren't really unified yet, but it is a start. 
- The Pony Express is replaced by the telegraph. The east-west fast mail service has existed for only 19 months, but it's legend will live on. The logo will be appropriated by Wells Fargo, and even the US Postal Service. 
- The Gatling Gun is invented. With the onset of War, the ingenious mind of the American citizen turns to mechanized mayhem. The result? The multi-barrelled gun that will show people how futile war can be. (FYI, it doesn't help at all in that regard.)