A grisly construction accident in New England in 1848 left railroad worker Phineas Gage with severe brain damage – but gave scientists valuable clues about how the brain functions. Gage survived the metal spike that went clear through his head and has since become an icon of both science and pop culture. His skull is on display at Harvard Medical School in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Like what you hear? Follow reporter Davis Dunavin as he travels the road from New York to Boston, looking for unusual stories and fascinating histories in his podcast, Off the Path from New York To Boston.