(CBS Local)– CBS Sunday Morning’s Mo Rocca has a knack for putting things into historical perspective.
Rocca shows off his skills weekly on CBS Sunday Morning and his podcast Mobituaries. The former correspondent from The Daily Show transformed his podcast into a book about people and moments throughout history that have been forgotten. Rocca wrote about everyone from Thomas Paine to Farah Fawcett.
“I first focus on what is kind of hitting me in the gut and what’s interesting to me,” said Rocca in an interview with CBS Local’s DJ Sixsmith. “It’s important to pursue what you’re interested in and go with it. I’m a big American history buff. I was interested in my early 20s in obscure presidential sites. Everyone is going to be forgotten. There are people that are still famous and people that were never famous that are interesting to me and both stories are worth telling as long as I have something to add.”
One of the most interesting people that Rocca writes about is Elizabeth Jennings, who took on racism 100 years before Rosa Parks in New York.
“She’s an African-American woman and almost 100 years before Rosa Parks and the Montgomery Bus Boycott, Elizabeth Jennings is trying to go to church in Lower Manhattan and gets kicked off a horse drawn street car,” said Rocca. “She ends up suing and this is a black woman in the 1850s. A jury of all white men rules on her side and she wins. She’s kind of the Rosa Parks of a century before.”
“Mobituaries” is available now wherever books are sold.