News George Stinney, the youngest person ever executed in South Carolina, in 1944

George Stinney was 14 when executed for a crime his family says he didn’t commit. A retrial may clear his name

Missing 40-stone teen is found

A 40-stone US teenager who disappeared with his mother after she was accused of neglecting his health has been found with her at a laundry in Maryland.

Craigslist faces prostitution controversy in NY

Seven people accused of publicizing a New York City prostitution ring over Craigslist have been indicted, adding to pressure on the online classified site to vet its ads.

Wildfire starts to spread in US

A coastal wildfire spread early today toward one of the busiest tourist stretches in South Carolina after destroying more than three dozen homes.

Markets soar after Fed boss sees 'green shoots' of recovery

Public figures in the US don't have their tongues cut out for saying they've seen "green shoots" of economic recovery. After Ben Bernanke, chairman of the Federal Reserve, uttered the phrase on television on Sunday night, stock markets soared.

US freezes as Arctic air blasts in from Canada

America is not unfamiliar with low temperatures, but the present cold snap is exceptional by any standards

Eartha Kitt: Singer and actress with a difficult reputation who was described as 'the most exciting woman on earth'

When New Faces of 1952, a revue celebrating fresh talent, opened on Broadway, the New York Times critic Brooks Atkinson stated, "Eartha Kitt not only looks incendiary but she can make a song burst into flame."

Eartha Kitt dies of cancer, aged 81

Eartha Kitt, the actress, diva and timeless sex symbol whose career spanned six decades and whose extraordinarily sultry voice propelled her from the cotton fields of South Carolina to the heights of global stardom has died, at the age of 81.

Statelines: the full collection of articles in our America travel series

Through 2008, The Independent Traveller has broken new ground by celebrating the US in every edition, starting on 5 January with Washington DC. Every Saturday since then we have featured one of the 50 states. Today, you can travel the US in three pages, as we distil the best of America

A beautiful life: Paul Bettany a successful acting export

He used to be a busker, but now Paul Bettany is one of our most successful acting exports. Just don't mention the bald patch, he tells James Mottram

My vision for America: Speeches by Barack Obama

Throughout his political life, Barack Obama's brilliant oratory has captivated and inspired millions. We publish the key speeches in which he sets out his vision for America – and the world

My secret life: Margot Stilley, actress, 25

The home I grew up in... was built in the Twenties by my great-grandfather. It had an amazing hanging garden made up of Spanish moss. My family was really into plywood, timber and bricks, and inside all the features had intricate detail. I still miss the smell of the place.

Dominic Lawson: A simple lesson in humanity

Every person with disabilities is defined – like all of us – by unique personalities and aspirations

McCains show off adopted daughter Bridget

The unlikely family tableau at the Republican National Convention surely jolted millions of viewers at home: there was Cindy McCain, strings of pearls about her neck as usual, clasping hands with her adopted 17-year-old daughter Bridget. Mother and daughter were on the edge of crying.

Tropical storm hits Florida coast



Tropical Storm Fay continued its erratic path today, moving north along the Florida coast but not going out over the Atlantic Ocean, where many had feared it could strengthen and curve back toward the state as a hurricane.

Charleston: not as gay as its ads

It started as a light-hearted attempt to promote America as a gay-friendly tourist destination during the Pride London parade. Throughout its history, South Carolina has been famous for many things: slaves, prohibition and the Ku Klux Klan among others. Now, much to the fury of its senators, posters on the London Underground are proclaiming: "South Carolina is so gay".

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Syria civil war: Meet the military commander who says his soldiers will not rest until every inch of their war torn country is free of Islamist 'terrorists'

‘We won’t stop until Syria is back to normal’

Near the front lines with Islamist-controlled towns where Assad’s troops were besieged just last month, Robert Fisk meets a commander confidently preparing his soldiers for battle
Fifa corruption: Strip Qatar of the World Cup? Not likely

Strip Qatar of the World Cup? Not likely

But if a real smoking gun is found, that might change things, says Tom Peck
The inside story of how Bill Clinton built a $2bn global foundation may undermine Hillary's chances

The inside story of how Bill Clinton built a $2bn global foundation...

... and how it may undermine Hillary's chances in 2016
Genes greatly influence when and how many babies a woman will have, study finds

Mother’s genes play key role in decision to start a family

Study's findings suggest that human fertility is still evolving
12 best olive oils

Extra-virgin, cold-press, early-harvest, ultra-premium: 12 best olive oils

Choosing an olive oil is a surprising minefield. Save yourself the hassle with our handy guide
Rafa Benitez Real Madrid unveiling: New manager full of emotion at Bernabeu homecoming

Benitez full of emotion at Bernabeu homecoming

There were tears in the former Liverpool manager’s eyes as he was unveiled as Real Madrid coach. But the Spaniard knows he must make tough decisions if he is to succeed
Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

The future of songwriting

How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

Recognition at long last

Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

Beating obesity

The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
9 best women's festival waterproofs

Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
Cycling World Hour Record: Nervous Sir Bradley Wiggins ready for pain as he prepares to go distance

Wiggins worried

Nervous Sir Bradley ready for pain as he prepares to attempt cycling's World Hour Record
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause