For those who need a refresher on this American folk icon, the story goes like this: During the 1800s, railroads started to snake across the U.S., and bands of men would smooth out the land by driving stakes into rock with a big ole hammer (and then filling the holes with explosives). John Henry, an African American, was supposed to be the biggest in spirit, in appetite, in the bulging of biceps and best driver of all. When companies started to employ steam-powered drills to make better time, Henry decided to challenge one to a race. He won but, tragically, died of exhaustion following his miraculous feat. The story is based in fact, but the details change with the telling how big Henry was, for example, or whether he was driving spikes or blasting rock. Regardless, his story remains the benchmark for the many human-machine battles since.