Gusher signals start of U.S. oil industry

01/10/2021 0

On January 10, 1901, a drilling derrick at Spindletop Hill near Beaumont, Texas, produces an enormous gusher of crude oil, coating the landscape for hundreds of feet and signaling the advent of the American oil industry. The geyser […]

Columbus mistakes manatees for mermaids

01/09/2021 0

On January 9, 1493, explorer Christopher Columbus, sailing near the Dominican Republic, sees three “mermaids”—in reality manatees—and describes them as “not half as beautiful as they are painted.” Six months earlier, Columbus (1451-1506) set off from […]

Crazy Horse fights last battle

01/08/2021 1

On January 8, 1877, Oglala Lakota warrior Crazy Horse and his men—outnumbered, low on ammunition and forced to use outdated weapons to defend themselves—fight their final losing battle against the U.S. Cavalry in Montana. Six months earlier, in […]

First U.S. presidential election

01/07/2021 0

Congress sets January 7, 1789 as the date by which states are required to choose electors for the country’s first-ever presidential election. A month later, on February 4, George Washington was elected president by state electors and […]

Samuel Morse demonstrates the telegraph

01/06/2021 0

On January 6, 1838, Samuel Morse’s telegraph system is demonstrated for the first time at the Speedwell Iron Works in Morristown, New Jersey. The telegraph, a device which used electric impulses to transmit encoded messages over […]

Golden Gate Bridge is born

01/05/2021 0

On January 5, 1933, construction begins on the Golden Gate Bridge, as workers began excavating 3.25 million cubic feet of dirt for the structure’s huge anchorages. Following the Gold Rush boom that began in 1849, speculators realized the […]

“The Mousetrap” opens in London

11/25/2020 0

“The Mousetrap,” a murder-mystery written by the novelist and playwright Agatha Christie, opens at the Ambassadors Theatre in London. The crowd-pleasing whodunit would go on to become the longest continuously running play in history, with […]

“Origin of Species” is published

11/24/2020 0

On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, a groundbreaking scientific work by British naturalist Charles Darwin, is published in England. Darwin’s theory argued that organisms gradually evolve through a process he called “natural […]

First issue of “Life” is published

11/23/2020 0

On November 23, 1936, the first issue of the pictorial magazine Life is published, featuring a cover photo of the Fort Peck Dam’s spillway by Margaret Bourke-White. Life actually had its start earlier in the 20th century as […]

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