Thursday, December 1, 2011

On This Day In History

Where does the time go? November was here one minute and then it was gone. It was a relatively quiet – and boring – month for me, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Sometimes we need periods that are completely uneventful to recharge our batteries. We’ll see what December has in store with Christmas just around the corner.

Below are some interesting things that happened on this day in history:

1640 - Portugal regains independence after 60 years of Spanish rule.

1641 - Massachusetts becomes first colony to give statutory recognition to slavery.

1750 - First American school to offer manual training courses opens, Maryland.

1821 - Santo Domingo (Dominican Republic) proclaims independence from Spain.

1835 - Hans Christian Andersen published his first book of fairy tales.

1878 - First White House telephone installed.

1887 - Sherlock Holmes first appears in print: "A Study In Scarlet".

1903 - "The Great Train Robbery", the first Western film, released.

1913 - First drive-up gasoline station opens (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA).

1913 - Ford Motor Co. began using a new movable assembly line that ushered in the era of mass production.

1918 - The US Weather Bureau issues its first official aviation weather forecast.

1918 - Danish parliament passes an act to grant Iceland independence.

1921 - First US helium-filled dirigible makes first flight.

1929 - Game of BINGO invented by Edwin S Lowe.

1935 - Birth of Woody Allen [Allen Stuart Konigsberg] in Brooklyn, New York, USA; writer, actor (Zelig, Annie Hall).

1941 - Japanese emperor Hirohito signs declaration of war.

1943 - US President Franklin Roosevelt, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, and Soviet Premier Josef Stalin agree to Operation Overlord, Anglo-American invasion of Europe (D-Day).

1952 - In Denmark, it was announced that the first successful sex-change operation had been performed.

1955 - Rosa Parks, a black seamstress in Montgomery, AL, refused to give up her seat to a white man. Mrs. Parks was arrested marking a milestone in the civil rights movement in the U.S.

1959 - Twelve nations sign a treaty for scientific peaceful use of Antarctica.

1959 - The first color photograph of Earth is received from outer space.

1965 - South Africa government says children of white fathers are white.

1969 - US government holds its first draft lottery since WWII.

1973 - Jack Nicklaus becomes first golfer to earn $2 million in a year.

1991 - Ukrainians vote overwhelmingly for independence from the Soviet Union in a referendum.

2003 - The use of hand-held cell phones while driving is made illegal in the United Kingdom.

2005 - South Africa becomes the fifth country in the world where same-sex marriages are recognized.

Below is a video that celebrates the achievement of Rosa Park’s bold action of remaining seated. One year and one day later, after a bus boycott led by the SCLC and Dr. MLK, public transportation laws were changed and blacks received equal rights while riding. It was a great feat for African Americans, and it all started with this brave woman.

Happy December, everyone.


  1. It cheers me to think Woody Allen is celebrating a birthday today - I adore his movies and hope we get a few more from him... he's no spring chicken!

  2. Funny thing is, I remember when he was a spring chicken. I guess that says something about my age, too!