Category Archives: This Day in History

November 24: A Man Calling Himself Dan Cooper Hijacks a Plane, Collects His Ransom, then Parachutes from it and is Never Heard from Again


This Day In History: November 24, 1971 An unidentified man referred to as D.B. Cooper hijacked a Boeing 727 airplane between Portland, Oregon and Seattle, Washington.   Cooper bought a one-way ticket on a Northwest Orient Airlines, Flight 305 to Seattle, Washington leaving Portland, Oregon at 2:50 p.m.  He brought with him aboard the plane a black suit-case supposedly containing a […]

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November 23: Thespis of Icaria Becomes the World’s First Actor


This Day In History: November 23, 534 BC November 23 marks the traditional date when the first ever human being to take the stage and portray someone else other than himself took place.  This person, according to various sources, most notably Aristotle, was a man named Thespis of Icaria. (which is also where we get the word “thespian”, meaning “actor”)  […]

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November 21: Two Frenchman Make the World’s First Untethered Manned Hot Air Balloon Flight


This Day In History: November 21, 1783 In Paris, France, Jean-François Pilâtre de Rozier and François Laurent d’Arlandes made the first untethered manned flight in a Montgolfier hot air balloon.  After several practice runs to get the feel for how to work the balloon, de Rozier and d’Arlandes finally made their first untethered flight leaving at 2:00 p.m. from the […]

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November 20th: A 160,000 Pound Sperm Whale Destroys the Whaling Ship, Essex, an Event that Partly Inspired the Novel Moby Dick


This Date in History: November 20, 1820 On this date in 1820, an estimated 80 ton sperm whale attacked and destroyed the whaling ship, Essex, an event that partly inspired the novel Moby Dick.  Sailing around 2,000 miles west of South America, the crew of the Essex encountered a huge whale, which they claimed was around 85 feet long, though […]

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November 19th: Abraham Lincoln Delivers the Gettysburg Address


This Day In History: November 19, 1863 Abraham Lincoln was invited to the dedication ceremony of the Soldiers’ National Cemetery, not as the primary speaker, but simply to follow famed orator and U.S. Senator Edward Everett.  Everett first gave a well received speech that lasted around two hours; Lincoln then got up and gave his now famous address which was […]

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November 18th: The U.S. and Canadian Railroads Institute a Five Standard Time Zone System that Eventually Becomes the Official Standard Time System


This Day In History: November 18, 1883 The U.S. and Canadian railroads instituted a five standard continental time zone system on November 18, 1883, “The Day of Two Noons”, marking the beginning of the end for thousands of local times that were used by cities across North America at that point. Just one year later, 85% of all cities in […]

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November 17: Earth’s First Successfull Landing of a Remote Controlled Roving Robot on Another Astronomical Object


This Day In History: November 17, 1970 The Soviet Union successfully landed a remote controlled roving robot on the moon, making it the first roving robot from Earth to land on another astronomical object.  The robot was the Lunokhod 1, designed by Alexander Kemurdjian.  It was  launched during the Soviet Luna program, which ran from 1959-1976.  More specifically, the Lunokhod […]

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November 16th: LSD is First Synthesized by Dr. Albert Hofmann


This Day In History: November 16th LSD, more technically known as Lysergic acid diethylamide was first synthesized on November 16th, 1938 by Swiss scientist Dr. Albert Hofmann.  Dr. Hofmann was working at the Sandoz Laboratories in Switzerland researching ergot alkaloid derivatives for use in pharmaceuticals.  Ergot alkaloid’s are a type of ergoline alkaloid which is found in a certain type […]

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November 15th: The First of the Modern Olympic Games are Played in Athens, Greece


This Day In History: November 15, 1859 The first of the modern Olympic games were played in Athens, Greece on November 15, 1859.  These were the first Greek Olympics in around 1450-ish years, with the original Olympic games beginning around 776 BC and ending around 393-426 AD.  The revival of the Olympics was primarily thanks to Evangelos Zappas and Panagiotis […]

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