Today in History

Today let’s take a look at some interesting occurrences from this day in history.

On this date in 1833 John Deere made the first steel plow. Suburban lawn farmers everywhere tip their ball caps today. Without this momentous invention which ultimately led to the riding mower, we all would be cutting our front yards using something akin to bronze shears which were actually invented sometime around the third century.

On this date in 1851, Linus Yale patents the Yale lock. Without the foresight of Mr. Yale our garden sheds, fenced junkyards, and school lockers would be secured with duct tape. Thank you Mr. Yale.

On May 6th, 1851, Dr. John Gorrie patents a refrigeration machine. Mortimer Cube, inventor of large metal ice tongs is seen beating his head against his horse-drawn carriage.

On May 6th, 1861, Jefferson Davis approves a bill declaring War between the U.S. and the Confederacy. On April 27, 2008, the not-so-Reverend Jeremiah Wright also declares war on the U.S. proving we have learned little in 147 years.

On this day in 1890 the Mormon Church renounced polygamy (via document 1006-Truth Restored). On April 8, 2008, 400 children were removed from a polygamous Mormon sect thus confirming Mormons don’t read their own literature.

Notable births on this day: Maximilien Robespierre, a well known figure of the French Revolution; his name symbolic of the Reign of Terror. Thanks largely to him, France is now a Republic and well known for poodles, potatoes repeatedly fried in animal fat, berets, and the mispronunciation of “the” as “zee”.

Sigmund Freud was born on this day in 1856. Little known facts about Siggy include his avid cigar smoking and contribution to lingerie, also known as the Freudian slip.

George Clooney was born on this day in 1961; noted thespian, humanitarian, perpetual bachelor and nephew to popular songstress Rosemary Clooney. A famous series of Walt Disney cartoons were named after the Clooney family, but due to an unfortunate typographical error, the Clooney Tunes came out as Looney Toons.

Deaths on this date worthy of note: May 6th, 523 marked the demise of King Thrasamunde of Vandalen. I have no idea who that was or where that is, but it’s a cool name to have and so I included it here.

In 1085 the conqueror of Toledo, King Alfonso VI, died. Why anyone would want to conquer Toledo is beyond me.

On this date in 1862, the writer and pacifist Henry David Thoreau (Walden Pond) died at the age of 44. Apparently living the quiet life among the trees was not healthy after all.

On this day in 1919, the author of The Wizard of Oz, Frank Lyman Baum disappeared somewhere over the rainbow never to be seen again.

And, lastly, famous actress Marlene Dietrich died in Paris on this date in 1992 at the ripe old age of 90.

A year from now we will look back and note that today the price of oil hit a record $123 a barrel, Hillary vowed to crush OPEC, the famous Tropicana Casino filed for bankruptcy, and a burglar in a Jacksonville, FL restaurant hiding in a grill vent nearly cooked himself for lunch.

All in all, May 6th was an interesting day.

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