Who doesn’t love to learn about history? Well, a lot of people, actually. The unfortunate negative feelings toward history probably comes from the endless droning of history teachers in the classroom. This is why I always like to read historical events a little at a time and in short segments. I was tortured in school with the attempt to memorize every date and year that corresponds to an event, location, and person. My attention span can only hold for so long, so below is a list of major historical events that I found interesting on my search through the month of April in the history of time.
This is in no way an exhaustive list of events. These are just a few things I thought were pretty cool. At the end of the article, you’ll find two links to sites that give more on these dates.
In 1933, Nazi Germany began its persecution of Jews with a boycott of Jewish-owned businesses
In 1945, invasion of Okinawa began during World War II
In 1960, The U.S. launched its very first weather satellite
In 1513, Juan Ponce de Leon discovered Florida (I wonder what he thought about Palmetto Bugs and oversized grasshoppers)
In 1792, Coinage Act was passed by Congress authorizing the United States Mint
In 1863, a bread riot broke out in Richmond, Virginia. Angry people stormed bread wagons and wrecked nearby shops. Confederate President, Jefferson Davis had to plea with the mob and threaten them with violence. This is like South Beach Diet gone Wild.
In 1918, American’s Creed was accepted
In 1995, Sandra Day O’Connor became the first woman to preside over the court in the absence of Chief Justice William Rehnquist
In 1887, first woman mayor, Susanna Salter, was elected in Argonia, Kansas.
In 1949, NATO was signed by 12 nations to protect against the expansion of Soviet Russia.
In 1968, Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated in Memphis.
In 1614, Pocahontas married John Rolfe in Virginia
In 1986, a bomb exploded at a club frequented by military personnel in West Berlin killing 2 soldiers and a Turkish woman. This bomb was attributed to Muammar Qaddafi of Libya.
In 1896, the first Olympics games were held in Athens (appropriately) after a 1500-year break.
In 1917, World War I began and the U.S. declared war on Germany
In 1994, one the largest tragedies of our time occurred: Rwanda Genocide began when the plane with the presidents of Rwanda and Burundi was shot down.
In 1712, a tragic rebellion of 27 black slaves broke out in New York City, killing white people.
In 1513, Juan Ponce de Leon actually claimed Florida for Spain (he must’ve been okay with the bugs)
In 1975, Frank Robinson, MLB’s first black manager, managed his first game for the Cleveland Indians.
In 1865, Robert E. Lee surrendered the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia. The American Civil War ended in the East.
In 1866, the Civil Rights Bill was passed by Congress, despite the presidential veto.
In 1963, Sir Winston Churchill was made an honorary United States citizen
In 1925, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby ” was published.
In 1942, the Bataan Death March started in WWII (Pacific) and both American and Filipino prisoners of war were forced to march for six days from a Bataan airfield to a Cabanatuan camp (about 60 miles under a blazing sun with no food or water). Over 5000 American Soldiers died here.
In 1945, Buchenwald Nazi concentration camp was liberated by U.S. troops. Of the 238,980 inmates, over 56,000 died.
In 1783, Congress proclaimed the end to the Revolutionary War
In 1970, Apollo 13 mission began
In 1861, Civil War began with the bombing of Fort Sumter
In 1877, the catcher’s mask was first used in a baseball game (wait… what did they use before this?!)
In 1962, the Beatles spent seven weeks at the Star Club in Hamburg, Germany
In 1865, President Abraham Lincoln was shot while watching Our American Cousin. He died the morning of the next day
In 1828, Noah Webster made the first dictionary of American-style English.
In 1986, the U.S. retaliated against Libya’s attack on the West Berlin club several days earlier.
In 1817, the first American school for the deaf was founded in Hartford, CT.
In 1912, the Titanic struck and iceberg and sank.
In 1862, A bill ending slavery in the District of Columbia became the law
In 1995, Iqbal Masih, a young Pakistani boy, was shot and killed after speaking out against child labor. He was sold into servitude at age 4, and escaped at age 10, when he began speaking publically.
In 1964, Ford Motor Company released the Mustang.
In 1775, the famous Midnight Ride of Paul Revere and William Dawes in Boston.
In 1906, the major San Francisco earthquake and fire, killing 4000 people and destroying over 10,000 acres of property.
In 1775, the American Revolutionary War began at Lexington and Concord
In 1898, the Spanish-American War began
In 1995, A truck bomb exploded outside the Federal building in Oklahoma City killing 168 and injuring 500.
In 1889, Adolf Hitler was born in Braunau, Austria
In 1999, school shooting in Littleton, Colorado. Two shooters stormed Columbine High School at lunch and killed 12 students and a teacher, while wounding 20 other people before committing suicide.
In 1649, the Toleration Act passed the Maryland Assembly
In 1855, the first train crossed the Mississippi River
In 1864, “In God We Trust” was put on all American coins.
In 1993, the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum was dedicated.
In 1564, William Shakespeare was born and he died on the same day 52 years later in 1616.
In 1800, Library of Congress was established
In 1990, Discovery shuttle left Cape Canaveral carrying the Hubble Telescope
In 404 B.C., the Peloponnesian War ended
In 1874, Guglielmo Marconi, radio inventor, was born in Bologna, Italy
In 1967, the first abortion law was signed in Colorado, allowing it in cases where three physicians agreed.
In 1965, John Wilkes Booth (Lincoln’s assassin) was killed by Federal troops in Virginia.
In 1986, Chernobyl nuclear plant accident in the Ukraine. Caused a meltdown and sent a massive radioactive cloud into the atmosphere.
In 1865, the Sultana exploded on the Mississippi River, killing almost 2000 people.
In 1937, the first Social Security checks were distributed
In 1788, Maryland entered the Union
In 1945, Adolf Hitler married Eva Braun
In 1945, about 32,000 prisoners of Dachau Concentration Camp were freed.
In 1803, the U.S. bought the Louisiana Territory from France
In 1945, Adolf Hitler committed suicide along with his wife of one day.
In 1789, George Washington took office in New York as the first President of the United States
All of the above information was enjoyed by reading these two great articles. http://www.aboutfamouspeople.com/article1216.html