Archive for the ‘michael collins’ Tag

04/12/2022 Historical Trivia   Leave a comment

I’m a lover of history, and I’m absolutely crazy about obscure historical trivia facts. I’ve collected quite a few over the years and I’m going to begin today with what I hope will be a number of postings with more of these little tidbits. Enjoy!

  • “Take this script,” Rudyard Kipling said to the nurse who cared for his firstborn child, “and someday if you are in need of money, you may be able to sell it at a handsome price.” Years later, when the nurse was actually in want, she sold the manuscript of the first Jungle Book and lived in comfort for the rest of her life.
  • After writing the runaway bestseller Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Harriet Beecher Stowe was bombarded with hate mail. Out of one package that she received fell the ear of a slave.
  • The author of the best-known document in the United States, and perhaps in the world, published only one book. Thomas Jefferson’s answers to a set of 23 questions about the American continent, circulated in 1780 by the French emissary Fran├žois Marbois, appeared as Notes on the State of Virginia.
  • Walt Whitman was dismissed from his clerical post in the Indian Bureau of the Department of the Interior when the Secretary of the Interior, James Harlan, read a portion of Whitman’s Leaves of Grass and deemed it “pernicious poetry”.
  • Heavyweight boxing champion Gene Tunney lectured on Shakespeare at Yale University.
  • The electric automobile self-starter, which was perfected in 1911 by Charles F Kettering, made it possible for women to drive without the companion previously needed for cranking the engine.
  • In the early 1860s, a New York firm offered a prize of $10,000 for a satisfactory substitute for ivory in the manufacture of billiard balls. The prize was won by an American inventor, John Wesley Hyatt, who devised for the purpose what came to be known as celluloid. It was the first synthetic plastic.
  • Somewhere out there in space, amid all of the junk, is the Hasselblad camera dropped during a spacewalk by the United States astronaut Michael Collins. It will orbit the earth indefinitely.
  • A manned rocket reaches the moon in less time than it took a stagecoach to travel the length of England.
  • In 1930, Ellen Church recruited seven other young nurses to work 5000 feet above the Earth. They were the first airline stewardesses, flying on Boeing’s San Francisco to Chicago route, a trip that, in good weather, took 20 hours and made 13 stops.

WHO DOESN’T LOVE HISTORICAL TRIVIA?

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