On 12 June 1817, the earliest form of bicycle, the dandy horse, was driven by inventor and baron Karl von Drais. Dandy horse is actually a derogatory term for what Drais initially called the Laufmaschine or “running machine”. It was later called a vélocipède or draisienne (in French and then English), and then a pedestrian curricle or hobby-horse. This was the first commercially successful two-wheeled, steerable, … Continue reading Karl Drais and the Dandy Horse or, The Invention of the Bicycle
Victory in Europe Day celebrates the formal acceptance by the Allies of World War II of Nazi Germany’s unconditional surrender of its armed forces on Tuesday, 8 May 1945, marking the end of World War II in Europe. VE Day (or V-E Day in the United States) is observed by most Western European states on 8 May with several of the Channel Islands marking their … Continue reading Victory in Europe Day, AKA Liberation Day, Victory Over Fascism Day, and More….
In the military, D-Day is the day on which a combat attack or operation is to be initiated. The earliest use of the term by the United States Army that the U.S. Army Center of Military History has been able to find was during World War I. In Field Order Number 9, First Army, American Expeditionary Forces, dated September 7, 1918: “The First Army will … Continue reading The 75th Anniversary of D-Day
The Battle of Puebla (Batalla de Puebla) took place on May 5, 1862, near Puebla City during the Second French intervention in México. The battle ended in a victory for the Mexican Army over the occupying French soldiers. The French eventually overran the Mexicans in subsequent battles, but the Mexican victory at Puebla against a much better equipped and larger French army provided a significant … Continue reading The Battle of Puebla and Cinco de Mayo
The Coastwatchers, also known as the Coast Watch Organisation, Combined Field Intelligence Service or Section C, Allied Intelligence Bureau, were Allied military intelligence operatives stationed on remote Pacific islands during World War II to observe enemy movements and rescue stranded Allied personnel. They played a significant role in the Pacific Ocean theatre and South West Pacific theatre, particularly as an early warning network during the … Continue reading Post #999: Coastwatchers in the Solomon Islands
On March 15, 44 BC — the Ides of March — Julius Caesar, Dictator of the Roman Republic, was stabbed to death by several Roman senators. The assassination of Caesar was the result of a conspiracy by many senators led by Gaius Cassius Longinus, Decimus Junius Brutus Albinus, and Marcus Junius Brutus. They stabbed Caesar (23 times) to death in a location adjacent to the … Continue reading The Assassination of Julius Caesar
The Courrières mine disaster, Europe’s worst mining accident, caused the death of 1,099 miners in northern France on March 10, 1906. This disaster was surpassed only by the Benxihu Colliery accident in China on April 26, 1942, which killed 1,549 miners. A coaldust explosion, the cause of which is not known with certainty, devastated a coal mine operated by the Compagnie des mines de houille … Continue reading The Mining Disaster at Courrières
On March 8, 1576, Spanish explorer Diego García de Palacio first sighted the ruins of the ancient Mayan city of Copán. This is an archaeological site of the Maya civilization in western Honduras, not far from the border with Guatemala. Today, it lies within the municipality of Copán Ruinas in the department of Copán. It is in a fertile valley among foothills at 2,300 feet … Continue reading The Spanish “Find” Copán