Francis Drake and his ship the Golden Hind circumnavigated the world in 1580. He left England December 13, 1577, with numerous ships and many men. The Golden Hind, the only ship to return, was loaded with treasure, and Queen Elizabeth’s half of the cargo was greater than all her other income that year. He was knighted for his efforts. Children could read You Wouldn’t Want to Explore with Sir Francis Drake, by David Stewart and David Salariya.
George Washington established his first cabinet in 1789.
- Thomas Jefferson became Secretary of State.
- John Jay was appointed the first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.
- Samuel Osgood was the first Postmaster.
- Edmund J. Randolph was made Attorney General
- Henry Knox had become Secretary of War on September 12, 1789. The position was renamed years later Secretary of Defense.
Today the President’s cabinet is comprised of the Vice President and fifteen heads of departments. Children can learn more at: https://www.whitehouse.gov/administration/cabinet
Cement was patented in 1871. David Oliver Saylor, of Allentown, Pennsylvania, received patent number 119,413. Children can take some virtual tours of cement being made at: http://www.cement.org/basics/howmade.asp.
Richard Nixon and John F. Kennedy, presidential candidates, held the first of four televised debates in 1960. Experts believe Kennedy fared better in the first debate, but Nixon improved as time went on.
Shannon Lucid, astronaut, returned to earth in 1996 after being in space 188 days. At the time she set the US record for longest time in space and the world record for the longest time for a woman in space. She conducted experiments aboard the Mir space station. She had previously flown on four other missions. Older children could learn more at: Shannon Lucid.
Gilligan’s Island appeared for the first time in 1964. The show ran for 98 episodes, but the series became famous through re-runs.
Johnny Appleseed (born John Chapman in Leominster, Massachusetts, 1774; died Allen County, Indiana, March 18, 1845) is believed to have planted many orchards of apple trees. He was well regarded by both the Indians and the settlers. His death is remembered as Johnny Appleseed Day. Children can learn more at: Johnny Appleseed
T. S. Eliot (born Saint Louis, Missouri, 1888; died London, United Kingdom, January 4, 1965) was a poet, essayist, and playwright. His works include The Waste Land and The Hollow Men. He received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1948. Children can read some of his works (including The Waste Land) at: Project Gutenberg
George Gershwin (born Brooklyn, New York, 1898; died Beverly Hills, California, July 11, 1937) was a composer. He often teamed with his brother, Ira. Two of his most famous works are I Got Rhythm and Rhapsody in Blue.
Lancaster, Pennsylvania, was the nation’s capital for this day only in 1777. The prior capital was Philadelphia, and the next capital was York, Pennsylvania.
Jean-Francois Champollion declared in 1822 that he had deciphered the Rosetta Stone. The monument contained the same speech in three languages. He was able to translate the speech in two of the languages, and he used patterns and syntax to decode the Egyptian hieroglyphics, the third language. The Rosetta Stone is housed in the British Museum. Children could learn about the Rosetta Stone and Egyptian hieroglyphics at: Rosetta Stone.
Matchbooks were patented in 1892 by Joshua Pusey of Lima, Pennsylvania. He received patent number 483,166. Children can learn more about matches and matchbooks at: Matchbooks.