Double-decked steamboat arrived in New Orleans for the first time in 1816. The Washington traveled between New Orleans and Louisville. It traveled upstream at 16 miles per hour and downstream at 25 miles per hour. This first steamboat was so successful that many others followed. By 1850 about 740 steamboats, transporting three million people annually, traveled on the Mississippi River.
Dow Jones Industrial Average was created in 1896 to give a snapshot of the overall trends of the stock market. The original average contained twelve stocks. The stocks were: American Cotton Oil Company, American Sugar Company, American Tobacco Company, Chicago Gas Company, Distilling and Cattle Feeding Company, General Electric, Laclede Gas Company, National Lead Company, North American Company, Tennessee Coal, Iron and Railroad Company, U.S. Leather Company, and United States Rubber Company. Today thirty stocks comprise the Dow Jones Industrial Average, and only one original Dow Jones company, General Electric, is part of today’s average. Children can view an interesting interactive graphic at: https://www.cnbc.com/2014/07/02/history-of-dow-30.html.
Far side of the moon was first photographed in 1959. The Soviet Union’s Luna 3, launched October 3, 1959, took 29 pictures. Then, when the spacecraft came closer to earth, it transmitted seventeen of the pictures. The photographs were of lesser quality than later photographs, but they showed that the far side of the moon was very different from the side we can see. The far side is more mountainous.
Niels Bohr (born Copenhagen, Denmark, 1885; died Copenhagen, Denmark, November 18, 1962) developed the theory of atomic structure. He received the 1922 Nobel Prize for his work. Later he studied the nucleus of atoms and quantum mechanics. Idea: Children could draw a model of an atom and learn about its various energy levels.
Alice Dalgliesh (born Trinidad, British West Indies, 1893; died Woodbury, Connecticut, June 11, 1979) wrote, illustrated, and/or edited at least 40 books for children. She received three Caldecott Honor Awards: in 1945 for The Silver Pencil, in 1953 for The Bears on Hemlock Mountain, and in 1955 for The Courage of Sarah Noble. Children can learn more at: Alice Dalgliesh
William Samuel Johnson (born Stratford, Connecticut, 1727; died November 14, 1819) represented Connecticut at the Constitutional Convention. A lawyer, he helped present the Connecticut Compromise (two branches of Congress). Later he became a US senator. He lived to be the oldest signer of the Constitution.
Yo-Yo Ma (born Paris, France, 1955) is a cellist. He was performing before audiences by age five. He has produced 75 albums, and he received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2001.
James Whitcomb Riley (born Greenfield, Indiana, 1849; died Indianapolis, Indiana, July 22, 1916) was known as the “Hoosier” poet. Idea: Students could read some of his poetry. Children could read many of his works at: Project Gutenberg.
Caesar Rodney (born Dover, Delaware, 1728; died Dover, Delaware, June 26, 1784) signed the Declaration of Independence. He represented Delaware. A wealthy man, he served as a sheriff, a member of the legislature, and a judge (even though he was not a lawyer). He fought in the Revolutionary War, and for a while he was governor of Delaware.
Desmond Tutu (born Klerksdrop, South Africa, 1931) is the archbishop of South Africa and a civil rights activist. He has received many awards, including the 1984 Nobel Peace Prize and the 2009 Presidential Medal of Freedom.