United States declared war against Great Britain, starting the War of 1812. Some people call the war the Second War of American Independence. The war ended December 24, 1814. Children could learn more at: War of 1812.
Napoleon was defeated at Waterloo in 1815 by Wellington and Blucher. This military loss ended Napoleon’s reign in France, and the British exiled him to Saint Helena where he died in 1821.
Sally Ride in 1983 became the first American woman and the third woman in space. She and four other crew members were in the Challenger for six days. Since then, at least 60 women, including females from France, India, United Kingdom, South Korea, Italy, Japan, Canada, and China, have flown in space. Children can learn more at: Sally Ride.
Pam Conrad (born New York, New York, 1947; died Long Island, New York, January 22, 1996) wrote books for children. She received the 1991 Edgar Award for Stonewords. Her book Our House: Stories of Levittown earned a 1995 Newbery Honor Award.
Pat Hutchins (born Yorkshire, England, 1942; died London, England, November 7, 2017) wrote and illustrated around 50 books for children. She received the Kate Greenaway Medal in 1974 for The Wind Blew. Children can learn more at: Pat Hutchins.
George Leigh Mallory (born Moberley, Cheshire, England, 1886; died climbing Mount Everest, June 8, 1924) was a mountain climber. His body was found in 1999 at around 27,000 feet. Experts are still puzzled as to whether he and his companion died on the way up or on the way down. He was asked why he wanted to climb the highest mountain in the world. His famous response was, “Because it is there.”
Angela Johnson (born Tuskegee, Alabama, 1961) is a poet. She has also written at least 40 books for children. She received the 1999 Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry Award for The Other Side. She has earned several Coretta Scott King Awards: an Honor Award in 1991 for When I Am Old with You, the 1994 Medal for Toning the Sweep, a 1999 Honor Award for Heaven, and the 2004 Medal for The First Part Last. The 2004 Michael L. Printz Award was given to her for The First Part Last. Children can learn more at: Angela Johnson.
Chris Van Allsburg (born Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1949) is a children’s author and illustrator. He earned a 1980 Caldecott Honor Award for The Garden of Abdul Gasazi. He received the 1981 Caldecott Medal for Jumanji and another Caldecott Medal for The Polar Express in 1985. Children can visit his website at: Chris Van Allsburg.
Vivian Vande Velde (born Rochester, New York, 1951) writes books for children and young adults. Her Never Trust a Dead Man earned the 2000 Edgar Award. Children can learn more at: Vivian Vande Velde.
Juneteenth is celebrated in Texas and in other states. Juneteenth is a portmanteau of the words June and nineteenth and commemorates the day in 1865 when slaves were given their freedom in Texas. Although the Emancipation Proclamation had been issued January 1, 1863, slaves in Texas were not given their freedom until several months after the conclusion of the Civil War. Children can learn more about: Juneteenth.
National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) was created in 1934. It centralizes federal documents and makes them available to the public. The National Archives Building in Washington, DC, houses originals of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. One of the four copies of the Magna Carta is also there. Children can visit the National Archives website at: http://www.nara.gov.
Garfield the Cat first appeared in 1978. Jim Davis created the comic strip character. It is the longest-running comic strip and is featured in over 2,500 newspapers.
Lou Gehrig (born Henry Louis Gehrig in New York, New York, 1903; died New York, New York, June 2, 1941) was a baseball legend. He appeared in seven World Series. He died of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, which has become known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. Children could read Lou Gehrig: Iron Horse of Baseball by James Buckley, Jr.
Pascal (born Clermont-Ferrand, France, 1623; died Paris, France, August 19, 1662) was a mathematician, a physicist, and a philosopher. At age sixteen he had developed Pascal’s Theorem. In 1642 he invented the first adding machine. Along with Pierre de Fermat, he developed the mathematics of probability.
Elvira Woodruff (born Raritan, New Jersey, 1951) writes for children. Her books include George Washington’s Socks and Dear Levi: Letters from the Overland Trail. Children can visit her website: http://ewoodruff.com/.
West Virginia became the thirty-fifth state of the United States in 1863. It seceded from Virginia in 1861. Its nickname is the Mountain State, and the capital is Charleston. The state ranks forty-first in area and thirty-fifth in population. Today much of its income comes from coal and farming. Children can visit a website at: West Virginia. Idea: Since Charleston is the capital, children could learn to dance the Charleston.
Congress adopted the Great Seal in 1782. The seal, housed with the State Department, is used to authenticate federal documents. Three committees contributed their ideas until the final choice was made. The seal has at least five symbols that have thirteen of that object. For example, the eagle holds thirteen arrows. Children can learn more at: Great Seal.