Bolivia celebrates Independence Day. A landlocked country in South America, Bolivia gained its freedom from Spain in 1825. La Paz is the capital, and at one time the country was under Inca control. Although the country is presently bigger than the state of Texas, it was once much larger. Parts of the country were sold, and parts were given away as spoils of war. Its natural resources include silver, tin, oil, and natural gas.
Jamaica celebrates Independence Day. It became free from Great Britain in 1962, but Jamaica remains a part of the British Commonwealth. Located in the Caribbean Sea, Jamaica is about the size of Connecticut. This mountainous island has a tropical climate. Almost three million people live there, and tourism is an important industry. Kingston is the capital. Children could learn more at: Jamaica.
Sandwich was invented in 1762 by John Montagu, the fourth Earl of Sandwich. Stories conflict as to why he invented the sandwich. One tale states he loved to gamble, and he did not want to miss the gambling when he got hungry. The other version indicates he was a very dedicated man, and he did not want to turn away from his work when he got hungry.
Gertrude Ederle in 1926 became the first woman to swim the English Channel. She swam for fourteen hours and thirty-one minutes from England to France. She returned to a ticker tape parade in New York City. Younger children could read America’s Champion Swimmer: Gertrude Ederle, by David A. Adler.
Atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima in 1945. The Enola Gay, a B-29 bomber, dropped the bomb that immediately killed 70,000 to 80,000 people. Within four months another 90,000 to 140,000 people died from radiation sickness and other complications of the atomic bomb. The United States dropped an atomic bomb on Nagasaki on August 15, 1945. The Japanese informally surrendered on August 15, 1945 and formally surrendered on September 2, 1945. Older students could read Hiroshima by John Hersey. The book follows several Japanese citizens after the bomb drop and then about 40 years later.
World Wide Web became available to the public in 1991. Sir Tim Berners-Lee developed a system of sharing files between computers. Within five years 40 million people were using the Web. Today almost 2.5 billion people use the Web. Berners-Lee could have become wealthy from his invention, but he wanted the Web to remain free and open.
Frank Asch (born Somerville, New Jersey, 1946) is a children’s author and illustrator. He is known for his Moonbear series. Children could visit his website, particularly his animated stories, at: Frank Asch.
Barbara Cooney (born Brooklyn, New York, 1917; died Portland, Maine, March 10, 2000) was a children’s author and illustrator. Her illustrations in Chanticleer and the Fox won the 1959 Caldecott Medal, and her illustrations in Ox-cart Man won the 1980 Caldecott Medal. Children can visit a website at: Barbara Cooney.
Sir Alexander Fleming (born Lochfield, Scotland, 1881; died London, England, March 11, 1955) was a bacteriologist. He discovered penicillin and received the 1945 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.
Edith Kermit Carow Roosevelt (born Norwich, Connecticut, 1861; died Sagamore Hill, New York, September 30, 1948) was the second wife of Theodore Roosevelt, twenty-sixth president of the United States. They had five children, and he also had a daughter by his first marriage. Children could visit a website at: Edith Roosevelt. Idea: Children could investigate what the Roosevelt children did while they were living in the White House. Did they really take a pony upstairs?
Alfred, Lord Tennyson (born Somersby, Lincolnshire, England, 1809; died Aldworth, England, October 6, 1892) was a poet. Children could read many of his works at: Project Gutenberg.