On this day in 1867, the U.S. formally takes possession of Alaska after purchasing the territory from Russia for $7.2 million, or less than two cents an acre. The Alaska purchase comprised 586,412 square miles, about twice the size of Texas
U.S. Air Force Captain Chuck Yeager becomes the first person to fly faster than the speed of sound.
Yeager, born in Myra, West Virginia, in 1923, was a combat fighter during World War II and flew 64 missions over Europe. He shot down 13 German planes and was himself shot down over France, but he escaped capture with the assistance of the French Underground. After the war, he was among several volunteers chosen to test-fly the experimental X-1 rocket plane, built by the Bell Aircraft Company to explore the possibility of supersonic flight.
For years, many aviators believed that man was not meant to fly faster than the speed of sound, theorizing that transonic drag rise would tear any aircraft apart. All that changed on October 14, 1947, when Yeager flew the X-1 over Rogers Dry Lake in Southern California. The X-1 was lifted to an altitude of 25,000 feet by a B-29 aircraft and then released through the bomb bay, rocketing to 40,000 feet and exceeding 662 miles per hour (the sound barrier at that altitude). The rocket plane, nicknamed “Glamorous Glennis,” was designed with thin, unswept wings and a streamlined fuselage modeled after a .50-caliber bullet.
Because of the secrecy of the project, Bell and Yeager’s achievement was not announced until June 1948. Yeager continued to serve as a test pilot, and in 1953 he flew 1,650 miles per hour in an X-1A rocket plane. He retired from the U.S. Air Force in 1975 with the rank of brigadier general.
The film was released in theaters October 14, 1954.
White Christmas is a 1954 movie starring Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye that featured the songs of Irving Berlin, including the titular White Christmas.
On this day in 1866, the Reno gang carries out the first robbery of a moving train in the U.S., making off with over $10,000 from an Ohio & Mississippi train in Jackson County, Indiana. Prior to this innovation in crime, holdups had taken place only on trains sitting at stations or freight yards.
On October 5, 1962, the 1st James Bond film, Dr. No, premiered in London (it would arrive in the US the 8th of May of 1963).
The Flintstones is an animated American television sitcom that ran from September 30, 1960 to April 1, 1966 on ABC. Produced by Hanna-Barbera Productions, The Flintstones is about a working class Stone Age man’s life with his family and his next door neighbor and best friend. It has since been re-released on both DVD and VHS.
Critics and fans alike agree that the show was an animated imitation of The Honeymooners with rock puns thrown in. William Hanna admitted that “At that time “The Honeymooners” was the most popular show on the air, and for my bill, it was the funniest show on the air. The characters, I thought, were terrific. Now, that influenced greatly what we did with “The Flintstones”… “The Honeymooners” was there, and we used that as a kind of basis for the concept.” However Joseph Barbera disavowed these claims in a separate interview, stating that “I don’t remember mentioning “The Honeymooners” when I sold the show, but if people want to compare “The Flintstones” to “The Honeymooners,” then great. It’s a total compliment. “The Honeymooners” was one of the greatest shows ever written.” Its popularity rested heavily on its juxtaposition of modern-day concerns in the Stone Age setting
The USS Nautilus, the world’s first nuclear submarine, is commissioned by the U.S. Navy.
The Nautilus was constructed under the direction of U.S. Navy Captain Hyman G. Rickover, a brilliant Russian-born engineer who joined the U.S. atomic program in 1946. In 1947, he was put in charge of the navy’s nuclear-propulsion program and began work on an atomic submarine. Regarded as a fanatic by his detractors, Rickover succeeded in developing and delivering the world’s first nuclear submarine years ahead of schedule. In 1952, theNautilus‘ keel was laid by President Harry S. Truman, and on January 21, 1954, first lady Mamie Eisenhower broke a bottle of champagne across its bow as it was launched into the Thames River at Groton, Connecticut. Commissioned on September 30, 1954, it first ran under nuclear power on the morning of January 17, 1955.
Minecraft Abbey Road
Beatles Abbey Road
Abbey Road is the eleventh studio album by the English rock band the Beatles, released on September 26, 1969 in the United Kingdom and on October 1, 1969 in the United States. The recording sessions for the album were the last in which all four Beatles participated. Although Let It Be was the final album that the Beatles completed before the band’s dissolution in April 1970, most of that album had been recorded before the Abbey Road sessions began.
On September 23, 1962, the Jetsons premiered on ABC.
The Jetsons is a prime-time animated American sitcom that was produced by Hanna-Barbera, originally airing from 1962–63 and again from 1985–87. It was Hanna-Barbera’s Space Age counterpart to The Flintstones, a half-hour family sitcom projecting contemporary American culture and lifestyle into another time period. While the Flintstones live in a world with machines powered by birds and dinosaurs, the Jetsons live in a futuristic utopia in the year 2062 of elaborate robotic contraptions, aliens, holograms, and whimsical inventions.
The original incarnation of the series aired Sunday nights on ABC from September 23, 1962, to March 3, 1963. It comprised 24 episodes, and was re-run on Saturday morning for decades. At the time of its debut, it was the first program ever to be broadcast in color on ABC-TV (as The Flintstones, while always produced in color, was broadcast in black-and-white for its first two seasons). Its continuing popularity led to further episodes being produced for syndication between 1985 and 1987.
“In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit.”
The Hobbit is a novel written by J. R. R. Tolkien in the tradition of the fairy tale. It was first published on September 21, 1937. While it also stands in its own right, it is often seen as a prelude to Tolkien’s monumental fantasy novel The Lord of the Rings (published in 1954 and 1955).
The story, subtitled There and Back Again, follows the adventures of the hobbit Bilbo Baggins as he travels across the lands of Middle-earth with a band of dwarves and a wizard named Gandalf on a quest to restore a dwarven kingdom and a great treasure stolen by the dragon, Smaug.
An emoticon is a facial expression pictorially represented by punctuation and letters, usually to express a writer’s mood. Emoticons are often used to alert a responder to the tenor or temper of a statement, and can change and improve interpretation of plain text. The word is a portmanteau word of the English words emotion and icon. In web forums, instant messengers and online games, text emoticons are often automatically replaced with small corresponding images, which came to be called emoticons as well. Certain complex character combinations can only be accomplished in a double-byte language, giving rise to especially complex forms, sometimes known by their romanized Japanese name of kaomoji.
The use of emoticons can be traced back to the 19th century, and they were commonly used in casual and/or humorous writing. Digital forms of emoticons on the Internet were included in a proposal by Scott Fahlman of Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in a message on September 19, 1982.
The series premiered on September 17, 1972, and ended February 28, 1983, with the finale becoming the most-watched television episode in U.S. television history.
Hogan’s Heroes premiered on September 17, 1965, and quickly became the most popular new show of the year. In fact, for several seasons it ranked in TV’s top 20 programs …but it never escaped the controversy it premise engendered: Was it immoral to portray history’s most evil killers as bumbling -even lovable- buffoons week after week, just to make a buck?
It ran for 168 episodes from September 17, 1965, to July 4, 1971, on the CBS network. Bob Crane starred as Colonel Robert E. Hogan, coordinating an international crew of Allied prisoners running a Special Operations group from the camp. Werner Klemperer played Colonel Wilhelm Klink, the incompetent commandant of the camp, and John Banner was the inept sergeant-of-the-guard, Hans Schultz.
168 Episodes, America must have decided it was ok… 🙂
On September 17, 1967, the first Hot Wheels was released.
Hot Wheels is a brand of die cast toy car, introduced by American toymaker Mattel in 1968. It was the primary competitor of Matchbox until 1996, when Mattel acquired rights to the Matchbox brand as well.
Today, the hard drive is found everywhere–from the PCs we use daily to MP3 players and memory keys so small you can toss them in your pocket and forget you’re carrying around a hard drive. But when the hard drive was first introduced on September 13, 1956, it required a humongous housing and 50 24-inch platters to store 1/2400 as much data as can be fit on today’s largest capacity 1-inch hard drives.
Click for larger image
September 11, 2001
Please observe a moment of silence at 8:46 a.m. (1246 GMT) to mark the moment when American Airlines Flight 11 crashes into the North Tower of the World Trade Center, at 9:03 a.m. (1303 GMT) when United Airlines Flight 175 crashes into the South Tower of the World Trade Center, 9:37 (1337 GMT) when American Airlines Flight 77 crashes into the Pentagon, at 9:59 a.m. (1359 GMT) when the South Tower Collapses, at 10:03 (1403 GMT) when United Airlines Flight 93 crashes near Shanksville, Pennsylvania, and finally at 10:29 a.m. (1429 GMT) when the North Tower Collapses.
On September 8, 1966, “The Man Trap” was first released upon the world. This, the first episode of one of the most famous TV Shows in history, Star Trek.
On September 7, 1813, the United States gets its nickname, Uncle Sam. The name is linked to Samuel Wilson, a meat packer from Troy, New York, who supplied barrels of beef to the United States Army during the War of 1812. Wilson (1766-1854) stamped the barrels with “U.S.” for United States, but soldiers began referring to the grub as “Uncle Sam’s.” The local newspaper picked up on the story and Uncle Sam eventually gained widespread acceptance as the nickname for the U.S. federal government.
In the late 1860s and 1870s, political cartoonist Thomas Nast (1840-1902) began popularizing the image of Uncle Sam. Nast continued to evolve the image, eventually giving Sam the white beard and stars-and-stripes suit that are associated with the character today. The German-born Nast was also credited with creating the modern image of Santa Claus as well as coming up with the donkey as a symbol for the Democratic Party and the elephant as a symbol for the Republicans. Nast also famously lampooned the corruption of New York City’s Tammany Hall in his editorial cartoons and was, in part, responsible for the downfall of Tammany leader William Tweed.
Perhaps the most famous image of Uncle Sam was created by artist James Montgomery Flagg (1877-1960). In Flagg’s version, Uncle Sam wears a tall top hat and blue jacket and is pointing straight ahead at the viewer. During World War I, this portrait of Sam with the words “I Want You For The U.S. Army” was used as a recruiting poster. The image, which became immensely popular, was first used on the cover of Leslie’s Weekly in July 1916 with the title “What Are You Doing for Preparedness?” The poster was widely distributed and has subsequently been re-used numerous times with different captions.
In September 1961, the U.S. Congress recognized Samuel Wilson as “the progenitor of America’s national symbol of Uncle Sam.” Wilson died at age 88 in 1854, and was buried next to his wife Betsey Mann in the Oakwood Cemetery in Troy, New York, the town that calls itself “The Home of Uncle Sam.”
To use their own image:
On September 4, 1998, Google was founded!
The SR-71 holds the “Speed Over a Recognized Course” record for flying from New York to London distance 3,508 miles (5,646 km), 1,435.587 miles per hour (2,310.353 km/h), and an elapsed time of 1 hour 54 minutes and 56.4 seconds, set on September 1, 1974 while flown by U.S. Air Force Pilot Maj. James V. Sullivan and Maj. Noel F. Widdifield, reconnaissance systems officer (RSO). This equates to an average velocity of about Mach 2.68, including deceleration for in-flight refueling. Peak speeds during this flight were probably closer to the declassified top speed of Mach 3.2+. For comparison, the best commercial Concorde flight time was 2 hours 52 minutes, and the Boeing 747 averages 6 hours 15 minutes.