This Day in History Class

This Day in History Class

From the desk of “Stuff You Missed in History Class,” “This Day in History Class” quickly recounts a tidbit from today’s events in history.

Episodes

December 7, 2021 10 min

On this day in 1972, five hours after launching from the Kennedy Space Center, the crew aboard the Apollo 17 spacecraft captured a rare image of the Earth in its entirety.

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On this day in 1877, at his lab in Menlo Park, New Jersey, inventor Thomas Edison made the first recording on his newly completed phonograph.

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On this day in 1791, Austrian composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart died in Vienna at the age of 35.

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On this day in 1961, the director of exhibitions at New York’s Museum of Modern Art realized that a picture had been hanging upside down for the past 57 days.

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On this day in 1979, at a concert for the British rock band The Who, eleven people were crushed to death by a crowd of overeager fans trying to get inside Cincinnati’s Riverfront Coliseum.

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On this day in 1867, British author Charles Dickens began his first American reading tour at Tremont Temple in Boston, Massachusetts.

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On this day in 1959, twelve nations signed the Antarctic Treaty, which prohibited military activity on the continent and ensured it would be used only for scientific research and exploration.

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On this day in 1966, the east Caribbean island of Barbados gained its independence from the United Kingdom.

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On this day in 1775, physician and amateur chemist James Jay invented a new kind of invisible ink, which was later put to use in the American War of Independence.

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On this day in 1895, the first American auto race took place in Chicago, Illinois, with six racers competing in custom, handcrafted cars.

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On this day in 1868, at dawn, Lt. Col. George Armstrong Custer led a surprise attack on a peaceful Cheyenne village along the Washita River in what is now Oklahoma.

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On this day in 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed a bill officially declaring that the Thanksgiving holiday would occur every year on the fourth Thursday in November.

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On this day in 1952, “The Moustrap,” a murder-mystery play by Agatha Christie, made its London debut at the Ambassadors Theatre.

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On this day in 1642, Dutch explorer Abel Tasman recorded the first European sighting of the island now known as Tasmania.

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On this day in 1889, an early forerunner of the modern jukebox was installed for public use at the Palais Royale Saloon in San Francisco, California.

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On this day in 1968, during a turbulent year for race relations in America, actors William Shatner and Nichelle Nichols shared a prominent kiss on an episode of Star Trek.

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On this day in 1934, at 17-years-old, Ella Fitzgerald became the first female performer to win Amateur Night at the Apollo Theater in Harlem.

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On this day in 1923, prolific inventor and entrepreneur Garrett Morgan received the patent for a traffic light signal of his own design.

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On this day in 1990, The National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences rescinded the Grammy Award for Best New Artist from pop duo Milli Vanilli.

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On this day in 1307, a legend was born when a Swiss farmer and skilled hunter named William Tell shot an apple off his son’s head with a crossbow.

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