HISTORY OF AUSTRALIA DAY Did you know that the history of European Australia has ties to the American Revolutionary War? Back when the 13 American Colonies were part of the British Commonwealth, it was convenient for England to transport its convicts to the Colonies. Indeed, it was considered more humane to “transport” prisoners than to…

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HISTORY OF MACINTOSH: A 37 YEAR LOVE AFFAIR The now-famous Macintosh computer turns 37. When Apple President Steve Jobs launched this computer at the Flint Center on De Anza College campus on January 24, 1984, to the theme from Chariots of Fire, he called it “insanely great!” The $1.5M “1984” Super Bowl commercial filmed by…

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Presidential Inaugurations

HISTORY OF PRESIDENTIAL INAUGURATIONS: WHY ON JANUARY 20? In 1933 it seemed that a four-month transition between an outgoing “lame-duck” president who was voted out in November and a new administration starting in March was too long. Indeed, during the winter of 1932-1933, there was a horrific battle between the incumbent Herbert Hoover and president-elect…

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Presidential Transitions

HISTORY OF PRESIDENTIAL TRANSITIONS: WAS IT ALWAYS LIKE NOW? We think that our most current change in Presidential administration is contentious. But our national history has seen worse. And it goes back over 200 years to the third Presidential election, and several since then. Presidential Transition: from John Adams to Thomas Jefferson Perhaps the most…

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HISTORY OF BENJAMIN FRANKLIN We know this polymath as a writer, publisher, printer, merchant, scientist, moral philosopher, international diplomat, and inventor. Musically he invented the glass harmonica, but he also invented the Franklin stove and started the first lending library and fire brigade in Philadelphia. He did experiments in electricity and developed the lightning rod.…

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Martin Luther King, Jr.

HISTORY OF MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. Born on January 15, 1929, we celebrate a holiday in honor of a man who was not a president, nor an explorer, nor a saint. Rather he was a Baptist minister and an American leader of the 1960s civil rights movement named for the Protestant Reformer Martin Luther after his…

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HISTORY OF EPIPHANY Epiphany occurs in the Christian calendar on January 6. It signifies the event of the Magi, or Wise Men, visiting the baby Jesus, and is known in some Latin cultures as Three Kings Day. In the Eastern (Orthodox and Oriental) churches, it is known as the Feast of Theophany (God Manifest), commemorating Jesus’ baptism with…

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HISTORY OF NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS As I mentioned previously, New Year’s Day celebrations began in pre-Christian times, beginning with the Babylonians in March, but later changed to January by the Romans. Where did we get the idea of New Year’s Resolutions and why at the beginning of the year?   Roman New Years Resolutions The…

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