Today in History

“Who controls the past controls the future. Who controls the present controls the past.” -- George Orwell


“Be a part of your time

but do not be its creature”

Friedrich Schiller


We hold “Open Office Hours” every day at 11:00 until 11:30 AM Eastern US Time (15:00 – 15:30 UTC) for consultation on anything having to do with regulations, codes and standards that govern any dimension of the physical character of education communities.  They’re just conversations.  If we need more time, we take it; or schedule another breakout session.  Saturday morning sessions are not unthinkable.  Academic communities are always open.

In the spring and fall you will need to wiggle the click-in time owing to national daylight savings practice.

This page is in the process of being re-coded — too many hyperlinks are slowing page upload.


27 September 1905:

20 September 1586:

Chidiock Tichborne was executed for his involvement in the Babington Plot, a Catholic conspiracy to assassinate Queen Elizabeth I of England and place Mary, Queen of Scots, on the English throne. Tichborne’s involvement in this plot ultimately led to his arrest and subsequent execution.  He left behind this poem, written to the young poet’s wife the night before his execution, a few days before his 28th birthday:  “My prime of youth is but a frost of cares…..”

Things Worth Remembering: The Last Words of a Doomed Poet

19 September 1796:

George Washington, as the first President of the United States, warned citizens of the dangers of foreign entanglements and excessive military spending in his Farewell Address, delivered on September 19, 1796. Washington warned against forming long-term alliances and involving the nation in unnecessary wars, which could burden the country financially and endanger its peace and prosperity. His warnings about avoiding foreign entanglements and maintaining fiscal responsibility continue to be cited in discussions about U.S. foreign policy and military engagements.

17 September, 1787:

The United States Constitution was signed by all states except Rhode Island.  Timeline.  Though under continual attack since — particularly from “academia” which has long since beclowned itself — it remains the model for governance of free societies and explains why migration patterns (notably among non-citizen graduate students and faculty) always lead to the United States or nations who mimic the governance of the United States.

President William McKinley died in Buffalo, New York, of gunshot wounds inflicted by an assassin; Vice President Theodore Roosevelt succeeded him.

11 September, 2001:

On September 11, 2001, a series of coordinated terrorist attacks occurred in the United States. Nineteen terrorists associated with the extremist group al-Qaeda hijacked four commercial airplanes. Two planes were flown into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City, causing both towers to collapse within hours. Another plane struck the Pentagon near Washington, D.C., while the fourth plane, United Flight 93, crashed in Pennsylvania after passengers bravely attempted to regain control. Nearly 3,000 people were killed in these attacks. It was a pivotal moment in American history, leading to significant changes in U.S. policies and global geopolitics.

Human Factors Using Elevators in Emergency Evacuation

1 September, 1804:


28 August 1865:

Thomas D. Stetson files a patent for double glazed (insulated) windows with the United States Patent Office.  Stetson’s patent described a design with two glass panes separated by a space filled with an insulating material, such as air or gas. His invention aimed to improve insulation, reduce condensation, and enhance soundproofing.  Stetson’s patent marked an early milestone in the development of double glazed windows, the concept of multiple glazing layers for improved insulation had been explored earlier by other inventors as well.  We update our understanding of window standard development during our periodic Fenestration colloquia.

24 August 1759: 

William Wilberforce born.  He was a British politician, philanthropist and leader of the movement to abolish the transatlantic slave trade.

The British Royal Navy engaged in the suppression of the transatlantic slave trade for several decades, beginning in the early 19th century.  The suppression included capture of African warlords and other intermediaries who were profiting from the sale of their own people.  The British government passed the Abolition of the Slave Trade Act in 1807, which made it illegal to engage in the transatlantic slave trade. This act was followed by additional legislation to strengthen anti-slavery efforts.

The Royal Navy’s West Africa Squadron, also known as the Preventative Squadron, was established to enforce these laws. The squadron patrolled the waters off the coast of West Africa, where many slave ships originated. Its mission was to intercept and capture slave ships, liberate enslaved Africans on board, and take legal action against those involved in the trade.

This effort continued for several decades, with varying degrees of intensity and success. It should be noted that this suppression of the transatlantic slave trade was part of a broader international movement to end the slave trade, with other countries also taking similar actions.

In 1833, the British government passed the Slavery Abolition Act, which led to the gradual abolition of slavery throughout the British Empire, culminating in the complete emancipation of enslaved individuals in 1838. While the suppression of the transatlantic slave trade continued beyond this date, it marked a significant milestone in the broader effort to end the institution of slavery itself.

15 August 1971:

President Richard Nixon announced a series of economic measures, including the suspension of the convertibility of the United States dollar into gold, effectively ending the gold standard for the U.S. dollar.

5 August 1930:

Birthdate of Neil Armstrong, the first human to set foot on the moon.

1 August 1936:

At the International Congress of Mathematicians held in Oslo the first Fields Medal was awarded to three mathematicians: Lars Ahlfors from Finland, and Jesse Douglas and Hermann Weyl, both from the United States. Lars Ahlfors was recognized for his contributions to the theory of Riemann surfaces and his work on the uniformization theorem. Jesse Douglas was recognized for his work on the Plateau problem, which involves finding the minimal surface area that can be spanned by a given boundary curve. Hermann Weyl was recognized for his contributions to the theory of Lie groups and the theory of analytic functions.

International Mathematical Union

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“History” is not about what happened. History is a “story” about what happened.

History never says “Goodbye”. History always says “See you later”

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