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History

This tag is associated with 398 posts

November 26, 1838 – A second trial finds some of the perpetrators of the Myall Creek massacre of Aborigines guilty of murder


After numerous clashes between European settlers and Aboriginals people in late 1837 in northwest New South Wales, tensions were high. On 10 June 1838, a gang of stockmen, heavily armed, rounded up between 40 and 50 Aboriginal women, children and elderly men at Henry Dangar’s Myall Creek Station, not far from Inverell in New South … Continue reading

November 26, 1941 – President Franklin D. Roosevelt establishes modern Thanksgiving holiday


President Franklin D. Roosevelt signs a bill officially establishing the fourth Thursday in November as Thanksgiving Day. The tradition of celebrating the holiday on Thursday dates back to the early history of the Plymouth and Massachusetts Bay colonies, when post-harvest holidays were celebrated on the weekday regularly set aside as “Lecture Day,” a midweek church meeting where topical sermons were presented. … Continue reading

November 25, 1880 – Reverend John Flynn, founder of the Royal Flying Doctor Service, is born


Australia’s Flying Doctor Service began with the vision of Reverend John Flynn. John Flynn was born on 25 November 1880, in the gold rush town of Moliagul, about 202 kilometres north-west of Melbourne, Victoria. Flynn’s first posting as a Presbyterian minister was to Beltana, a tiny, remote settlement 500 kilometres north of Adelaide. After writing … Continue reading

November 24, 1642 – Dutch explorer Abel Tasman reaches Tasmania, naming it Van Diemen’s Land


Abel Janszoon Tasman was a Dutch seafarer and explorer born in 1603 in the village of Lutjegast, Netherlands. In 1634 Tasman joined the Dutch East India Company and, after gaining further experience and promotions, was ordered to explore the south-east waters in order to find a new sea trade route to Chile in South America. … Continue reading

November 23, 1923 – Australia’s first public wireless broadcast begins


The development of the wireless telegraphy system, which came to be known as “radio” is attributed to Guglielmo Marconi. Marconi first demonstrated the transmission and reception of Morse Code based radio signals over a distance of 2 or more kilometres in England in 1896, and from this point began the development and expansion of radio … Continue reading

November 23, 1936 – First issue of “Life” is published


On November 23, 1936, the first issue of the pictorial magazine Life is published, featuring a cover photo of the Fort Peck Dam’s spillway by Margaret Bourke-White. Life actually had its start earlier in the 20th century as a different kind of magazine: a weekly humor publication, not unlike today’s The New Yorker in its use of tart cartoons, humorous … Continue reading

November 22, 1956 – The opening ceremony for the Melbourne Olympics is held


Melbourne was announced as the host city for the Games of the XVI Olympiad on 28 April 1949, beating bids from Buenos Aires, Mexico City and six other American cities by a single vote. The Olympic Games commenced with an opening ceremony on 22 November 1956. Because Melbourne is located in the southern hemisphere, the … Continue reading

November 22, 1963 – President John F. Kennedy is assassinated


John Fitzgerald Kennedy, the 35th president of the United States, is assassinated while traveling through Dallas, Texas, in an open-top convertible. First lady Jacqueline Kennedy rarely accompanied her husband on political outings, but she was beside him, along with Texas Governor John Connally and his wife, for a 10-mile motorcade through the streets of downtown Dallas on … Continue reading

November 21, 1936 – Victor Chang, Australian heart surgeon and one of the pioneers of modern heart transplantation, is born


Victor Peter Chang Yam Him was born in Shanghai, China, on 21 November 1936. Chang’s mother died of cancer when he was just twelve years old, and this was a deciding factor in his choice to become a doctor. He came to Australia to complete his secondary schooling in 1953, then studied medicine at the … Continue reading

November 21, 1980 – Millions tune in to find out who shot J.R. (with video)


On November 21, 1980, 350 million people around the world tune in to television’s popular primetime drama “Dallas” to find out who shot J.R. Ewing, the character fans loved to hate. J.R. had been shot on the season-ending episode the previous March 21, which now stands as one of television’s most famous cliffhangers. The plot … Continue reading

November 20, 1860 – Burke and Wills first reach Cooper Creek


Robert O’Hara Burke and William Wills led the expedition that was intended to bring fame and prestige to Victoria: being the first white people to cross Australia from south to north and back again. They set out on Monday, 20 August 1860, leaving from Royal Park, Melbourne, and farewelled by around 15,000 people. The exploration … Continue reading

November 19, 1946 – Australian country music singer Slim Dusty records his first single


David Gordon “Slim Dusty” Kirkpatrick was born on 13 June 1927 in Kempsey, New South Wales, Australia. The son of a cattle farmer, he was brought up on Nulla Nulla Creek dairy farm. He wrote his first song, entitled “The Way The Cowboy Dies” at age ten and took the name “Slim Dusty” when he … Continue reading

November 19, 1863 – Abraham Lincoln delivers Gettysburg Address


On November 19, 1863, at the dedication of a military cemetery at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, during the American Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln delivers one of the most memorable speeches in American history. In fewer than 275 words, Lincoln brilliantly and movingly reminded a war-weary public why the Union had to fight, and win, the Civil War. The Battle of Gettysburg, fought … Continue reading

November 18, 1879 – One of Australia’s youngest bushrangers, a 15-year-old member of Captain Moonlite’s gang, is shot and killed.


Augustus Wernicke was one of Australia’s youngest bushrangers, and part of Captain Moonlite’s gang. Captain Moonlite, aka Andrew George Scott, became a bushranger upon his release from gaol, eight years after robbing the bank at Mount Egerton, Victoria. He recruited several other gang members, among them 15-year-old Wernicke, and walked to New South Wales, hoping … Continue reading

November 18, 1978 – Mass suicide at Jonestown


On November 18, 1978, Peoples Temple founder Jim Jones leads hundreds of his followers in a mass murder-suicide at their agricultural commune in a remote part of the South American nation of Guyana. Many of Jones’ followers willingly ingested a poison-laced punch while others were forced to do so at gunpoint. The final death toll at Jonestown that day … Continue reading

November 17, 1840 – Eyre replenishes his supplies at Fowler’s Bay, South Australia


Edward John Eyre was the first white man to cross southern Australia from Adelaide to the west, travelling across the Nullarbor Plain to King George’s Sound, now called Albany. Eyre began the journey with his overseer, John Baxter, and three Aborigines, intending to cross the continent from south to north. He was forced to revise … Continue reading

November 17, 1558 – Elizabethan Age begins


Queen Mary I, the monarch of England and Ireland since 1553, dies and is succeeded by her 25-year-old half-sister, Elizabeth. The two half-sisters, both daughters of King Henry VIII, had a stormy relationship during Mary’s five-year reign. Mary, who was brought up as a Catholic, enacted pro-Catholic legislation and made efforts to restore the pope to supremacy … Continue reading

November 16, 1532 – Francisco Pizarro traps Incan emperor Atahualpa


On November 16, 1532, Francisco Pizarro, the Spanish explorer and conquistador, springs a trap on the Incan emperor, Atahualpa. With fewer than 200 men against several thousand, Pizarro lures Atahualpa to a feast in the emperor’s honor and then opens fire on the unarmed Incans. Pizarro’s men massacre the Incans and capture Atahualpa, forcing him to … Continue reading

November 15, 1867 – First stock ticker debuts


On November 15, 1867, the first stock ticker is unveiled in New York City. The advent of the ticker ultimately revolutionized the stock market by making up-to-the-minute prices available to investors around the country. Prior to this development, information from the New York Stock Exchange, which has been around since 1792, traveled by mail or messenger. … Continue reading

November 14, 1851 – Herman Melville publishes Moby Dick


Moby-Dick is now considered a great classic of American literature and contains one of the most famous opening lines in fiction: “Call me Ishmael.” Initially, though, the book about Captain Ahab and his quest to catch a giant white whale was a flop. Its author, Herman Melville was born in New York City in 1819. As a young man, he … Continue reading

November 13, 1982 – Vietnam Veterans Memorial Dedicated in US


Near the end of a weeklong national salute to Americans who served in the Vietnam War, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial is dedicated in Washington, D.C. after a march to its site by thousands of veterans of the conflict. The long-awaited memorial was a simple V-shaped black-granite wall inscribed with the names of the 57,939 Americans who died in … Continue reading

Australia risks losing specialist teachers in English, maths, history and other subjects


The focus on generic skills in Australia‘s new national curriculum risks breeding a profession of general-capabilities educators rather than teachers of specialist subjects such as history, English or maths. Former president of the national History Teachers Association Paul Kiem – who has written about school history in a collection of essays, Australian History Now, launched … Continue reading

Former Prime Minister praises contributions of immigrants to Australia


As Julia Gillard talks tough on foreign workers, Kevin Rudd has praised the contribution of successive generations of migrants to building the nation. Speaking to an infrastructure conference in Melbourne today, Mr Rudd said Australia would not have become the world’s 12th largest economy if not for the contribution of migrants. “Our natural birth rate … Continue reading

December 31 1999 Panama Canal handover


On December 31st 1999, the United States, in accordance with the Torrijos-Carter Treaties, officially handed over control of the Panama Canal, putting the strategic waterway into Panamanian hands for the first time. Crowds of Panamanians celebrated the transfer of the 50-mile canal, which links the Atlantic and Pacific oceans and officially opened when the SS … Continue reading

December 30 2006 Saddam Hussein executed


On December 30th 2006, fallen dictator Saddam Hussein was hanged at dawn, a dramatic end for a leader who ruled Iraq by fear for three decades before a U.S. invasion toppled him. He was then convicted of crimes against humanity. As day broke on one of the holiest days of the Muslim year and the … Continue reading

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