The Race of the First Kentucky Derby

TweetShareShareToday is the 146th anniversary of America’s most storied horse race: the Kentucky Derby. The winning jockey was Oliver Lewis aboard a horse name Aristides. We have forgotten how black Americans, in the beginning, not only ran these thoroughbreds but also cared for them. In this first running of the Kentucky Derby, thirteen out of…

Read More

America Embraces Debt

TweetShareShare“Put it on my card!” It’s the American way. We buy now, pay later.  The history for card purchases is nothing new. In fact, it was first described in an Edward Bellamy utopian work titled Looking Backward (1887). Bellamy employed the term “credit card” in his work as a way for a person to spend…

Read More

The Hindenburg Disaster

TweetShareShare Nobody knew it at the time, but the Hindenberg disaster was the beginning of the end for air travel by blimp. For decades, the rich used blimps to travel to new locales, still somewhat faster than the automobile of that day. But as the airplane–a new air tech–found its wings, old-school blimps no longer…

Read More

The Monkey Trial of the Century

TweetShareShare It was one of the most influential, transformative court cases of the 20th century. The Scopes Trial–or “Monkey Trial” as some called it–focused on a Tennessee high school teacher named John Scopes. He was charged with teaching evolution. The only problem? He didn’t know if he actually taught the origins theory. Nevertheless, to force…

Read More

Network News is Born!

TweetShareShareIf your over 40, you remember a day when the three big networks (ABC, CBS, NBC) dominated the television news landscape. Indeed, the 1960s and 1970s were the “golden age” of network news, featuring personalities like Walter Cronkite, David Brinkley and Howard K. Smith. There were also new emerging (and future) stars like Dan Rather…

Read More

The Age of Television is Launched!

TweetShareShare In the course of human history, there are few technologies that significantly reimagine everything and move culture forward exponentially. Fire. Gunpowder. The Printing Press. The Internet. And television. The world before television–the projection of visuals into the private home–reimagined how we lived. It proved, in the end, more than just an entertainment evolution. In…

Read More

The First Family of Radio

TweetShareShare You’ve probably heard of the radio shows “The Shadow,” “Abbott and Costello,” “Amos ‘n Andy” or “Ozzy and Harriet,” but what about One Man’s Family? This popular American radio soap opera broadcasted from 1932 to 1959. Developed by Carlton E. Morse, One Man’s Family was the longest-running uninterrupted dramatic serial in the history of…

Read More

The Mouse Hits the Big 4-0!

TweetShareShare On April 27, 1981, I was a senior in high school. In six weeks I would graduate and leave home for good. At the time I was typing my papers on an electric typewriter. In graduate school I bought my first desktop computer and learned the misery of early MS-DOS computing. In the mid-1990s…

Read More

Boomers The First To Get the Point on Polio!

TweetShareShare Polio was a feared disease in the early and mid-1900s. The crippling disease had disabled Franklin D. Roosevelt in the 1930s. But, even more so, polio was epidemic among children (who saw the lion share of the cases). In 1952 there were 58,000 new cases of poliomyelitis (with 3000 deaths). The worst part was…

Read More

New Coke Is Introduced

TweetShareShare It was either the worst move in soda history or a brilliant marketing ploy. But on this day 35 years ago, Coca-Cola announced they were changing the formula for its historic drink. The move made sense as a new “Pepsi Generation” was slowly eating into profits (helped by clever, targeted advertisements to younger generations).…

Read More