Wondering what cool stuff happened on this day in history? We've got some fun facts to keep you entertained and impress your friends:
In 312: The battle of the Milvian Bridge between the two Roman Emperors took place. Constantine beat rival Maxentius and became the sole ruler of the Roman Empire. (Let's just say they did not remain on each other's holiday card lists.)
In 1492: Christopher Columbus discovered Cuba. He claimed it for Spain. When he originally landed, he thought he had found China. (If only Google Maps had been around, it might've saved some embarrassment.)
In 1636: Harvard University was founded in Cambridge, MA. It's the oldest higher education institution in the United States. (And one no one who works for this blog could ever get into.)
In 1776: The Battle of White Plains occurred during the American Revolution. It was a British victory, but they lost 42 soldiers and 182 were wounded while the Americans only sustained 28 casualties and 126 injuries. (Americans 1, British 0)
In 1793: Eli Whitney applied for a patent on the cotton gin. He failed to profit from his invention even with the patent, because other imitations of his machine appeared before his patent was granted in March 1794. (So close...)
In 1858: Macy's Department store opened in New York City. The total sales profit for the first day was $11.06, but by the end of the year it grew to almost $90,000. (Profit jump, much?)
In 1886: The Statue of Liberty was dedicated in New York by President Grover Cleveland. It was a gift from France to honor the US and France friendship established during the American Revolution.
In 1918: Czechoslovakia gains independence as Austria-Hungry breaks up. It was a bloodless revolution that took place in Prague.
In 1922: The first coast-to-coast radio broadcast of a football game happened. The play-by-play of the Princeton vs. Chicago game was heard across the country. And we are forever grateful for the road this paved for fans of the game the world over!
In 1958: Pope John XXIII was elected. He was known as humble and attentive and his most important accomplishment was the convening of the Second Vatican Council.
In 1974: The Luna 23 unmanned space mission launched and landed on the moon. It was designed to return lunar samples back to earth, but unfortunately failed to actually collect said samples. #spaceoops
In 2011: The 125th anniversary of the dedication of the Statue of Liberty took place in New York City.
That's a smattering of facts that'll certainly make you the brainy one around the house or office today. Go ahead and drop those nuggets of wisdom with reckless abandon!
Do you know any interesting history facts that happened today?
About the author: Shana is a friend of House Party. She enjoys hiking, traveling, and concerts. Her party tip: Dessert, specifically chocolate.