Today in Hystery January 4th

   On this day in 1642, King Charles the first, along with 400 soldiers attacked the English parliament. It was an unfair fight. The soldiers used their weapons; bows and arrows, swords and battle axes. The parliamentarians used their weapons; jeers, catcalls, procedural votes and general desk thumping. They were slaughtered.

   On this day in 1725, one of America’s founding fathers, Benjamin Franklin, arrived in London. Of course, he wasn’t a founding father at that point. America was just a twinkle in his eyes.

   On this day in 1847, Samuel Colt sold his first revolver pistol to the United States government. He walked into the office of the Attorney General who said to Samuel, “Is that your new revolver in your pocket or are you just happy to see my cash?”

   On this day in 1863, four-wheeled roller skates were patented in New York by James Plimpton. Plimpton was a dreamer. He envisioned a day when Americans would find pleasure at a roller rink, dozens of people holding hands, skating in circles ever fast and faster and then cracking the whip and shooting some poor fool at high speed into the boards and breaking various limbs. Thanks you James Plimpton.

   On this day in 1884, the last sighting of an Eastern Cougar was noted in Ontario, Canada. After that, Eastern Cougars were never seen again for a hundred years later, until one was spotted sitting on a bar stool at the Drake Hotel.

   On this day in 1887, Thomas Stevens became the first man to bicycle around the world. When they asked him what the toughest part was, he said, “The China Sea was a little rough during the cyclone, but I just kept on pedaling.”

   On this day in 1904, the Stanley Cup hockey championship was won. The Ottawa Silver Seven beat the Winnipeg Rowing Club 2 games to 1. The Winnipeg Rowing Club team lost the game because they were a bit awkward shooting the puck with their oars.

   On this day in 1925, French psychologist Emil Coué brought his self-esteem therapy to the United States. Coué’s philosophy is summed up with the phrase “Every day in every way I am getting better & better…and doggone it, people like me!” Okay, that’s not totally correct. Minnesota Senator Al Franken made up the last part.

   If your birthday is January the 4th, you share it with Jacob Ludwig Carl Grimm. You remember him; he and his brother wrote those cute kiddies’ fairy tales about children being eaten alive by monsters.

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