Browsing: Science & Technology

A Brief History On September 23, 1641, off the coast of Cornwall, England, a British merchant ship named the Merchant Royal sank with her cargo of Spanish treasure.  She has not yet been found, and your treasure possibly awaits you somewhere at the bottom of the Atlantic ocean, southwest of England. Digging Deeper If lost treasure interests you, then pay attention!  The Merchant Royal, despite being leaky and somewhat weary after long travels, had been contracted to transport gold and silver from Cadiz, Spain, to Antwerp in modern-day Belgium (which at that time was part of the Spanish Netherlands), to pay…

A Brief History On September 7, 1942, the Consolidated B-32 Dominator strategic bomber made its first flight.  Only developed as a fallback in case the Boeing B-29 Superfortress was not successful, the B-32 could not hold its own, and only 118 were built.  Over the years, many weapons or weapons systems have proven themselves to be disappointments.  Here 10 of those are listed, in no particular order. (Please also see the similarly-themed History and Headlines articles: “10 Weapons and Weapons Systems that Flopped” and “10 Weapons That Never (Or Barely) Went into Service.”)  Can you think of any weapons that fall into these categories? Digging Deeper 10. Consolidated B-32 Dominator. As mentioned…

A Brief History On September 4, 1957, the Ford Motor Company introduced its latest product, the Edsel.  Named after founder Henry Ford’s son, the Edsel was supposed to be an upscale mass-market car and vital part of Ford’s marketing plan.  It turned out to be a flop, and has since become synonymous with the word “failure.”  The ugliness of the car did not hurt or kill anyone, but some do products end up being fatal.  Here 10 products that for a variety of reasons have become infamous, notorious and reviled are listed.  A previous article already covered Zyklon B and DDT.  What other products would you add to the list?…

A Brief History On September 2, 1666, one of history’s most memorable fires occurred in the English capital of London.  The medieval portion of central London located within the old Roman wall was completely devastated and every building therein basically gutted. Digging Deeper Despite the terrific damage, the death toll has never been known and only 6 fatalities have been documented.  Researchers seem to think many more people must have died but were not counted as they came from parts of town that were either poor or middle class; the shops and homes of the upper classes being spared.  Also, possible victims may have been incinerated in the flames, making it…

A Brief History On September 1st, 1914, Martha, the last known passenger pigeon, was found dead in her cage by her keepers at the Cincinnati Zoo. Digging Deeper Now extinct, passenger pigeons were once the most abundant bird in the entire world.  Native to North America, it is estimated that there were 3-5 billion of them when Europeans first arrived.  Today their closest living relative is the smaller mourning dove. Their demise was caused by deforestation and the commercialization of their meat.  Losing more and more of their natural habitat, they were easy game for hunters. Their numbers already dwindling…

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