Wednesday, June 4, 2008

On this Day: June 4

I like doing "on this date in history" posts, simply because there's a void of information -- historic information -- thanks to the constant, ever-growing flow of data and useless information we get from television and the internet. So I present to you, some interesting things of note.

+ On this date in 1939, President Franklin D. Roosevelt refused to allow the passengers of the SS St. Louis -- more than 900 Jewish refugees from Europe -- to enter the United States.

+ In 781 B.C.E, the first historic solar eclipse is recorded in China.

+ It was in 1971 that the patent for the ATM was handed out to three individuals.

+ Massachusetts becomes the first U.S. state to set a minimum wage -- in 1912!

+ In 1917, the first Pulitzer prizes are handed out.

+ Finally, today is sort of an unofficial memorial day for the incidents at Tiananmen Square in 1989. In fact, the government keeps a tight watch on the square on this day to make sure nothing goes down. The incident is known in China colloquially as "Six-Four," and supposedly, there are more than 100 people still imprisoned from the incident, and there's even an article about civil rights activists urging China to release the prisoners. I mean, come on ... it's 19 years later.