This Day in History

This Day in History… July 27, 1909

Wright Brothers Set Flight Record

US #C45 was issued for the 46th anniversary of the Wright brothers’ first successful flight of a heavier-than-air powered aircraft.

On July 27, 1909, Orville Wright flew a plane a record one hour and 12 minutes.

Born in 1867 and 1871, Wilbur and Orville Wright had been interested in science and technology from a young age.  After receiving a flying toy as a gift from their father in 1878, they became fascinated with flight.  They sought to develop a heavier-than-air flying machine that could carry a man.

Continue reading

Posted in July 2020, This Day in History | 2 Comments

This Day in History… July 26, 1948

Executive Order 9981

On July 26, 1948, President Harry Truman signed Executive Order 9981, calling for the end of racial discrimination in the US armed forces.

Early American laws barred African Americans from the military, but in times of war, white leaders recruited both slaves and free blacks.  The Continental Army had 5,000 African Americans, and at least 198,000 black men served in the Union forces during the Civil War.

Continue reading

Posted in July 2020, This Day in History | 4 Comments

This Day in History… July 25, 1844

Birth of Thomas Eakins

US #1335 pictures Eakins’ The Biglin Brothers Racing.

Artist Thomas Cowperthwait Eakins was born on July 25, 1844, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

As a child, Eakins watched his father, a writing master and calligraphy teacher, work.  By the time he was 12, he was skilled in line drawing and had an excellent grasp of perspective.  Eakins also enjoyed athletics such as rowing, ice-skating, swimming, wrestling, and gymnastics.  He would later paint these activities and encourage his students to do them.

Continue reading

Posted in July 2020, This Day in History | Leave a comment

This Day in History… July 24, 1897

Happy Birthday Amelia Earhart 

US #C68 was issued on Earhart’s 66th birthday.

Aviation pioneer Amelia Earhart was born on July 24, 1897, in Atchison. Kansas.

Earhart had a taste for adventure from a young age.  In 1904, she saw a roller coaster for the first time during a family trip to St. Louis.  When she returned home, Earhart and an uncle built a homemade version and attached it to the roof of a shed.  Though Amelia ended up bruised and the wooden box she rode in was destroyed, she exclaimed, “It’s just like flying!”

Continue reading

Posted in July 2020, This Day in History | 3 Comments

This Day in History… July 23, 1885

Death of Ulysses S. Grant

US #223 – From the 1890-93 Regular Issues.

Civil War general and 18th US president, Ulysses S. Grant died on July 23, 1885. 

Hiram Ulysses Grant was born on April 27, 1822, in Point Pleasant, Ohio.  He was a small, sensitive, and quiet child, which earned him ridicule in school by children who confused his silence for stupidity, nicknaming him “Useless.”

From an early age, Grant displayed a high level of skill in horsemanship, and he was known throughout town for his talent at handling unruly horses.  In 1839, Grant’s father heard of a vacancy at West Point.  He asked Congressman Thomas L. Hamer to appoint his son to fill the spot.  Grant was hesitant at first, but grew excited at the chance to travel and receive a better education.

Continue reading

Posted in July 2020, This Day in History | 12 Comments

This Day in History… July 22, 1898

Birth of Stephen Vincent Benét

US #3221 from the Literary Arts Series, was issued on Benét’s 100th birthday.

Stephen Vincent Benét was born on July 22, 1898, in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. 

Benet was born into a military family and grew up hearing their stories.  He had an uncle who served with the Navy in the Spanish-American War, a grandfather who served with the Army Ordnance Corps during the Civil War, and his father was a colonel in the US Army.  Growing up, Benét’s father spent hours reading to his children.  This, combined with tales of his family history, gave Benét a love of storytelling and a desire to become an author.

Continue reading

Posted in July 2020, This Day in History | 4 Comments