This Day in History

This Day in History… November 7, 1728

Birth of Explorer James Cook

US #1732 was issued for the 200th anniversary of Cook’s voyages to Hawaii and Alaska in 1778.

British explorer and navigator Captain James Cook was born on November 7, 1728 (October 27 in the Old Style calendar), in Marton, Yorkshire, England. 

Cook attended school for five years before leaving to work with his father on a farm.  At age 16, Cook found a job as a shop boy in a fishing village.  He soon realized he wasn’t suited to this work, but instead, was drawn to the sea.

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Posted in November 2019, This Day in History | 4 Comments

This Day in History… November 6, 1854

Happy Birthday John Philip Sousa 

US #880 from the Famous Americans series.

American composer and conductor John Philip Sousa was born on November 6, 1854, in Washington, DC.

The third of ten children, Sousa began playing music at the age of six when he took lessons on the violin.  His instructors quickly found that he had absolute or perfect pitch – the ability to identify or recreate a note without a reference tone.  By the time he was a teenager, Sousa learned to sing and to play piano, flute, cornet, baritone horn, trombone, and alto horn.

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This Day in History… November 5, 1852

American Society of Civil Engineers

US #1012 was issued for the ASCE’s 100th anniversary.  Click the image to order.

On November 5, 1852, the American Society of Civil Engineers was founded in New York City.

Civil engineers are responsible for the design, construction, and maintenance of dams, bridges, roads, canals, and railroads.  Some of the first calls for a professional society of civil engineers came in 1828 when John Kilbourn created his short-lived Civil Engineering Journal.  Inspired by Great Britain’s Institution of Civil Engineers, he suggested the US create its own organization. 

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Posted in October 2019, This Day in History | 2 Comments

This Day in History… November 4, 1986

Northern Marianas Becomes U.S. Territory

US #2804 was issued on the 7th anniversary of the Northern Marianas receiving full territory status.

On November 4, 1986, the Northern Marianas became a territory of the United States. 

An expedition led by Spanish explorer Ferdinand Magellan in 1521 was the first European contact with the native Chamorro.  Magellan landed on Guam, explored the neighboring islands, and called the group the “Islands of the Lateen Sails,” named after the out-rigger sailboats used by the natives. 

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This Day in History… November 3, 1793

Happy Birthday Stephen Austin

U.S. #776 pictures Stephen F. Austin, Sam Houston, and the Alamo.

US #776 pictures Stephen F. Austin, Sam Houston, and the Alamo. Click the image to order. 

Stephen Fuller Austin was born on November 3, 1793, in Wythe County (present-day Austinville), Virginia.  When he was four years old, Austin’s father, Moses, moved the family west to Potosi, Missouri, to join a lead-mining site.

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This Day in History… November 2, 1795

Birth of James K. Polk 

US #816 from the Presidential series.

James Knox Polk was born on a farm in Pineville, North Carolina, on November 2, 1795.

Small and sickly, Polk was spared hard farm chores but did learn to help his father manage and survey land.  In 1815, he entered the University of North Carolina.  He graduated at the top of his class.  After just one year of study, he was admitted to the bar in 1820 to practice law.  Polk opened a thriving law practice in Tennessee.

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Posted in November 2019, This Day in History | 5 Comments