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2018

Johannes Kepler Is Born, 1571

Week of December 23
Johannes Kepler’s achievements in mathematical theory and scientific application astound even the casual observer. In Kepler’s day, princes subsidized geniuses and kept them close to the throne, for such men brought prestige to the state and...

The Romanian Uprising Begins, 1989

Week of December 9
Dictators have a long and storied history of leaving this mortal world well before their demographics might suggest, due to their unbridled tyranny. Nicolae Ceauşescu, “President” of Romania, is a good case in point. His downward mortality arc...

The Birth of Andrew Carnegie, 1835

Week of November 25
The 19th Century Industrial Revolution changed the life and culture of the United Kingdom and the western world. Machines brought increased production of manufactured goods, demand for entrepreneurs, engineers, inventors, and...

Gustavus Adolphus Killed in Battle, 1632

Week of November 18
In 1593 the Swedish Church adopted the Lutheran Augsburg Confession as its statement of faith, bringing to culmination a half century of struggle over whether the Protestant Reformation would finally win popular support. According to one...

The End of the Great War, 1918

Week of November 11
The leaders of the nations and armies of the First World War called for an Armistice at the 11th Hour of the 11th Day of the 11th Month in 1918. After four years of unprecedented industrial-scale slaughter, resulting in the deaths of about eight million...

Guy Fawkes and the Gunpowder Plot, 1605

Week of November 4
King James VI of Scotland became King James I of England upon the death of Queen Elizabeth I. Not everyone in England was happy with this outcome. A secret cabal of Roman Catholic assassins determined to blow up the King and Lords and...

Sir Walter Raleigh Beheaded, 1618

Week of October 28
Warrior, pirate, businessman, investor, courtier, explorer, jailbird, Member of Parliament, Governor, historian, poet: Sir Walter Raleigh lived a most colorful and dangerous life, full of adventure. He loved to fight, hated the Catholic Church, was...

The Battle of Trafalgar, 1805

Week of October 21
Admiral Horatio Nelson, England’s greatest living war hero, sent his last communication to the fleet. They were about to engage the combined naval forces of France and Spain in the Napoléonic War showdown at Trafalgar, off the coast of Spain...

Anthony Comstock Launches His Crusade, 1872

Week of October 14
Anthony Comstock was one of the most admired and most hated men of the nineteenth century. Journalist and professional cynic H.L. Mencken hurled ridicule at the legislation inspired by...

The Great Chicago Fire, 1871

Week of October 7
Fire has destroyed many cities in the past. The great fire of London, England in 1661 consumed more than 13,000 homes and 87 parish churches as temperatures reached 2,280 degrees fahrenheit. Many saw it as divine judgement on a dissolute...

The Birth of Caesar Augustus, 63 BC

Week of September 23
“Now in those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus, that census be taken of all the inhabited earth.” (Luke 2:1) With these words many Christmas pageants and plays begin, but Augustus is just a bit player off stage to the moment...

Emancipation Proclamation Announced, 1862

Week of September 16
In his First Inaugural Address, President Abraham Lincoln stated that “I have no purpose, directly or indirectly, to interfere with the institution of slavery in the States where it exists. I have no lawful right...

Death of William the Conqueror, 1087

Week of September 9
Scottish writer and historian Thomas Carlyle during the 1840s, and especially in his book Heroes and Hero Worship, argued that history can largely be explained by the actions and leadership of great men of the past. He lauds but a few in his book...

Japan Surrenders, 1945

Week of September 2
The iconic photograph shows the American commander in the Pacific Theatre of World War II, General Douglas MacArthur, standing behind the table that supports the surrender document. It will soon be signed by the representatives of the...

The Eruption of Krakatoa, 1883

Week of August 26
Out for a walk on a summer Sabbath in 1884, boys from a mission school on the island of Zanzibar, East Africa, spotted a strange looking object stranded on a sandbar in the ocean. Upon closer inspection, it proved to be a black island of...

Burning of the Library of Congress, 1814

Week of August 19
The Library of Congress is the largest book repository in the world, with more than one hundred million books as well as another sixty million other items, in four hundred fifty languages. These holdings take up about 838 miles of shelves...

The Birth of Herbert Hoover, 1874

Week of August 5
Bertie was declared dead by his distraught father, at the age of 2, having suffered from the croup, turned purple, and had no discernable heartbeat. His uncle, Dr. John Minthorn, came in the door and worked desperately on the child. He coughed and...

Lafayette Becomes a General, 1777

Week of July 29
If ever a young man was born to a heroic past and military tradition, Marie-Joseph Paul Yves Roch Gilbert du Motier, Marquis de Lafayette was that man. His father served as a Colonel of grenadiers, falling in an artillery barrage in the Battle of...

Roanoke Colony Established, 1587

Week of July 22
Connecting the providential skeins of ideas can lead to the very practical results of how God caused history to flow. In the midst of the sixteenth century, a sixteen-year-old Englishman visited his lawyer-cousin of the same name, Richard Hakluyt...

The Birth of Robert the Bruce, 1274

Week of July 9
Robert Bruce of Scotland was born in 1274, probably at Turnberry Castle, “of which the remains can still be seen perched on the cliffs which plunge steeply into the waters of the firth of Clyde.” His family claimed Anglo-Norman ancestry and...

Andrew Jackson Vetoes Bank Recharter, 1832

Week of July 2
Andrew Jackson, seventh President of the United States, engendered hatred and opposition on a scale that previous chief executives never experienced. Jackson, in fact, still faces hatred...

The Execution of the Rosenbergs, 1953

Week of June 17
Following the Second World War, the United States and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics waged a “Cold War” to bring the “third-world” nations into the political orbit of the West or of the USSR. Both sides were determined to thwart the other, by...

The Signing of the Magna Carta, 1215

Week of June 10
In the year 1100, King Henry I of England issued a document known since then as “The Charter of Liberties,” in an attempt to curry favor with his barons. He was the youngest son of William the Conqueror, but was able to grab the throne after...

The Six Day War Begins, 1967

Week of June 3
In the late 19th Century, certain eastern European Jewish leaders created a movement known as Zionism, advocating the return of Jews to Palestine for the eventual creation of a Jewish state, hopefully in the same boundaries as Old Testament Israel...

The Fall of Constantinople, A.D. 1453

Week of May 27
In one of the greatest sieges of all time, Sultan Mohammed II, on May 29, A.D. 1453, captured the last Christian bastion in the Middle East, Constantinople, which had withstood every assault for 1,100 years. With the total collapse of the...

America Declares War on Mexico, 1846

Week of May 13
On December 29, 1845, The Republic of Texas became the 28th State of the United States. The legislation admitting Texas did not define the borders of the new state. The government of Mexico protested loudly that Texas was still...

Scopes Trial, Dayton, Tennessee, 1925

Week of April 29
In March of 1925, the State Legislature of Tennessee passed the Butler Act, prohibiting the teaching of the theory of evolution in the public schools. Governor Austin Peay signed the bill, courting the support of rural legislators. He later...

Bay of Pigs Invasion Routed, 1961

Week of April 15
The United States’ involvement in the island of Cuba has a long and storied history. So much so that one of “America’s Little Wars” was fought there in 1898, and helped vault Theodore Roosevelt...

Birth of Booker T. Washington, 1856

Week of April 1
The 1860 census taker noted that the Burroughs family in Franklin County, Virginia and their fourteen children, also had seven slaves, one of them a boy named Booker, valued at $400.00. Born to Jane...

Jonathan Edwards Sermon, 1742

Week of March 25
The impact of itinerant English evangelist George Whitefield’s preaching was felt across New England. Many people were converted to Christ, and Christians were renewed in their faith. Ministers of the region followed up on Whitefield’s success...

Pocahontas Dies in London, 1617

Week of March 18
Inside the Rotunda of the United States Capitol, eight magnificent 12x18 foot paintings depict some of the most important moments in American history. Four of them relate to the War for Independence, and three to exploration and settlement...

Confederate Constitution Adopted, 1861

Week of March 11
By the first of February, 1861, seven southern states had seceded from the United States: South Carolina, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, Florida, Louisiana, and Texas. They formed a federal...

Saracens Attack after First Crusade, 1144

Week of March 4
Deus Vult! The battle cry of the Crusaders, “God Wills It,” is no longer heard outside the walls of Accra, Antioch, Jerusalem and all the other Christian strong-points in the Levant. Allahu Akbar...

Articles of Confederation Take Effect, 1781

Week of February 25
When the Founding Fathers declared independence on July 4, 1776, they were then faced with the construction of a new form of government. The representatives of the thirteen colonies had...

Marbury v. Madison, 1803

Week of February 18
Many Americans believe that the overwhelming power of the United States Supreme Court is a fairly recent phenomenon. The far-reaching authority of the Court, however, has developed incrementally...

The Birth of Cotton Mather, 1663

Week of February 11
Born the grandson and namesake of two of the most famous Puritan preachers of the 17th Century, founders of the “Puritan oligarchy,” and son of the most influential preacher of the second generation...

The Death of Sir Winston Churchill, 1965

Week of January 21
"The history of the world is but the biography of great men,” wrote Scottish historian Thomas Carlyle. He was articulating the widespread belief that certain historical characters — through their...

The Death of John Tyler, 1862

Week of January 14
His funeral was the largest ever held in Richmond, Virginia. President John Tyler (1790-1862) was the only President who died not a citizen of the United States — he was serving in the Congress of...

Marines Capture Los Angeles, 1847

Week of January 7
With the election of President James K. Polk came Texas annexation and the advancement of American “Manifest Destiny,” a widely accepted theory that the United States was destined...

The Battle of Princeton, 1777

Week of December 31
As Christmas approached, the cause of American independence seemed as bleak as the winter that descended on New Jersey and Pennsylvania. George Washington’s army lay frozen in their...