Today in History: Nürburgring opens in 1927

Today in History: Nürburgring opens in 1927

The Nürburgring is a 22.8-kilometer circuit for car and motorcycle racing located in the town of Nürburg in Germany. Some 3,000 workers helped build the “First Mountain, Race and Test Track.” The construction of the racetrack was part of a job creation program of the government for the economically weak Eifel. For decades, the Nürburgring was regarded as the most difficult racetrack in the world. In 1976, Niki Lauda barely survived a terrible accident on the Nordschleife, the “Green Hell.” After Lauda’s accident, Formula 1 races at the Nürburgring were discontinued. Lauda was the only person ever to lap the full 22,835-metre (14.189 miles) Nordschleife in under seven minutes.

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Today is National Lobster Day

Today is National Lobster Day

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Today in History: The World’s First Auto Race in 1895

Today in History: The World’s First Auto Race in 1895

124 years ago today, Emile Levassor became the winner of arguably the world’s first official automobile race from Paris to Bordeaux and back. After 732-miles, Levassor crossed the finish line in Paris in his Panhard et Levassor car in just under 49 hours with an average speed of 15 miles per hour – an impressive achievement at the time. Other motor events had taken place prior to 1895 but they were not considered “official races” but “motoring exhibitions” that included limited competitions. Panhard et Levassor became a major force in the developing French auto industry. The success of the Paris-Bordeau-Paris race prompted the creation of the Automobile Club de France. The organization promoted future motorsports events that would eventually grow into the Grand Prix motor racing and Formula One.

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Today in History: Christo born in 1935

Today in History: Christo born in 1935

The avant-garde artist known as Christo (Christo Vladimirov Javacheff, born in Bulgaria) is turning 84 today. Christo is famous for his spectacular, large-scale installations. He and his wife have wrapped the Reichstag in Berlin, the Pont Neuf in Paris, and turned New York’s Central Park orange with his project The Gates. But even at age 84, Christo shows no signs of slowing down. We can’t wait to see what he has planned next.

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Today is National Red Rose Day

Today is National Red Rose Day

National Red Rose Day honors the flower that is a symbol of love and romance. Red roses were used in many early cultures as decorations in wedding ceremonies and wedding attire. It was through this practice that, over the years, the red rose became known as a symbol of love and romance. The tradition of giving red roses as the strongest message of love is still practiced today.

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History: Africa hosts the World Cup in 2010

History: Africa hosts the World Cup in 2010

The 19th FIFA World Cup – the first ever on the African continent – opened in Johannesburg, South Africa. In the final, Spain defeated the Netherlands 1-0 in overtime.

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Today in History: The Pen is born in 1943

Today in History: The Pen is born in 1943

76 years ago today, in 1943, Hungarian-born László Biró received the first patent for the pen. Biró was a journalist who was frustrated with the use of the fountain pen: it took too much time to refill the ink and there seemed to be no way to avoid ink smudges. Biró noticed newspaper inks seemed to dry more quickly, thus rendering the paper stain free, and so he set out to design a pen using the same type of ink. He filed a British patent in 1938 and continued to develop and improve the pen’s design together with his brother György and their friend Juan Jorge Meynin. A new patent for the improved pen was filed in 1943: it was the first real ballpoint pen as we know it today. The pen became an immediate bestseller in the United States after World War II where it was first introduced in the fall of 1945 at a New York department store. Despite its high price of $9, some 10,000 pens were sold within the first week

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