Today in History: The first Oktoberfest in 1810

Today in History: The first Oktoberfest in 1810

209 years ago today, the very first Oktoberfest took place. The festivities lasted five days and were organized around the wedding of the Bavarian Crown Prince. It was the first non-religious folk festival in Germany and had all of Munich on its feet – certainly something that has not changed in the last two centuries.

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Today in History: Mauzan born in 1883

Today in History: Mauzan born in 1883

Achille Lucien Mauzan was born on the French Riviera but moved to Italy in 1905. He was known as a decorative illustrator, though he also painted and sculpted. After studying at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts at Lyon, France, Mauzan divided his life between Milan, Paris and Buenos Aires. During his career as a poster printer and designer, Mauzan created over 2,000 posters, using a style marked by humor and brilliant colors for advertisement and events. In 1926, he set up the “Affiches Mauzan” publishing house in Argentina where many of his greatest works were created and where he worked until 1932 before returning to France. He died in January of 1952.

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Today in History: Olympic Games in Mexico open in 1968

Today in History: Olympic Games in Mexico open in 1968

51 years ago today, the first Olympic Games in Latin America were opened In Mexico City. The Games were overshadowed by political events such as the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia and civil unrest in the host country. More than 5,000 athletes from over 100 nations participated. It marked the first time that West- and East Germany would send separate teams to the Olympics (the team from the GDR was forced to depart early as the IOC forbade it from competing under the name DDR). During the medal ceremony for the 200-meter dash, American medal winners Tommie Smith and John Carlos demonstrated their sympathy for the “Black Panther” movement by raising a black-gloved fist during the American national anthem. American Bob Beamon created a sensation with his world record long jump of 8.90 meters (29 ft. 2 1/2 in.), beating the existing record by 55 cm (21 3/4 in.).

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Today in History: U.S.A. Aids March in 1987

 

Today in History: U.S.A. Aids March in 1987

Today marks the 32nd anniversary of “The Great March” of 1987. Hundreds of thousands march for lesbian and gay rights marched by the White House and then assembled on the national Mall below the U.S. Capitol. The march was led by about 3,000 people with AIDS, some in wheelchairs, others in chartered buses.

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Today in History: Mona Lisa shown at Castle Clos Lucé in 1517

Today in History: Mona Lisa shown at Castle Clos Lucé in 1517

502 years ago today, Leonardo da Vinci allegedly presented his Mona Lisa to King Francis I of France. Da Vinci was invited to work at King’s castle in 1516 and it is believed that he took the Mona Lisa (and several other works) with him where he continued to make refinements to his masterpiece before presenting it to the King. The Mona Lisa was acquired by King Francis at the time and is now property of the French Republic. It is likely the most visited, most written and talked about, and possibly even the most valuable painting in the world. It has been on permanent display at the Louvre in Paris since 1797.

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Today in History: First Olympic Games in Asia in 1964

Today in History: First Olympic Games in Asia in 1964

55 Years ago today, the 18th modern Olympic Games opened in Tokyo. It was the first time that the Games were hosted by an Asian country. Tokyo was originally scheduled to hold the Games in 1940 but after Japan’s invasion on China, the honor was passed on to Helsinki and the event was ultimately canceled because of World War II. The 1964 Games were the first to be telecast live internationally. The “Summer Games” were scheduled for mid-October to avoid both the typhoon season (September) as well as Tokyo’s mid-summer heat and humidity. 93 nations participated, 16 of which made their first Olympic appearance.

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Today in History: Hoover Dam goes online in 1936

Today in History: Hoover Dam goes online in 1936

83 years ago today, the Hoover Dam went fully online and began generating electricity. Construction began in 1930 and lasted almost 6 years. A total of 21,000 men were needed to build the world’s largest dam of its time. The $49 million project is also one of the largest manmade structures in the world.

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