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August 27, 2001:
Did you know the preservation of the Gettysburg battlefield began soon after the battle was fought?
Yes. The battle of Gettysburg was fought from July 1 to July 3, 1863, and the preservation began immediately afterward when David McConaughy bought tracts of land comprising the Union line (East Cemetery Hill, Culp's Hill, and Little Round Top). In September, 1863, the Gettysburg Battlefield Memorial Association was formed. The battleground was deeded to the Federal War Department in the late 1890's.
Read more in Report #9.
Photo:
Ulysses and Robert E. on a cannon on the Confederate lines on Seminary Ridge in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. The field behind them is the site of the famous Picketts' Charge. The two low hills in the background are Little Round Top on the left and Big Round Top on the right.

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August 20, 2001:
Did you know Frederick Douglass was born Frederick Augustus Washington Bailey?
Yes, Frederick was born into slavery in 1818. When Frederick was about 20 years old, he escaped north to freedom. He then changed his name to hide his identity. He wrote his autobiography, The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave, and started an anti-slavery newspaper, The North Star. Did you know Frederick Douglass participated in the first women's rights convention at Seneca Falls, New York, in 1848?
Photo: Frederick Douglass

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August 13, 2001:
Did you know Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart composed variations of the nursery rhyme, Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star?
Yes. In fact Wolfgang composed 12 variations of this popular nursery rhyme. They are listed as K. 265. The first verse of Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star is:

Twinkle, twinkle, little star,
How I wonder what you are.
Up above the world so high,
Like a diamond in the sky.

 

August 6, 2001:
Did you know the Sojourner Rover was named after Sojourner Truth?
Yes, when the Mars Pathfinder landed on Mars on July 4, 1997, its rover was named the Sojourner Rover after the abolitionist and champion of women's rights, Sojourner Truth. NASA chose the name Sojourner (which means "traveler") after a year-long world-wide essay competition among 3,500 students. In their essays, the students explained how the heroine's traits related to the exploration of Mars. The winner was Valerie Ambroise, age 12. The other names considered for the rover were: Marie Curie (chemist), Judith Resnik (astronaut), Sacagawea (guide and interpreter), Harriet Tubman (abolitionist and Underground Railroad conductor), and Amelia Earhart (aviator). Read a book about Sojourner Truth…
From Your Page: May 14, 2001.
Photo: Sojourner Truth

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July 30, 2001:
Did you know Thomas Alva Edison received his first patent for the Electrical Vote Recorder?
Yes, Thomas Alva Edison invented the Electrical Vote Recorder in 1868, and was granted a patent for it. This was his first of over 1,000 patents Alva received. He thought the U.S. Congress could use the machine to automate and speed up the voting process. Although the machine worked, Congress did not use it. The Electrical Vote Recorder was later used in the New York State Legislature. Read a book about Alva.
Photo: Thomas Alva Edison

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July 23, 2001:
Did you know there are different ways to spell Shakespeare?
Yes, Shakespeare has been written over eighty ways. The Shakespeare family records show 44 different spellings of Shakespeare. Even The Bard spelled it two ways in his will -- "Shakspere" and "Shakspeare." Other spellings include "Shagspeare," "Shakestaffe," "Shagsbere," "Shaxpere," and "Shackspeare." Throughout the years, it has been decided to spell it Shakespeare. So if you are looking up William Shakespeare in an encyclopedia, be sure to spell his name S-h-a-k-e-s-p-e-a-r-e. Read a book about William Shakespeare.
Photo: William Shakespeare

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July 16, 2001:
Did you know it took 4 days for Apollo 11 to reach the moon?
Yes, Apollo 11 was launched on July 16, 1969, from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, on a Saturn V rocket. Four days later, on July 20, the Lunar Module, Eagle, landed in the Sea of Tranquility on the lunar surface. Apollo 11 returned safely to Earth on July 24 when it splashed down in the Pacific Ocean. Did you know the entire mission lasted 8 days, 3 hours, and 18 minutes? Read a book about the Moon.
Photo: First photograph of Earthrise over the Moon's horizon taken from Apollo 8 during Christmas 1968.

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July 9, 2001:
Did you know Yosemite is located in the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range?
Yes, Yosemite National Park is located in the Sierra Nevadas in central California. Yosemite's spectacular natural beauty includes Half Dome, El Capitan, Glacier Point, Tuolumne Meadows, Tenaya Lake, Merced River, Mirror Lake, Mariposa Grove, Yosemite Falls, Bridalveil Fall, Nevada Fall, Vernal Fall, Sentinel Rock, Royal Arches, North Dome, Sentinel Dome, Clouds Rest, and The Three Brothers. Have you seen any of these sites?
Photo: Taken just before sunset, looking at Half Dome from Glacier Point with the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range in the background. This is a perfect spot to watch sunrise, sunset, full moon rise, and to look at the night sky.

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July 2, 2001:
Did you know the American colonies had been fighting the American Revolution for over a year when the Declaration of Independence was signed?
Yes, the American Revolution began on April 19, 1775, after "the shot heard around the world" was fired at Lexington and Concord, Massachusetts. In that same year, the Second Continental Congress met in Philadelphia. The next year, in 1776, the Declaration of Independence was drafted, adopted by the colonies, and signed, thus making the American colonies an independent nation, called the United States of America. Read a book about the American Revolution.
Photo: Second Continental Congress, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

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June 25, 2001:
Did you know Henry VIII became the King of England when he was 17 years old?
Yes, Henry VIII was born on June 28, 1491, and he was crowned King of England on June 24, 1509, just 4 days before his 18th birthday. Henry was born Henry Tudor. As second son of Henry VII and Elizabeth of York, Henry was referred to as the Duke of York. Henry's older brother, Arthur, was the heir to the throne until his death in 1502. Henry became the heir and eventually became King of England from 1509 to 1547. Read a book about King Hal.
Photo: Henry VIII

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June 18, 2001:
Did you know Stonehenge is the largest constructed megalith in Europe?
Yes. First of all, let us define a megalith. Megalith literally means huge stone. It is a term applied to prehistoric stone monuments forming circles, half circles, or rows in Northern Europe. Stonehenge, meaning "something hanging," is a circular group of large standing stones located on Salisbury Plain in southern England. The outer circle of stones are almost 14 feet high. Stonehenge was built c. 2200-1500 BC. Wow, that's old! The remaining structure is a small part of the original structure. The significance of Stonehenge is unknown, and the positioning of the stones suggests it could have been an observatory, a calendar of the seasons, a place for ceremonial gatherings, or even a palace. Did you know some of the stones came from distances up to 150 miles away? Read a book about Stonehenge.
Photo: Stonehenge.

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June 11, 2001:
Did you know Vasco da Gama was the first explorer to discover a sea route from Europe to Asia?
Yes, when the Ottoman Empire blocked the European trade route by land to the Far East, many explorers set out to find a new sea route. One of these explorers was Bartholomew Diaz. In 1488, Diaz discovered Africa's southern tip which is known as the Cape of Good Hope. Another explorer was Christopher Columbus. In 1492, Columbus sailed west and discovered the Americas. And then there was Vasco da Gama. In 1499, da Gama continued around the Cape of Good Hope and discovered a sea route to the Far East. Read a book about Vasco da Gama.
Photo: Vasco da Gama.

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June 4, 2001:
Did you know Sacagawea's name has been spelled many different ways?
Yes, in the journals of Meriwether Lewis and William Clark, Sacagawea's name is pronounced "Sah-ca-gah-we-ah" and "Sah-kah-gar-we-a." In 1814, the Lewis and Clark journals were first printed, and the editor spelled her name "Sacajawea." This is how her name was spelled for many years. Recently, historians and official publications have changed the spelling of her name to "Sacagawea." "Sacagawea" is a Hidatsa name. Since the Hidatsa Indians gave her the name, it is more likely they spelled it with a "g." Also, Sacagawea's nickname is Bird Women. "Sacagawea" means Bird Woman, and "Sacajawea" means Boat Launcher. Read a book about Sacagawea.
Photo: Sacagawea

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