6 July 1960: Death of Aneurin Bevan, British Politician

Aneurin Bevan was born into an area of Wales where two-thirds of the male population worked underground in the mines. Throughout his career he championed the cause of the working classes and his service as Minister for Health gave the British universal healthcare through the National Health Service.

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5 July 1810: Birth of P. T. Barnum, American Showman

P. T. Barnum is remembered as the circus showman and promoter of “The Greatest Show on Earth”, but he did not start his circus venture until he was 60. In his earlier career he took on many roles, becoming a newspaper publisher, an exhibitor of curiosities, a concert promoter and a theatre owner.

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4 July 1790: Birth of George Everest, British Surveyor

George Everest was responsible for the great trigonometrical survey of India, but it is for the peak that bears his name that he is remembered. Despite this, he never saw the world’s largest mountain.

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3 July 1938: Mallard Became the Fastest Steam Locomotive

The record set by the LNER’s Mallard locomotive on 3 July 1938 looks set to remain unbroken well into the future.

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2 July 1900: First Flight of a Zeppelin Airship

On 2 July 1900 the first rigid airship built by Count Ferdinand Graf von Zeppelin flew over Lake Constance in Southern Germany. Although the test was not a complete success, it marked the start of a new era in powered flight.

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1 July 1860: Death of Charles Goodyear, American Inventor

For Charles Goodyear, the inventor of vulcanized rubber, life was always a struggle. But even frequent incarceration in debtors’ prisons did not stop him achieving his goal of perfecting the rubber manufacturing process. Unfortunately, he never benefited financially from his hard work.

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Elements of the Periodic Table Articles Moved

The first five articles in my Elements of the Periodic Table series have been moved to pages on this site from their old home at Triond.

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16 June 1890: Birth of Stan Laurel, English Comic Actor

As one half of the comedy duo Laurel and Hardy, Stan Laurel starred in over a hundred comedy shorts and feature films. But he also had a successful acting and writing career before his partnership with Oliver Hardy.

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14 June 1811: Birth of Harriet Beecher Stowe

Harriet Beecher Stowe was born into an era in which women were assigned an inferior role. But through her writing, and her most famous work, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Stowe was influential in the abolitionist cause.

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13 June 1983: The First Man-made Object to Leave the Solar System

On 13 June 1983 the Pioneer 10 spacecraft flew beyond the orbit of Neptune and so became the first man-made object to leave the solar system. But this was not the only first during its extraordinary mission.

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