11 Swiss Women Got The Right To Vote The Same Year The U.S. Drove A Buggy On The Moon (1971)
Switzerland is often seen as one of the, if not the, most progressive nations on Earth. It comes as a surprise then that women weren't granted the right to vote until 1971, 65 years after Finland become the first European country to do so.
By that time, NASA had already landed on the moon, and were driving a moon buggy around! In the meantime however, Switzerland has caught up massively in terms of women's rights and the gender gap, ranking at number 11, well ahead of the United States at number 45.
12 The Fax Machine Was Invented The Same Year The First Wagon Crossed The Oregon Trail (1843)
The original fax machine, the "Electric Printing Telegraph" was patented in 1843 by Scottish inventor Alexander Bain, the same year that about 1,000 people set off West for Oregon, forming a huge wagon train on what is now known as the Oregon trail. This set the tone for Westward expansion in the USA, and is the beginning of the 'Great Migration.'
13 You Could Take The London Underground To The Last Public Hanging In The UK (1868)
Hanging used to be a common punishment in the UK, and wasn't abolished until 1868. Micheal Barrett was the last to be executed in this manner, in Newgate prison, London, in front of a large crowd of people.
5 years earlier in 1863, the first journey of the London Underground took place. With a station in operation close by the Newgate prison, it is entirely feasible that many Londoners would take the tube to go and watch somebody get hanged.
14 Princess Diana And Mother Teresa Died Days Apart In 1997
Princess Diana and Mother Teresa died just days apart, in 1997. Princess Diana was killed in a car crash in Paris on August 31st, while Mother Teresa died on September 5th after a struggle with declining health. She died in India and received a state funeral from the Indian government, in gratitude for her service to the poor of all religions in the country.
15 Prisoners Arrived At Auschwitz Just Days After Mcdonald's Was Founded (1940)
While McDonald's is traditionally associated with the good times and affluence of 1950's America, the very first restaurant was opened much earlier, on May 15th 1940. Just 5 days later, the first prisoners arrived at the Auschwitz concentration camp in what is now Poland.
16 Ecstasy Was Invented The Same Year The Titanic Sank (1912)
In the same year pharmaceutical giant Merck was interested in developing substances that stopped abnormal bleeding, and one of its chemists, Anton Köllisch, synthesised MDMA to avoid a patent by rival Bayer. The drug was of no particular interest to Merck at the time, and they only came back to research the substance sporadically over the next few years. It wasn't until 1975 that psychoactive effects of the drug began to be taken seriously, and recreational use spread thereafter through personal networks of psychotherapists, psychiatrists, users of psychedelics, and yuppies.
17 Orville Wright Was Still Alive When Hiroshima And Nagasaki Were Bombed (1945)
The Wright brothers are rightly credited with inventing what we know as airplanes, and it must have been tremondously difficult for Orville Wright, whose brother Wilbur died back in 1912, to see his life's great acheivement be responsible for the greatest single act of destruction man has ever seen. In 1945 U.S. Airforce planes dropped atomic bombs on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, killing at least 129,000 people, mainly civilians.
Orville died in 1948 and expressed sadness in an interview about the death and destruction brought about by the bombers of World War II:
"We dared to hope we had invented something that would bring lasting peace to the earth. But we were wrong ... No, I don't have any regrets about my part in the invention of the airplane, though no one could deplore more than I do the destruction it has caused. I feel about the airplane much the same as I do in regard to fire. That is, I regret all the terrible damage caused by fire, but I think it is good for the human race that someone discovered how to start fires and that we have learned how to put fire to thousands of important uses."
18 Charlie Chaplin And Adolf Hitler Were Both Born In 1889. Interestingly, Chaplin Portrayed Hitler In The 1940 Satire "The Great Dictator"
The Great Dictator is a 1940 American political satire comedy-drama film written, directed, produced, scored by and starring British comedian Charlie Chaplin, following the tradition of many of his other films. Chaplin's film advanced a stirring, controversial condemnation of Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini, fascism, antisemitism, and the Nazis.
At the time of its first release, the United States was still formally at peace with Nazi Germany. Chaplin plays both leading roles: a ruthless fascist dictator and a persecuted Jewish barber. Coincidentally, Chaplin and Hitler were the same age, both being born in 1889.
19 Eiffel Tower Was Inaugurated In 1889 For The World's Fair, Which Was The Same Year Van Gogh's 'Starry Night' Was Painted
Regarded as among Van Gogh's finest works, The Starry Night is one of the most recognized paintings in the history of Western culture. One of the most recognized buildings, the Eiffel Tower, was built in the same year that Van Gogh painted his masterpiece, 1889. The tower was only supposed to serve as the entrance for the 'World Fair' in Paris, but as we now know, it has become a permanent and much-loved fixture of the Paris skyline. 1889 was quite the year for iconic works!
20 The Ottoman Empire Existed The Second To Last Time The Chicago Cubs Won The World Series (1908)
Before the Chicago Cubs won the World Series in 2016, they hadn't won one previously since 1908. That means that the second-to-last time the Cubs tasted victory, the Ottoman Empire still existed, before it was dissolved after defeat in World War 1 and became modern day Turkey.