April is an interesting month. Just through April, it’s possible to gain a fascinating glimpse of the history of the world. It’s a month full of wars, disasters, achievements, and leaders great and not so great:
•The American Civil War started and ended in April.
•The founder of the three German empires or reichs, were all born in April.
•The April Fifth Movement started in Tiananmen Square in 1976. So did the protests that would end as the Tiananmen Massacre in 1989.
•Buddha and Mohammed were both born in April. Christ rose again in April.
•The Louisiana Purchase and the Alaska Purchase were both made in April.
•Quite a few ships and aircraft went down in April, including the Affray, Akron, Atlantic, Atlas Star, Dara, Dumlupinar, Goya, Kashmir Princess, Powhattan, Scandinavian Star, Sultana, Sewol, Thresher, Titanic, and Voorbode.
•For space nuts, the first man in space, the first Shuttle mission, the Apollo 13 and 16 missions, and the launches of the first navigation satellite, the Compton Gamma Ray Observatory, the Dong Fang Hong 1, the Hubble Space Telescope and Salyut 1, were all in April.
•For car nuts: Benz, Chrysler, Ford, Hertz, Jellinek-Mercedes, Kimber (MG), Lamborghini, Michelin, and Royce were all born or died in April. And the Ford Mustang was born in April; the Oldsmobile died.
•For aviation fans: Bell, Dassault, Fokker, Handley Page, Hartmann (greatest air ace), McDonnell and Douglas, the Red Baron, Udet, Roe (founder AVRO) as well as AVRO chief designer, Chadwick, were all born or died in April. Also the maiden flights for the Airbus A380, Boeing 737, and Zero fighter, and last flight for the Spitfire fighter and decommissioning of the F-117A Nighthawk. British Aerospace was also founded.
•For tech geeks, Apple, Microsoft and Netscape were all founded in April. So is the birthday of the Internet, the invention of the integrated circuit, and the first publication of Moore’s Law.
•Joining Brahms, Picasso and Shakespeare are more than three dozen great artists, musicians and writers, all born or died in April.
•Boxing legends and friends Joe Louis and Sugar Ray Robinson died on the same day in April, eight years apart. Aviation pioneers Anthony Fokker and Donald Douglas were born on the same day in April, two years’ apart.
•Boston Marathon bombing, Columbine shooting, Oklahoma City bombing, CSA siege, Virginia Tech shooting and the Waco siege, all happened in April, among several other incidents.
And … the universe began in April. Really. And we will first meet aliens in April. Really. For a quirky, unique take on the history of the world, read 1,001 Things You Didn’t Know Happened in April!