Wednesday, January 25, 2012


By Elysia Walton, SnapSpace Solutions Team
January 25th, 2012

            January. We have just turned a new year, and with it we welcome a fresh start. Hopefully you have made some resolutions for this New Year, or maybe you are continuing last year’s resolutions. Whatever goals you plan to achieve, some history on January may give you a better appreciation for this cold, fresh month:
            On January 4th, 1643, Isaac Newton was noted physicist, mathematician, and astronomer.[1] Imagine that! About 370 years ago the person whom we all read about, in every history and science book, was named for his actions and remembered for the amazing inventions that would shape the world—one of which would enable us to see to the stars.
            In 1809, also on January 4th, Louis Braille invented a reading system for the blind.[2] Sound familiar? You guessed it. Mr. Braille used his last name for his invention, and we see this invention nearly everywhere we go; fast-food restroom doors, fancy hotel elevators, yes, without Braille the blind would also be blind to the written world. However, Mr. Braille’s invention has enabled the blind to ‘see’ a bit more than before, not through their eyes, but instead through their fingers.
            On January 13th, 1930, the Mickey Mouse cartoon first appeared in newspapers throughout the United States.[3] That’s right—January, the freezing-cold month, is the birth month of Mr. Mickey Mouse, the beloved little creature that, though he is now over eighty years old, has lasted the test of time and is still close to most American’s hearts. He is the little mouse that rowed a row boat, and won Minnie’s heart. Yes, Mickey is nearly as famous as our flag itself, he is such a well-known, big part of American history.
            Another January invention is Doublemint™ gum. January 19th happens to be the 97th anniversary of the day Doublemint™ gum was trademark registered.[4] So why don’t you go out and buy yourself a pack of Doublemint™ for good ol’ time’s sake.
            Two different historical events happened on January the 20th, seventy-two years apart. In 1857 on January 20th, William Kelly patented the blast furnace for manufacturing steel.[5] Just imagine where we would be if Mr. Kelly hadn’t invented this. Also on the 20th, but in the year 1929, (much closer to the 21st century) the first outdoor feature-length talking motion picture played.  It was called “In Old Arizona”[6], thus our drive-in movies were born.
            Evidently January is a pretty popular month! It is not just about the ringing of a new year, or icy asphalt. No, January is more. January contains birthdays and anniversaries of many historical events we are all familiar with. Alas, before you fall asleep tonight, or bid January goodbye until 2013 next Tuesday night, remember what January means. Chew yourself a piece of Doublemint™ gum while watching Mickey, and enjoy the stars through a telescope…


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