Mark's Almanac

Mark Pennell sits at the helm of his time machine.

Mark's Almanac is a 90-second time travel that highlights the world's history from the very serious to the sometimes sublime. Listen during Morning Edition and On Point.

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President Dwight Eisenhower blazed a trail in presidential travel on this date in 1957. And in 1976, this still-popular gameshow debuted on ABC.

Our system of roads was influenced by a new law passed on this date in 1916. And in 1988, boxer Mike Tyson formed an alliance with a man who would one day be president.  

Ohio is home to the world's oldest concrete street, put in place on this date in 1891. And in 1938, an ambitious pilot took off for a once-in-a-lifetime journey.

On this date in 1795, a Boston financier did something that is unfathomable today. And in 1869, a dutch immigrant woodworker developed a product famously associated with a certain snowman.  


On this date in 1947, an Army press release raised eyebrows. And in 1988, a well-known singer announced plans to run for Detroit mayor. 

It was on this date in 1643 that a certain meteorological event was recorded for the first time. And in 1937, a new food was introduced which gained popularity with U.S. soldiers during World War II and still remains around today.

On this date in 1776, a resolution was approved declaring the United Colonies free and independent states.


On this date in 1938, President Franklin Roosevelt dedicated a symbolic memorial. And in 1985, one of the most popular films of all-time was released.

On this date in 1843, an interesting weather event involving a storm and an alligator occurred in Charleston, South Carolina. And in 1940, the world's first floating bridge was dedicated.

On this date in 1847, a big change came to the U.S. Postal Service. And in 1859, a balloon voyage made history.

On this date in 1761, a colonial man became the first person to be accused of trying to pass funny money in the new world.  And in 1859, this show literally went to the dogs.

It was on this date in 1778 that the Liberty Bell was bought back to Philadelphia. And in 1955, buckling up became the law for the first time anywhere in the U.S.

On this date in 1498, a new product was created in Charlotte, North Carolina that is still used today, although it's been refined since then. And in 1948, U.S. and British pilots began a mission to deliver supplies to help an entire city survive.

It was on this date in 1929 that a new law called the Boulder-Canyon project act was put into place.

On this date in 1901, a legendary artist had his first significant show. And in 1947, pilot Kenneth Arnold reported seeing something rather unusual in the skies. 

On this date in 1893, the World's Columbian Exhibition in Chicago provided the world with a glimpse of something they'd never seen before. And in 1975, a historic concert at Wembley Stadium in London took place.

On this date in 1782, Congress officially adopted a new symbol for the United States of America. And in 1963, a red telephone was established between the United States and the Kremlin. 

On this date in 1910, the nation officially celebrated a new holiday. And in 1963, a Soviet woman made space history.

On this date in 1812, a war for the ages began, ending in a draw. And in 1873, Susan B. Anthony was fined $100 for something unheard of in today's rules.

On this date in 1876, a trans-continental train made history. And in 1896, the legendary Henry Ford made a little history of his own.

On this date in 1775, a famous battle was fought. And in 1885, a new gift from France to the United States arrived by way of water to New York. 

On this date in 1775, a new Army was created to coordinate the military efforts of the 13 colonies. And in 1922, President Harding had his voice transmitted via radio, changing forever how presidents would be heard . 

On this date in 1917, the deadliest World War I air raid took place. And in 1920, the United States Postal Service created a rule banning an interesting item from being sent via parcel post.

On this date in 1917, the Secret Service expanded their protection. And in 1923, Harry Houdini performed a stunt in New York City that went down as one of the greatest in history.

On this date in 1741, Benjamin Franklin was back at it again, inventing a new product for homes. And in 1895, a man by the name of Charles Gruyere received a patent that would forever change how cars would be powered.