This Week in History: May 14th - May 20th

May 15, 2018
by Graham Pierrepoint -

Who says you need a time machine to appreciate history? Thanks to the rise of the internet and thanks to record-keeping that appears to have been going since the dawn of the written word, we have plenty of evidence to show just how far we’ve come. Here’s our weekly look at some of the most notable events of what went down this time last decade, century and beyond!

May 14th, 1787 – The Birth of the Constitution
While it took some time to draw up completely, it was on this day back in 1787 when the future of US law was decided by delegates who gathered for the first time – to help form what would become known as the US Constitution.
Famous Birthday: Cate Blanchett (Actor), 49

May 15th, 1940 – The First McDonald’s Opens
Synonymous with fast food the world over, the Golden Arches opened its doors for the first time in San Bernardino in California – it’s the subject of the movie The Founder, starring Michael Keaton.
Famous Birthday: Andy Murray (Tennis Star), 30

May 16th, 1929 – The First Academy Awards
A major first in movie history this week, as the ceremony that would become known as The Oscars was hosted for the first time ever. Nowadays, it takes place a little earlier in the year.
Famous Birthday: Janet Jackson (Singer), 51

May 17th, 1990 – The World Health Organization Removes ‘Homosexuality’ as a Mental Illness
In a move which many will consider well overdue, the WHO decided to finally remove homosexuality from its list of recognized illnesses.
Famous Birthday: Craig Ferguson (Actor / Comedian / TV Host), 55

May 18th, 1897 – ‘Dracula’ is First Published
It’s the name that kick-started the vampire genre – and a whole host of scares – as Bram Stoker’s iconic Dracula would be published for the first time this week in 1897.
Famous Birthday: Tina Fey (Actor / Comedian), 47

May 19th, 1536 – Anne Boleyn Executed
Of all of King Henry VIII’s six wives, Anne Boleyn, his second, was among the least lucky – having been incarcerated for incest and treason – and beheaded on this day in 1536.
Famous Birthday: Andre the Giant (Wrestler / Actor) (1946 – 1993)

May 20th, 1609 – Shakespeare’s Sonnets First Published
It’s hard to believe that William Shakespeare’s iconic poetry has been with us this long – yet it celebrates its 409thbirthday this week!
Famous Birthday: Cher (Singer), 71

Join us again for more time travelling next week!


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