Good News in History, April 6

Good News in History, April 6

1896_Olympic_opening_ceremonyOn this day 120 years ago, the first Olympic Games of the modern era opened in Athens–1,500 years after the original games were banned by the Roman emperor. Because Ancient Greece was the birthplace of the Olympic Games, Athens was chosen to stage the inaugural modern Games. Despite obstacles, the Games of the I Olympiad were regarded as a great success, attracting the largest international participation of any sporting event to that date. The Panathinaiko Olympic Stadium overflowed with the largest crowd ever to watch a sporting event. (1896)

The highlight for the Greeks was the marathon victory by their compatriot Spyridon Louis. The most successful competitor was German wrestler and gymnast Carl Schuhmann, who won four events.

MORE Good News on this Date:

  • Peter the Great repealed his tax levied on men who wore beards, which was meant to encourage the beardless fashions of France, but infuriated Russians, who had always cherished long beards as sacred and preserved them with much care (1722)
  • The United States Congress convened in New York to begin its first regular session (1789)
  • The Jews of Prussia were granted equality (1848)
  • Matthew Henson, an African-American and Robert Peary, another American, along with four Eskimo guides, reached the North Pole (1909)
  • The first Tony Awards were presented for theatrical achievements (1947)
  • Post It Notes were introduced after a mistake in the 3M lab led one inventor to try using the weak adhesive to secure a bookmark in his hymnal (1980)INTELSAT_I_(Early_Bird)-NASA

The first commercial communications satellite was placed in geosynchronous orbit. The tiny 2-ft Intelsat I (nicknamed Early Bird for the proverb “The early bird catches the worm”) was the first to provide direct and nearly instantaneous contact between Europe and North America, handling television, telephone, and fax transmissions. (1965)