What the sky looked like on 1929
Get the star map showing the sky over this special date
The torch passed from President Calvin Coolidge to America’s 31st president, Herbert Hoover, on March 4th of 1929. At this time, census numbers place the world population at just over 2.1 billion.
The most common names for newborns at the time were Robert and, just like many years prior, Mary. Included among these bundles of joy were famous Civil Rights leader, Martin Luther King Junior; a famous female fashion designer, Liz Claiborne; a future Canadian Prime Minster, John Turney; and a future first lady, Jacqueline Kennedy. As the sun rose on those four, this year also saw the passing of Wyatt Earp, Karl Benz, and Elijah McCoy.
These 364 days also saw changes to Sunday comics, a tragedy that forever changed February 14th, and the establishment of Grand Teton National Park. Libraries had a hard time keeping books like All Quiet on the Western Front, A Farewell to Arms, and The Sound and the Fury on the shelves. In contrast, on the silver screen, movies like Pandora’s Box, The Broadway Melody, and The Cocoanauts shot to the top of the box office charts.
Whether you knew it or not, a lot of things did not exist until 1929. These items include sci-fi (Buck Rogers) and first adventure-based (Tarzan) comic strips, the Academy Awards, and nudist organizations. Even if they were not the first in the world, some other notable things happened: the forming of the USA’s Seeing Eye Guide Dog Organization, the expulsion of Trotsky from Russia, the arrival of Mother Theresa in Calcutta, the withdrawal of British troops from Germany in September, and the invention of the car radio. Sadly, some tragedies also marred these 365 days. Mobsters killed eight during the Valentine’s day massacre. The worst thing of all occurred on October 29th as the Dow Jones plummeted and marked the beginnings of the Great Depression. While this would help make Hoover synonymous with an item used for sucking, the vacuum, this year also saw him grant his name to the Boulder Dam.
For everyone who loves headbanging on the highway, or loved their first reading of All Quiet on the Western Front, they owe some measure of gratitude to the year 1929.
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