History is an old chest, which you open to revive the old memories and unravel the past. They are moments enclosed in this chest of history that need to be cherished, memories that need to be relived, and a little dust of nostalgia and grief. Let us now read the historical milestones of August 13 and unravel the past.
1889 – The first coin-operated telephone is patented by William Gray.
The first coin-operated telephone or also known as ‘Payphone’ was invented and patented by William Gray. The first pay phone was installed at a bank in Hartford, Conn by Gray Telephone Pay Station Company. This invention popularized the telephone to be used in public places. The earliest coin-operated phones were post-pay phones, users paid coins after the call was made. A hundred years later, there were more than 2 million payphones installed in the United States.
1892 – The first issue of the Afro-American newspaper is published in Baltimore, Maryland.
The first issue of the Baltimore Afro-American newspaper went on sale in 1892 today. This was a Black-owned and operated newspaper crusaded for racial equality and economic advancement for African- America for more than a century. John Henry Murphy Sr., a former slave, started this paper by merging his church publication with two other church publications. At a time 13 editions were being circulated across the country. The Afro-American’s status as a Black paper profoundly affected social change on a national scale. The editorial pages of The Afro-Americans were used to push for the hiring of Blacks by Baltimore’s police and fire departments; to press for Black representation in the legislature, and for the establishment of a state-supported university to educate Blacks.
1913 – Invention of stainless steel by Harry Brearley, Sheffield, England
Harry Brearley was an English metallurgist, credited with the invention of “rustless steel”, later called “stainless steel”. This invention brought affordable cutlery to the masses which saw an expansion of traditional cutlery trade. The potential of steel as an application was not limited to high-temperature resistance but also in the mass-production of cutlery, saucepans and processing equipment, etc. At that, time carbon-steel knives were prone to unhygienic rusting if not frequently polished and only expensive sterling silver or EPNS cutlery was an alternative to avoid this. Therefore, Brearley examined and tested stainless steel with food acids like vinegar and lemon juice and got very promising results.
1989 – US space shuttle STS-28 lands
It is the first space-rated orbiter in NASA’s Space Shuttle fleet. STS-28 was the 30th NASA Space Shuttle mission, the fourth shuttle mission dedicated to the United States Department of Defense purposes. It traveled 2.1 million miles during 81 orbits of the Earth, before landing on Edwards Air Force Base, California on this day in 1989. The mission marked the first flight of a human skull. This joint experiment of NASA/DoD was aimed to examine the levels of radiation that can penetrate the human cranium during the spaceflight.