[Not single-page] Reliving the "Carrington Event," a solar storm that disrupted the U.S. telegraph system and lit up the sky in late August 1859:
"The night of Carrington's discovery, the electrical hurricane that had swept the globe peaked. The Great Auroral Storm had actually begun several days earlier with a similar incident on August 28, but it was Carrington and another astronomer, Richard Hodgson, who identified one of the solar flares that enveloped the earth in a week-long magnetic maelstrom. Because of their work, the episode was dubbed the 'Carrington Event,' and it consumed the world's attention for the week.
"In New York City, San Francisco, Boston, and Chicago, thousands of sky gazers wandered about the midnight streets, astounded at what they could see. 'Crowds of people gathered at the street corners, admiring and commenting upon the singular spectacle,' observed the New Orleans Daily Picayune. When the September 1 aurora 'was at its greatest brilliancy, the northern heavens were perfectly illuminated,' wrote a reporter for The New York Times."
PUBLISHED: May 4, 2012
LENGTH: 9 minutes (2334 words)
(Not single-page) Nothing irritated phone company executives more than the use of the word "hello" in initial telephone conversation. In 1910, Bell's Telephone Engineer magazine sponsored a contest for the best essay on proper telephone etiquette. AT&T had the prize article distributed to telephone directories. Here's what it said about the h-word: "Would you rush into an office or up to the door of a residence and blurt out 'Hello! Hello! Who am I talking to?' No, one should open conversations with phrases such as 'Mr. Wood, of Curtis and Sons, wishes to talk with Mr. White...' without any unnecessary and undignified 'Hellos." No aspect of telephone use escaped the interest of AT&T's etiquette police. "Speak directly into the mouthpiece," explained a California franchise's instruction manual, "keeping mustache out of the opening."
PUBLISHED: Sept. 1, 2011
LENGTH: 13 minutes (3313 words)