October 2, 2014

Thursday Open Line

The nature of American neighborhoods began to take on a new look this week in 1947. That’s when one of the first planned communities built by a real estate developer opened and began receiving its new residents–Levittown, in New York. Named for William and Alfred Levitt, the town ultimately contained more than 17,000 Cape Cod […]

Wednesday Open Line

On this date in 1785, the first city directory in the United States was published. Fittingly, it was in the young country’s place of birth — Philadelphia. The directory’s title was the unwieldy “Macpherson’s Directory, for the City and Suburbs of Philadelphia, extending to Prime-Street, southward; Maiden-Street, northward; and from the River Delaware to Tenth-Street, […]

Tuesday Open Line

On this date in 1882, the world’s first hydroelectric power plant began operating on the Fox River in Appleton, Wisconsin. Inspired by Thomas Edison, a man named H.F. Rogers built the facility using a water wheel to power the lights in the Appleton Paper and Pulp Company, a nearby building, and his home. Soon, hydroelectric […]

Monday Open Line

As September’s National Honey Month ends tomorrow, Wisconsin — the land of milk — hosts the opening of the World Dairy Expo, running through Saturday. Cattle call is by noon, Central Time today, as all of the show animals must be on the expo grounds in Madison. Farmers, producers and others attending will see some […]

Friday / Weekend Open Lines

National Rehabilitation Awareness Week ends tomorrow. One of goals of the annual event is to salute the determination of the nation’s 56.7 million residents who confront their disabilities as they go about their daily lives. Another is to say thanks to the thousands of rehabilitation professionals, such as the nation’s 204,000 physical therapists, who help […]

Thursday Open Line

Three important dates in American newspaper history occurred in September. These anniversaries span more than three centuries. On September 15, 1982, USA Today began publishing. Critics at the time said the idea of a national newspaper was doomed to failure — now, USA Today is one of the country’s largest-selling dailies. On September 18, 1851, […]

Wednesday Open Line

We are halfway through “Unmarried and Single Americans Week,” noting that many who are unmarried do not identify with the world “single,” since they may be parents, have partners, or are widowed or divorced. The idea for the observance started in Ohio in the 1980s. There are 105 million unmarried adult Americans, more than 44 […]

Tuesday Open Line

The nation’s oldest institution of higher learning conferred its first nine college degrees on this date in 1642, in the Massachusetts Bay Colony. Called the “New College,” the school was founded by Puritans in 1636 and began teaching in 1638. The following year, it was renamed in honor of John Harvard, a young minister who […]

Monday Open Line

The average age of the American population is on a steady climb, and the national median is nearly 37. As people grow older, many tend to become a little vague about their exact age. After about 85, though, they tend to become proud of their longevity. Not too many years ago, someone who had lived […]

Friday / Weekend Open Lines

One of our favorite foods is being celebrated — it’s National Chicken Month, nicely complementing September’s Mushroom and Rice Month. The versatility of chicken — served in numerous ways ranging from Southern fried style to sandwiches to salads — drives a demand that has reached over 8.6 billion birds a year in the U.S. alone. […]

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