History Timeline: Events of Modern History

Modern era can be summed into the Historiographical timeline as a collection of events of Technical Revolution, Discoveries and Arts with occurrence after the middle ages.

Historians mark the Early Modern Era transition by pinning with the European Renaissance, the cultural moment in Europe. Some others credit the modern era to Discoveries of Telescope and Microscope, as well as Industrial Revolution.

Please also refer to our other guides on:

Complete modern history cannot be summed up in a single book, least given this piece, and the events are selected based on impact and completeness. If you are bummed about something not being covered, drop a comment. There were countless conflicts, invasions, and mutinies during the time, so only significant of these are mentioned.

Modern History Image


The Pacific Ocean sighted by Europeans

  • September 26, 1513

Roughly 20 years after the accidental discovery of the American continent, Spain’s conquistador Vasco Nunez de Balboa was the first to lay eyes on the blue Pacific. The journey went through dense forests, erratic rivers, and tribal communities. Later in time, a westward route to the east will be discovered. Soon after in 1519, Magellan-Elcano expedition would sail from Spain, making it through Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans to successfully circumnavigate the earth.


Death of Leonardo da Vinci

  • May 2, 1519

One of the geniuses of the Renaissance, Leonardo da Vinci was known for his inquiring mind, art and critical thinking. He received his training in painting, sculpture, architecture, and design from Florentine artist Andrea del Verrocchio. He was also credited for his contributions in the military, with models and schematics detailing crossbows, canons and flying machines.


Nicolaus Copernicus publishes De Revolutionibus Orbium

  • May 24, 1543

To many of you, it might come as a shock that Nicolaus Copernicus wasn’t the first one to propose a heliocentric theory. Aristarchus of Samos ( 310 BC – 230 BC ) proposed that the sun was the center and that the stars were, in fact, sun-like heavenly bodies that are just very far away. Though his theory which in part was astonishingly correct, the conclusions were not backed by proof. It wasn’t until another 1500 years when Copernicus published his text with detailed observations signaling the heliocentric nature. The theory shook off most cultures, as the earth-centric theory was both popular as well as backed by religious practices. Copernican heliocentrism is considered as the starting point of Scientific Revolution and Modern Astronomy.

Calendar Reset

  • October 4, 1582

Julius Caesar in 46 B.C.E. had correctly calculated the length of the solar year to be 365.25 days. Or had he?
While the calculation by Julius Caesar was quite accurate by his time, the length of a solar year was (is) in fact 365.2422 days. This meant that over long periods of time, in spite of adding in a leap year, calendar days would drift from solar days.
Pope Gregory XIII institutionalized the Gregorian calendar (which is still in place) by making a small change, that no century year should be a leap year unless divisible by 400. What this did was omitted the extra leap year day every century. This was vital as in the 1500s, the spring equinox was falling on March 11 instead of the supposed March 21. Also at the time, people who fell to sleep on October 4 (1582) woke up on October 15 as immediate offset was put in place to make the calendar align with solar days.

Globe Theatre Opens in London

  • 1599

Globe Theatre was the famous theatre in London well known for running plays written by William Shakespeare. Plays of William Shakespeare were performed here after 1599 AD.

During that time, there were only a few licensed theatres, and among them, fewer licensed to play within the city. The Globe stood by river Thames and played a vital role in the cultivation of drama and art. Shakespeare was a chief shareholder in the company owning the Globe. Globe was stood at the southern end of river Thames, close to the London Bridge.

Martyr for Science, Giordano Bruno

  • 1599

Giordano Bruno, born in Italy, was a radical thinker and philosopher who put forward modern cosmological ideas unnerving to people of his time. His beliefs were that the distant stars were, in fact, many numerous suns like that of ours, with their own planets harboring life. Bruno also hence believed in many worlds and universes hypothesis. He was not a discoverer. His views were the extensions of discoveries of Nicolas Copernicus’s heliocentric theory (which says that planets revolve around the sun and not that everything revolves around the earth.). Although being mere extensions, his views were radical and profound.

The implications of his teachings were rejected and frowned upon by the church. Many world’s interpretations were unacceptable to the church. Giordano Bruno was given death punishment for heresy, and also was rejected the customary mercy of death by hanging or strangulation. He was burnt alive in public.

Astronomical Breakthrough by Galileo

  • January 7, 1610

Galileo Galilei, the Italian astronomer, makes the discovery of Jupiter’s moons. Galileo is often wrongly attributed with the invention of Telescope. Telescope was made by few others before him, but Galileo upgraded the telescope design and lenses to offer higher magnification.

He was also a believer in heliocentric Copernican Theory, and that earth is not the center of the universe. His discovery of 4 celestial bodies revolving around Jupiter made it clear that everybody in the universe does not revolve around Earth. The 4 biggest moons of Jupiter which he discovered are called Galilean moons. NASA also named the first satellite to travel to Jupiter after Galileo.

First Thanksgiving

  • November 1621

The first Thanksgiving is said to be celebrated in November of 1621. It was at the autumn harvesting celebration that various dishes were prepared such was Turkey, Potato, Pumpkin Pies, etc. The celebration was among the newly arrived pilgrims and Wampanoag Indians.

William Harvey details the Heart and Circulatory System

  • 1628

William Harvey published his work “De Motu Cordis” in 1628 highlighting the Heart and Circulatory system. He was the first to have researched thoroughly on this subject. In his work, Harvey notes the function of Valves in controlling blood flow, functions of arteries and veins, and of the Human heart as a pump. He studied animal heart and circulatory system, as well as the human system by direct examination (dissection).

The Great Fire of London

  • September 2, 1666

The Great Fire of London occurred on the 2nd of September 1666. The fire started shortly after midnight and carried on from Sunday, September 2nd to Thursday, 6th September. It started at the baker house of Thomas Farriner on Pudding-lane and spread west across the city of London. The fire was so rapid that it burnt almost 13,200 houses, 87 parish churches, St. Paul’s Cathedral and most of the building of city authorities. It swept through the entire middle part of the English city destroying over 70,000 homes of 80,000 inhabitants.

The houses made from the wood and fewer spaces between them made the fire uncontrollable. Effective firebreaks and the slowing of wind were the two major factors resulting in the halt of the fire. Some of the city ‘s part as for the aristocratic district of Westminster, Whitehall Palace and some suburban slums were saved from the fire. Total deaths are unknown but six verified deaths were recorded. A melted piece of a pottery recovered by the archaeologists from the fireplace on pudding lane shows that the temperature reached 1250 °C (2,280 °F).

A monument was built after the Great fire incident at the place where the fire started, designed by Christopher Wren and Robert Hooke. And another monument built named, The Golden Boy of Pye Corner where the fire stopped.

First modern bank, Sweden

  • 1668

Italy is credited for forming the first bank in the world. The bank is still in existence and is known as Banca Monte Dei Paschi di Siena. It was established in 1367 and is working continuously since 1472.

It wasn’t until 1688 that a modern bank was established. Sveriges Riksbank is the first oldest central bank. It had the mindset “Herefore Strength and Safety” Riksbank introduced many innovative monetary policy initiatives including negative interest rates, and E-Krona recently.

This bank instituted annual Sveriges Riksbank Price in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel after completing 300 years of continuous operation.

Isaac Newton publishes Principia Mathematica

  • July 5, 1687

Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica, known as Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy is among the most important books in the history of science.  It consists of three books published on July 5, 1687, and two more editions in 1713, and 1726.

This historic landmark is the epoch of great revolution in physics. This book lays out of mathematical terms, and laws of motion with universal gravitation. Isaac Newton explained the foundation of classical mechanics with universal gravitation and derived Kepler’s law.

The book was translated into English twice by 1726. Recently, two space missions were named after Principia.

John Kay invents The Flying Shuttle

  • 1733

The Flying Shuttle is among the most critical developments in the industrialization of weaving. The device designed by John Kay in 1733 was a stepping stone during the early industrial revolution. It let single weaver weave wider fabrics, could be mechanized and allowed automatic machine looks.

The device cut more than half of labor work in weaving. Before the introduction of this shuttle, four spinners were needed to work on one weaver; the shutter reduced it to only one. Apart from changing the industry, it also had some social effects as it exceeded the capacity of the spinning industry, and improved fine threat quality and quantity. The only drawback was laborers were more prone to injury now.

First Balloon Flight

  • June 4, 1783

The Montgolfier Brothers (Joseph-Michel Montgolfier and Jacques-Etienne Montgolfier) are credited for the invention of Hot Air Balloons that led to the development of human-crewed Balloon flights. The brothers developed their prototype in AnnonayArdeche, France and showed it to the public on September 19, 1783.

Joseph experimented with flight technologies and started working on the Balloon projects in 1782. He soon recruited the help of his brother and built an improved version of Joseph’s earlier incarnations. The brothers flow the balloon at Annonay in front of a group of dignitaries and the fight covered 2 KM. It lasted about 10 minutes.

Constitution of the USA signed

  • September 17, 1787

The American Revolution which (formerly) took place between 1765-1783 ended with the Thirteen Colonies securing independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain. It altered the World Map as the Thirteen Colonies became the United States of America.

After the American Revolutionary War, or American War of Independence and events like Surrender of Lord Cornwallis, Battle of Trenton, General Warren’s Death and Battle of Long Island,  British recognized the independence of American and it led to Signing of United States Constitution.  The Signing occurred on 17th September 1787 at Independence Hall, in Philadelphia Pennsylvania. 38 delegates representing all 12 states except for Rhode Island supported the constitution.

Napoleon loses his final battle at Waterloo

  • June 18, 1815

Napoleon Bonaparte, who conquered most parts of Europe during the early 19thcentury faced his final defeat during the Battle of Waterloo. Napoleon who had control over the French army at just 26 years of age, changed the history of Europe. He fought wars against Netherlands, Italy, Austria, Egypt, and Syria.

He ended up in the chaos after the French revolution and built France into the beautiful city it is still today. He also created the French banking system and Judicial System. He lost the Battle of Waterloo (Present day in Belgium). It brought an end to Napoleon Wars and started his downfall.

First commercial railway

  • September 27, 1825

Stockton and Darlington Railway (S&DR) was the first commercial railway company. It was officially opened on September 27, 1825, and connect collieries near Shildon with Stockton-on-Trees and Darlington. It is the first company to use steam locomotives when they were introduced in 1833.

The company is regarded for building the East Coast Main Line between York and Darlington. The company was running into several financial issues and was defunct in 1863. It was succeeded by the North Eastern Railway.

The First Photograph

  • June 1827

View from the Window at Le Gras,  credited to be the best Photograph in history. The history of photography dates a millennium back, but Heliographic images were first used in 1822. It was a photographic process invented by Joseph Nicephore Niepce.

The process of used Natural asphalt, and coating on glass or metal. The film hardened in proportion to its exposure to light when the plat was washed with lavender oil.

Nicephore Niepce created the picture himself at Saint Loup De Varennes France and showed parts of the building and surrounding countryside of his state from a high window.

Michael Faraday’s electromagnetic discovery, Dynamo

  • August 24, 1831

Michael Faraday, a removed British Science who is known for discovery of electromagnetic induction, electric motor and electrolysis laws. Among his vital contributions was his work on magnetism and electricity. He started conducting electromagnetic experiments before the 1820’s.

His first breakthrough came after years when he wrapped two insulated coils of wire around an iron ring and found when he passed current through one coil, it was induced on the other one. His experienced established that changing magnetic field produces an electric field. This laid the groundwork of Mutual Induction theory and modeled the Faraday’s law.

Darwin’s discoveries on the voyage of the Beagle

  • December 27, 1831

December 27th, 1831 was the day when Charles Darwin commended his Pacific Voyage. His journey onboard the HMS Beagle formed the basis of his theories of evolution. The theory established every form of life was descended from common ancestors. This let to branching pattern of evolution named Natural Selection.

In this section, the struggle for existence had a similar effect to artificial selection in selective breeding. Darwin published his theory of evolution with substantial evidence in his book, On the Origin of Species. The book was published in 1859. It established the foundation of the mechanism of evolution. This went on to become the unifying theory of Life Sciences.

Telegraphic code demonstrated by Samuel Morse

  • January 6, 1838

Do you know what “SOS” means? This is an international distress signal embedded in Morse Code. Samuel Morse, painter, and inventor well-known as the pioneer of single wire telegraph system based on European Telegraphs. He helped to develop the Morse Code, and implementing its commercial use.

On January 6th, 1838: Morse demonstrated his Telegraph, a new communication device that converted alphabet in simple code tapped on a single key and sent as electrical signals. These signals are sent along a cable and decoded on receiving end. The cable could be laid anywhere and made communication feasible at the time.

The arrival of a modern postal system with the adhesive postage stamp

  • May 1, 1840

“Penny Black” is credited as the World’s First Adhesive Postage Stamp introduced in Public Postal System. It was first released in Great Britain on 1st May 1840. However, it was not validated before 6th may. The stamp featured a profile of Queen Victoria.

It helped regulate the postal rates which were high, complex and suffered from various issues. The adhesive stamp indicated pre-payment of the postage. During those times, it was routine for the recipient to pay postage on delivery which was charged by the sheet and travel distance.

However, Penny Black allowed letters of 14 grams to be delivered at a flat rate of one penny, despite the distance.

Domestic Sewing Machine launched

  • 1850

The industrial revolution changed industries that relied on physical labor. The sewing machine is an excellent example of this transition which freed the housewife from hand sewing. Before that, women had to sew everything by hand. As you can imagine, it was a tough ordeal.

Sewing Machine was a great convenience and was considered a luxury item. It cut off the manual sewing. The world owes Thomas Saint, but It was Isaac Singer who modified these machines and made them affordable for a domestic audience.

Slavery abolished in the USA

  • December 6, 1865

Although President Abraham Lincoln declared several slaves free with the Emancipation Proclamation in 1963, his efforts weren’t very fruitful. The 13th Amendment of US Constitution was passed on 8th April 1864 and officially brought an end to slavery. Although the Civil War played a central role, it wasn’t until the Constitution took formal action which abolished slavery and involuntary servitude (but in the form of punishment for crime).

The house ratified it later on December 6, 1865, because Delaware, Kentucky and other states didn’t accommodate the original draft. Secretary of State William H. Seward proclaimed the Adoption, and it was among the three Reconstruction Amendments that followed the Civil War.

Mendeleev publishes the periodic table of elements

  • March 6, 1869

Dmitri Ivanovich Mendeleev was a removed Chemist and Inventor. He is known for his farsighted version of the Periodic Table of Elements, which he used to correct the properties of already discovered elements. He also predicted the properties of eight elements which were not discovered at that time.

Demitri Mendeleev created the first periodic table. It crafted a tabular arrangement of chemical elements according to their configuration, properties, and atomic number. The table closely followed the periodic trends which themselves were based on Periodic Law.

Inauguration of the Suez Canal

  • November 17, 1869

Although the history of Suez Canal Dates back to 2nd BCE with Sesostris (Twelfth Dynasty of Egypt) trying to join the Nile and the Red Sea, it wasn’t until late 1869 that Suez Canal successfully lined the Red and Mediterranean Seas, thanks to Ferdinand Lesseps. He knows the Landscape well and held various positions there.

The Suez Canal Company took ten years to construct this canal, and it was officially opened on 17th November 1869. The canal cuts the journey between North Atlantic and Nothern Indian Oceans through the Mediterranean and the Red Sea. It reduced the journey to a mere 7,000 kilometers.

Alexander Graham Bell patents Telephone

  • March 7, 1876

The world of modern communication owes a great deal to Sir Alexander Graham Bell. Yes, the idea of a talking telegraph or telephone was in development before Sir Graham Bell started working on his design. The most notable example is Antonio Meucci, an Italian immigrant who started working on such a device from early 1849.

However, it was Graham Bell’s device that was first patented. He had the patent for a while but couldn’t make a fully functioning instrument until 1876. The device was successful in transmitting intelligible speech over a single wire. Bell continued to improve his phonograph later on.

The electric light bulb invented

  • October 21, 1879

Even though Halogen Bulbs are a thing of past now, they will remain a historic landmark. Early Light Bulbs go Back to 1802, with Humphry Davy Inventing first electric light, he continued his experiments and invented an electric battery which was connected to carbon and made it glow. The invention was dubbed as Electric Arc Lamp.  This led to a serious of experiments that went on till 1878. This was the time when Thomas Edison seriously started his research to develop a practical lab, and on October 21, 1879, he filed his first patent.

The first patent used carbon filament with cotton and linen threads, These bulbs were not commercialized until the patent improved and used carbonized bamboo filament which could last over 1200 hours. This discovery marked the rise of commercially manufactured light bulbs and laid the foundation of Thomas Edisons Company, Edison Electric Light Company.

The Ashes Created

  • September 2, 1882

A test cricket series between England and Australia, it all started in 1882 when the one-off match played at The Oval laid the foundation of an incredible history. The 1882-match is not considered a part of The Ashes because it precedes the introduction of Trophy.

The match took place between 28-29 August 1882; it ended on 2 September with a Mock Celebration as Australia won the match, thanks to Hugh Massie, Billy Murdoch, Harry Boyle, and Fred Spofforth.

The volcanic eruption of Krakatoa

  • August 26, 1883

The Dutch East Indies, Modern Indonesia has its share of destruction through Volcanic Activities. The most famous is the 1883 Eruption of Krakatoa. It started on the Afternoon of Sunday, August 26 and peaked in the late morning of Monday 27 August.

The eruption led to the destruction of almost 70% of the island and its surrounding Archipelago which collapsed into Caldera. The seismic activity continuity until February 1884.

It is listed as one of the deadliest and destructive volcanic erumpent in history which claimed the lives of 36,417 people. The effects were felt around the whole world in the following days.

Further Topics appear as a list and will be elaborated soon.

First human flight by the Wright brothers

  • December 17, 1903

Since the Dawn of Humanity, Man always wanted to take up to the skies. This dream wasn’t accomplished until the early 1900’s. The first controlled and sustained flight of heavier than air vehicle successfully took place on 17th December 1903. The Wright Brothers, Orville and Wilbur Wright are the aviation pioneers gave us wings to fly.

The Brothers with 3 Years High School and after going through different careers invented and built the first successful airplane in history. There are conspiracy theories of competing claims of early aviators, but we said first successful flight, not just flight.

Einstein publishes the Special Theory of Relativity

  • June 30, 1905

Have you ever heard about Annus Mirabilis? Don’t get any thoughts, the “Annus Mirabilis” Papers (English Translation: Extraordinary Year) were published in Annalen der Physik scientific Journal in 1905 by Albert Einstein. These papers consisted of four articles that laid the foundation of modern physics and gave the world a better perspective of space, time, mass and energy.

The third paper focused on Special Relativity. It was titled ZurElektrodynamikBewegeterKorper (English Translation: On the Electrodynamics of Moving Bodies), It reconciled with Maxwell equations and introduced major changes to mechanics close to the speed of light. It was dubbed as Einstein’s theory of relativity.

Germany initiates World War 1

  • August 4, 1914

Schlieffen Plan, it’s the name given to the thinking behind German’s initiation of the First World War, aka invasion of France and Belgium on 4th August 1914. The global war that started in Europe and dubbed as the “War to End all Wars” ended nothing but 37 million human lives.

A big chunk of the 19th century was invested by European countries to maintain a balance of power among themselves; this led to a complex network of political and military relations. Major issues that gave birth to WW1 were a decline of the Ottoman Empire, Splendid Isolation, the rise of Prussian, Triple Alliance, Reinsurance Treaty among others.

Foundation of Saudi Arabia after Mecca Seized

  • October 20, 1924

The Battle of Mecca (not to confused with Grand Mosque Seizure) was a decisive battle that shaped the modern world map. It took place in Mecca and oversaw the fall of Taif to King Abdulaziz ibn Saud. It was a decisive battle that cemented Saud’s campaign to conquer the Hejaz Kingdom.

This battle led to Hashemite defeat to Saudis and the Allied Ikhwan, Hussein bin Ali fled to Aqaba and later to Cyprus after losing at the hands of Sultan bin Bajad and Abdulaziz ibn Saud of Sultanate of Nejd. Till now, there is no official casualty and loss report submitted.

Edwin Hubble discovers other galaxies, reveals the Universe is expanding

  • January 1, 1925

1st January 1925 will always be remembered as the Day of Discovered the Universe.  Edwin Hubble, a man who has dedicated his whole life to infinity and beyond discovered other Galaxies. His search concluded with the fact that the Universe is continuously expanding and lit the Great Debate that Milky Way is just an Outpost within a vast universe, not the center of it as we previously thought.

Hubble admitted more evidence with planets and obituary system of Andromeda; It gave us a deeper perspective. Twon’t be wrong to say that Edwin gave astronomers a reality check of their blind or blinkered standpoint of reality.

First Demonstration of Television

  • January 26, 1926

I’d love to say that Vikings invented the Television, but John Logie Baird was only Scottish, not a Viking. The inventor blessed the world with a first public demonstration of a television system in London. This was a historic landmark in the history of the world, especially communication and entertainment. The pictorial-transmission machine was dubbed as a “Televisor”. It showed the heads of ventriloquist dummies during the demonstration.

Baird operated these dummies in front of the camera, out of the audience’s view and showed it on demonstration. This sparked a revolution, and we owe Baird an excellent deal for his work which he started even before the 1880’s.

First liquid fuel rocket makes space travel a possibility

  • March 16, 1926

We admit the world is far behind space travel, and we can’t go from one planet to another easily, but the world is making significant discoveries now and then. Man always wanted to touch the moon, and the history is full of his futile attempts. This changed in 1926 when an American Inventor, Rober H. Goddard launched the first liquid propellant rocket at Auburn, Massachusetts. It used liquid oxygen and gasoline as propellants.

The rocket was nicknamed as “Nell”.  It rose 41 feet during 2.5-second flight and ended in a cabbage field. It laid the foundation of liquid-fueled rockets. Goddard started experimenting with his prototypes in early 1921.

Steamboat Willie featuring Mickey Mouse released

  • November 18, 1928

Can you believe publishers rejected Mickey Mouse saying that women will be afraid of it?  The mascot of The Walt Disney Company was created by Walt Disney and UbIwerks at Walt Disney Studio. At first, it was meant as a replacement for Oswald, the Lucky Rabbit.

Mickey Mouse first appeared in Short Plane Crazy, in short file Steamboat Willie which debuted on late 1928. Since his introduction, the Disney family got a lot of new friends since then. The most notable addition is Minnie (His Girlfriend, a dog, and friend).

Hitler’s appointment as chancellor

  • January 30, 1933

Hitler was the Time’s Man of the Year 1938. Yes, the man who committed suicide was Time Magazine’s Man of the Year. Fortunately, this was before Germany Started the world war.

Hitler’s rise to power will be an exciting subject in history. Hitler oversaw the unification of Germany with Austria and other countries. He had the swagger of a true leader and as endorsed by celebrities. However, after taking the lives of 37 innocents, he ended up taking his own life.

Nuclear Fission found

  • December 17, 1938

Nuclear fission was discovered in late of 1938. It was founded in Kaiser Wilhelm Society for Chemistry. It was followed by five decades of work on the science of radioactivity and elaboration of new nuclear physics. Ernest Rutherford promised a model of Atom in 1911. It was very small, dense and positively charged nucleus of protons.

Nuclear Fission is now defined as a nuclear reaction or radioactive decay process in which the nucleus of an atom splits into small parts (lighter nuclei). Fission process produces free neutrons and gamma phones while releasing large amounts of energy, even by energetic standards of radioactive decay.

The launch of Hitlers V-2 supersonic missile

  • October 3, 1942

V2 Rockets are the worlds first long-range guided missiles. The Vergeltungswaffe 2, aka Retribution Weapon 2 was liquid propellant rocket engine. These were developed during the Second World War and was a part of Vengeance Weapon Program. These were designed and assigned to attack allied cities.

These were Germany’s answer to Allied Bombings of German Cities. These rockets went on to become the first man-made object to travel in space as it crossed the Karman Line. After the war ended engine with Reich defeat, Allied forces distributed the V2 between themselves. These rockets were designed by Wernher von Braun.

Hitler commits suicide

  • April 30, 1945

Hitler’s Downfall is full of interesting events.  The Fuhrer was holed up in his bunker under the headquarters in Berlin, Adolf Hitler committed suicide.  It is said that he swallowed a cyanide capsule and shot himself in the head.

Soon after his death, Germany surrendered to Allied forces, and it ended Hitler’s dream of “1,000 Year Reich”. Hitler’s beloved wife, Eva Braun also committed suicide. They married in a small ceremony in a bunker and haven’t been married for even 40 hours at that time. She took cyanide capsules. The couple committed suicide together in the sitting room of the bunker.

WW II ends, United Nations created

  • 1945

After the First World War ended (the war to end all wars), League of Nations came into the existence. However, the organization miserably failed when the second world war broke out. Therefore, when WW 2 ended, a more effective alternative was established on 24th October 1945.

At the start, it had 51-member states which now rose to 193. The aim of this prestige organization is to promote international cooperation and deal with international affairs in a peaceful way, thus preventing the outbreak of a Third World War. The intergovernmental organization is headquartered in New York City.

Marshall Aid is launched

  • June 5, 1947

Marshall Plan, aka the European Recovery Program, was a US initiative to aid Western Europe. America gave more than $ 12 billion to help Western Europe build their economy after the end of the Second World War. It is also known as Marshall Aid and Foreign Assistance Act of 1948.  The aid was enacted by 8TH United States Congress, and Harry S. Truman.

It was an initiative to promote world peace and welfare. The plan was in operation for 4 years. Its’ help in removing trade barriers and modernize the industry for a new era. It also played a vital role to prevent the spread of Communism. However, its role in quick recovery is debated.

Gandhi, Father of non-violent civil disobedience dies

  • January 30, 1948

Mahatma Gandhi, who led the Indian Independence movement against British rule used non-violent civil disobedience, inspired movements for civil rights as well as freedom across the whole world.

However, soon after the independence, Mohandas was assassinated at Garden of Birla House, which is now known as Gandhi Smriti. According to text, he was on his way to a prayer meeting when Nahturam Godse fired three bullets from a Beretta 9mm into his chest from point black range.  Some say Gandhi died on spot, while other says he was carried into Birla House, and died 30 minutes later.

DNA structure presented to the world

  • April 25, 1953

We discovered the Secret of Life- James Watson. There is a conspiracy theory that DNA was not discovered by James Watson and Francis Crick. Instead, it was discovered decades before by pioneers who made ground-breaking revelations about the structure of DNA in the 1800’s. It started with the Molecule of life by Swiss Chemist Friedrich Miescher during his research on white blood cells.

It was followed by four building blocks of DNA by Albrecht Kossel and chromosome theory of inheritance by Gregor Mendel.  But it wasn’t until 1953 that Watson and Crick perfectly lagged out DNA and presented it to the world.

Hillary and Tensing scale Mount Everest

  • May 29, 1953

“It is not the mountain we conquer, but ourselves”- Edmund Hillary

Do you realize that every corpse on Mount Everest used to be an extremely motivated person? The history the population around Mount Everest dates to 800 BCE during the Kirata Kingdom in Himalayan Mountains. The Qing Empire first surveyed this mountain and mapped its territory in 1715. There were many surveys through 1700-1800.  Known as the Holy Mountain before, it was identified as the highest mountain during 1850’s and was named as Mount Everest in 1856 after Sir George Everest.

Its possible that Mount Everest was climbed in ancient times, but no record is available; It’s possible the mountain was climbed in 1924. The first recorded expedition was in 1921 led by Charles Howard-Bury, infamous for discovering the Northern Approach. But it wasn’t until 1953 when the first successful ascent happened with Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay reaching the summit.

Elvis is number one

  • 1950’s

Elvis, the King of Rock and Roll, started his career in 1953 and checked into Sun Records, and recorded My Happiness. It was a gift to his mother, and he wanted to see what he sounds like. He enjoyed mainstream success and commercial breakout in 1956 when his song, Heartbreak Hotel topped Billboard number one singles list on April 21 and remained at the top for eight weeks.

He returned on the list with “I Want You, I Need You, I love You” on July 28, 1956. He continued to the list with eight more songs and remained on top for almost 57 weeks.

Soviets lead the space race

  • 1957

The Soviet Union Secured a lead in early stages of the space race. They launched the first artificial satellite, Sputnik 1.  In 1957, the Soviets were leading Space Race which was initially started during nuclear arms race. Both nations fought for Spaceflight capability. It started off on August 2, 1995, when the Soviet Union reacted to US announcement of launching artificial satellites. The race was a fight for technological superiority.

The USSR managed to beat the US with Sputnik 1, first artificial satellite and also sending the first man in space, Yuri Gagarin. The race peaked on July 20, 1969, when the US successfully commenced Lunar landing with Apollo 11.

Construction of the Berlin Wall

  • August 13, 1961

The Line that Separated West and East Germany. Also called the Wall of Shame, it divided West Berlin, controlled by Federal Institutions and the Federal Republic of Germany while the Soviet Union controlled East Germany. The Wall met its demise on June 3rd, 1990 and unified both parts of Berlin.

There are some ruins found along the trajectory of the original wall, and some segments were sold to museums all around the world.

Christiaan Barnard does the first successful heart transplant

  • December 3, 1967

The First Successful Human Heart Transplant took place on a Saturday evening, 3rd December 1967. Christiaan Bernard, a Cardiac Surgeon from South Africa Performed the transplant at Groote Schuur Hospital in Cape Town.

The patient, Louis Washkansky had diabetes, and severe heart issues, he had minor heart attacks before. The operation was completed in Six hours, Barnard was assisted by his brother and 30 other staff members.

The donor was a 25- year old young lady, Denise Darval who was struck by a drunk driver with her mother, she was taken to the hospital and had two fractures in her skull. Her father allowed the surgeons to use Denise’s heart when asked.  Washkansky died 18 days after the operation due to pneumonia, and a weakened immune system.

Giant leap for mankind

  • July 21, 1969

“That’s one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind”

The Space Race started in the Late 1950’s, and USSR had the lead for the majority. Apollo 11 was the fifth operated program launched by NASA; it was launched by a Saturn V rocket from Kennedy Space Center on Merritt Island. The spaceflight which landed first two people on the moon, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin, landed on July 20, 1969.

Armstrong became the first person to step on the lunar surface six hours after landing. Aldrin joined 20 minutes later. The duo spent two and quarter hours together outside the spacecraft and collected 21.5kg lunar material to be brought back to earth.

Microsoft and Apple founded

  • 1975 – 1976

The 70’s kickstarted the Digital Age, although it was decades in development. The Two Tech Giants that rule the technology world today were founded in the same decade, just a year after another.

Apple was founded on April 1976 by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and Ronald Wayne. Today, it is the world’s largest IT company by revenue. It owns “Beats Electronics” among various other subsidiaries.

The Microsoft Corporation which revolutionized Office Space was founded on April 4, 1975, by Bill Gates and Paul Allen. It is the world’s sixth largest information technology company by revenue and owns Skype Communications, Yammer, and other subsidiaries.

Bhopal gas tragedy

  • December 3, 1984

The Bhopal Disaster which took place between December 2- December 3, 1984, was a gas leak incident at Union Carbide India Limited Pesticide Plant in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh. It is considered one of the first industrial disasters in history.

Although the confirmed death rate is 3,787, several claims suggest that more than 16,000 people lost their lives whereas thousands of others were severely injured (a majority permanently). The cause of the disaster to this date remains under debate. But it is argued that slack management in routine pipe maintenance caused a backwater flow in a MIC tank, which led to the unfortunate event.

Chernobyl Explosion

  • April 26, 1986

A significant blow to the already crumbling Soviet Union, The Chernobyl Disaster or accident was a nuclear accident that led to 40-50 deaths.  This is one of the worst nuclear disasters in history. The area is abandoned till to this date.

The accident happened between 25-26 April 1986. The No.3 Light water graphite moderated reactor near Pripyat (now in Ukraine) exploded and made the whole area inhabitable.


  • September 11, 2001

Let’s not debate on who was behind these events and respect the 2,977 victims who lost their lives along other hundreds of thousands of innocents who died in the aftermath. The event shaped the world and started the War on Terror, which continues to till this date. It a subject of popular culture and it will remain to do so in the future.

Indian Ocean Tsunami

  • December 26, 2004

The 7th deadliest natural disaster in the history of man, 2004 Indian Ocean Earthquake on 26th December 2005 caused a series of large Tsunamis which went up to 30 meters high and flooded the coastal communities on the coast of Indian Ocean.

It is estimated that 227,898 people died in 14 countries, with the majority of them in Indonesia. The earthquake with a magnitude of 9.1-9.3 Mw reached Mercalli Intensity of IX in different areas and caused 20 Billion Dollar property damage apart from unthinkable life loss.

Osama bin Laden killed

  • May 2, 2011

Hailing from the wealthy Bin Laden Clad, he was once known as a Hero for playing an essential role in ending the Cold War. He shocked the world with the events of 9/11 and afterward. Operation Neptune Spear was a military operation carried by CIA, Navy Seals, JSOC with other participants to raid a suspicious compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan. The mission was a success, and it ended Osama’s Terror Regime.

One Response

  1. yashdeep vitthalani July 2, 2017

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