This Day in History

Edgar Allan Poe Publishes "The Raven" (1845)
Like Poe's other works, "The Raven" conveys the dreamlike and often macabre forces that pervaded the author's sensibility. While his wife suffered from a protracted illness, Poe composed this poem, which became an instant sensation when it appeared in the Evening Mirror in 1845. In the poem, the speaker, who is mourning the death of his love, Lenore, is mysteriously visited by a talking raven and asks the bird a series of questions. What is the raven's one-word response to each query? Discuss

Space Shuttle Challenger Breaks Apart (1986)
Seventy-three seconds into its launch, the Space Shuttle Challenger disintegrated, killing everyone on board. Investigators concluded that an O-ring—a rubber seal located in the right booster engine—had failed due to cold weather at the time of launch, causing a chain reaction that led to the orbiter's ultimate disintegration. The tragic event was captured on film, and many children viewed the launch live because schoolteacher Christa McAuliffe was on board. Why was she on the shuttle?

Outer Space Treaty Signed (1967)
The Outer Space Treaty represents the basic legal framework of international space law. It bans the stationing of weapons of mass destruction in outer space, exclusively limits the use of the Moon and other celestial bodies to peaceful purposes, holds countries responsible for any damage caused by the objects they launch, and forbids any government from claiming a celestial body, such as the Moon or a planet. The Moon Treaty was approved 12 years later but was considered a failure. Why?

Quote of the Day

Charlotte Perkins Gilman
The labor of women in the house, certainly, enables men to produce more wealth than they otherwise could; and in this way women are economic factors in society. But so are horses. Discuss

E. M. Forster
Have you ever noticed that there are people who do things which are most indelicate, and yet at the same time—beautiful?

John Milton
He that has light within his own clear breast May sit in the center, and enjoy bright day: But he that hides a dark soul and foul thoughts Benighted walks under the mid-day sun; Himself his own dungeon.