Time Capsules: 37 Pivotal Dates That Shaped History

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1Ray Caldwell

Ray Caldwell

On August 24, 1919, Ray Caldwell who was pitching for the Cleveland Indians was struck by lightning after playing for 8-2/3 innings. He then got up from the ground, checked himself, finished pitching to get the last out and his team won 2-1 over the Athletics.

2. In January 1997, the capital of Ghana rioted over accusations of penis snatching wizards. Several people were killed by mobs who accused them of using magic handshakes to kidnap penises and hold them for ransom.

3. On September 26th, 2011 Mikey Welsh posted on Twitter, "Dreamt I died in Chicago next weekend (heart attack in my sleep). Need to write my will today" followed by, "Correction - the weekend after next". He died October 8th, 2011 from a heart attack in his sleep in a hotel room in Chicago.

4. On October 23, 1999, BASE jumper and stuntwoman Jan Davis died while making an illegal protest jump from El Capitan intended to demonstrate the safety of BASE jumping at Yosemite National Park, after a ban on BASE jumping in the area regarding safety.

5. On August 1, 1946, in Athens, Tennessee, battle-hardened World War 2 veterans won a shootout with highly corrupt police deputies who were manipulating ballots and illegally holding ex-GIs in the county jail.

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62004 Indian Ocean tsunami

2004 Indian Ocean tsunami

During the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami on 26 December 2004, fishermen in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu said they saw with their own eyes “the reality of generations of legends, the remains of ancient temples and hundreds of refrigerator-sized blocks, all briefly exposed before the sea swallowed them up again.”

7. In October 2012, Boy Scouts of America was forced to release 20,000 pages of documentation on 1,200 cases of child sex abuse. They had allegedly been helping to cover up about 1/3 of those cases.

8. Pope Paul VI spent the night of July 20-21, 1969 watching the moon through a telescope of the Vatican Observatory during the first moon landing. Afterward, he praised the achievement by writing at length about the event.

9. In October 2014, Actress Amanda Bynes tweeted that her father sexually abused her as a child. She later claimed that this was not the case, and a microchip implanted in her brain forced her to say it.

10. On June 29, 1995, a department store in Seoul, Korea collapsed, killing 500 people. During construction, the owner insisted on adding an unauthorized 6th floor with a swimming pool. When his engineers protested, they were fired.

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11The Making of a Fly

The Making of a Fly

In April 2011, two competing algorithms on Amazon.com each kept altering the price that they were selling a book (“The Making of a Fly”) about flies for based on how much the other was charging. After 10 days of price warring, the price of the book had climbed to $23.7 million.

12. In March 2012, a U.S. soldier named SPC Dennis Weichel saved an Afghani boy by jumping in front of a moving truck to push the boy out of the way. He was struck by the truck instead and died of his injuries.

13. On February 15, 1969, a woman named Vickie Jones was arrested for impersonating Aretha Franklin in concert. Jones' impersonation was so convincing that nobody in the audience asked for a refund.

14. On October 14th, 1944, doomed death camp prisoners at Sobibór managed to lure numerous high ranking Nazi officers into separate workshops, on the pretext of fitting them with new boots and clothes. They then hacked their defenseless captors to death with various tools and objects, one by one.

15. In May 1991, Freddie Mercury started recording vocals for "Mother Love", but upon reaching the last verse, he told his band that he had to "have a rest" and that he would return to finish it. He didn't end up making it to the studio, eventually succumbing to AIDS. Brian May sang the final verse.

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16Cleveland East Ohio gas explosion

Cleveland East Ohio gas explosion

On October 20, 1944, an above-ground natural gas storage tank began to leak. The gas eventually made its way into the sewers of Cleveland and ignited, blowing manhole covers miles away and shooting flames up through the plumbing of homes. 130 people were killed.

17. On June 8, 1921, Babe Ruth was jailed until 4 p.m. for speeding -- an hour after the Yankees game began. He had his jersey delivered to the jail, changed in his cell, then was police escorted to the game. He pinch-hit walked in a 4-3 win over Cleveland and became the Homerun champ 2 days later.

18. On 16 November 1949, students in Ghent (Belgium) stormed the medieval castle (Gravensteen), lowered the portcullis and threw fruit from the walls at the police to protest a new tax on beer. The event is still commemorated yearly by the city as the greatest student prank in its history.

19. On March 6, 2010, a blind hiker named Mike Hanson set on the Appalachian trail with a goal to inspire other visually impaired people. Seven months later, he finished hiking the 1,700 miles using only a cell phone, GPS open-source software, and hearing to locate camps, trailheads, and water sites.

20. On November 22, 1963, just hours after JFK's assassination, comedian Lenny Bruce performed a scheduled nightclub gig. Bruce walked up on stage and stood in silence for a few moments. Then, referring to the famed JFK impersonator, he stated in a sad voice "Boy, is Vaughn Meader f*cked."

21Never gonna give you up

Never gonna give you up

On 1st April 2008, Youtube rickrolled its viewers by redirecting every featured front page video to the original song video, 'Never gonna give you up.'

22. On August 13, 1966, in response to John Lennon's "More popular than Jesus" comment, a radio station in Texas held a burning of Beatles merchandise. The next day, the broadcast tower was struck by lightning, damaging much of their equipment and sending the news director to the hospital.

23. On June 6, 2013, John Malkovich saved a 77-year-old man's life after the man tripped in the streets of Toronto and slashed his throat on scaffolding as he fell. Malkovich applied pressure to the man's neck before the man was rushed to a hospital, where he received stitches.

24. In November 1994, Tim Allen starred in the highest grossing film, Disney's "The Santa Clause", topped the New York Times best-seller list with his book "Don't Stand Too Close to a Naked Man" and appeared in the top-rated TV series "Home Improvement", all within the span of one week.

25. There is a thing called Black Day (April 14) in South Korea where the people who didn't receive anything on the equivalent of Valentine's day eat black noodles and mourn being single.

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