Light Up

Today in History, April 7: 1827 – English Chemist and Pharmacist John Walker sells his first “friction match”, the first safe and easy method to ignite fire in the modern age. He had been experimenting for some time when a combination of chemicals accidentally caught fire when struck on a solid surface. Walker called his matches “Congreves” after the inventor of the Congreve Rocket of “The Rocket’s Red Glare” fame. There are indications that the ancient Chinese had invented these same items in the 14th Century.

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