Today in History, October 9, 1873:
The United States Naval Institute (USNI) is founded by 15 USN officers, including the first commander of the USS Monitor.
The USNI was initiated to study Naval issues and to report on them. It began publishing “Proceedings”, a publication to report its findings in 1874, a practice that continues today. I know this may not be of tremendous interest to most, but to me it is very important. I receive “Proceedings” and more importantly to me, “Naval History”, from which I obtain many interesting articles to post. USNI is fantastic! It also publishes many books, maintains history sources, and continues to document veteran’s experiences.
Today in History, May 20, 1873:
Jewish immigrant, successful San Francisco businessman Levi Strauss and Reno, Nevada tailor Jacob Davis go in together and obtain a patent for a revolutionary, extremely durable work pant….the XX model (eventually 501) denim pant, reinforced at the stress points by copper rivets.
Cowboys and other hard working people needed a pant that would last. The “jeans” fit the bill and sold like hotcakes. I’m told there was originally a rivet at the crotch…but cowboys began complaining about crouching over the campfire with obvious results…and it was removed….
Today in History, February 25, 1873:
Enrico Caruso, considered to be the greatest tenor to ever live, is born in Naples, Italy. Caruso would perform in opera houses all over the world before finally coming to America in 1903; soon after he would make the Metropolitan Opera House in New York his home base.
Soon he was recording records for the Victor Talking Machine Company, later RCA Victor. Caruso would be the first person to sell over a million records, demonstrating his wide-spread popularity.
When “The Great War” came, he showed his patriotism to his adopted country by singing a rousing song that inspired many to enlist and told the Hun that Americans were coming “Over There, and we wouldn’t come back til it was over….over there.”