Ned Kelly Is Captured (1880)

Ned Kelly is Australia’s most famous bushranger and, to many, a folk hero who defied colonial authorities. Ned’s trouble with the law began when he was just a teen, and what started as minor scrapes with authorities escalated into more serious crimes, including the bank robberies and murders that eventually led to his execution. Despite Kelly’s misdeeds, many believe that he and his family were unfairly targeted by police. In its last stand, the Kelly gang utilized “body armor” made out of what? Discuss

Ukraine Constitution Day

Having gained independence in 1991 following the collapse of the Soviet Union, Ukraine began working on drafting a new constitution. The final document was written and approved by the country’s parliament on June 28, 1996. The constitution created a democratic form of government that guarantees human rights and freedoms for its citizens under the rule of law. Since it is a fairly new holiday, traditions have not yet been established to celebrate the day. In Kiev, popular Ukrainian musicians and singers give concerts in Maidan Nezalezhnosty Square. Discuss

Henry VIII of England (1491)

Henry VIII, the second monarch of the Tudor dynasty, was King of England from 1509 until his death in 1547. Notable events during his reign include the break with Rome and establishment of the independent Church of England, the dissolution of the monasteries, and the union of England and Wales. However, he is best remembered for his turbulent love life—he was married six times—and for the callous way he ended two of his marriages—having his wives beheaded. What were the fates of the other four? Discuss

Alicia Alonso

Alonso is a Cuban prima ballerina and choreographer. She danced in Broadway musicals before becoming a soloist with several leading companies, including the American Ballet Theatre, in 1939. She is best known for her work in Giselle and in Agnes de Mille’s Fall River Legend. Her own works include La Tinaja, Ensayos Sinfonicos, and Lidia, all created for her company, which Alonso has continued to direct despite being almost blind. What caused her failing vision? Discuss

jerk

flounce – Can mean a sudden fling or jerk of the body or a limb. More…

hike – As a walk, it evolved from its original meaning of “to jerk or pull” (oneself along). More…

jerk – As in jerked meat (e.g. beef jerky), it is from American Spanish and Quechua charqui, “dried flesh.” More…

weight lifting, power lifting – Weight lifting is specifically the press, the clean and jerk, and the snatch; power lifting is the bench press, squat, and dead lift. More…

World's First ATM Installed in Enfield, London (1967)

ATMs, or automated teller machines, can be used by bank customers to process several different kinds of account transactions, such as cash withdrawals, deposits, and fund transfers, and to review account statements and balances. Most consider the world’s first ATM to be the one invented by John Shepherd-Barron and installed by Barclays Bank in North London on June 27, 1967. However, a mechanical bank deposit box, arguably an ATM, was installed in New York how many years earlier? Discuss

Tajikistan Day of National Unity

On June 27, 1997, a treaty was signed between Islamic rebels and the Russian-backed Tajikistan government, bringing to an end a five-year-long civil war. The day is remembered as the Day of National Unity. On the Day of National Unity in 2007, the Tajik parliament passed a law granting amnesty to all rebels who had fought against the government, provided they had not committed murder, rape, human or drug trafficking, or terrorism. Some 2,000 prison inmates were released under the new law. The 2007 commemoration also marked the opening of 11 new buildings in the city of Dushanbe. Discuss

Helen Keller (1880)

Blind and deaf from the age of two, Helen Keller was placed in the care of Anne Sullivan, who acted as her teacher and companion for 49 years. Under Sullivan’s tutelage, Keller made rapid progress, eventually graduating from Radcliffe College with honors. She later became a world-famous lecturer and advocate for people with disabilities. The Miracle Worker, a play based on Keller’s autobiography, chronicles her remarkable journey. What was the first word Keller learned? Discuss