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History's Happenings for November 14

Nellie Bly Leaves For World Jaunt

Nellie Bly -- born Elizabeth Cochrane on May 5, 1867 in Cochran's Mills, PA -- was an enterprising newspaper reporter and advocate for wider roles for women.

As a writer for the Pittsburgh Dispatch from 1885, she took her pen-name after the song by Stephen Foster and wrote features on social issues, as well as a book on her travels in Mexico.

Later as an employee of the New York World she feigned insanity in order to do an inside report on a local asylum, a report that helped improve conditions there.

On November 14, 1889, she left to travel around the world, promising to beat the 80-day record set by Jules Verne's fictional hero, Phileas Fogg. When she returned in 1890, she had made the trip in just over 72 days, and received a rousing welcome in New York.

In 1895 she left the newspaper business to marry millionaire Robert Seaman. When he died in 1904, she managed the family businesses until they went bankrupt in 1920, then returned to writing until her own death in 1922.

She left us the story of her around-the-world adventure in Nellie Bly's Book: Around the World in Seventy-two Days (1890).

Luftwaffe Destroys Coventry

(Stay tuned for a write-up on this event.
On the other hand, if you'd like to try writing
one  ... send it in! )

Navy Almost Torpedoes FDR

As he traveled to the Tehran Conference with his staff aboard the battleship U.S.S. Iowa on this day in 1943, President Franklin Roosevelt almost became a war casualty.

An American submarine, misidentifying the seemingly unmistakable battlewagon, fired a torpedo at her. Fortunately it missed, exploding harmlessly in the Big I's wake.

Dow Beats 1,000 for First Time

(Stay tuned for a write-up on this event.
On the other hand, if you'd like to try writing
one  ... send it in! )

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