Five Nobel Laureates Were Born (Plus 12 Other Things That Happened On This Date)


Let's take a look back at the fun, the fascinating, the smart, the courageous, and the flossy of this day, November 7, in history.

- The Ensisheim Meteorite struck a wheat field in Alsace, France, around noon in 1492. The meteorite is the oldest meteorite with a known date of impact.

- Cornelius J. Drebbel, the inventor of the first navigable submarine, died in 1633.

- The London Gazette, which is now the oldest surviving journal, was first published in 1665.

- William Stukeley, one of the founders of the field of archeology, was born in 1687; he went on to pioneer the archaeological investigation of Stonehenge.

- In 1805, Thomas Brassey, an English civil engineering contractor, was born. Not only was he responsible for building a large portion of the world's railways (including one third of the British railways and three-quarters of the French) in the 19th century, but he also played a role in the development of steamships, mines, locomotive factories, marine telegraphy, and water supply and sewage systems.

- The cofounder and first president of Cornell University, Andrew Dickson White, was born in 1832. He was also a member of Skull and Bones with his classmate, Daniel Coit Gilman, who became the first president of Johns Hopkins University.

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- Although Lise Meitner was really born on November 17, 1878, an accounting error led her to use November 7 as her birthday. She was a member of the team that discovered nuclear fission; Element 109, Meitnerium, is named in her honor.

- Alfred Russel Wallace died in 1913. While Wallace's name may not be familiar to many people, he independently proposed a theory of natural selection which prompted Charles Darwin to publish his own theory earlier than intended.

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- New York City's MoMA (Museum of Modern Art) first opened in 1929.

- In Tacoma, WA, the middle-section of "Galloping Gertie" (the Tacoma Narrows Bridge) collapsed in 1940, only four months after the bridge's completion.

- In 1944, Hannah Szenes was executed. She had parachuted into Yugoslavia during WWII as part of an attempt to save the Jews in Hungary, but was captured, though she never released any details of her mission to her captors. She is regarded as a national heroine in Israel.

- Many Nobel Prize recipients were born on this day, including Maria Sklodowska-Curie (Physics; Chemistry), Konrad Zacharias Lorenze (Physiology or Medicine), Albert Camus (Literature), Eric Richard Kandel (Physiology or Medicine), and Andrew Michael Spence (Economics).

If you have any November 7th milestones to add to our list, let us know.