27 December-Louis Pasteur

The town of Dole in France was twinned with the town of Carlow in Ireland in 1992. Dole, which is the birthplace of scientist Louis Pasteur, lies in the Dijon Region of eastern France. The twinning of the two towns was arranged under the European Town Twinning project. The European Parliament established the Town Twinning scheme in 1989. The aim of the project is to foster new links between local authorities and local communities in Europe.

Louis Pasteur was a chemist and microbiologist who came up with a process that destroyed the bacteria which caused the souring of wine, beer and milk. The process, which is known as pasteurisation involves heating liquid food and then allowing it to cool. Pasteur was also responsible for the creation of vaccines for anthrax, rabies, cholera, TB and smallpox. Often referred to as the ‘father of microbiology’, the discoveries made by Pasteur are responsible for saving countless lives.

Having attended secondary school in Besançon, about 50km from Dole, Louis Pasteur graduated with a baccalauréat (BA) degree from the Collège Royal de Besançon in 1840. He was awarded a doctorate from the École Normale in Paris in 1847. Having spent some time doing research and teaching at Dijon Lycée, Pasteur was appointed Professor of Chemistry at the University of Strasbourg in 1848. He was appointed professor of Physics and Chemistry at École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts in 1862. He established the Pasteur Institute in Paris in 1887.

Louis Pasteur, often referred to as the ‘father of microbiology’, was born in Dole, France in the year 1822 On This Day.




17 December-The Simpsons

The Simpsons is an animated sitcom which was created by Matt Groening. It is based on the Simpson family who live in the American town of Springfield. The family consists of nuclear plant employee Homer, his wife Marge and their three children Bart, Lisa and Maggie.

The long running comedy is considered to be one of the greatest television series of all time. Since it was first released in 1989 over 600 episodes of the Simpsons have been broadcast to date. It is the winner of numerous awards including 31 Primetime Emmy Awards, 30 Annie Awards and a Peabody Award. The Simpsons Movie was released on July 27th 2007.

The Simpsons had its television debut in the year 1989 On This Day.



11 December-Venetian Blinds

Venetian blinds are widely used in offices and homes. They have horizontal slats which are usually made of plastic, metal or wood. They are suspended by cords which can rotate the slats to open or close the blinds.

Venetian blinds are thought to have originated in Persia. They were brought to Europe by Venetian traders. From around the mid 1700’s Venetian blinds began to be used widely in public buildings in Europe and North America.

Edward Beran of London was granted the first patent for venetian blinds in the year 1769 On This Day.

venetian blinds by HelenaRAmos on 2011-02-07 12:33:18

Venetian Blinds photo

Photo by HelenaRAmos venetian blinds

10 December-Playboy

Playboy Magazine was founded by Hugh Hefner. The magazine is famous for its centrefolds of nude and semi-nude models who are called Playmates. Hefner founded Playboy Magazine on October 1st 1953. Today it is a global publication with a circulation of almost 700,000.

 Hugh Marston Hefner was born in Chicago, Illinois on April 9th 1926. He was educated locally and served in the U.S. Army from 1944 to 1946. Following military service he studied at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign. He graduated with a BA in psychology and creative writing in 1949. Following graduation he worked for a time with Esquire Magazine.

In 1953 Hefner raised almost $8,000, which included $1,000 from his mother, to establish Playboy Magazine. The first issue had Marilyn Monroe as a centrefold. The publication was a success and today Playboy is one of the world’s best known brands.

The first issue of Playboy went on sale in the year 1953 On This Day




24 December-Silent Night

Silent Night is one of the most popular of all Christmas carols. The carol dates back to the early 1800’s and has been translated into over 150 languages. It has been recorded by numerous singers including Bing Crosby, Elvis Presley, Mariah Carey and Justin Bieber. The recording of Silent Night by Bing Crosby is one of the best-selling records of all time.

The lyrics of Silent Night were written by Father Joseph Mohr in 1816 when he was serving as a priest in Mariapfarr in the state of Salzburg in Austria. The carol was written at a time of great upheaval in Europe following the Napoleonic Wars. In 1817 Fr Mohr was transferred as curate, over 130km away to the parish of St Nicholas in the town of Oberndorf. It is said that preparations for Christmas were disrupted due to flooding in the town in December 1818. During the flooding the church organ had been damaged.

On December 24th 1818 Fr Mohr brought the poem he had written to the home of the church organist Franz Gruber. Franz Gruber lived in the nearby village of Arnsdorf where he was the local schoolmaster. Since the church organ was not working, Fr Mohr asked Gruber to compose a melody which could be accompanied by a guitar in order that it could be sung later at midnight mass. Gruber composed the melody and later that evening Franz Gruber and Fr Mohr, backed by the church choir, sang silent night while Fr Mohr played the guitar.

Silent Night (Stille Nacht) was performed for the first time at midnight mass on Christmas Eve in St. Nicholas Church in Oberndorf, Austria in the year 1818 On This Day.

Silent Night

Silent-Night-Chapel in Oberndorf

by schun.oi on 2014-12-25 10:21:27