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Happenings on the May calendar
Apr 29, 2011
After the long Manitoba winter has finally departed, it figures that May would be merry. At last, the arrival of spring weather along with all its wonderful and long-awaited outdoor activities. In this climate of extremes, we really deserve the joy of spring!
Here’s a look at the May calendar, down through history:
May 1, 1840 — England released the first adhesive postage stamp.
May 1, 1931 — The Empire State Building was dedicated. 
May 1, 1941 — The cereal food Cheerios hit store shelves. 
Proof that those were simpler days is the fact that kids of that era felt those funny little “Os” were exciting stuff — at least a lot more exciting than porridge.
May 1, 1952 — Mr. Potato Head was introduced, which was almost as exciting as Cheerios.
May 2, 1885 — Good Housekeeping magazine first hit the newsstand. 
May 3, 1936 — Joe DiMaggio makes his major-league debut with three hits for the N.Y. Yankees. 
May 3, 1963 — Martin Luther King Jr. made his I Have a Dream speech. 
May 3, 1937 — Margaret Mitchell won the Pulitzer prize for her novel Gone With the Wind.  A few years later it became the first blockbuster movie hit — in colour!
May 4, 1932 — Atlanta Penitentiary had a new resident after Chicago gangster Al Capone was convicted of income tax evasion. 
May 4, 1626 — Manhattan Island was sold to the Dutch by local aboriginals, who agreed to the deal in exchange for $24 worth of cloth and buttons. 
May 4, 1878 — The phonograph was played for the first time at the Grand Opera House in New York. 
May 5, 1862 — Mexican forces under Benito Juarez defeated French troops in the Battle of Puebla. Today, this battle is celebrated as Cinco de Mayo. 
May 5, 1893 — The New York Stock Exchange crashes, causing the Great Panic of 1893. 
May 6, 1889 — The Paris Exposition opened with the just completed Eiffel Tower as its centrepiece. 
May 6, 1937 — The dirigible Hindenburg exploded into flames while landing at Lakehurst, New Jersey.
May 6, 1994 – The amazing Chunnel, linking England and France, officially opened.
May 7, 1789 — The first U.S. Inaugural Ball was held in honour of George Washington and his wife Martha.
May 7, 1888 — George Eastman (Kodak) patented the box camera. 
May 7, 1945 — Germany signed an unconditional surrender at Rheims, France, ending the Second World War in Europe. 
May 8, 1952 — Mad magazine hit the newsstand. 
May 9, 1926 — Americans Richard Byrd and Floyd Bennett became the first people to fly over the North Pole.  
May 9, 1960 — The birth control pill was approved in the U.S. by the FDA. 
May 10, 1994 — Nelson Mandela became South Africa’s first black president. 
May 11, 1916 — Mathematician Albert Einstein presented his Theory of General Relativity. 
May 13, 1983  — Reggie “Mr. October” Jackson became the first major league ballplayer to strike out 2,000 times. 
May 14, 1878 — Vaseline petroleum jelly slid onto store shelves for the first time. 
May 14, 1973 — The first U.S. space station, Skylab, was launched. 
May 15, 1940 — Nylon stockings hit the market for first time.
May 18, 1804 — Napoleon Bonaparte  became emperor of France.
May 18, 1884 —  Ringling Brothers circus premiered. 
May 22, 1933 — The first reported sighting of the Loch Ness Monster. 
May 22, 1967 — The debut on TV in the U.S. of  Mister Rogers' Neighbourhood. 
May 27, 1647 — Achsah Young was the first woman to be executed as a witch in Massachusetts. 
May 27, 1919 — The pop-up toaster was patented. 
May 28, 1934 — The Dionne Quintuplets were born in Ontario. Annette, Emilie, Yvonne, Cecile and Marie were identical, and the sisters became world-famous as the first quints to survive more than a few days.
Two years later, a film called The Country Doctor was made. It was about the doctor who delivered the quints and was later charged with exploiting them.
May 29, 1953 — Sir Edmund Hillary was on top of the world as the first person to reach the summit of Mt. Everest.