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Blog Topic: On this day

April 13, 2012

On this day: Friday the 13th

Everyone knows that Friday the 13th is an unlucky day, right? According to Wikipedia, there is no record of this superstition existing before the late 19th century, and different cultures ascribe the unfortunate day to Tuesday the 13th or Friday the 17th. Meanwhile, many superstitions popular in the Middle Ages did not make it to our era. Visit […]

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April 12, 2012

On this day: The American Civil War begins

On April 12, 1861, Confederate shore batteries opened fire on Fort Sumter in South Carolina; in response, President Abraham Lincoln called for 75,000 volunteer soldiers to quell the Southern insurrection, marking the beginning of the American Civil War. The conflict had been building up for some time before the attack: Following Lincoln’s election the previous […]

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March 19, 2012

On this day: Josef Albers is born

Pioneering modern artist Josef Albers was born on March 19, 1888. Albers was an influential teacher, writer, painter, and color theorist best known for the Homages to the Square series and the groundbreaking book The Interaction of Color. In partnership with the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation, the ARTstor Digital Library features 2,100 images of […]

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March 15, 2012

On this day: The Ides of March

Julius Caesar, “dictator in perpetuity” of the Roman Empire, was murdered by his own senators on the Ides of March (March 15), 44 BC. Caesar had raised the ire of his already-resentful Republican senators after he appointed loyal members of his army to rule the Empire while he was away from Rome to fight in a […]

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March 14, 2012

On this day: Happy Pi Day (3/14)!

Happy Pi (∏)Day! Today is 3/14, the first three decimals of ∏ (3.14). To celebrate, here is a 16th-century woodcut of the Greek letter ∏ from The Illustrated Bartsch. Too dry? Try these pies from Pop artist Wayne Thiebaud, courtesy of the Museum of Modern Art: Painting and Sculpture. Not enough? Visit this site from the University of […]

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February 8, 2012

On this day: Valentine’s Day

February 14 is Valentine’s Day! Of course you know it’s the day in which you are supposed to express love for your sweetheart with flowers, candy, or greeting cards. And you probably know that it’s purportedly a holiday to honor an early Christian saint named Valentine. But did you know that there was more than one […]

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January 13, 2012

On this day: Artstor celebrates Martin Luther King, Jr.

The Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. was a pivotal figure in the African-American Civil Rights Movement. Among his many achievements, King led the 1955 Montgomery Bus Boycott that ended racial segregation on all Montgomery public buses; planned the drives in Alabama for the registration of African-Americans as voters; and directed the 1963 march on Washington […]

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December 12, 2011

On this day: Happy birthday to Mayor Ed Koch!

Happy 87th birthday to former New York City Mayor Ed Koch from ARTstor and artist Dmitry Borshch! Mayor Koch recently posed for this portrait, which is now included in the Catalog of American Portraits maintained by The National Portrait Gallery. View more of Dmitry Borsch’s work in the ARTstor Digital Library.

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November 18, 2011

On this day: Louis-Jacques-Mandé Daguerre is born

Louis-Jacques-Mandé Daguerre, widely known as the father of photography, was born on November 18, 1787, France. Dauguerre, also a painter and theatrical designer, was already a celebrated figure for his invention of the Diorama, a spectacle featuring in-the-round theatrical painting and lighting effects. He eventually partnered with Joseph Nicéphore Niépce to make lasting images using […]

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