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The Writer’s Almanac for May 20, 2019

The Writer’s Almanac for May 20, 2019

It was on this day in 1873 that Levi Strauss and Jacob Davis received a patent for the pants that came to be known as blue jeans.

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The Writer’s Almanac for May 19, 2019

The Writer’s Almanac for May 19, 2019

It’s the birthday of civil rights leader Malcolm X, born Malcolm Little in Omaha, Nebraska in 1925. His autobiography was almost finished when he was assassinated in 1965.

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The Writer’s Almanac for May 18, 2019

The Writer’s Almanac for May 18, 2019

On this day in 1804, Napoleon Bonaparte became emperor of France. Beethoven, who had drafted a symphony in Bonaparte’s honor, changed his mind and tore the score in half.

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The Writer’s Almanac for May 17, 2019

The Writer’s Almanac for May 17, 2019

The Supreme Court ruled that school segregation violated the Fourteenth Amendment on this date in 1954, overturning the precedent that had been set with Plessy v. Ferguson.

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The Writer’s Almanac for May 16, 2019

The Writer’s Almanac for May 16, 2019

It’s the birthday of Liberace (1919), who replied to his critics, “Thank you for your very amusing review. After reading it, in fact, my brother George and I laughed all the way to the bank.”

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The Writer’s Almanac for May 15, 2019

The Writer’s Almanac for May 15, 2019

It was on this day in 1886 that poet Emily Dickinson died at the age of 55. She made her sister promise to burn all of her letters when she died, but didn’t say what to do with her notebooks.

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The Writer’s Almanac for May 14, 2019

The Writer’s Almanac for May 14, 2019

It was on this day in 1925 that Virginia Woolf’s stream-of-consciousness novel “Mrs Dalloway” was published.

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The Writer’s Almanac for May 13, 2019

The Writer’s Almanac for May 13, 2019

It was on this day in 1958 that Velcro was patented. The inventor, Georges de Mestral, was inspired by burrs stuck to his dog’s fur, observing that each bristle was a tiny hook.

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The Writer’s Almanac for May 12, 2019

The Writer’s Almanac for May 12, 2019

It was on this day in 1935 that the founders of Alcoholics Anonymous first met, in Akron, Ohio. Four years later, one of them wrote the handbook that would accompany the 12-step program.

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The Writer’s Almanac for May 11, 2019

The Writer’s Almanac for May 11, 2019

It’s the birthday of painter Salvador Dalí (1904), who had a long waxed mustache and who sometimes walked down the street ringing a bell so that people would look at him.

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