Today in 1867 at the New York Stock Exchange the first stock ticker debuted. The invention was the work of Edward Calahan who configured a machine to a telegraph that printed stock prices on a narrow strip of paper–the same paper that makes “ticker tape” parades. The ticker got its name from the noise of the type wheel. Prior to this invention, stock prices were conveyed by mail or messenger, since 1792.
Thomas Edison patented an easier improved ticker in 1869, which became popular and for Edison lucrative, giving him enough money to build his lab at Menlo Park, New Jersey.
The last ticker debuted in 1960 and was soon replaced by computerized stock quotes with electronic displays.
Today in 1777 at York, Pennsylvania, the Continental Congress adopted the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union. The Articles did not become law of the land until March 1, 1781, when the last state, Maryland, ratified the agreement. In 1789 the US Constitution replaced the Articles.
From 1776 to 1789 Americans transformed from subjects of a king, to citizens of sovereign states, to citizens living in their own sovereign country.
Today in 1956 at the Paramount Theater in New York City, the movie “Love Me Tender” starring Elvis Presley debuted, the first of 31 movies and two concert documentaries that launched Presley’s acting career.
Most critics, and Elvis himself, considered the movies formulaic and frivolous and Elvis never achieved his full potential as an actor, even though each film was a financial success. Elvis’ last movie was “Change of Habit” (1970).
Today in 1864, Union General William T. Sherman continued his expedition across Georgia by torching the industrial section of Atlanta and pulling away from his supply lines. For the next six weeks, Sherman’s army destroyed most of the state before capturing the Confederate seaport of Savannah, Georgia.
One witness reported “immense and raging fires lighting up whole heavens… huge waves of fire roll up into the sky; presently the skeleton of great warehouses stand out in relief against sheets of roaring, blazing, furious flames.”