This Week in Geographic History, November 14 – 20

Here’s an advance look at a some of the “This Day in Geographic History” (TDIGH) events coming up this week.  For each date, we’ve matched it with a map or visual, background information, and a classroom activity so you can plan ahead.

Wednesday, November 16

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A parade passes by the Federal Reserve’s headquarters in Washington D.C. Photograph by J. Baylor Roberts, National Geographic

TDIGH: Opening of the Fed

Created in 1914, the Federal Reserve Bank of the United States sets the country’s monetary policy.

Map: Federal Reserve districts

Background: Why was the Fed created and how does it work?

Activity: Take our Reserve Currency Quiz!


Thursday, November 17

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Actors perform a play about Roanoke: the ill-fated colony established under Queen Elizabeth I in what would become the U.S. Photograph by Jack Fletcher, National Geographic

TDIGH: Elizabeth I Takes the Throne

The daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn ruled England from 1558 until 1603, an era considered the “golden age” of British history.

Visual: Drawing of Queen Elizabeth and explorer Sir Francis Drake

Background: Biography of the Virgin Queen

Activity: Read and discuss Queen Elizabeth I’s unlikely alliance with Islam.


Friday, November 18

TDIGH: North American Time Zones Created

In 1883 American and Canadian railroads established standard time zones, eliminating the confusion of each railroad keeping its own time.

Map: U.S. time zones

Background: More about longitude (the lines we use to define time zones)

Activity: Understanding time zones


Saturday, November 19

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This photograph of Abraham Lincoln was taken just days before he gave his famous address in 1863. Photograph by Alexander Gardner. Submitted by Library of Congress, National Geographic

TDIGH: Lincoln Delivers Gettysburg Address

President Lincoln’s 1863 speech at the site of the largest battle of the Civil War is one of the most famous speeches in American History.

Map: Battles of the U.S. Civil War

Background: Video about the life of Abraham Lincoln

Activity: Watch a mashup of the Gettysburg Address and analyze the original address.


Saturday, November 20

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This display at the former Nazi concentration camp in Auschwitz, Poland shows uniforms and photographs of those killed at the camp. Photograph by James L. Stanfield, National Geographic

TDIGH: Nuremberg Trials Begin

The 1945 trials held Nazi leaders accountable for the war crimes they committed during WWII and the Holocaust.

Map: War crime trials, 1943-1947

Background: Info about the Holocaust and more about the Nuremberg Trials

Activity: Read about the late Holocaust survivor and Nobel laureate, Eli Wiesel. Ask students how his teachings could be applied to current events.

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