Here’s an advance look at 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.
Tuesday, March 14
Born in 1879, the German theoretical physicist invented the most famous equation in history and changed the way we think about gravity, space, and time.
Wednesday, March 15
Julius Caesar’s brutal murder in 44 BCE led to a series of civil wars and the eventual transformation of the Roman republic into the Roman empire.
Map: The Roman Empire
Background: Collection of resources about Ancient Rome
Thursday, March 16
In 1968, U.S. troops killed more than 400 Vietnamese civilians at the My Lai hamlet, a war crime for which only one officer was convicted.
Map: The Vietnam War
Background: The Tet Offensive (January 1968)
Activity: Watch this 1 minute clip, “My Lai: When Should a Soldier Say No?” and ask students to share their views.
Friday, March 17
Though less connected to the original 4th-century saint, the holiday of St. Patrick’s Day has endured as a celebration of Irish identity.
Activity: Try out St. Patrick’s Day Quiz!
Sunday, March 19
In 2003 the U.S. began what would become an 8-year war over the claim that Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction.