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.
Wednesday, April 12
In 1961 Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin became the first person in outer space as he orbited the Earth in the Vostok-1 spaceship.
Visual: The Vostok-1 control panel
Background: What is an orbit?
Friday, April 14
President Abraham Lincoln’s assassination in 1865 came just one week after Confederate troops surrendered, ending the Civil War.
Visual: Portraits of Abraham Lincoln
Background: Video about Lincoln’s life
The largest dust storm in American history hit the Great Plains region in 1935, during the time period known as “The Dust Bowl.”
Map: The Dust Bowl
Background: What is a plain?
Saturday, April 15
In 1912 the “unsinkable” R.M.S. Titanic sank off the coast of Newfoundland, Canada.
Visual: Photo gallery
Background: More info on how and where the ship sank
Activity: Read this article about the value of items that went down with the Titanic. Then use this inflation calculator to see how much items now would have been worth in the past.
Sunday, April 16
In 1912 American aviator Harriet Quimby became the first woman to fly across the English Channel.