Monday, March 24, 2008


1909. The NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) is organized at New York.

1909. The Sixteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution providing for an income tax is submitted to the 46 states for ratification.

1909. The first transcontinental U.S. motorcar race pits two Model T Fords against an Acme, an Itala, a Shawmut, and a Stearns (which fails to start). Five cars leave New York, June 2, and a Ford wins the race, arriving at the Alaska-Yukon Pacific Exposition in Seattle, June 22.

1909. One Iowa farmer in 34 has a motorcar, while in New York City only one family in 190 has one.

1909. Synthetic rubber is produced by German chemist Karl Hoffman.

1909. The nucleic acids RNA and DNA discovered by Russian-American chemist Phoebus Levene will be the basis of major genetic discoveries.

1909. Austrian pathologist Karl Landsteiner looks into the reasons why donors' blood sometimes causes clotting in recipients' blood; he establishes the existence of different blood types, O, A, B and AB. Knowledge of compatibility will make blood transfusions safe.

1909. Landsteiner isolates the poliomyelitis virus.

1909. The United States Copyright Law passed by Congress March 4 takes effect July 1, protecting U.S. authors, publishers and composers under terms that will remain unchanged for 68 years. The law gives copyright owners exclusive rights "to print, reprint, publish, copy and vend the copyrighted work." The courts will develop an ill-defined doctrine of "fair use" by which to decide cases involving charges of copyright infringement, taking into account the nature of the copyrighted work, the amount of material copied and the effect of the use on the copyright owner's potential market.

1909. A futurist manifesto published by Italian poet-publicist Emilio Filippo Tommaso Marinetti advocates rejection of the past, including abandonment of syntax and grammatical rules.

1909. Popular songs: "I Wonder Who's Kissing Her Now"; "Put on Your Old Grey Bonnet"; "Casey Jones"; "On Wisconsin."

1909. A field goal in football receives a value of 3 points, down from 4 in 1904, 5 in 1883.

1909. Colorado is the most irrigated state in the nation with more than 3 million acres under irrigation.

1909. Hawaiian Pineapple's James Dole summons his competitors to a meeting as a glut of pineapple production depresses prices. The growers agree to undertake a program of advertising to win acceptance for canned pineapple in the big eastern U.S. markets, the first advertising campaign for a commodity by any growers' association.

1909. Strawberries are frozen for market in the Pacific Northwest.

"A Retrieved Reformation." O. Henry. American. 1909. Story. Reformed safe cracker reveals his past when he opens a safe in an emergency.

Ann Veronica. H. G. Wells. British. 1909. Novel. Heroine's struggle for independence, sexual freedom and equality with men.

"Casey Jones." Seibert and Newton. American. 1909. Poem. American ballad about train wreck, the Cannonball Express (1900). Driver born in Cayce, Ky., hence the nickname.

The Hostage. Paul Claudel. French. 1909. Verse drama. Aristocratic woman sacrifices herself and marries a former servant. She hates him but dies by a bullet meant for him.

Personnae. Ezra Pound. American. 1909. Poetry. "Masks of the Actor." Indebtedness to the monologues of Browning.

Strait is the Gate. Andre Gide. French. 1909. Novel. Heroine seeks mystic joy by self-renunciation, but never achieves what she seeks.

Three Lives. Gertrude Stein. American. 1909. Stories. Three character studies of women. Kindly, domineering German serving woman. Uneducated, sensitive black girl. Feebleminded young German maid.

Tono-Bungay. H.G. Wells. British. 1909. Novel. Uncle makes fortune from quack medicine. Narrator observes.

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