On This Day in History: May 1

Today in history, Scotland and England joined together to form the union and the first newspaper advertisement was published. Here’s a look at the events and birthdays from May 1 around the world.

1704: The Boston News-Letter Publishes First Newspaper Advertisement

Boston News LetterToday in history, the first newspaper advertisement was published by the Boston News-Letter. The News-Letter was the first newspaper in the colonies with British government backing. Bookseller John Campbell took over as the first editor, as he already had experience writing newsletters to the New England governors. Initially full of England and European news, until Bartholomew Green took over the printing and started sharing domestic events.

1707: The Acts of the Union Comes Into Force

On this day, Queen Anne’s Acts of the Union finally came into force. The parliamentary bill joined England and Scotland as one, officially. They became known as Britain. This occurred more than a century after the two kingdoms were actually joined, due to Queen Anne’s great-grandfather, James VI of Scotland, becoming King of England after the death of Elizabeth I. The countries have remained together, although power has been devolved to Scotland over the years. It is unknown how long the union will last, as some of Scotland continues to fight for independence.

1937: President Franklin Roosevelt Signs the Acts of Neutrality

On this day in history, President Franklin Roosevelt officially kept the United States out of World War II (of course, only temporarily) through the signing of the Acts of Neutrality. It was the third of four acts, designed to avoid the costly addition of the U.S. again after the events of World War I. The Acts were viewed negatively, as both Allied and Axis powers were treated as “bad” rather than “neutral” as they should have been. The Acts were all repealed in 1941, allowing the U.S. to enter in the war against Nazi Germany and AnneJapan.

1997: Labour Party Gains Government Majority

The British people voted the Labour Party back into government with an overwhelming majority today in history. Led by Tony Blair, the party broke 18 years of Conservative rule under Margaret Thatcher and then John Major. Blair was just 43 when he became prime minister, making him the youngest ever to hold the position. The party won the next two elections. It was only in 2010 that Labour lost to the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition, ending 13 years of Labour rule.

Famous Birthdays on May 1

John I, Count of Hainaut—1218

King Magnus VI Lagabuter of Norway–1238

Alchemist, Philippus Paracelsus—1493

Opera composer, Marco da Gagliano—1582

John Haynes, Massachusetts colonial magistrate—1594

King Kamehameha I of Hawaii—1738

British prime minister Arthur Wellesley, Duke of Wellington–1739

Rayon inventor Louis-Marie-Hilaire Bernigaud—1839

Athlete Archie Williams—1915

Catch-22 author Joseph Heller—1923

First black American TV anchor Max Robinson—1939

Football player Olaf Thon—1966

Olympian Renee Poetschka—1971

The Other Boleyn Girl TV movie actress Jodhi May—1975

Sources:

Featured image from Deposit Photos

Birthdays from HistoryNet.com and OnThisDay.com

The Boston News-Letter: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Boston_News-Letter#/media/File:Boston_News-Letter_(first_issue).jpeg

Queen Anne of Great Britain: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anne,_Queen_of_Great_Britain#/media/File:Anne1705.jpg


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