Thursday, November 23, 2017

November 23rd...This Day in History

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First issue of Life is published 1936

 Image result for Life magazine Nov 23, 1936 images

On November 23, 1936, the first issue of the pictorial magazine Life is published, featuring a cover photo of the Fort Peck Dam by Margaret Bourke-White.
Life actually had its start earlier in the 20th century as a different kind of magazine: a weekly humor publication, not unlike today’s The New Yorker in its use of tart cartoons, humorous pieces and cultural reporting. When the original Life folded during the Great Depression, the influential American publisher Henry Luce bought the name and re-launched the magazine as a picture-based periodical on this day in 1936. By this time, Luce had already enjoyed great success as the publisher of Time, a weekly news magazine.
From his high school days, Luce was a newsman, serving with his friend Briton Hadden as managing editors of their school newspaper. This partnership continued through their college years at Yale University, where they acted as chairmen and managing editors of the Yale Daily News, as well as after college, when Luce joined Hadden at The Baltimore News in 1921. It was during this time that Luce and Hadden came up with the idea for Time. When it launched in 1923, it was with the intention of delivering the world’s news through the eyes of the people who made it.
Whereas the original mission of Time was to tell the news, the mission of Life was to show it. In the words of Luce himself, the magazine was meant to provide a way for the American people “to see life; to see the world; to eyewitness great events … to see things thousands of miles away… to see and be amazed; to see and be instructed… to see, and to show…” Luce set the tone of the magazine with Margaret Bourke-White’s stunning cover photograph of the Fort Peck Dam, which has since become an icon of the 1930s and the great public works completed under President Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal.
Life was an overwhelming success in its first year of publication. Almost overnight, it changed the way people looked at the world by changing the way people could look at the world. Its flourish of images painted vivid pictures in the public mind, capturing the personal and the public, and putting it on display for the world to take in. At its peak, Life had a circulation of over 8 million and it exerted considerable influence on American life in the beginning and middle of the 20th century.
With picture-heavy content as the driving force behind its popularity,the magazine suffered as television became society’s predominant means of communication. Life ceased running as a weekly publication in 1972, when it began losing audience and advertising dollars to television. In 2004, however, it resumed weekly publication as a supplement to U.S. newspapers. At its re-launch, its combined circulation was once again in the millions.

 (More Events on This Day in History)
  • American Revolution

  • 1749 Reluctant Patriot Edward Rutledge is born
  • Automotive

  • 1966 Elvis Presley’s “Spinout” opens in U.S. theaters
  • Civil War

  • 1819 Benjamin Mayberry Prentiss born
  • Cold War

  • 1981 Reagan gives CIA authority to establish the Contras
  • Crime

  • 1959 The Birdman of Alcatraz is allowed a small taste of freedom
  • Disaster

  • 1980 Southern Italy rocked by earthquake
  • General Interest

  • 1499 Flemish pretender executed in London
  • 1859 Billy the Kid born
  • 1876 “Boss” Tweed delivered to authorities
  • 1979 IRA member sentenced for Mountbatten’s assassination
  • Hollywood

  • 1990 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory creator Roald Dahl dies
  • 2012 Larry Hagman, star of “Dallas” and “I Dream of Jeannie,” dies
  • Literary

  • 1874 Far from the Madding Crowd, by Thomas Hardy, is published
  • Music

  • 1936 Blues legend Robert Johnson makes first-ever recording
  • Old West

  • 1903 Colorado governor sends militia to Cripple Creek
  • Presidential

  • 1804 Franklin Pierce is born
  • Sports

  • 1984 BC wins on Hail Mary
  • Vietnam War

  • 1970 Laird discloses the details of the Son Tay Raid
  • 1972 Paris peace talks deadlocked
  • World War I

  • 1915 Battle of Ctesiphon in Mesopotamia
  • World War II

  • 1940 Romania becomes an Axis “power”

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