What Happened on November 14?

  • The Dow Jones closed higher than 1,000 for the first time in history. (1972) The Dow closed at 1,003.16, signaling an optimistic economic outlook on the heels of US President Nixon's re-election, heightened corporate profits and declining fears of increased taxes and inflation.

  • The US federal government effectively shut down. (1995) The US Congress couldn't agree on a budget, resulting in a standoff that forced many non-essential offices to close and most other government offices to run with minimal staff. The shutdown, which also closed national museums and parks, lasted several weeks.

  • The first streetcar in the US began operations. (1832) The "John Mason," named after its owner, was a horse-drawn streetcar that operated in New York city.

  • NASA launched Apollo 12, the second of the manned missions to the Moon's surface. (1969) Apollo 12 was the second successful attempt to land a manned spacecraft on the Moon. This mission, among other things, was significant in that it achieved a precision landing, touching down very close to the target point. The landing techniques would be used in future lunar explorations that required specifically-targeted landings. The first manned mission that successfully landed on the Moon on July 20, 1969 was Apollo 11.

  • The first major battle between the North Vietnamese and US military troops began during the Vietnam War. (1965) The "Battle of la Drang" lasted four days and resulted in heavy casualties for both sides. The battle included an ambush on November 17 which resulted in 155 deaths and 126 injuries.

  • The Trans-Neptune object "90377 Sedna" was discovered. (2003) The "90377 Sedna" is an object that lies beyond Neptune in the Solar System. It may have the proper characteristics to be classified as a dwarf planet, but scientists can't quite nail down its shape due to its distance from the Sun. At the time of its discovery, it was the farthest-known object in the Solar System, aside from some comets.

  • US President Jimmy Carter froze all Iranian assets — about $8 billion US Dollars worth — in the US. (1979) The executive order was in response to the Iran Hostage Crisis in which 66 US citizens were taken hostage in Tehran. Two days before the asset freeze, President Carter banned oil imports from Iran.

  • Nellie Bly began her attempt to complete a trip around the world in less than 80 days. (1889) Bly, also known as Elizabeth Cochrane, was a US journalist who set out on a trip similar to the fictional trip in the novel Around the World in 80 days, by Jules Verne — only Bly wanted to do it faster. She succeeded, completing the trip in 72 days.

  • The UK's BBC began its radio service. (1922) Arthur Burrows read the first newscast. Today, the BBC operates 10 radio stations and offers live streaming on the Internet.

  • The first plane takeoff from the deck of a ship took place. (1910) Eugene Ely, an aviator from Iowa, took off in a Curtiss pusher plane and from a platform on the USS Birmingham. The wheels touched the water after takeoff, but the plane succeeded in taking off.

  • Moby Dick was published. (1851) Herman Melville's novel, which was based on the real-life sinking of the Essex whaleship by a sperm whale, has become one of the most well-known novels in the world.

Discussion Comments


Pictures of Eugene Ely show him with a bicycle tire draped around his neck. At the last moment, someone decided he might need some sort of flotation protection in case he made a water landing. A bicycle inner tube was all they could find.

Graduate Aeronautical Engineer, 1952


The fourth to last bullet point is what caught my attention the most, especially considering that one person was able to travel across the world in such a short amount of time.

However, one thing that I do wonder is how she was able to do it in the first place. I mean after all, unless you're trying to rush, it's pretty difficult to go around the world in only 72 days, especially in that time period.

Speaking of which, with the technology that's available in this day and age, if someone wanted to complete a trip around the world, I seriously wonder how long that would take.

While it might not be an easy feat, on the other hand, don't forget that in 2014, technology has far advanced when compared to 1889.

In fact, I wish the bullet point would have went into a bit more detail about the methods that Nellie Bly used to travel around the world. Regardless though, this is an amazing accomplishment. It really shows how technology (or lack of it) won't always deter someone's determination.

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