Momentous or Merely Memorable
40 YEARS AGO: Six Fateful Days
Tensions brewing since Israel became a state in 1948 erupt June 5, 1967, when it and Egypt go to war, each claiming the other invaded. Syria, Jordan and several other Arab states quickly join Egypt. After six days, Israel prevails. Its occupation of the Sinai Peninsula, Gaza Strip, Golan Heights and West Bank—uniting control of Jerusalem—aggravates Arab-Israeli territorial hostilities for decades.
60 YEARS AGO: The Man With the Plan
Secretary of State George Marshall, speaking at Harvard on June 5, 1947, outlines a plan to aid Europe's recovery from World War II. The U.S. will send money for food and the rebuilding of industry if Europe agrees on how to spend it. The program sends some $13 billion over 4 years, and paves the way for future cooperative efforts like the European Union. Marshall wins the Nobel Peace Prize in 1953.
70 YEARS AGO: Meals on Wheels
Oklahoma City grocer Sylvan Goldman introduces the shopping cart in June 1937. Inspired by folding chairs, his two-basket invention—rejected at first by women tired of pushing prams and men afraid of seeming weak—soon has shoppers buying twice as many groceries. Goldman, who later invents a luggage cart, dies in 1984, age 86.
90 YEARS AGO: Eyes on the Prize
The first Pulitzer Prizes, named for New York World owner Joseph Pulitzer (1847-1911), are awarded June 4, 1917. Pulitzer funded them to lift journalism above the "yellow" sensationalism he and competitor William Hearst practiced. Today 21 Pulitzers are awarded each May in journalism, photography, literature, music and drama.
140 YEARS AGO: Wright Stuff
Frank Lincoln Wright is born in Wisconsin June 8, 1867. Trained as an engineer, he learns architecture while working for Chicago master Louis Sullivan, and makes his name—by then changed to Frank Lloyd Wright—with open-plan, hearth-centered "prairie style" houses. Wright's signature spiral Guggenheim Museum is completed after his death in 1959.
170 YEARS AGO: Queen for 23,225 Days
Princess Alexandrina Victoria, 18, ascends to the British throne when her uncle, King William IV, dies June 20, 1837. Professing herself "very young and perhaps in many, though not in all things, inexperienced," Victoria ultimately presides over the expansion of her empire and the increased popularity, if not power, of the monarchy. Her reign, the longest in British history, ends with her death on January 22, 1901.