January 29 in American History

January 29 in American History

Jan 29, 2024

History happens every day, so why not choose a random day and research it?

Living in Williamsburg, I'm reminded daily how many stories there are in history. Here, the main focus is the 18th century, but I can wander just a few miles away to Jamestown for the 17th century. And through books, blogs, visits to the fantastic Rockefeller Library, and traveling, can visit any era of course!

So I've done it again. I'm choosing a random day as I'm in the mood to write and, hopefully, give you both a-ha moments and an appetite to dig deeper by getting a quick view into the past.

Disclaimer: As a blogger, I use affiliate links sometimes! I may receive commission from purchases I share; it does not change your price but sometimes you might get a discount.

View between buildings, historic area of Colonial Williamsburg.

Historical summary of January 29th.

  • 1737- Thomas Payne, known for writing Common Sense, was born in England. Here in Colonial Williamsburg we hear his name often. The impact of his words can be felt throughout writings and speeches related to American independency- because he was a supporter who actually put pen to paper supporting it. Also born on January 29th: 1843- William McKinley, our 25th president and 1960- diver and Olympic gold medalist Greg Louganis.
  • 1820- King George III, who reigned during our War of Independence- the last King of America, died on January 29th. Also passing on this day: poet Robert Frost in 1963 and in 2008, Margaret Truman- author and daughter of President Harry S. Truman.
  • 1845- Edgar Allen Poe's the Raven was published. Get the book here. And if you want to see a super-cool, affordable, and truly unique museum: visit the one dedicated to him in Richmond Virginia. I've been to it multiple times and it is truly haunting, just like the man himself who was orphaned as a toddler.
  • 1861- The state of Kansas officially enters the Union. After being a struggling territory lacking supplies and experiencing poverty, the decision was to join the Union during the strife of Civil War. Read more here on the Kansas Historical Society's website.
  • 1929- The Seeing Eye Guide Dog organization was formed in Nashville Tennessee- an impactful organization still supporting those in need today. From research to public policy, this is an active organization and one I loved learning about. For the history, click here.
  • 1936- The first members of the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York were named. Those named included Babe Ruth and Ty Cobb. This year's inductions will take place in July. Want some stats on Babe Ruth for some "water cooler" knowledge? Click here.
  • 1958- Charles Starkweather was captured in Wyoming. As a true crime buff, mentioned in yesterday's book post, this is one I had to include. Serial killer Starkweather's reign of terror with accomplice (an even younger teenager) Caril Fugate is still a story that grabs true-crime addicts' attention today. Read more here.
  • 2002- President George W. Bush's famous State of the Union address, where he describes the "current" day Axis of Evil. You can read the address here.

Closing it out.

Be sure to use the links above to get more information on any of the events I listed and share your January 29th events in the comments.

Today's closing words: an excerpt from Poe's The Raven.

For the full poem, visit The Poe Museum's website here.

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,

Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore—

While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,

As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.

“’Tis some visitor,” I muttered, “tapping at my chamber door—

Only this and nothing more.”

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There is a huge practical disclaimer to the content on this blog, which is my way of sharing my excitement and basically journaling online.

1) I am not a historian nor an expert. I will let you know I’m relaying the information as I understand and interpret it. The employees of Colonial Williamsburg base their presentations, work, and responses on historical documents and mainly primary sources.

2) I will update for accuracy as history is constant learning. If you have a question about accuracy, please ask me! I will get the answer from the best source I can find.

3) Photo credit to me, Daphne Reznik, for all photos in this post, unless otherwise credited! All photos are personal photos taken in public access locations or with specific permission.