Science

2005 37¢ American Scientist: Barbara McClintock
June 16, 1902

Birth of Barbara McClintock

Barbara McClintock was born Eleanor McClintock on June 16, 1902, in Hartford, Connecticut.  She’s the first, and to date only woman to receive an unshared Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, for her discovery of transposition, or genetic “switches” in genes.

Read Article
1994 20¢ Great Americans: Virginia Apgar
June 7, 1909

Birth of Virginia Apgar

Dr. Virginia Apgar was born on June 7, 1909, in Westfield, New Jersey. She was a pioneer in the field of neonatology, the area of medicine that specializes in premature and ill newborns. Her work is credited with drastically reducing infant mortality worldwide.

Read Article
1981 35¢ Charles R. Drew, M.D.
June 3, 1904

Birth of Charles R. Drew

Doctor and medical researcher Charles R. Drew was born on June 3, 1904, in Washington, DC.  During World War II, Drew developed programs and blood mobiles to help the war effort.

Read Article
2008 41¢ American Scientists: John Bardeen
May 23, 1908

Birth of John Bardeen

Physicist John Bardeen was born on May 23, 1908, in Madison, Wisconsin.  Bardeen helped develop the transistor, which made possible the invention of almost every modern electronic device.

Read Article
2001 34¢ Diabetes Awareness
April 2, 1940

American Diabetes Association

On April 2, 1940, the Committee for the Establishment of a National Diabetes Association was formed, paving the way for the creation of the American Diabetes Association (ADA). Today it’s one of the top non-profit charity organizations in the country.

Read Article
1986 22¢ Public Hospitals
March 31, 1736

Bellevue Hospital

On March 31, 1736, a six-bed almshouse (home for the poor) was founded in New York City with construction starting only a year earlier.  That almshouse would eventually become Bellevue Hospital, which is often cited as the oldest public hospital in the US.

Read Article
1940 3¢ Luther Burbank
March 7, 1849

Birth of Luther Burbank 

Luther A. Burbank was born on March 7, 1849, in Lancaster, Massachusetts.  A largely self-trained horticulturalist, Burbank developed more than 800 strains and varieties of flowers, fruits, vegetables, grasses, and more.  He’s been called the “high priest of horticulture” and the “plant wizard.”

Read Article
2006 39¢ Large Center Snowflake stamp
January 28, 1887

A 15-Inch Snowflake Falls in Montana!

On January 28, 1887, it was claimed that a snowflake 15 inches across and eight inches thick fell on Fort Keough, Montana. While this claim hasn’t been verified, unusually large snowflakes are possible…

Read Article
1998 32¢ First Transcontinental Telephone Line
January 25, 1915

First Official Transcontinental Telephone Call

On January 25, 1915, the first official transcontinental telephone call from New York to San Francisco was made.  It was a revolutionary moment in communication, instantly linking callers on either side of the country. 

Read Article

Love history?

Discover events in American history – plus the stamps that make them come alive.

Subscribe to get This Day in History stories straight to your inbox every day!