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MARCH 30 - Today in Food History

• National Dining Car Day (see 1868 below)

On this day in:

1843 Napoleon E. Guerin of New York received the first U.S. patent for an egg incubator (U.S. patent No. 3,019). He also was the first to patent a life preserver.

1848 An ice jam on the upper Niagara River completely stops the flow of water over Niagara Falls for 30 hours.

1858 Hyman Lipman of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania received U.S. patent No. 19,783 for the first pencil with an eraser attached.

1867 The U.S. agreed to purchase Alaska from Russia for $7.2 million (about 2 cents an acre). The Treaty with Russia was negotiated and signed by Secretary of State William Seward and Russian Minister to the United States Edouard de Stoeckl.  Critics at the time called it "Seward’s Folly.”  (Alaska Food Trivia)

1868 The Pullman Palace Car Company introduced the first railroad dining car. (Dining Car Trivia & Facts)

1899 The Tropical Trading & Transport Company merged with rival Boston Fruit Company to form the United Fruit Company. The company traded bananas and other tropical fruit grown in Central and South America. The company is now known as Chiquita Brands International.

1911 Ellen Swallow Richards died.  She was one of the founders of the home economics movement in the U.S.

1914 Morton Salt Co. registered ‘When It Rains It Pours’ trademark. (Salt Trivia and Facts)

1945 Eric 'Slowhand' Clapton, singer & songwriter was born.  A member of the rock groups the Yardbirds and Cream.

1972 Royal Canadian Navy sailors are issued their very last daily rum ration. (Sailor Food Trivia)

1987 'Sunflowers' by Vincent Van Gogh is sold to a Japanese buyer for $39.9 million.  There has been some controversy on whether it is possibly a fake.  During the 1990s more than 2 dozen Van Gogh's have been labeled as fakes or copies.  Vincent Van Gogh was also born on this day in 1853.

1997 'Wannabe' by the Spice Girls is #1 on the charts.


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