2017 Milestones

3 minute read


The ‘Gangnam Style’ video is uploaded to YouTube

JULY 15, 2012

The popularity of Psy’s K-pop ode to materialism–and its signature horsey-dance move (above)–would eventually require the video-streaming site to upgrade its views counter to track large enough numbers.

Also in style: May 7 marks 80 years of Ray-Ban sunglasses.


Apple releases the iPhone to U.S. customers

JUNE 29, 2007

In honor of the retail debut of the much anticipated device, which had been unveiled by Steve Jobs that January, every Apple store in the U.S.–164 at the time–remained open until midnight.

Also in retail: The then 4.2 million-sq.-ft. Mall of America turns 25 on Aug. 11.


Princess Diana’s passing

AUG. 31, 1997

The Paris car wreck that led to the death of the “people’s princess” also killed her companion, Dodi al Fayed, and their driver. An estimated million people came out for her funeral procession later that week.

Also in world-changing women: On Jan. 23, 20 years will have passed since Madeleine Albright, the first woman to be U.S. Secretary of State, was sworn in to office.


AIDS drug AZT gets federal approval

MARCH 20, 1987

The O.K. by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration was the first for any life-extending AIDS treatment.

Also in health: June 28 will mark five years since the U.S. Supreme Court upheld a crucial component of the Affordable Care Act.


Little Rock’s Central High School is integrated

SEPT. 25, 1957

Under guard by hundreds of federal troops, nine black students (below) made civil rights history by entering their Arkansas school.

Also in integration: March 24 will be the 15th anniversary of Halle Berry’s becoming the first black woman to win an Oscar in the Best Actress category.


FDR signs Executive Order 9066

FEB. 19, 1942

Not long after the infamy of Pearl Harbor, President Franklin D. Roosevelt made his own infamous move, giving the military new powers that would allow it to relocate Japanese Americans.

Also in persecution: On June 12 of the same year, Anne Frank received a diary for her birthday.


The Golden Gate Bridge opens

MAY 27, 1937

Members of the public first walked across the San Francisco landmark (above) on the day of its completion. Cars crossed the next day.

Also in California icons: Buffy the Vampire Slayer premiered on TV 20 years ago on March 10.


The U.S. enters World War I

APRIL 6, 1917

Following years of debate over neutrality, the U.S. formally declared war on Germany, joining Britain, France and Russia in the trenches.

Also in war: The Six-Day War, which redefined Israel’s borders, will have ended 50 years ago June 10.


Walt Whitman dies

MARCH 26, 1892

The poet (above) passed peacefully at home after a career that revolutionized American literature with works like Leaves of Grass.

Also in verse: Twenty years will have passed since rapper Christopher Wallace, also known as the Notorious B.I.G., was fatally shot on March 9.


Martin Luther nails his 95 theses to a church door

OCT. 31, 1517

The priest sparked the Protestant Reformation–forever reshaping Christianity–by posting his radical views on the door of Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany.

Also in faith: Mother Teresa, who became a saint in 2016, will have died 20 years ago on Sept. 5.

Compiled by Lily Rothman

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