I actually appreciate stories about history. Even moreso when they contain interesting facts. Did you know that Lenin and the Bolshevik revolution was funded with gold donated by Jacob Schiff, a Wall Street capitalist? When you know your history, the rest of the world is much more interesting. Almost without fail, the mainstream version of history that we learn in school is far from the truth of what happened. Another aspect of history which I appreciate is looking for patterns of societal changes based on scientific inventions. Electricity, which was revolutionary in and of itself, brought us many things but probably the most notable of these was air conditioning. According to some historians, the first ‘air conditioning’ was when people cooled down President Garfield’s deathbed by almost 20 degrees by fanning ice toward him. The first real a/c was built by a guy who was named Willis Carrier. You may know that name because it is still involved in the Heating, Ventilation, A/C industry. Carrier’s first patent for his A/C was called an ‘Apparatus for Treating AIr.’ It was developed in 1902. The term air conditioning was not coined until a later date by someone named Stuart W. Cramer. In 1914, the first A/C was installed in a mansion for a cost of about $10. Since then, the cost of this technology has greatly decreased and it has become more accessible to the public as a whole. Air conditioning is now a familiar feature in almost home the entire U.S. The spread of air conditioning was followed by an increase in overall productivity, plus big cities in the South have now become more habitable. Air conditioning actually was truly revolutionary.
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