On April 1st, the first day of the Japanese fiscal year, Japanese companies hold Nyushashiki, an entry ceremony for new hires. Inter-company teamwork is a main emphasis in the ceremony.
The first real estate signs, signifying a property for sale, were seen in some of the more upscale areas of Ancient Rome. One example found on the front of the ruins of a two-story apartment complex dated to roughly 150 AD declares, “L. Antonius, son of Gaius will accept payment for this property.”
Under current British law, all castles within the territory of the United Kingdom are zoned “historical monuments.”
Throughout history in the non-English speaking world, Passover and Easter have often been given an identical name, the Greek word “Pascha.”
The largest septic tank explosion killed 30 people in Texas in 1987. It was later found out that the tank was improperly installed. Remember to always closely inspect the work of your contractors.
The lawn as a landscaping element at one’s residence really didn’t catch on in the US until the 1870s, when the confluence of more leisure time and the creation of the suburban house/property archetype solidified the trend.
According to a factoid in a Newsday from 1967, April 16th 1796 was the day that Benjamin Smith, a Southold farmer, declared his independence from the United States, calling his 50-acre domain “Godly Acres.” None of the locals noticed or cared, and Smith faded into obscurity; the date of his death and the location of the farm are unknown.
The first known instance of the US president’s residence being called “The White House” was in a letter written in 1811 by Francis J. Jackson, former Minister for the US in Britain.
The International Space Station is the largest artificial satellite ever placed into Earth orbit. It is due to weigh in at 440 tons when completed and has roughly the same dimensions as a football field.
When George Washington was the official surveyor for Culpeper County, Virginia in the mid-1700s, he was one of the first Americans to use the now-indispensible theodolite surveying tool. English mathematician/engineer Leonard Digges had invented the device a decade before.
Scientists refer to the third millennium BC as the “Age of Cleanliness,” because toilet and sewer infrastructure were being implemented in many parts of the world including the civilization of Mohenjo-daro, founded in what is now Pakistan.
In the worldwide Easter-time celebrations, a number of Christian devotees reenacting the Stations of the Cross (Jesus’ journey from betrayal to death) will go so far as to actually be nailed to the cross.
Some items included in the April 2011 issue of Long Island Pulse Magazine are subject to “April Fools,” but are revealed as gags on http://www.lipulse.com.
The tallest tent (technically a “tensile structure”) on Earth is the Khan Shatyr Entertainment Center in Astana, the capital of Kazakhstan. It is 500 feet high and has an internal area larger than 10 football stadiums.
German engineer Georg Robert Werner Sell invented the prefabricated house. Between the end of WWII and 1948, over 5,000 were built for the US troops occupying Germany.