Here’s a post that caught my eye largely because of the timeline for a ninety-year-old person. It snagged my attention because my parents aren’t ninety, but they’re pretty close, so this is like the timeline for their lives: Start at WWII and march forward. Here’s television, here’s the Civil Rights era right here, here’s the first man on the moon … I was just thinking, because it was Holocaust Remembrance Day yesterday, how the whole Holocaust is sinking into ancient history for young people today.
The liberation of Auschwitz was seventy-four years ago. Can that even be right? Seventy-four years. For someone who’s twenty today, that was fifty-four years before they were born.
What was happening fifty-four years before I was born? Let me see. The assassination of Archduke Ferdinand, launching WWI. That doesn’t really seem like ancient history to me, partly because for me WWI and WWII happened basically together, a one-two punch of violent struggle and human tragedy.
Julian Huxley was at the height of his career. That does seem like ancient history.
Oh, I see William Carrier patented the air conditioner. Not super important juuuust at this moment, with temps here set to fall below zero in a couple of days, but every July, I bless the name of William Haviland Carrier, as the temps go up above 90 degrees for weeks on end.
Well, now, let me see. From the post I originally linked, I note that the year(s) my parents were born are closer in time to the day Lincoln was shot than they are to today. That is indeed shocking. Lincoln really is back there in the mists of history.
A similar bit of trivia: Cleopatra lived closer to today than she did to the building of the Great Pyramids. Wow. Definitely click through and admire this post, which eventually goes straight back to the Big Bang.