By David Prerau

ISBN-10: 1560256559

ISBN-13: 9781560256557

Benjamin Franklin conceived of it. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle counseled it. Winston Churchill campaigned for it. Kaiser Wilhelm first hired it. Woodrow Wilson and Franklin Roosevelt went to conflict with it, and extra lately the U.S. fought an power predicament with it. For numerous months each year, for greater or worse, sunlight discounts time impacts huge numbers of individuals in the course of the international. And from Ben Franklin’s period to at the present time, its tale has been an interesting and sometimes-bizarre amalgam of colourful personalities and severe technical matters, purported bills and perceived merits, conflicts among curiosity teams and executive policymakers. It affects assorted and unforeseen parts, together with agricultural practices, road crime, the reporting of activities rankings, site visitors injuries, the inheritance rights of twins, and voter turnout. Illustrated with a well-liked examine technology and background, grab the sunlight offers an fascinating and strangely interesting tale of our try to keep watch over the daylight hours.

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Extra info for Seize the Daylight: The Curious and Contentious Story of Daylight Saving Time

Example text

The use of mechanical clocks spread slowly. Public clocks first appeared in London in about 1292, in Paris in 1300, and in Padua, Italy, in 1344. Clocks high up on town hall and church towers eventually proclaimed the local time in most cities and towns throughout Europe and beyond. The first instance where the time shown by a clock was officially advanced one hour is said to have occurred in Switzerland in the fifteenth century, although it had nothing to do with saving daylight. In 1444, during a siege of the Swiss city of Basel, the invading army hatched a plan to overthrow the defending garrison.

In fact, the sunlight that stole through Ben Franklin’s window on that Paris morning has preoccupied the thoughts of more than a few scientific minds, and the energies of numerous political leaders, in a host of intriguing and unexpected ways in the two hundred—plus years since it awakened Franklin. Chapter One The Waste of Daylight O, for an engine to keep back all clocks. —Ben Jonson, The New Inn As a beautiful morning dawned in the small town of Chislehurst, England, just south of London, in the summer of 1905, William Willett was up early for a horseback ride before breakfast, as was his custom.

An accidental sudden noise waked me about six in the morning,” he wrote in a whimsical letter to the Journal de Paris, “when I was surprised to find my room filled with light. ” The year was 1784, and the seventy-eight-year-old Franklin—statesman, author, and scientist—was living in Paris while serving as the American minister to France. His attendant had forgotten to close the shutters the previous evening, and when Franklin saw the sunlight streaming through his windows, he checked his watch.

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Seize the Daylight: The Curious and Contentious Story of Daylight Saving Time by David Prerau

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