ContractsProf Blog

Editor: Myanna Dellinger
University of South Dakota School of Law

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Today in history—March 20

1602: The first great modern commercial enterprise, the Dutch East India Company, is founded.

1793: William Murray, 1st Earl of Mansfield, the Chief Justice whose was perhaps England's greatest commercial jurist, dies at London.

1852: Boston’s J.P. Jewett takes a chance by publishing a work by an unknown author.  Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin, or Life Among the Lowly will sell an unprecedented 500,000 copies by 1857.

1869: William E. Story agrees to pay his 15-year-old nephew William 2d $5,000 if the latter will "refrain from drinking, using tobacco, swearing, and playing cards or billiards for money until he became 21 years of age."

1883: The Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property is signed.

1904: The father of behavioral psychology, Burrhus Frederic Skinner, is born at Susquehanna, Pennsylvania. The story that he raised his daughter in a Skinner box is an urban legend. Probably, anyway.

1916: Albert Einstein, one of the relatively few scientists whose name will become a registered trademark, publishes his The Foundation of the General Theory of Relativity.

1934: San Francisco Mayor and longtime California Assembly Speaker Willie Lewis Brown, Jr. (Hastings Law 1958) is born at Mineola, Texas.

1939: Future Montreal lawyer and Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney (Laval Law 1964) is born at Baie-Comeau, Quebec.

1941: Securities and Exchange Commissioner Jerome New Frank is confirmed by the Senate to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 1st Circuit.

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