1916 Facts, Fun Trivia and History

1916 Facts, Fun Trivia and History

Top Ten Baby Names of 1916

Mary, Helen, Dorothy, Margaret, Ruth, John, William, James, Robert, Joseph

US Life Expectancy

(1916) Males: 49.6 years, Females: 54.3 years

Firsts, Inventions, and Wonders

Piggly Wiggly revolutionized grocery shopping by allowing customers to select their items, “To have no store clerks gab and smirk while folks are standing around ten deep to get waited on.”

The Professional Golfers Association of America (PGA) was founded in New York City.

Fall of a Nation, the 1916 sequel to D.W. Griffith’s Birth of a Nation, is considered the first sequel in film history, but no copies exist.

The US Department of Interior formed the National Park Service.

Mr. Peanut from Planters’ brand peanuts was created by 13-year-old Antonio Gentile, for a contest in 1916. He won $5. Mr. Peanut appeared in the Saturday Evening Post on February 23, 1918.

Oxycodone, a narcotic painkiller closely related to codeine, was synthesized in Germany.

Norman Rockwell’s’ first cover (Mother’s Day Off) for the Saturday Evening Post was published on May 20.

Tristan Tzara is often credited for founding the Dadaism art movement.

The Chicago Cubs played their first game at Weeghman Park (now Wrigley Field), defeating the Cincinnati Reds 7–6 in 11 innings.

In 1916, John D. Rockefeller became the world’s first confirmed U.S. billionaire.

The phrase “Founding Fathers” – usually referring to John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and George Washington – was coined by Warren G Harding in 1916.

The Most Popular Singers and Artists of 1916 include

The American Quartet, Sam Ash, Elsie Baker, Elizabeth Brice, Henry Burr, Albert Campbell, Enrico Caruso, Arthur Collins, Marguerite Dunlap, Marguerite Farrell, Arthur Fields, Byron G. Harlan, Charles Harrison, Al Jolson, Charles King, Olive Kline, Harry Macdonough, John McCormack, Lambert Murphy, Billy Murray, Geoffrey O’Hara, The Orpheus Quartet, The Peerless Quartet, Prince’s Orchestra, The Taylor Trio, The Victor Military Band, Walter Van Brunt, Elizabeth Wheeler

Pop Culture Facts & History

On October 7, 1916, the Georgia Tech Engineers defeated the Cumberland College Bulldogs 222–0. Georgia Tech’s coach was John Heisman; later, the Heisman Trophy was named after him in 1935.

The Star-Spangled Banner, when written in 1814 as a poem by Francis Scott Key, was initially titled The Defence of Fort McHenry and kept its original title until the poem was paired with music and people nicknamed it Star-Spangled Banner in 1916. The melody is from an older English tune, To Anacreon in Heaven.

An Arctic cold front slammed through Browning, Montana, dropping the temperature overnight, January 23, from 44°F to -56°F in 24 hours. The most dramatic 24-hour drop in temperature ever recorded in the US.

White-Tailed Sea Eagles went extinct in Scotland in 1916 due to hunting and egg collecting. In 1975, a breeding pair from Norway was re-introduced, and by 2006, the 200th Sea Eagle egg hatched on the Isle of Skye.

From 1860 through 1016, the British army required soldiers to have a mustache. That was revoked in October 1916, because the recruits were so young that some could not rustle up more than a thin, mousey streak.

The Statue of Liberty’s torch has been closed to the public since July 30, 1916, when it sustained structural damage from the Black Tom explosion – an act of German sabotage.

America’s last stagecoach robbery took place on December 5, 1916. A wagon headed for Jarbidge, NV, was hit. Fred Searcy, the driver, was killed, and $4,000 vanished. A drifter, Ben Kuhl, was tied to the crime by a bloody palm print. This marked the first time palm print evidence was used in a U.S. court. The $4,000 was never found.

Frank Grigware was serving a life sentence at Leavenworth Prison when he escaped in 1910 and fled to Canada. By 1916, he was elected mayor of Spirit River, Alberta, Canada.

A “blue discharge” was a form of administrative military discharge issued by the U.S. from 1916-1947. Neither honorable nor dishonorable, the blue discharge became the discharge of choice for commanders seeking to remove homosexual service members from the ranks.

Jeanette Rankin was elected to the US House of Representatives in 1916, four years before women won the right to vote nationwide.

The Movie Stars

The term ‘movie star’ originated from Paramount Pictures. In 1916, the studio contracted 22 actors and honored each with a star on the logo.
Based on Famous Players-Lasky (precursor to Paramount) members, they were Valentine Grant, Wallace Reed, Owen Moore, Donald Brian, Fanny Ward, Pauline Frederick, Theodore Roberts, Ann Pennington, Mary Pickford, Marguerite Clark, Mae Murray, Marie Doro, Louise Huff, Geraldine Farrer, Blanche Sweet, Anita King, Hazel dawn, Lou Tellegen, Cleo Ridgely, Victor Moore, Sessue Hayakawa, and Thomas Meighan.

WWI News

A miscalculation of Montana’s population led to 40,000 men being drafted into the 1st World War…10% of the state’s population.

Due to the outbreak of World War I, the 1916 Summer Olympics in Berlin, Germany, was canceled.

The Tragedy

In 1916, 2,223 Americans died in mining accidents.

Nobel Prize Winners

Physics – not awarded
Chemistry – not awarded
Medicine – not awarded
Literature – Carl Gustaf Verner von Heidenstam
Peace – not awarded

Popular and Best-selling Books From 1916

Fiction Bestsellers:

1. Seventeen by Booth Tarkington
2. When a Man’s a Man by Harold Bell Wright
3. Just David by Eleanor H. Porter
4. Mr. Britling Sees It Through by H.G. Wells
5. Life and Gabriella by Ellen Glasgow
6. The Real Adventure by Henry Kitchell Webster
7. Bars of Iron by Ethel M. Dell
8. Nan of Music Mountain by Frank H. Spearman
9. Dear Enemy by Jean Webster
10. The Heart of Rachael by Kathleen Norris

Other Books of Note

Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce
A Course in General Linguistics by Ferdinand de Saussure
Imperialism: The Highest Stage of Capitalism by Vladimir Lenin
Democracy and Education by John Dewey
Psychology of the Unconscious by C.  Jung (English translation by Beatrice M. Hinkle)
The Passing of the Great Race by Madison Grant


World Series Champions: Boston Red Sox
Stanley Cup Champs: Montreal Canadians
U.S. Open Golf: Chick Evans
U.S. Tennis (Men/Ladies): Richard Norris Williams/Molla Bjurstedt
Wimbledon (Men/Women): not held (WWI)
NCAA Football Champions: Pitt
Kentucky Derby Winner: George Smith
Boston Marathon Winner: Arthur Roth Time: 2:27:16

More 1916 Facts & History Resources:

Most Popular Baby Names (BabyCenter.com)
Popular and Notable Books (popculture.us) 
Broadway Shows that Opened in 1916
1916 Calendar, courtesy of Time and Date.com 
Fact Monster
1916 in Movies (according to IMDB) 
Wikipedia 1916