Monday, April 12, 2010

He Split His Time and What Else?

Today I'd like to discuss Henry L. Stimson.

Henry L. Stimson was born in 1867, and was 33 when the 19th century ended. Stimson was about 9 when Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone, and about 12 when Thomas Edison invented the electric light. Neither invention became commonplace until the 20th century. The horse was the primary mode of transportation during Stimson's first three decades, though trains were often used for long distances.

Henry L. Stimson died in 1950. By that time, telephones and electric lights were common place. As well as automobiles, motion pictures, radios, and airplanes. Television was just beginning to catch on.

That's all you need to know about Henry L. Stimson.

Oh, wait. There's a couple more things.

Henry L. Stimson served as Secretary of War between 1940 and 1945. In that capacity he was a leading proponent of the development of the atomic bomb.

Just think, a man who spent his first three decades in the horse-and-buggy era helped bring about the nuclear age.

What the hell did he think an A-bomb was anyway, a giant cannonball?

15 comments:

  1. Talk about a lifespan that covered a lot of real estate! I wouldn't want to be shot out of that cannon, Kirk, with or without a net.

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  2. Les, a lot of what happens next century--oops, I mean THIS century (2010 and I still don't know what century I'm in) will be decided by people who grew up with rotary phones and manuel typewriters. We better be prepared.

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  3. Doesn't matter Kirk. There's no way we will be able to keep up with the current rate of change. Experts say that technological progress will 20,000 times what it was the previous century. All we can do is hang on for the ride and hope its friendly.

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  4. What's 20,000 times an atomic bomb?

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  5. I think it was inevitable that humans would eventually discover nuclear power...and it seems all inventions are used somehow for war. sigh. here lately i've been seriously considering the possibility of a Matrix existence in the not-too-distant future.

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  6. The Matrix? A false reality meant to keep us from the truth?

    That's not the future but the past. Remember the Iraq war?

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  7. I hope Kirk that I won't live long enough to find out the answer to your question.

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  8. But I'm afraid my children's children may.

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  9. kirk,according to buddhism, and several other philosophies, what we experience on a daily basis is a false reality. we keep ourselves from the truth.

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  10. It took a couple of days for the light to come on, Kirk. I grew up with rotary phones and manual typewriters. The Badger and I say all the time (and you've read these very words) that our first conversations were on those big, heavy black phones that smelled of our parents' cigarette smoke at the receiver. And I used a manual typewriter at school in that same era. I say the world better be prepared for US.

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  11. @standing--So we're kidding our selves?

    @Limes--What's funny is I thought those phones were so modern looking at the time--at least compared to the candlestick type phone Mr. Drucker used to talk into on Green Acres.

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  12. You know what remains with me most? The sheer weight of them. If you threw one at a man, he'd better duck quickly! I remember when the Princess phones came out. I got a baby blue one with my own phone number for my birthday. Yow!

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  13. When I was a kid I liked dialing a number, and them watching the dial go back to its' original position. Plus, the rattle-like sound it made when it did that.

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  14. Being a natural snoop I liked the party lines. It was also fun to sigh heavily into the phone and hear the line go silent.

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  15. You're lucky the call wasn't traced.

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