September Almanac
Aug29

September Almanac

September begins with Labor Day on the first Monday of the month. Labor Day became a federal holiday in 1894 to honor the nation’s workers. The first day of astronomical autumn is on Sept. 22. This is called the equinox because day and night are almost equal in length throughout the world. On this day the sun will rise exactly in the east and set exactly in the west. The average high temperature in Birmingham for September is 85...

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August 2017 Almanac
Jul31

August 2017 Almanac

On August 21, 2017, the moon’s shadow will race from the Pacific Coast to the Atlantic Coast. It will be the first total solar eclipse across any of the 48 contiguous states since 1979. The total eclipse will occur in a narrow band that will cross Tennessee, North Carolina, Georgia and South Carolina. The eclipse will be a partial eclipse in Alabama. At 1:31 p.m., the sun will be 90 percent obscured in Tuscaloosa. The maximum eclipse...

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July Almanac
Jun30

July Almanac

July 2017 Almanac for Birmingham and Tuscaloosa On July 4, 1776, the Declaration of Independence was adopted by the Second Continental Congress. The Continental Congresses had been formed as tensions with Great Britain increased. A resolution for independence for the American colonies was made on June 7, 1776, and Thomas Jefferson with the help of others drafted a declaration. On July 2, the delegates voted for independence, and on...

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June 2017 Almanac for Birmingham and Tuscaloosa
May29

June 2017 Almanac for Birmingham and Tuscaloosa

On June 14, 1777, the Continental Congress adopted the Stars and Bars as the official flag of the United States. Flag Day was first widely observed in 1877, according to World Book Encyclopedia. It was officially recognized by President Harry S. Truman in 1949, although it is not a federal holiday. Father’s Day is on June 18. Father’s Day is observed on the third Sunday of June. It was observed for many years unofficially until being...

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Historical Perspective: Ancient Astronomy
May11

Historical Perspective: Ancient Astronomy

For centuries human beings have observed the skies. Our ancestors knew more about the skies than we give them credit. For example, Pythagoras, who lived about 580-500 B.C., taught the earth is a sphere. Plato correctly believed that the moon reflected light from the sun. Aristotle believed in a spherical earth and moon. Aristarchus of Samos, who lived about 310-230 B.C., showed that the sun is much more distant than the moon....

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May 2017 Almanac for Birmingham and Tuscaloosa
May01

May 2017 Almanac for Birmingham and Tuscaloosa

After the Civil War, states in both the North and the South began a tradition of honoring their war dead. It was once called Decoration Day, but later called Memorial Day. The state of Alabama has on its calendar Confederate Memorial Day on the fourth Monday in April as well as National Memorial Day on the last Monday in May. National Memorial Day was at one time on May 30, but in 1968 it was changed to the last Monday in May. This...

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April 2017 Almanac
Mar29

April 2017 Almanac

Passover is on April 11, and Easter is on April 16. The Boston Marathon is held on April 17, which is Patriots’ Day. Patriots’ Day remembers the Battles of Lexington and Concord, which began the American Revolution on April 19, 1775. The average low temperature for Birmingham in April is 51 degrees, and the average high temperature is 74 degrees. The average precipitation for the month is 4.38 inches. According to the National Weather...

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Historical Perspective
Mar20

Historical Perspective

The tornado that devastated Tuscaloosa on April 27, 2011 will not soon be forgotten. The tornado tracked from Greene County through Tuscaloosa County and into Jefferson County leaving a scar upon the land. This tornado killed 64 people and traveled more than 80 miles, according to the National Weather Service. The same supercell thunderstorm then regenerated a tornado in eastern Jefferson County that traveled another 97 miles, killing...

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