The first dinosaur eggs were discovered in 1923. That same year 100 years ago, the Hollywood Sign was inaugurated—though it originally read “Hollywoodland.”
Before we welcome a new year, we ought to look back at the many important events that happened exactly 100 years ago. These include coups d’état, wars, marriages, disasters, and strikes, among others, that still have a lasting impact on our world today.
View 1923 Events (100 Years Ago) in a full screen map
As is often the case, many of the most important events of 1923 were political. In the U.S.:
- The Ku Klux Klan refused to publish a list of its millions of members, which was required by law.
- New York’s Moderation League was created to amend the definition of the “intoxicating liquors” prohibited by Prohibition. Members thought of this as a more achievable goal than repealing Prohibition altogether.
- Vice President Calvin Coolidge was sworn in as the 30th President following the sudden death of President Warren G. Harding in August.
- Coolidge then addressed Congress in the first radio broadcast from a U.S. President.
Yet, the U.S. isn’t the only country to face a multitude of changes. Turkey also faced monumental events in 1923, starting with the Treaty of Lausanne, which settled the boundaries of the modern Republic of Turkey and ended the Ottoman Empire after 624 years. Around the same time, Ankara became the capital of Turkey. Meanwhile, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk founded the Republican People’s Party (CHP) and was elected as the first president of Turkey. The same year, İsmet İnönü was appointed as the first prime minister of Turkey.
The women’s movement was also being established around the world. The Egyptian Feminist Union, the first nationwide feminist movement in Egypt, was founded at the home of activist Huda Sha’arawi in March. In Iraq, the women’s movement started with the foundation of the Women’s Awakening Club.
Group the map by “Wars & Coups” to see the next most popular event category, or read on for education and culture insights from 1923.
Events in this category from 1923 included marriages amongst the English monarchy. In April 1923, the current Queen Elizabeth’s mother, Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon, married future King George VI. The same year, King George VI’s cousin, Her Highness Princess Maud of Fife, was also wed.
Meanwhile, in the U.S.:
- The American Law Institute was incorporated.
- The Hollywood Sign, “Hollywoodland” was inaugurated in California… to promote a new housing development.
- Roy and Walt Disney founded The Walt Disney Company.
- Vladimir K. Zworykin filed a patent for “television systems.”
- Marcel Duchamp’s artwork The Bride Stripped Bare by Her Bachelors, Even (La mariée mise à nu par ses célibataires, même or The Large Glass) was completed.
Of course, then there’s the discovery that may have inspired a million movies, including one of the highest-grossing media franchises of all time: dinosaur eggs. Near Flaming Cliffs, Mongolia, American explorer Roy Chapman Andrews was the first to come across these prehistoric artifacts, though this is far from the final first of the year.
When it came to sports in 1923, interest in women’s participation grew following previous years’ Women’s World Games and Women’s Olympiads.
As a result, 1923 was the year of women’s track and field. In August, the first British Track & Field championships for women were held in London. The following month was the first American Track & Field championships for women in New Jersey.
However, the year wasn’t all good. Quite a few disastrous events took place in 1923, including Tokyo and Yokohama’s Great Kantō earthquake, which resulted in over 100,000 deaths.
While not as deadly, Mount Etna’s eruption in Italy destroyed the homes of 60,000 people.
For more on the Most Disastrous Natural Disasters, check out our post on the subject.
While the events of 1923 are a century old, their impact can still be felt today. For example, today, Disney is one of the world’s largest and most well-known companies. The Hollywood sign remains a frequented tourist destination and dinosaur eggs are more popular than ever thanks to the Jurassic Park franchise.