Today’s Historiscope: December 1


1768 The slave ship Fredensborg sinks off Tromøy in Norway.

Fredensborg was a frigate built in Copenhagen in 1752 or 1753. After an unsuccessful stint in the triangular trade, her operational area was limited to the Caribbean, where she sailed as a trader until 1756. On 1 December 1768, Fredensborg sank in a storm off Tromøy in Arendal, Norway.

The wreck was discovered by three divers in September 1974, Leif Svalesen, Tore Svalesen and Odd Keilon Ommundsen. Leif Svalesen later worked extensively to document the ship and its history.


1824 US House of Representatives begins to decide outcome of election deadlock between John Quincy Adams and Andrew Jackson (Adams wins)

After winning election to the Senate, Jackson ran for president in 1824. Although he got a plurality in both electoral and popular vote against three major candidates, Jackson failed to get a majority and lost in the House of Representatives to John Quincy Adams. Jackson claimed that he lost by a “corrupt bargain” between Adams and Speaker of the House Henry Clay, who was also a candidate, to give Clay the office of Secretary of State in exchange for Adams winning the presidency. Jackson’s supporters then founded what became the Democratic Party.


1953 Hugh Hefner publishes 1st edition of Playboy magazine, featuring Marilyn Monroe as the magazine’s 1st centerfold

Hefner chose what he deemed the “sexiest” image, a previously unused nude study of Marilyn stretched with an upraised arm on a red velvet background with closed eyes and mouth open.[21] The heavy promotion centered around Marilyn’s nudity on the already-famous calendar, together with the teasers in marketing, made the new Playboy magazine a success.[22][23] The first issue sold out in weeks. Known circulation was 53,991.[24] The cover price was 50¢. Copies of the first issue in mint to near mint condition sold for over $5,000 in 2002.

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