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1924: Business and industry; science; education; philosophy and religion.

By early 1923 Germany, in default in reparations payments called for by the Treaty of Versailles, was undergoing extreme monetary inflation. It was clear that economic instability in Europe was a danger to U.S. economic growth. On Dec. 15, 1923, Pres. Calvin Coolidge had appointed Charles G. Dawes, a banker and government official, to head a commission to study the problem. On Apr. 9, 1924, the commission proposed what came to be known as the Dawes Plan, a program to reorganize German debt payments and stabilize its currency. The plan substantially reduced Germany's reparations, which had been set at the enormous sum of 132,000,000,000 marks. Payments would be graduated from 1,000,000,000 gold marks in the first year to 2,500,000,000 in the fifth. The plan was agreed to at an international conference that began in London on July 16, and that went into effect on Sept. 1. The economic crisis was alleviated for a time.

Ford auto prices hit their lowest point after a series of price cuts: $290 without a self-starter. The price for the Model T had been $950 back in 1909.

A test run for transcontinental airmail was made in 27 hours from New York City to San Francisco. The best time in 1848 was three months (by ship to Panama, then overland across the Isthmus and by ship to San Francisco); in 1869 it took seven and a half days by rail.

Jan. 1

The number of radios in U.S. homes was over 2,500,000. In 1920 there had been no more than 5000 receivers in the U.S., most of them in the hands of experimenters and technicians.

Mar. 31

An Oregon public school law requiring all children of grammar- school age to attend public schools was ruled unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court. The law had been aimed chiefly at Roman Catholic and Lutheran parochial schools.

May 21

The theory of evolution was ruled untenable by the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church at San Antonio, Tex.

May 27

The Methodist Episcopal General Conference, meeting at Springfield, Mass., lifted its ban on dancing and theater attendance.

June 2

The struggle against child labor took the form of a proposed amendment to the Constitution. But by 1950 only 26 of the necessary 36 states had ratified the amendment.

June 15

The Ford Motor Company announced manufacture of its 10,000,000th automobile. Ford had taken seven years to make the first million cars, but only 132 working days to make the tenth million.

Oct. 15

Dirigible ZR-3, a German airship, completed the flight from Friedrichshafen, Germany, to Lakehurst, N.J. It was renamed the Los Angeles when taken over by the U.S. Navy.

Nov. 30

Wireless transmission of photographs from London to New York City was demonstrated by the Radio Corporation of America. It took 20 to 25 minutes for each photograph to be transmitted.

Dec. 13

Samuel Gompers, president of the American Federation of Labor from 1886 (except for 1895), died at 74.

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Author:Carruth, Gorton
Publication:Encyclopedia of American Facts & Dates, 9th ed.
Article Type:Reference Source
Date:Jan 1, 1993
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