World traffic: Transport opportunities around 1900

World traffic: Transport opportunities around 1900

Holiday time is travel time. And the eternal question arises: Where shall we go? Today’s possibilities are countless and, depending on the destination and means of travel, don’t even need to cost that much. As early as 1900, Europeans had, as a result of technological advances, a wide choice of travel destinations to which they could head by ship or train.

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Drawing electricity out of the clouds: Benjamin Franklin’s ‘Letters about Electricity’

Drawing electricity out of the clouds: Benjamin Franklin’s ‘Letters about Electricity’

‘Eripuit caelo fulmen sceptrumque tyrannis’ (He snatched the thunderbolt from heaven and the sceptre from tyrants) is an epigram about Benjamin Franklin, coined by the French economist and minister Anne-Robert Jacques Turgot (Möhring 2010, p. 253). It shows that Franklin achieved fame in the eighteenth century not only as co-author and signatory of the American Declaration of Independence but also as researcher into electricity and inventor of the lightning conductor. Read more

Walter Mittelholzer, tour operator

Walter Mittelholzer, tour operator

Commercial air travel for tourists began in Europe after the First World War in 1919. In Switzerland, Walter Mittelholzer and Alfred Comte, the driving forces behind the Swiss airline company Ad Astra Aero AG, started conducting tourist flights to the Alps in the early 1920s. As these ceased in the winter months, two tourist flights to Africa in 1929/30 and 1930/31 were just what the doctor ordered for Mittelholzer. Not only Read more