" America is another name for opportunity. "
Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Captain James Cook Crosses Antarctic Circle

An explorer, navigator, and map maker, Cook sailed the Pacific Ocean between 1768 and 1779 and, with the help of new timekeeping instruments, drew the first accurate navigational maps of the area. He became the first person to cross the Antarctic Circle, as well as the first European to land on the Hawaiian islands, where he was identified by native Hawaiians as the reincarnation of their god Lono---a misunderstanding that eventually led to his death. How was Cook able to measure longitude?

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The Great Gatsby

Written by F. Scott Fitzgerald, an American novelist of the Jazz Age, The Great Gatsby is today considered standard reading in high school courses on American literature. It tells the story of a bootlegger whose obsessive dream of wealth and lost love is destroyed by a corrupt reality. Cynical yet poignant, the novel is a devastating portrait of the so-called American Dream, which measures success and love in terms of money. What quote from the novel is inscribed in Bill Gates' library?

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Muhammad Ali

Muhammad Ali is considered by some to be the greatest heavyweight boxer--and perhaps the greatest athlete--of all time. With his highly unorthodox style of carrying his hands low at his sides, he won the title a record three times and beat the best fighters of his generation. He stirred up controversy and was stripped of his title after refusing to serve in Vietnam, but he remained a hero to millions for his courage and moral conviction. How many of his 56 wins were knockouts?

Last updated on Wednesday, 17th January 2007

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