Accomplishments and Records

What Was the Most Boring Day in History?

History is filled with dates that will live in infamy. The September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks; the December 7, 1941, bombing of Pearl Harbor; and the November 23, 1963, assassination of John F. Kennedy are just a few examples of days that had more than their fair share of adrenaline.

What about the other end of the excitement spectrum? Is there a day that was more boring than any others? Off the top of our heads, it’s hard to imagine anything more dull than the day Miss Ackerman introduced our high school English class to the writings of William Faulkner, but that only affected about 20 teenagers in one Michigan classroom. Was there a day that was utterly boring for the rest of the world?

British researcher William Tunstall-Pedoe must have been bored one day in 2010. Having nothing else to do, he designed a computer program to analyze all the news from each day in the twentieth century. The task was to figure out the least exciting day.

His search engine, True Knowledge, reviewed 300 million facts and landed on April 11, 1954. That is the day that was the most yawn-worthy of all.

In terms of notable historical figures, none were born that day, unless you count Turkish engineering professor Abdullah Atalar. No disrespect intended toward the distinguished professor, but thus far, no one has been petitioning to have his birthday designated as a national holiday.

As far as celebrity deaths go, an English footballer by the name of Jack Shufflebotham passed away that day — maybe. Some sources, such as this one confirm his death on April 11, 1954. Others, such as this one put his death at May 4, 1951. Possibly the indignity of dying on such a boring day prompted him to put it off for a few weeks.

When scanning the headlines, the computer was unable to identify anything particularly exciting going on in the world. No military conflicts, sporting events, movie releases, or fluctuations in the stock market.

Even the weather was boring, with no reports of tornados, floods, hurricanes, or as much as a warning about elevated allergy risks.

As we have previously pointed out, the BBC evening news on April 18, 1930, carried the report that there was no news that day. It would have been nice if BBC had made a similar announcement on April 11, 1954. That, at least, would have been interesting.

Do you know of anything interesting that took place on April 11, 1954? Please leave a comment or send us an email. If you were born on that date, please accept our apologies. No doubt, that was a very significant event.

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