For many, the summer is a time of discovering new things, getting outside, and enjoying some sunshine. One way some families do this is to visit an amusement park and ride everything from the Tilt-A-Whirl to the fastest, most terrifying roller coaster they can find. I was never much of a roller coaster fan until high school. That’s when I took the plunge (literally) and climbed on board. The first experience wasn’t the best, but before too long, I was riding the mega-monsters with the best of them!
Roller coasters are nothing new. It’s thought the earliest roller coasters may have appeared as far back as the 17th century in France. But the first time the public paid to ride a car along a wooden track at an amusement park was June 16, 1884. The place was Coney Island in Brooklyn, New York. And before long, companies, architects, and engineers would be racing each other to design the fastest, most thrilling, and most complicated coasters in the world.
Enjoy some roller coaster-themed printables below, and then take a look at some of the other events going on in history in 1884 (and download some more great freebies while you browse!).
What was going on around the world in 1884:
Grover Cleveland is elected President of the United States (free Presidential copywork)
The Ringling Brothers circus premiers (free circus placemats).
Sir Charles Parsons invents the first steam engine that is practical to operate. Enjoy a video on how steam engines work.
The Bureau of Labor is established by U.S. Congress (career book roundup and free (limited time) unit studies from The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine).
The capstone is placed on the Washington Monument (fun computer game all about addition and the Washington Monument).
The U.S. receives the Statue of Liberty in Paris (free printable activities about the Statue of Liberty).